Saturday, April 11, 2009

Where To Find Recycled Yarn

If you read my Art of Recycling blog you may have read about how people are recycling yarn from sweaters to use to create new items. If you're into reducing waste or even just saving money you may want to try this yourself. It's really easy to get the yarn back from a sweater, scarf, afghan, or whatever has been knitted or crocheted. You can pick up those items for under a dollar at garage sales or thrift stores. There are lots of easy to follow instructions for unraveling the yarn found on the net, so I'm not going to reproduce that here. If you find the process a bit time consuming or too boring for you there are many places you can purchase yarn others have reclaimed. Here's a quick list.

Neauveau Fiber Arts

Lion Recycled Cotton
Recycled Yarn and Gently Used Stuff (eBay Store)

The Wool Peddler

My 7 Kids

If you reclaim yarn and sell it on the internet please leave your link in the comments for this post. I will see it and add it to the list on the sidebar as well.


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Been Busy

I've been very busy with getting divorced, helping the kids to adjust, searching for a job, and searching for a place to live. Not much time to weave, unfortunately. So I figured I do a quick post highlighting a few other tri-loom weavers and their work.

Lana of Bruggie Tailes in Australia has woven a beautiful Maclaren Tartan that I find very inspiring. I've already got plans to create the Cambell Tartan as soon as I finish the shawl for my mother. Trilooms are perfect for Tartan weaves because of the way they duplicate the pattern on each side as you work.

Leigh of Leigh's Fiber Journal has created an Alpaca Teddy Bear Shawl. I think my daughter would like some for her dolls. In fact, it's about time to teach her how to weave :)

Fibergarden is using a truly gorgeous yarn from Ironstone Farms to create a large trapezoid shaped wrap.

I promise to have more of my own work for you all as soon as I have a job and a place to live.


Friday, January 23, 2009

On the Loom ...

I'm currently working on a shawl for my mother. It's a cut length shawl blending together the two colors she wears most. Unfortunately the shiny gold wall color where I hang my loom doesn't work well for photographing my work.


Thursday, June 7, 2007

Continuous Weave Method

A weaver just asked me how to weave on the Triangle Loom. She couldn't figure out what to do with the shuttle. Since I just wrote out a nice set of instructions for her, I figured I'd better post it here to for everyone else as well. I'll take pictures next time I start a project and add them to these instructions.

First a few definitions for those who may not know these terms yet.

If you've ever woven on a loom (floor loom, tapestry loom, etc...) then you know what a shuttle is. If you don't know what a shuttle is don't worry about it. I'll define it at the end in case you're curious. For Triangle Loom weaving, you don't use a shuttle. A crochet hook works well - the longer the better. But you don't even need that if you don't have one. You leave the yarn as a skein or ball and work strait from that. There really is no waste and absolutely no need for a shuttle.

The yarn that goes strait across the loom. This is what you will weave over and under.

The yarn that weaves over and under the warp.

Starting Your Shawl

  1. Let your skein or ball of yarn rest in a box or basket on the floor below your loom. This will keep it from rolling around as you work.
  2. To start, tie the end of your yarn onto the left corner at the top (assuming you are putting the long side of the triangle at the top). If you are planning to have fringe on your shawl make the tail end of that knot the length you plan to make your fringe. It will become part of your fringe and you won't have do do anything more with that end when you're done.
  3. Pull the yarn across to the right corner. You've created your first warp. Don't pull it too tight - when all the wefts weave across this it will tighten up. I usually leave mine drooping about an inch or two below the nails at the center on my 7 foot loom - less on my smaller looms.
  4. Now go around the nail next to that right corner on the top rail.
  5. Then go down to the nail just under that right corner on the side rail. You've created your first weft on the right side, the yarn going over the warp.
  6. Go back across to the nail just under the left corner nail where you started with the knot. You've created your second warp.
  7. Now go up to the nail on the top rail next to that left corner. You've created the first weft on the left side.

Weaving your Shawl

  1. Notice how your first weft went over the first (top) warp. Your next one will need to go under that first warp and over the second warp.
  2. Use your crochet hook to weave up through the two warps you created. Pull a loop of yarn down through. (If not using a crochet hook, just use your fingers to weave a loop of yarn down through).
  3. You spread that loop out to each side to the nails just under the previously used nails on the side rails. So the left side of the loop becomes weft on the left, the bottom of the loop becomes the next warp and the right side of the loop becomes weft on the right.
  4. If the yarn catches in the nails on the top rail as you pull it across, just lift it over. It should end up next to the nail you previously used on the top right.
  5. Then you start at the top (now on the right side - you'll see what I mean) and weave another loop down... So your fabric forms at both sides and works in towards the middle instead of starting at the bottom and working toward the top like other looms.

For those of you still wondering what a shuttle is...
It's a tool that the weft yarn is wrapped around. On looms that use shuttles, the warp yarn and the weft yarn are two separate yarns. You then attach the end of your yarn on the shuttle to the warp already on your loom. Then you weave the shuttle through the warp back and forth. This pulls your weft yarn through and creates the fabric.


Monday, April 16, 2007

First Cut Length Shawl - Weaving has begun!

Cut Length ShawlHere's a photo of the cut length shawl I'm currently weaving on my 7 foot loom. You can see some of the cut lengths of yarn waiting for me to weave them hanging on the left of the loom. Progress is slow on this as I don't have a lot of free time for my weaving. But I always make sure to weave at least one strand through each day. Shortrow, if you're reading this, you may recognize the blue yarn.

When this one is done, I'll put the experimental shawl back on the loom and see if I can get that one fixed up.

cut length weave close upAnd here's a close up. As always, click the photos to see a larger view.


Friday, March 30, 2007

A Few New Things

Changing My Look
Decided I didn't like the look of my blog so I picked a different background. All the previous posts are still here, it just has a new look.

Show This Weekend
Been really busy the past couple of weeks. My show season is starting up and the first one is tomorrow. I sat around all winter playing with my looms and figuring the booth setup was perfect as it was. One week ago I set my booth up in my studio to make sure I have all the pieces together and ready for the show. As usual, that's when I decide to make some major changes to the booth design and I'm off to the lumber yard for raw wood. Tonights the setup for the show and my booth is nearly ready (just a few more nails to hammer in).

The show is tomorrow at Waterford Mott High School (Waterford, Michigan). Corner of Scott Lake and Pontiac Lake roads. Saturday, March 31 from 10 to 4. I'll be in booth number 35 in the gym. I won't have any of my weaving there - I'm still learning the craft. I'm hoping by next year I will be able to bring some of my weaving into my shows as well. This year it will still be all beadwork.

Experimental Shawl
I know I promised to post pictures of the expirimental cotton shawl I was weaving. It didn't work out the way I planned and I just haven't been inspired enough to take pictures yet. As I mentioned previously I was going to run out of yarn before the weaving was finished. My solution was to leave the center unwoven and create a fringe from the weft that would run up the center back of the shawl. I removed the shawl from the loom and knotted the weft to pull the two halfs of the shawl together. Unfortunately, there was no longer an even tension on the shawl so the fabric is all buckled around the knots. I've decided that I need to untie those knots and place the shawl back on the loom down at the bottom, so the two halves match up correctly in the center. Then I'll try retying my knots and that should make the fabric lay correctly. Pictures of the before during and after will be posted next week (after I finish my show).

Princess Poncho
I built a small 18" triloom a few weeks ago because I wanted one I could take with me for long trips in the car and stuff like that. Then I went craft shopping with my 3 year old and while I was looking at beads she wandered over to the yarn and found some bright pink bulky yarn, so I decided to make her a shawl. I wove 4 triangles and stitched them together. She had trouble keeping it on, so I turned it into a poncho. Now all her little friends want one too. I'll upload the picture next time I post.

I made the new loom using nails, but I'm finding the nails catch in the fabric of my sleeves as I work with the loom. So I need to replace those nails with pegs.

I'm now using the 18" loom to make a ruana for myself from a nice brown boucle yarn. I want it to be warm and the yarn is a bit thin, so I've learned to double up on the nails. I couldn't wait to start weaving the ruana, so I didn't switch out the nails for pegs yet. Now I wish I had, but it will have to wait until I'm done weaving all the triangles for this project.

Cut Length Bias Shawl
I started another shawl on the large 7 foot triloom. I'm using wool this time and making a plaid in blue, pink and white. I've decided to try the cut length technique and so far I really like it. The most difficult part is trying to cut the lengths of yarn. Each time I start measuring it out to cut he kitties think that I'm playing with them.

I believe that recycling is very important for our environment and the future of our planet. Occasionally I come across ingenious and creative ways people have found to recycle used objects into new ones. I can no longer resist the need to share these discoveries with others, so I'm creating another blog where I can post links to all the beautiful new things created from recycled materials. Whenever I come across a crafting project that recycles I'll post that there too. The new blog is at


Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Shawl Update

Here's the progress I've made on my latest hand woven shawl. As always, click the picture for a larger view. The color looks off because of the metalic gold wall my loom hangs on. It's a yarn with a dusty rose color and a creamy white. It's done in the continuous weave method and uses the fringing technique I previously wrote about. I only have time to weave a strand or two through each day, so progress on this one has been slow. I've also come to the conclusion that I'm going to run out of yarn before I finish so I thought up another way to finish it. You'll have to wait to see what I've come up with. I'm hoping to have it done by next weekend. I'll be photographing what I do to go along with instructions in case it works. I'm also having trouble thinking of a good name for this one. Got any ideas?


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