Weaving on the Rigid Heddle Loom

Loom set up to warp.

Christmas 2011 I received an Ashford rigid heddle loom. It took pretty much all of 2012 to 1) gather enough yarn for a project. 2) put the thing together. 3) Learn how to warp the loom.  4) Mess that  up and re-warp the room. Then as I finally set to weaving I found I messed up the warp again (Measure from the front, not the back) and only used 1 skein of yarn (spread over two types) for the whole thing. Yeah, so I have a ton of the same yarn to try again.

I choose Caron Simply Soft Bone for the warp. I wanted to make it 4 ft long. I had no

Warp looks cool.

where to put the warp peg except on Aia’s gate in the hallway. So I set the whole thing up and warped from the door to our bedroom. This worked well. What I didn’t know was that I had miscalculated. I had filled all the slots twice but I measured from the wrong part of the loom. So I only used less than half of one skein. I figured that I must have calculated

Rolling on the warp.

too much but it was really too little. Live and learn. It looks awesome though and was probably the longest part of the whole project next to putting the loom together. I worked on it while Aia was gone.  Then Aia held the warp as I winded it on to the loom after she got home. In all it took a few days to get it right. Next I had to move the double threads to their own slot. Then I used part of the left over thread to tie the warp to the front and adjust the tension. Ashford has some great tutorials on weaving on this loom on YouTube. I think I watched about 30 times. It sat like that for a long time. Between working and writing I had little time at home. So a few months went by before I finished the project. When finally prepared the weft I found that I had a whole new issue.

Pulling Through
Pulling the threads through
Begin the Weave!

I choose to use Lion Brand Homspun Painted Desert. This is one of their gradient yarns. I had to fill the shuttle, unwind it and then rewind it backwards for the gradient to work. It was worth it but an extra step.

Weaving was fun and fairly simple. I was just doing a basic pass back and forth. The next issue I ran into was one I did not find a solution to fix.

I used another bit of the Bone to spread the warp before starting. I jacked the heddle into the starting position. Passing the heddle through the first part was okay. The threads did not spread very far and adjusting the tension didn’t help. When I moved the heddle into the next position for the next pass, the threads spread really well. I had no problems

Still weaving.

passing the shuttle from the top heddle but when it came time to pass the shuttle from right to left I put the heddle into the lower position and the threads pancaked. I had to use a pick from a sock loom to hold the threads up as I passed the shuttle through. It was annoying but not so bad that I stopped.

As I came to the end of the warp, I discovered the shortfall was big instead of the the other way around. I checked my math, it was all correct. The problem was I needed to measure the warp from the back of the loom. I lost 2 feet of warp because I didn’t. Now though, I have a WPI (wraps per inch) count for the Lion Brand. It should only take one skein.

I’ll start again. This will take a lot less time than the first time and I want to try some other weaves. I hope to get more


heddles for this loom and a double heddle kit because I’d like to do a finer weave and have no room for a big loom. The Lion Brand wove up so soft and the Caron made great tassels. I used the finished project for a cover cloth for my end table. No real loss.

I have updates on my Tatting (grr) and other projects. I got a bead loom and as sock loom and more DPNs for Christmas. That will have to wait just a bit. As I have to give away some of those projects first.



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