I've been wanting to try my hand at weaving again so when inspiration struck this month I knew I had to make this one of my 40 Projects Just For Fun. I had a little loom as a kid and made beaded bracelets and pot holders but I hadn't really thought much more about trying this medium as an adult until I saw the giant loom someone had made to make a rug out of cut up t-shirts. I still want to try that but this is a little more realistic for now.
I've been really drawn to natural elements and textures lately but still love how they look along side bold colors and patterns so I gathered some supplies I had on hand and then did a little browsing through Instagram to see what I'd find under #weaving. There were a lot of hair photos but then there were some beautifully modern, kawaii influenced pieces by a few users in particular that seemed to be fiber artists.
One of the women I was most impressed by was @cathymcmurray. Her work is fresh while still maintaining an ethnic vibe. I didn't find her woven projects on her site but they're in her IG feed. Then I discovered the wall hangings from Mimi Jung at Brook and Lyn and fell in love with their colors and patterns. My most favorite fiber artist on IG, though, is @houseofmaryannevintage. Her designs feel young and modern. I feel like I just discovered of a whole new world of fiber art and design. Here are a few more beautiful pieces I found through Pinterest.
This one was really an experiment but I love how it turned out. I used supplies I already had on hand so it cost nothing to make and was therapeutic enough to work on while listening to some Ted Talks on YouTube. I learned a few things as I went like starting and stopping thick fibers near an edge but not worrying about where you start and stop weaving with smaller ones. It's not as noticeable. I learned to not pull too tightly else I end up with an hourglass shape rather than a straight one, although I did get a little of that near the bottom. I learned there are so many ways to make patterns and use colors that I'm surely going to have to make another one or two. Here's what the back of it looks like.
Above shows how I skipped a few rows to get a diamond shape of negative space.
Here's what I did in case you're wanting to make your own:
1. I didn't want to invest in a loom since this was an experiment and I knew from a previous project years ago that I could essentially make my own kind of loom with a frame and some nails. I had an old drawer that I knew was a good size for a wall-hanging so I gathered some supplies. I had regular brown twine that I used for my base and then gathered some pink plastic twine (Lowe's), woven pink cord (also Lowe's), and dark pink chunky yarn. I recommend a range of thicknesses if you can manage it for more interesting textures. 2. Then I nailed 13 nailes into the top and bottom of the back side, tied a knot to the top left nail and wove my brown twine up and down the rows until I got to the other side and wrapped the twine through the top loops and knotted it again where I started. 3. Next I cut a length of pink plastic twine and started a few rows in from the edge so as to hide the end and wove over and under until I ran out. Then I switched to the next material and did the same. I tried a few different things I saw in images online but wanted to keep it pretty simple for my first time. 5. When I was almost to the bottom I tucked in my last end of pink twine and then cut my brown twine where it was at the nail and tied two rows at a time into a knot to secure the base. 6. I added a dowel rod through the top loops at the ends and another piece of twine to hang it to a screw. Ta-Da!
It took me about 8 hours total split between other responsibilties and sleeping and I kept at it until I was done so as not to lose motivation. I'm really proud of how it turned out and have it hanging on our wall in the dining room.
Here's one great resource for doing something much smaller with children. I joined some new friends at a local Forest School gathering and the project that day was to make our own mini looms from sticks and yarn and to weave in different things we found in the woods. There were some really beautiful creations made by those mamas and preschoolers and I found myself way more intrigued by it than Ruby. We ended up with sticks and leaves tucked in between different colors of yarn and fabric. I kept it for her in hopes that she'll remember what a fun morning we had with our friends exploring the woods.
I may not be the best resource for further questions since I'm still just figuring it out myself but if anyone else has anything to add in the comments about their experience or any sites to check out, feel free.
Have you ever woven something? How did it turn out?