One of the most frequent frustrations I hear from weavers is about how long and drawn out the set-up process is, so here are tips and techniques to “speed warp” or “continuous warp” a loom for tablet weaving.
Set up / Supplies:
- Thread in two or more colors (#10 cotton, 2/20 or smaller silk, wool, linen, and other) Tablet weaving does not lend itself well to very chunky threads as you’ll end up with a very very thick band. Here are some of my favorite sources:
- Silk: Eowyn de Wever: https://www.etsy.com/shop/EowynDeWever?ref=ss_profile
- Wool: EPiC yarn from Timeless Textiles: https://timeless-textiles.com/shop/
- Linen: Ursula’s Yarn: https://www.etsy.com/shop/ursulasyarn
- Cotton: Aunt Lydia’s Cotton Crochet thread: Available at any craft store and many general merchants like Walmart
- Tablet weaving cards: Wood, leather, plastic, card stock, bone all work well. Here are my favorites:
- Wood: VytuVatu: https://www.etsy.com/listing/662092154/super-thin-weaving-cards-tablets-for?ref=yr_purchases
- Plastic: https://zsag.abacuscity.ch/en/chf/A~6.20.064/Cards-for-weaving-60×60-mm-Bundle-of-60-p.
- Bone: Jorgen Knochenschnitzer on Facebook (Historic Tablet Weaving Group)
- Bobbins (if needed) anything from Schacht plastic bobbins to a tube of paper works fine
- Dowel / Hand drill (convenient but not required)
- 4 Bowls / bins / buckets (anything large enough to hold your bobbin neatly will work fine)
- This is the loom I used in the Facebook Live class: https://www.etsy.com/listing/258136703/almost-pennsic-walnut-inkle-loom-thats?ref=shop_home_active_8&frs=1&crt=1
- This one is what is used in the YouTube video: https://www.etsy.com/listing/483844848/cherry-inkle-loom-thats-good-for-card?ref=shop_home_active_1&frs=1&crt=1
- Pick out your pattern and count the number of strands of each color you will need based on the highest number in any single card in the pattern. For example, for the pattern below I’ll need 4 red strands, 3 blue strands, and 1 yellow strand.
- Wind bobbins of each color so you have the number of bobbins = the number of strands in the pattern. (In the example above, I’ll have 3 bobbins and 1 spool of red, 2 bobbins and one spool of blue, and 1 spool of yellow).
You’re ready to warp now – pick up the hand out, refer to the video, and lets get started!
Can I Speed Warp That????
Here’s a visual guide to when speed warping works, and when it won’t!
What if I’m not using an inkle loom?
Great! The process if very similar initially. You’ll have to measure out a warp. You can follow the speed warp process using any 2 fixed points. I’ve used chair legs (flipped upside down onto the dining room table), fence posts, peg board, or an actual warping mill.
Once you’ve measured out your warp, chain one end of it like a crochet single chain. This will keep it from tangling up while you put it on your loom of choice.