So… Apparently “telling the internet” works a bit like “telling the bees” as far as wishcraft is concerned. I’ve been throwing looms and spinning wheels up on my pinterest board and, lo and behold, I now have a spinning wheel (kind of like this single-flyer wheel, but only 40 years old and rather cobbled together – I’ll talk more about it in another post) and I now have a loom. 🙂
A friend was clearing out some stuff from his basement – his mom used to run a chain of fibre arts stores in Ottawa back in the 1970s, when Macrame was A Total Thing and he’s got a bunch of her left-over stuff that he’s trying to get rid of – and I was happy to help him out. 😉
So now I have this loom – a MasterWeaver MW105 – that can weave stuff up to 30cm wide and which, by the looks of things, has a limit to the length of warp in can handle (damn – but we’ll do what we can to make that not the case). If this works (ahaha) I will probably be making Table Runners for Everyone this xmas. Wish me luck with that. 😉
As it stands, I am not entirely sure how to make it go and, since the MasterWeaver is no-longer being made, I’m having a devil of a time finding instructions anywhere.
I’m pretty sure (in my very guess-as-guess-can way) that the wide bar of disks (the “reed”?) is something a bit like a rigid heddle (since there are no pre-existing wire “heddle loops” and no peg to attach string heddles to link on an inkle loom…), but one where you can do a repeating pattern that’s more complicated than the kind where half the warp is “up” while the other half is “down”.
The… dial that the reed disks are on has eight positions, and each disk has… four(?) settings? (I think… I will have to check this out). There is no beater, so I think I’d have to use something else (maybe a ruler or a narrow dowel?) to make sure the weft thread is good and tight against the weave… (Sorry, I’m totally speculating and thinking-in-print right now – bear with me). I’m really hoping that I don’t need to use “pick-up sticks” or similar to make this work. :-\
I think how it works is that you set the disks to the pattern of “ups” and “downs” that you want (Maybe for something Very Simple, I would just set everything to 1-2-1-2-1-2?) and then I turn the “dial” to shift the position of the warp threads (I just don’t know if I would shift it between “one” and “five” or “one” and “two”… Any suggestions?).
I think this may be the kind of occasion where I go digging around in my cheap synthetics bag and see what I can come up with through experimentation.
Wish me luck! 😀
Meliad the Birch Maiden.
 If I really take to weaving, I will eventually find/get-my-wife-to-build/scrounge (or even buy, ye gods) a 32-inch (potentially wider, but that’s unlikely) rigid heddle loom of some kind (like a Cricket or something), potentially with a stand to go with it… but for now, we’re working with what we can get for free. So this is what I’ve got. Woohoo!!! 😀