Honestly, my favorite rigid heddle loom is……

29 12 2011

If you’ve read the rigid heddle loom review, you may have used it to help you find the right loom for you, based on your criteria. If your criteria is cost alone, you bought the Beka, If you are specifically interested in using your rigid heddle loom for tapestry, hopefully, you got the Penelope. If you are traveling, and want a compact loom, you probably got the flip, or the Kromski folding loom. Whatever your specific criteria or expectations are from the loom, the review offered some guidance.

Through the years that I’ve had product reviews up, people have drawn from the reviews their own conclusions as to what my preferences were. So, tonight, I’m going to tell you what I choose to weave on, and why. For tapestry that I will take with me,  I like a rigid heddle loom, and use the Penelope II. It doesn’t have the ability to use the rigid heddle as a beater, and that’s fine with me. It limits the loom in it’s use for continuous, pattern weaving, but it’s just right for me for tapestry. I can warp it with a nice long warp also. Because I use an upright tapestry floor loom, the upright feature of the Penelope is a natural choice.

Of the horizontal, rigid heddle looms, I choose the Ashfords. I have two of them. One is narrow and one is wider. Both have stands. I may even have 3, couldn’t tell you for sure, tonight. I like the heft of the loom in my hands,  like the stand for the Ashford, and I like the colored rigid heddle. The thing I don’t love about it, is the dumb plastic things that connect the warp rod and the warp beam, as well as the front “apron” rod and the cloth beam. Oh well, nothing is perfect, and I often choose favorites that aren’t the most popular looms or items on other people’s list. There you have it;0D

This isn’t to say that these are the best looms. They are the looms that harmonize with my weaving self. A natural “fit” with my weaving quietude. Though I weave professionally, I’m not a production weaver. My work is on a commission basis, because I prefer the peace of weaving in conjunction with my natural rhythms, rather than working on a pushed schedule. Unfortunately, I am most inspired to work by a looming deadline.  My commissions are generally woven on floor looms, but I’ve sold pieces off the rigid heddle loom for respectable money. Don’t undersell yourself, because you are then underselling all weavers and all handcraftsmen.

What’s your favorite loom, and why?  You can respond by e-mail, or in the comments section. I really want to know, and think other folks do too.

Weave joyfully.

C.

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Rigid Heddle Weaving Workshop – Jan 21, 2012

22 12 2011

OK, after several responses expressing interest in the Rigid Heddle Weaving workshop, I’ve decided to set a date for the workshop as January 21, 2012. In the class, you will learn to measure your warp, thread your heddle, wind on your warp, tie it on, and weave off a simple piece of handwoven cloth, perhaps in the form of a scarf, or placemats.

If you have your own loom, bring it and you will learn to use your own loom. If not, you can use one of mine. I have several brands, so you can see how the various looms compare, and hopefully weave on the type of loom that you are considering.

We will meet from 9 am – 4 pm. It’s  a Saturday. I’ll provide lunch. If you are vegan, please be kind enough to bring something suitable for your lunch, as I’m clueless when it comes to vegetarian and vegan needs.

I’ll provide the materials for the day’s project, and encourage you to work with them, as they are geared to a project that we can complete in class. That’s necessary, because you need to learn to tie off your work, and remove it from the loom in addition to weaving!

If you would like to register for the class, please send me a note, telling me what class you want to register for, in addition to the class fee. YOu can do that throus the US mail, or through Paypal. The only credit card ability I have is through Paypal. I’m happy to send you an invoice, if you like.

Class fee for the 7 hour class is: $100.00   January 21, 2012                9 am – 4 pm              Materials and lunch provided

Max class size is 4 students.                    Hope to see you in the studio!

There are times during the class, that you are doing repetitive activities. You may find it enjoyable to bring your mp3 player, if you have one.

 





Currently in the studio

15 12 2011

Currently, I’m working on 3 chiengora commissions. One tapestry, and one just yarn, and a third that is a hand-spun and handwoven afghan. My friend, Jeanne, is doing some of the carding for me, as I simply cannot stay on top of all of this, the sewing classes, and my cycling!

A couple folks “liked” the posts about the spinning class and the rigid heddle class, so perhaps there is some interest. I’ll make a decision, based on your feedback, by 12/22, and post a class proposal. We will see if I get enough registrants to run a class. It only takes 4 students to fill a class, as I’m teaching from the studio in my home now;0) That means that lunch comes with a workshop, as long as you are willing to eat what I cook, which is usually rather omnivorous.

Gotta get back to the spinning wheel. There’s a lotta dog to be spun up.

Will post pics soon.

Joy!





Learn to Spin Yarn from the Spinning Wheel

13 12 2011

I’m organizing a spinning class for January 2012. It will be a beginners spinning class. If you are looking for a spinning class, or workshop, please let me know what date/s work for you. A series of 4 classes over a month is best for most students, as you benefit most from at-home work between lessons. Cost for a 4 class series is $140.00 and will provide 10 hours of instruction, if you attend all classes. Make-up classes are not free-of-cost. If you miss a class, you may purchase a 1 hour make-up lesson for $40.00.

Students interested should contact me so we can organize the class on a date that will work for you!

Spinning wheels are available for rent to students who do not have their own. REntal fee: $50/month.  Spinning wheels are only rented to current students and only during the dates of their class session.  Students may bring their own fiber, or pay materials fee for fiber to be used in class.





Rigid heddle weaving class

13 12 2011

I’m trying to put together a Rigid Heddle weaving class in Goochland (just west of Richmond), VA for January 2012.

If you’re interested, let me know. Currently, it looks like a Sat, or Sat/Sunday workshop will be best. Cost is based on the # of hours.

Usually, a 6 hour workshop (10am – 4pm) is about $125.00 + materials. This limits us to keeping the lesson to learning the basics of dressing the loom, and weaving off a small, potentially short piece, like a simple scarf, using a single weft. We would cover measuring the warp, dressing the loom, weaving off a single warp, removing from the loom, and finishing/wet-finishing. It would be a “run-through”

A 2 day workshop is difficult for out of town students because of the additional cost of a hotel, and the nearest hotel is 20-25 minutes away. However, a 2-day workshop would be 10-4 on Saturday, 2 hours of independent work time, from 4-6, which is without the instructor (rather like “Open studio”). Then we would return on Sunday and continue class from 10-4 again.  The two day workshop, with open studio time would mean students who are using looms from my studio could complete a larger, more complex work than in a shorter class. It would also be a much more relaxed weaving/learning experience for slower students. Class fee for the 2 day workshop would be $250.00 + materials fee. Overnight accomodations would be the responsibility of the student, but I’m happy to offer suggestions.

Is anyone interested? If so, what dates are best for you?