Rigid-Heddle Weaving: Begin at the Beginning
When you set about learning something new, there is always so much that seems like gibberish—the words, the patterns, the techniques are like entering an alternative universe where everyone else seems to know the lay of the land, but you. When writing Weaving Made Easy, I assumed you know nothing about weaving. You may have some yarn skills—knitting, crochet, spinning, felting—but weaving is a new area of exploration.
I used this same attitude in my video workshops, first tackling warping, then weaving on a basic rigid-heddle loom, and finally stepping up to weaving with two heddles. Even when the subject matter gets more complex, I assume that you are coming from a place where you want to tackle the basics first and then you can branch out into learning all the crunchy details and endless nuances.
I take a “less is more” philosophy. My goal is not to be comprehensive—giving you every possibility—but rather to tell you what you need to know to get started. There are many ways to get any given task done, and learning one simple way first will allow you to gain confidence in your new skill set. Then you can get creative from there.
My book and videos teach you how to weave. Although each book or video includes projects which demonstrate the techniques I’m teaching, the focus is on the know-how. How do I warp my loom? How do I wind a shuttle? How do I keep my edges straight? Make joins? Take the cloth off the loom? Set up and weave with two heddles? I dwell on the crunchy details that I know trip beginners up, and I offer you plenty of encouraging words along the way.
There is so much in the weaving world to explore, and with a solid foundation you can travel wherever your imagination takes you. I’m still on that journey, and I hope you will join me.
Liz Gipson is the author of the newly revised Weaving Made Easy and instructor in two previous Interweave videos, Slots and Holes and Life After Warping. She is the founder of yarnworker.com, a source for rigid-heddle weaving know-how.