A few other projects have been in limbo lately. Summer Solstice remained a whole lot of balls of frogged yarn and some graph paper with the new pattern mapped out. The baby blanket remained half warped. Blame the Passap? Well, actually, it’s not all the fault of the new kid in the workroom.
The baby blanket had stalled before the Passap arrived, and the main reason was heddles. The lack of heddles, to be precise. The table loom comes with plastic heddles, but if I make something as wide as the loom in thinner yarns I inevitably run out of them. However, if I make something as wide as the loom in a thick yarn, those spare heddles sit at the side and get in the way.
Since you can’t remove or add plastic heddles without dismantling the loom, the standard solution is to tie on string heddles. I’ve done this before, and all that bending over to tie lots of little knots – three per heddle – isn’t good for my back and hands. I also hate that, after all this effort, I have to cut the heddles off again. The baby blanket being woven by the double weave method, which means it’s folded in half on the loom, and takes twice as many heddles. I needed to add more than 80 string heddles. You can probably understand why I’d been putting it off.
I kept thinking ‘there’s got to be a better way’ and decided to search the internet for removable heddles. That’s when I found instructions on how to make removable string heddles. You make them separately, and only need to tie one knot per heddle to get them on the loom. I tied them on with a single loop bow, so I can (hopefully) remove them by pulling the end rather than try to undo tiny knots.
A few days later I finally had the loom warped and started weaving. Weaving log cabin in double weave is… interesting. Slow but steady work.
It’ll be a few weeks before this one is done, I suspect. But it is always nice to start to see how it’s going to look.