Going to a Desert Isle? Take Weaving With You!

Planning a trip to an “uncharted desert isle”? To celebrate National Craft Month, we here at Interweave decided to have a little fun and post this question: “If you were on a deserted island, what craft would you take with you?” I, naturally, suggest you pack weaving in your duffle. It’s practical: If you need to find a way off the island, you could weave sails as the Vikings did; if your darling, little palm-frond hut on the beach needs sprucing up, you could make beautiful, warm, colorful rugs and blankets; and if your clothes start fraying from too much sun and surf, you could even weave a sarong or two.

Staying for a while?

Planning on being there for more than a few seasons? Weaving is a fully engaging craft that uses both the logical and the creative parts of the brain, and it also relies on hand-eye coordination for threading, sleying the reed or heddle, and throwing the shuttle. That makes it the perfect craft for the long haul. Assuming your duffle is as magical as Mary Poppins’s carpet bag, you’ll be able to bring more than one loom. May I suggest a multi-shaft loom, rigid-heddle loom, an inkle loom, and a small tapestry loom so that you can jump from one loom to another as suits your fancy or your needs on any given day.

Need a way home?

Use the multi-shaft loom to weave sails in double- or even triple-weave. They will probably be plain weave, but why weave them in white? Weave them in any or all colors of the rainbow, and make them plaid or striped just for the fun of it. You’ll need rigging for your sails, so warp up that inkle loom to weave sturdy straps—perhaps in a fun, black-and-white-checkered pattern that would look stunning with rainbow-colored sails.


You could even weave bikini straps with your inkle loom. Photo by George Boe.

Make yourself comfortable!

Your rigid-heddle loom will be perfect for weaving rugs and blankets to cozy up your little hut, but you could also weave towels on it and, with a little pick-up, create honeycomb- or waffle-weave patterns that will be soft and thirsty in your little hut’s kitchen and fully functional bathroom. (It may be “as primitive as can be,” but no one wants to hang out on a desert island without a flush toilet and shower.)


These Savory Towels from Handwoven November/December 2017 by Jenny Sennott use just enough pick-up to make them thirsty, and perfect for drying dishes. Photo by George Boe.

Might as well decorate!

You’ll want to record the beauty of your “tropic island nest,” and for that, you’ll need the tapestry loom. With a small tapestry loom, you can weave anywhere on the island, including on the beach, above the tide pools, or in the tropical forest. Decorate your hut with your tapestries and be sure to grab them when you leave. Otherwise, no one will believe your “tale of a fateful trip.”


A small tapestry loom such as this one is perfect for toting around the island and recording your surroundings. Photo courtesy of Schacht Spindle Company

If you are there “for a long, long time,” you may need to weave sarongs for yourself and the other castaways. Set your sail-weaving aside long enough to weave overshot or twill sarongs in tropical colorways.

It’s going to be great—weaving to the sound of waves and palm trees swaying in the breeze without a care in the world and “not a single luxury.” You may not want to leave, even if the Professor does figure out how to make a cellphone out of a coconut and two clam shells.

Weave well and bon voyage,

More About Our Blog Hop

For those of you that aren’t familiar, a blog hop is a group of blogs that participate in writing around a shared theme. You can then hop from blog to blog to learn and explore all sorts of new ideas and perspectives.

Our group decided to throw a blog hop in honor of National Craft Month, and this year our theme is “What craft would you take to a desert island?”. On each day listed below, visit that website and scroll through the most recent blogs posted until you find the latest blog hop post. Click and enjoy hopping around!

March 1 – Interweave.com
March 4 – Sew Daily
March 7 – Crochet (Interweave)
March 11 – Jewelry (Interweave)
March 13 – Weaving (Interweave)
March 15 – Cloth Paper Scissors
March 18 – Knitting (Interweave)
March 20 – Spinning (Interweave)
March 22 – The Quilting Company
March 26 – Needlework (Interweave)
March 27 – Beading (Interweave)

Featured Image: The colors on your desert island will inspire your weaving. Photo from Pixabay

Remember to pack your magazine subscriptions for your “three-hour tour”!

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