Gear Guide: Tapestry-Weaving Tools
Whether you’re weaving traditional-style tapestries or textured art pieces, there are a few weaving tools that will make your life easier.
Looms used for simple tapestry are the most basic of tools, just enough to hold the warp evenly spaced and under tension for your creative endeavors. For the pieces demonstrated here, a frame loom or lap loom will do the trick. Some tapestry looms have another element, a mechanism for holding heddles and a shed. Another fun option is a circular loom, which holds the warp threads in a radiating pattern.
Depending on your yarn and the width of your warp, you may be able to use a typical tapestry needle or longer weaving needle to pass the weft.
3. SHED STICK
A smooth piece of wood longer than the width of your warp, this will hold one of the weaving sheds open, making half of the weft passes a cinch. Most weavers use a pick-up stick for this purpose.
4. STICK SHUTTLES
Although you could use a needle to place each pick, the short lengths of yarn involved can make for a lot of ends to weave in. A shuttle will hold more yarn and be easier to pass through the warp.
Majacraft Circular Loom 7″ (available from The Woolery)
NICE TO HAVE:
1. TAPESTRY BOBBINS
Special tapestry bobbins help the yarn pass between warp threads.
2. WEAVING FORK, COMB, OR BEATER
To press the weft into place, you will need a device that slips between the weft threads easily. You could use a dining fork, but a specially made tapestry fork is more efficient.
- Ashford Handicrafts, 415 West Street, Ashburton, Mid Canterbury 7700, New Zealand. +64 3-308 9087,
www.ashford.co.nz United States Distributor: Foxglove Fiberarts Supply 8040 NE Day Road W, Bainbridge Island, WA 98110. (206) 780-2747, www.foxglovefiber.com Canadian Distributor: Harmonique Fibre Arts Supply, (250) 294-4411, www.harmonique.ca
- Glimakra USA, 1471 Railroad Boulevard Unit 5, Eugene, OR 97402. (541) 246-8679, www.glimakrausa.com
- Hokett Would Work, [email protected]; www.wouldworkifhewantedto.wordpress.com
- Schacht Spindle Company, 6101 Ben Place, Boulder, CO 80301. www.schachtspindle.com
- The Woolery, 859 East Main St Suite 1A, Frankfort, KY 40601. (800) 441-9665, [email protected]; www.woolery.com
Featured Image: Ashford Frame Loom