How to warp a simple frame loom in under 20 minutes

I bet many of you have these little school frame looms at home… and the firm intention to use them one day to do some weaving, to make beautiful wall-hangings and play around a bit… and never done so, because you don’t know how to warp it?

It’s such a pity! You need maximal 20 minutes to warp a loom like this, it’s super easy and you nearly don’t need any material besides your loom. And afterwards you really can do so many things even with a simple loom like this!

So today I thought I’ll warp my loom and make some photos to show how easy it is, because it really is! Please try it out!

So first things first, the material needed:

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  1. Your loom naturally
  2. Some yarn for the warp. I used some simple cotton yarn. You can use whatever yarn you want, but, please, use a smooth yarn, some cotton or linen, or some sock-yarn for example. Don’t use a hairy or sticky wool or alpaca. You won’t be able to separate the strands into two sections afterwards.
  3. Some yarn for the weft. Here you can use whatever yarn you want.
  4. A stick to wrap your weft yarn around. I use a wooden one, but you can easily make one out of cardboard yourself.
  5. A comb to beaten down your weft. This one isn’t really necessary, you can use whatever you want to beaten down your weft.  In the beginning even only your fingers would be fine too!

And now… action!

Step by step we’ll see how to warp a frame loom!

There are three phases to warp a loom like this:

1. Warp the first set of threads

                                      2. Insert the middle stick

                                      3 . Warp the second set of threads.

 

1. Warp the first set of threads: Put the middle stick on one side for the moment. You don’t need it here. Tie the beginning of your warp threat around the first hole in front of you. You don’t need to precut your warp, it stays for moment on the skein or cone.

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Begin by passing your string  in the first slot of the front side, go to the first hole of the backside, turn around to the second hole and come back to the front side. Here you pass your thread into the second hole, turn around to the third hole and return to the backside and so on, until you finish the whole loom (or the width you want). You cut your yarn and fix it with a knot in the last slot, like for the beginning.

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First step finished with the first set of threads warped:

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2. Insert the middle stick: First, pass the stick simply under all warp threads and lay it on the side frame. Looks like this:

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Secondly, you arrange the threads you warped before one by one: One after the other you put the threads in every second slot of the middle stick, in my case always in the shorter slots like this:

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And here finished:

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3. Warp the second set of threads: You start as for the first set by knotting your thread around the first slot of the front side. You make the same “there and back” movement as for the first set in the same slots of the front and back side – only difference – you pass now by the empty slots of middle stick too (the long ones). In this way you create two sets of threads separated by one another:

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Here the finished warp of the loom:

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The middle stick helps to separate the two sets of threads. By turning it to the back or to the front, you lift once the threads of the shorter slots and once the threads of the longer slots and create in this way two differents openings.

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Et voilà! Your loom is warped! Finished! Now you can start to weave! I’m sure this doesn’t took more than 20 minutes!?

To start weaving, wrap you weft yarn around your stick or cardboard, whatever you use. Attention here! Don’t wrap too much yarn around your stick!!! The opening created isn’t very large and the threads are not fixed inside the slots! If you use a weft stick that’s too thick, you won’t arrive to pass the opening or you’ll lift the threads outside the middle stick!

So wrap a bit of yarn around your stick, pass once the opening for example created with the middle stick turned to the back side:

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Push your yarn down, turn the middle stick to the front and pass your weft yarn back through the new opening (pay attention you don’t pull the side in so much as I’m doing here on the photo!):

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In this way you create the most basic of weaving patterns, the plain weave. It means that you always goes over one warp thread, then under the next, and so on, which produces a very strong, balanced and hard-wearing fabric:

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Naturally you can make many other pattern even with a simple loom like this. I think I’ll play around now a bit, make some twill and herringbone patterns and try some tapestry…

Hope you followed until here and warped your loom with success! If something isn’t clear, don’t hesitate to ask! Hope to see some of your weaving in the future on Instagram!!??

Courage! It’s easy! Try it!

10 thoughts on “How to warp a simple frame loom in under 20 minutes

  1. Try it,try it…. pas si simple, il faut déjà posséder la bête….
    Article très instructif, je suis sûre que ça va aider pas mal de monde !

  2. Tutoriel très clair, bravo Petra ! Ça me donne bien envie d’essayer 😉. Ça s’achète où ces bestioles ?

    1. Par exemple sur amazon ou butinette… pour 15€ environ… mais je sais que par exemple Stéphanie a trouvé un sur un marché aux pucex pour 5€ il me semble… mais tappe metier à tisser scolaire… il y a plein de site et ce n’est pas très chér.

  3. Oui, il faut l’avoir en effet… mais un metier comme ça beaucoup ont dans la cave, et j’ai vu sur des marchées au puces à 2-3 €… si cela t’interesse que te prété le mien!!!

  4. Un grand merci pour cet article!
    Nous avons un métier à tisser pratiquement identique à la maison.
    Il appartenait à ma belle-maman, quand elle était enfant, donc dans les années 1930.
    Elle le sortait quand nous étions en vacances chez elle et mes filles faisaient des vêtements pour leurs poupées, surtout des écharpes. 😉
    Elle doublait avec ses tissages les petites vestes qu’elle tricotait pour mes enfants.
    Je songeais à le ressortir pour de prochaines vacances avec mes petites-filles, pour la quatrième génération cette fois-ci!
    Donc un grand merci pour ce mode d’emploi, qui va m’être particulièrement utile ! 🙂

  5. C’est passionnant Petra !!!! Ça me tente ! Je vais faire les greniers de mes grands-mères à Noël ! C’est vrai que dans ton articles ça paraît assez simple. Merci !

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