Tri Looms

Be prepared to play

This is what I always say to customers on the stand at a show. Weaving is a totally absorbing and fun activity. To begin with, play and experiment, get used to the feel of the yarn and how you and it interact. Weaving tension is something which may require some work. Generally, tighter tension and the weave will be perhaps narrower and denser than you hoped once lifted off the loom. Too loose a tension and the final result may be too open and floppy.

Having said that, when it comes to Tri-Looms, you will find the tension naturally builds as the weave progresses. Depending on the thickness of yarn used any apparent openness of the weave on the loom will greatly reduce or close completely once the weave is lifted.

The continuous weave bonus. This technique naturally develops a "locked edge" so when completed simply lift it from the pins.

Tri-looms are well suited to mixed fibres as they are less likely to snag. Mixed fibres can be quickly woven into beautiful creations. When using entirely natural fibres you may find you need to work more slowly and be prepared to tease out snags. Long staple yarns will generally work better.

Natural fibre weaves may also be "blocked" on or off the frame depending on the desired finish.

To begin

Smaller looms can be pretty much hand held. For larger looms I tend to set these on an old artist's easel. For very large ones a purpose built 3 legged frame or even hang from 2 hooks on a wall. If your room has old picture rails, that's ideal.

For these images I'm using a thinner yarn (Arran) than I'd normally use in order to better show how the weave develops. I'd usually go for a chunky for a denser weave but there again it depends on the project and the desired finish required.

Set up the loom point down.

Tie your yarn to the top left corner pin

then take it across the frame to the top right pin.

Go clockwise around that pin, take the yarn down to the 2nd pin right side, clockwise round it and back over to the 2nd pin down on the left.

Now you have 2 wefts and can begin weaving.

Take the yarn upwards between pin 1 and 2. Keep the feeder yarn (leading back to the ball) under some tension all the time when weaving so you can hook it and draw it down

Insert the crochet hook between the 2 wefts, over the first and under the second, and going between the 2nd and 3rd pins on the top row. Hook the feeder yarn and draw it down and hook over the 3rd pin.

Still keeping some tension on it, hook the right side yarn of the 2 warps you just pulled down. Still holding the feeder yarn, with the hook draw the yarn over to the 3rd pin down on the right-hand side while also moving the feeder yarn over to sit between the 1st and 2nd pins of the top row on the right.

Now we reverse the process. Insert the needle between the wefts, over, under, over and draw down the feeder yarn between pins 2 and 3 hooking on to pin 4 on the right. This time pick the left side warp of the 2 you just brought down and transfer that back across the loom to the left side, pin 4. The feeder yarn should now be sitting between pins 2 and 3 on the top row.

That completes the initial weaving process in both directions. Simply repeat till you reach the end of the weave.

To change colours part way through, simply draw down a new colour

after a couple of rows, cut and tie the ends together. This way the knot will always be on a pin, right at the edge. This is not a hard and fast rule, just the way I prefer to do it.

A mistake!!!! It happens. See in the top left the weave is slightly leaning to one side. I missed a pin. Simply rectified be looking at the side of the pins to see where the missed pin is then hook the weave back up a pin at a time.

The weave can look a little irregular while it's on the frame. I tend to just line it up by moving the warps and wefts about with the hook or a large comb till they're sort of streight.

Not one of my best pieces. I let the tension slip by picking it up and purring it down while writing this and taking pictures.