Thursday, 5 September 2013

DIY Cardboard Box Inkle Loom Tutorial PART 3!



 Remember this?

I know it's been a long time coming.  It turns out maintaining an acreage in the summertime while wrangling a 4 year old and a baby and keeping up a blog is---whaaaaaaaaaaaat?! People do this!???  I seriously NEED more hours in a day.  :) 

Thank you for following along, and for staying energized excited about this project. I hope that you will join along with me and thread up that cardboard loom so we can take it for a little test drive!

First you created an inkle loom out of a cardboard box (totally rad) and then you made some string heddles for you are ready for part 3! Let's learn how to thread up that loom and start weaving an inkle!

For this you'll need your loom, 20 heddles, a pair of sharp scissors, an extra piece of cardboard to make a shuttle, a plastic ruler you get inside a geometry kit, and 4 different colours of mercerized cotton string in a uniform size (thicker is better).  I used Lily brand 8 strand cable cotton yarn from the thrift store.  Size 5 crochet thread would also work.  I DO NOT recommend you use wool, or acrylic or novelty yarns of any kind for your first few attempts.  Acrylic yarn stretches, novelty yarn catches on everything and wool will usually bind and felt a little around the heddles.  Smooth, tightly spun cotton is best. I also don't recommend using that thick baby cotton or the kind used to knit/crochet dishcloths, as that stuff is softer and loosely spun.  It will pill and fray with friction.

The tutorial is split up into six video segments. The first one is about warping the loom, and rest are a five part series about weaving your band, start to finish! 

I hope you find them helpful!  My tools were limited, but I tried the best I could to give you a good start!  Special credit goes to my loving and patient husband Justin Keller, who filmed all the segments and helped me figure out how to edit them.

Some images to help:


This is your pattern draft.  It's done on brick layout graph paper.
You can find all kinds of graph paper, including brick layout free online.  I get my graph paper here: .  I like it because you can set the scale and everything.  Some of the other graph papers found on that site are helpful for drafting more advance structures like basketweave pick up and horizontal bar pick-up.

And this is how you read it, left to right, according to the numbers.
 Thread 1 is royal blue and open, thread 2 is royal blue and heddled, thread 3 is white and open, etc.  You can substitute any 4 colours in this pattern, or if you are feeling even more adventurous you can mess around with several colours, just be sure you keep EACH SET of colours. So all 3 greens in the first cluster need to be the same colour, both whites that come after it need to be the same colour, then all 3 purples should be all the same colour, etc. below is one example of how youc an switch up the colour sets:

I would keep the two sets of border threads the same colour.  You can also sub colours in the white areas.  

The possibilities are endless--just with one pattern draft!

 What threading looks like from the side:

How an open thread looks on the loom
How a heddled thread looks on the loom

Position (shed) one.  The open threads are above the heddled threads.

Position (shed) two.  The open threads are below the heddled threads.

If you have any questions please email me at:
heartsonfibreblog (at) gmail (dot) com

Best wishes on your inkle weaving journey!
Happy Creating!




Anonymous said...

Great video. This was so easy to do. Thanks

Viltmaaraan said...

Thanks for the tutorial, I made a loom for my mochila bag ! See my fb : it fryske skiepke

Blanca De La Sotilla said...

Thank you so much for sharing!I''m addicted now!!
I was searching for more info on the internet and I saw different types of weaving and I don't really understand the difference between the heddles and the cards that some people use to make the same weaving. Could you please tell me the difference? Is easier with one of them? I need your help!! ☺️☺️☺️
Thanks in advance!

Dipti Trikannad said...

Thank you so much for this lovely tutorial. Understood the process so well.

Leslie Clark said...

I don’t know if you’re still checking this space, but I have a couple questions. I have finished my first piece following your instructions, which were mostly very helpful.

However, 2 probs arose: it was very difficult to change my shed - it popped up no problem for the open rows but when it came to the heddle row, I had to really push hard to get it down. I watched you work on the videos and you didn’t have to work anywhere near that hard. Any ideas what might cause that?

Also, when I took it off the loom, i had nothing I could trim at the weaving started exactly where the knots were...was I meant to move those away from the front bar after tying them?

Thanks so much, it was a real blast weaving for the first time!

JQ said...

Hi Leslie,

Thanks for following along! I'm glad to hear they helped you.

Difficulty pushing open threads below the heddles could be caused by a number of things. If the threads get hung upon or blocked by the heddles, then try opening them up a bit across the heddle bar so that there's a bit of space between for the threads to travel.

The length of your heddles and where they hold the harnessed threads in relationship to the open threads might also be an issue. I like to make sure that the slope of my open threads meets the point at which my heddled threads go through each heddle loop (the point at which those threads angle up towards the top bar). I hope this makes sense. I should have included a diagram showing that in my tutorial.

I recommend advancing the knots so that they end up being an inch or more away from the beginning of your weaving (Inkle Weaving Part One 2:30). If the knots are too close and/or you want a fringe you can cut them off (even cut a bit of the band off) and un-weave the weft until you like the length of fringe. Then weave the fresh weft end into the woven row behind it, same as we did with the other end in Part Five.

I hope this helps! Thanks again for following this tutorial!