Tag Archives: heddles

Tips for quick and easy heddling on Mirrix looms

I love how easy it is to warp the Mirrix looms.

I’ve found that there are a few things that can make the process of attaching the heddles go quick as a wink.

Efficient is good!  🙂

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The first thing that I do, after I release the warping bar from the blocks and turn them around, is to slide a piece of cardboard or masonite between the layers of warp strands at the front of the loom and the back of the loom.

It sits there, in the middle, blocking the distracting view of those warp strands at the back of the loom. 🙂

Then, I use a shed stick that is at least as long as the width of the loom to pick up every other warp strand.

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Then, I flip the shed stick on it’s side, with each end being supported by the shedding device blocks.

I now have 2 layers of warp strands because of this shed being open.

So, to keep the back warp strands out of view, I slide a ruler or strip of cardboard into the open shed.

Bliss! Now, I just have one set of warp strands ready for the heddles- Yay!

This makes things sooooo much easier!

I like the center brass knob of the shed changer to be as close to the exact center of the warp strands.

So, I count how many strands I need to attach to the rod, and divide that in 1/2.

I place 1/2 the heddles on 2 of my fingers, and 1/2 on the other 2 fingers.

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I loosen the heddle rod and slide it along so it’s about 2 inches/5 cm from the edge of the warp strands.

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Then, I reach behind the warp strand with a crochet hook, pluck a heddle off my fingers, and pull it behind the warp strand.

I catch both ends of the heddle loop and pop them onto the heddle bar. Slide the bar along as you go.

When I run out of the the first clump of heddles, I should be half way along the warp strands.

I work across , picking up all the strands, and attaching them to the heddle bar, then tighten up the little nut that holds the heddle bar in place.

Remove the shed stick and ruler, then rotate the heddle bar, sliding the heddles down the warp strands.

Turn the shed opener enough so the heddles open your first shed.

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Use the shed stick to pick up the warp strands that are between the warp strands that you have just heddled.

Turn it on it’s side, insert the ruler, and repeat the process.

Check to make sure that all the heddles are securely attached to the heddle rods.

When I was making the video, one little bounder escaped, which was actually a good thing.

This allowed me to show how to capture the escapee heddle and tie it back in place.

 

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Remove the shed stick and ruler and check the sheds, then attach the handle or treadle and Voila!

You’re ready to weave!

Here’s the video:

Happy Weaving! 😀

 

 

 

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Filed under Loom & looms & small loom weaving, Mirrix loom, tutorial & how to, video tutorial, weaving & handwoven

How to weave inkle bands on the Mirrix loom part two

This is the second stage of the video tutorials that I made on how to weave inkle bands on the Mirrix loom.

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There are two bands on the loom, because in this video, I am working on the 16 inch loom.

When you work on the 8 inch loom, it’s okay to just weave one band at a time, as the warping bar doesn’t flop around.

But, on the 16 inch loom, you do need to either warp up 2 bands, or secure the other end of the warping bar with a cord so it will stay perfectly horizontal.

I tried weaving 3 bands at once on the 16 inch loom, and didn’t like it, as the center knobs on the shedding device got in the way.

Two bands are just great though.

AND…. if you want to weave longer bands, and have either a 12 inch or 16 inch Mirrix loom then the loom extenders will be your friend 🙂

 

I use a crochet hook and a weaving stick to make the heddling process go quick like a bunny.

Here’s the video tutorial:

Start by placing a piece of cardboard between the layers at the front of the loom and the back so you can’t see the warp strands at the back of the loom.

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Place the shed changing device into the brackets.  Unscrew the little knob that holds the heddle rod in place.

Pull the heddle rod back so it’s about half way along the warp strands.

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Place the heddles onto the fingers of your non dominant hand.

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Look down at the warp strands that are at the lower edge of the front of the loom.

There’s a gap between the strands that have gone in front of the warping bar and behind it.

Slip your fingers into the gap and scoot them up to the shedding device.

Slide a shed stick into the gap.

Voila! (which is how ‘walla’ is really spelled 🙂  )

You have shed one ready to heddle!

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Now, slip the crochet hook behind the first warp strand, pluck a heddle off your fingers, and pull it forward.

Catch the other end of the heddle loop and place both loops on the heddle rod.

Go slowly, and be sure that both ends of the heddle loop stay politely on the heddle rod.

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When you have all of the warp strands heddled, slide the heddle bar into position in the knobs, and tighten the lock nut.

Repeat the heddling process on the second set of warp strands for your other band.

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Push the first set of heddles down as you rotate the shedding device.

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Leave the shed stick in place, and use the crochet hook to pick up the warp strands for the other shed.

Take the warp strand from the back to the right of the one in front, and onto the hook,

take the hook over the front strand, and pick up the next strand and carry on across.

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Slide the weaving stick out of the first shed, and slip it along the crochet hook to transfer the warp strands from the crochet hook to the weaving stick.

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Turn the weaving stick on it’s side, and then pick up the warp strands one at a time and capture them with the heddles just as you did for the first set of warp strands.

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Repeat this process for the second band.

Check your heddles carefully to make sure that they are opening the sheds properly.

Ahhhhh! a warped loom is a thing of beauty!

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Attach the handle to the shedding device and adjust the tension by turning the thumbscrews.

Open the first shed, and insert a craft stick, then open the second shed and insert another craft stick.

Squish the warp strands together to establish the width of your band.

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Weave one row, leaving a 6 inch/15 cm tail.

Change sheds, and weave the next row.

Pull up firmly on the tail end and weave it through the same shed.

Repeat several times until the tail end is woven in, and the band is established.

Next video: The fun part! Wheeeeeee…. weaving…… 🙂

 

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A pin a stick and a loop of string to open the shed

If you have a loom that doesn’t have a shedding device, picking up the warp strands for every row you weave can be a tedious process.

I like to use a stick,  a pin and a loop of string to open the sheds. It’s a huge time saver!

I’ve made a video tutorial on how to do this for narrow bands, but this technique also works on wider pieces, too.

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Pick up every other warp strand with a weaving stick (even a popsicle/craft stick or a paint stick will work).

Push that stick up to the top of the loom.

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Now, use a knitting needle to pick up  the ~remaining~ warp strands, to open the second shed.

You’ll be going over the strands that you went under in the first shed, and under the ‘overs’.

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Take a loop of string (in this case, I used 2 string heddles from one of my inkle looms held together for more strength, and to make it easier to see in the video) through the open shed.

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Pick up the end of the loop with a kilt pin, and then lift the loop strings between each warp strand onto the pin.

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Take the second end of the loop up onto the pin, and close it.

Adjust the length of each section of the loop.

And, Voila! you now have a handy, dandy way of opening both sheds!

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Here’s a pic of the shuttles that I make by upcycling old rulers and bits of decorative trim:

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HOT TIP that I mentioned in the video: If you use a file folder as the separator/background thingie between the front and back of your loom, you can use the pocket of the file folder to park your shuttle and beading needle when you’re not weaving.

And, here’s the video tutorial:

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