I used my rigid heddle loom to weave a scarf using the silk/yak/wool yarn I hand spun last fall. I really wanted it to be a shawl or wrap, but the width of the loom limits the size to a maximum of 15″ wide. I had enough yarn to make it as wide as the loom will allow, and about six feet long. Don’t be surprised if someday I get a bigger loom.
For the warp yarn (the long way on the scarf) I used a skein of Madeleine Tosh sport weight “Pashmina” from my yarn store inventory purchase. It is very soft with 75% merino wool, 15% silk, and 10% cashmere. The weft (the short way) is my handspun silk/yak/wool yarn that I posted about in December. It is a little thicker. https://yarnsfromthelake.com/2020/12/17/wool-silk-yak-yarn/
It is hard to get the colors right in the photos, and they look different depending on what device you are using to read the blog post. My hand spun has a little variegation, but it is primarily a traditional denim blue. The Madeline Tosh yarn color is called “Arch”, and includes some tan, taupe, gray, blue, and bits of off white.
Our dog Lyla kept me company on the recliner while I warped the loom with 90″ of warp yarn in our small rental unit in Arizona. That is the entire living and dining area.
Weaving every row with the hand spun yarn went quickly since I did not have any pattern to follow or changes of yarn. You can see the weaving in progress in the photo below.
As the weaving progressed, the completed fabric was rolled onto the front beam in order to access more warp yarn. See photo below.
When I got to the end of the warp yarn, or as far as possible given the ends were attached to the apron bar, I did a hem stitch while the weaving was still on the loom.
After cutting the weaving off the loom, I twisted the fringe, using a technique I learned last summer. I could have left the ends loose, but the twisting method gives it a professional look. If you want to see how this is done, you can look at the following youtube tutorial. The tutorial uses a special gadget that I don’t have, so I used my fingers to hold the yarn while twisting. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WjXmJUaFOlw
The next photo was taken after finishing the fringe, but before washing the scarf.
I thought I was measuring out the warp yarn for a 72″ scarf. I did not account for “take up”, which is a reduction in length and width due to the yarn going over and under repeatedly in the weaving process. I knew the width would be a bit less than 15″ due to not using every slot and hole in the reed all the way to the edges. The finished size ended up being 14″ wide, and only 61″ long. A little longer would have been ideal, but it will work. After finishing the fringe, I hand washed the scarf carefully to allow the fibers to set and bloom, but not shrink or felt.