I have started warping up a loom. My goal is to keep both looms warped up so that I do more weaving during spring, summer and fall. The more carefully one warps up the loom the fewer mistakes one has to work around as one weaves. Since I am a sporadic weaver I don’t warp the loom often enough so that it is an easy task. First one calculates how many ends or strands of warp and how long. Then using a warping board I measure out all the ends as the warp strands are called.
Then I tie up to keep organized and avoid knots.
One chains long warp – again to avoid tangling
Then the loom has some parts added for the process – a pair of lease sticks hold “the cross” or figure eight wound to keep the order of the warp. A raddle is used to space the warp to its woven width.
First one winds the warp on the back warp beam. Tension should be even and pieces of cardboard or strips of wood are placed between layers on the beam.
Next the warp ends are threaded through the heddles. This loom has string heddles. The heddles are controlled by foot pedals so that some harness of heddles lifts and the weft is woven between the space – called the shed. I have the most basic two harness loom that weaves plain weave or tabby. It is threaded so the even are on one harness and the odd on the other.
After the heddles one sleys the reed. The reed spaces the warp ends and is set into the beater that I pound the weft tight for a tight rug.
After the reed the ends are tied onto the cloth beam. This is where the cloth (rag rugs in my case) will be wound as one weaves. First I weave some old t-shirt fabric to space out the warp and allow for space to tie knots once the rug is finished.
Now at this point I start to push the shuttles through the shed. Most people would see this as weaving. I see the whole process from cutting rags to finishing the ends of completed rugs as weaving. The grey on the left will be the end of the first rug.