Welcome to the magical world of handweaving! For thousands of years, weaving has been tied to creating useful and durable textiles. In this Zoom class, you’ll learn how to repurpose fabrics into long-living and beautiful rag rugs, inspired by the Swedish rosepath technique. We will meet via Zoom on Mondays from 5-7pm CST, April 3 through 24.
This class is designed for students who have a 4-harness floor or table loom at home (if you only have 2 harnesses, you can make very lovely plain weave rag rugs, if desired). It’s a great way to garner a warping refresher, as well as learn to make a beautiful and useful project in point twill. If you are not certain if the loom you have is appropriate for the class, please reach out to Laura, and she is happy to help. Approximate project dimensions are 22(width) x 34(length) inches, though variations in size are quite welcome. Students are welcome to make as many projects as desired during the course.
Students will also have a detailed photo essay (which comes as a digital download in the email receipt of this order) as well as access to a host of video tutorials Laura has made to help support the course. No physical materials are sent to students for this course.
What You Will Need for this Project:
- Floor or sturdy table loom with 4 harnesses (you can use 2 harnesses if you choose to just work plain/tabby weave). The project is designed to be 22 inches wide, but you can choose to make it wider or narrower as interest and your loom allows.
- A warping board
- A raddle (board with pegs or nails to help with warping process)
- 2 padded C clamps
- 2 lease sticks (or ½ inch dowels will work too)
- 2 1-inch dowels for “angel wings” plus several elastic hair ties
- Sturdy cotton cording
- Reed (6 or 12 dent, see adjusting notes for other reed sizes if necessary)
- Threader for reed and heddles
- A scissors and tape measure
- Fabric for stripping—flannel sheets work great! I used one king-sized sheet
- Fabric scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Cotton carpet warp (in contrasting color to fabric strips). I have used pearl cotton for this project as well, but it was not as sturdy.
- Several heavy washers if you are using the warping alone method
- Shuttles: rag, ski, or flat shuttles for the fabric strips and flat or boat shuttle for the warp-as-weft sections (headers and overshot).
- Strips of slippery fabric (nightgown or slip materials works great) to spread the warps at the beginning. This does not stay with the finished rug.
- Stiff materials or slats of wood to wind onto warp beam to separate warps
This course can be self-paced, and students are welcome to make more than one project as desired. Here are notes on how the Zoom sessions will be paced.
Session 1: Meet and greet. Learn your loom (please bring pictures to screen share or be able to bring your device to your loom), with tips and tricks on how to adapt the course to your particular loom. Notes on measuring warp and using a warping board (please bring the warp you want to use or questions about warp material). Demonstration on making fabric strips (please bring the fabric(s) you hope to use for your project or questions about appropriate fabrics).
Session 2: All about threading a point twill! Mastering the anatomy of your loom, tricks and tips for avoiding threading errors, and techniques for warping with friends or warping alone. Please also bring the shuttles you plan to use for weaving, and we’ll discuss best practices for winding either warp-as-weft or rag strips onto the types of shuttles in your stash.
Session 3: Weaving! We’ll cover waste weft/fill, making a strong header, plain weave, and how to work the rosepath designs using overshot technique. It might sound tricky, but once you catch on, overshot is really quite simple and super effective for adding creative designs while maintaining the strength of the rag rug.
Session 4: Finishing. We’ll also discuss what to do between the rugs if you’ve put on enough warp to make more than one in series. Tips and tricks for touch-ups as well as caring for your rug. We’ll also discuss how you could use the various rosepath motifs to make lovely rugs or textiles in a variety of materials. Please also bring ideas to bounce about what you might like to do next on your loom.
Please make sure the email you use during the checkout is the email you’d prefer Laura uses for class communications. This is the email that will receive the digital download of the instructions via the email receipt, as well as the one Laura will use to send you your Zoom link before the first class. Thank you, and happy weaving!