Looking Back: My First Floor Loom Weaving Sample

First Weaving Sample: Wooly Mastadon

I was going through a bunch of my fiber related creations today, especially the weaving samples and surface design samples I had created during my fiber classes in college. I happened to stumble upon this beauty which happens to be my first ever sample of fabric woven on a floor loom, or any real loom for that matter. The most weaving I had ever done before was that fancy method they teach kids in grade school to weave on cardboard, and I’d never actually finished one of those (although I started many).

Seeing this sample brings back good memories. Part of my weaving class involved finishing several samples of different types of weaving on different floor and table looms. I would go the the fiber studio early (normally before 8 am when only the maintenance men were there) and just weave for an hour before I had to go to classes. It was so nice to be able to unwind that way, starting the day with a calm, positive activity. I miss that actually and it has made me consider trying to spin every morning to get that feeling into my day.

But back to weaving. This sample was creating using the overshot technique. My professor just told me how it worked and told me to get some yarn to go with the blue/purple warp. I had no idea what I was doing, but in order to get the correct thickness, I mixed several colors on my bobbin and went to work. Apparently others had not thought of mixing colors and that really took off, but I just kind of intuitively went for it. I didn’t follow any of the patterns but just went for it, making my own sequence and design. When the piece was completed and off the loom, it was completely unique and all mine. Later in the class, I realized that my professor had put me on one of the hardest weaving structures first, while everyone else started on slightly more beginner techniques, and I did just fine. I guess fiber is in my blood and a part of who I am, regardless of whether I embrace it or not. This sample isn’t amazing: the selvages are terrible and there are a few stray wefts, but I love it, and it reminds me that you can tackle a more difficult technique if you put your mind to it.

~Stay Inspired


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