February 24, 2011
I recently discovered a new form of weaving. Actually, it is one of the most ancient forms of weaving in the world — it has been practiced in cultures all over the world for thousands of years. It’s called card or tablet weaving, and uses very simple cards or tablets with holes in the them. It is similar to a backstrap loom in that the tension of the warp yarn is created by tying one end of the warp to a stationary object, and the other end is tied around the weaver’s waist. Narrow bands of very ornate designs can be woven on these primitive looms.
I became interested in this form of weaving because I am living on a very small sailboat and don’t have a lot of space for a regular loom. As a weaver, I have always envied the portability of knitting, and this is as close as a weaver can get to the ultimate travel loom. So I have been experimenting with card weaving and while attempting to weave at the beach the other day, my husband and I came across a variation that may never have been done before in the long long history of weaving….
My husband loves kites and was flying one of his kites on the beach. I was looking for something to tie my warp onto to hold tension while I was weaving. My husband came up with the crazy idea of tying the warp yarn onto the kite string, and it worked!!! The kite, flying hundreds of feet in the air above me, held the perfect tension on the yarn while I was down below, attached at the other end weaving. It was an exciting discovery and a very fun way to weave while hanging out on the beach!!!
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