The last couple years have been rough. In the last year my mom died and my dog died all while we are living in a global pandemic that still hasn’t ended. Work for me as a recipe developer basically dried up, my agent couldn’t sell my latest cookbook proposal and we basically believe in science and didn’t leave the house for about 18 months and we were fully vaccinated. My husband has been working from home since early March 2020 and took over my then underutilized craft room.
I had grown up making a lot of my own clothes and making things like (machine) quilts, curtains and pillows on my mom’s old-even when she got in the the 1970s- sewing machine. I did decoupage quite a bit in college (CD boxes, mostly!), crocheted a little and took a knitting class.
I wanted to get back into crafting to fill my time with more than just cooking dinner, reading books (I do read a lot) and watching tv. I liked the idea of knitting but never was able to really master how to make anything beyond scarves and really hated reading patterns. I did some embroidery but I’ve never had the best fine hand control and it was frustrating. I loved decoupage and piecing together different colors and pictures but it was so messy and there are only so many wooden boxes I need, I still have the ones I made years ago! I realized that while I loved the finished product when I sew, I didn’t really enjoy the actual sewing part. Then I saw this piece in the Strategist by Nikita Richardson about weaving on a small frame loom. Bingo! I ordered a frame loom from Etsy and when that didn’t arrive, ordered the smaller loom (the Schacht Lilli Loom) featured in the post and got to work using some yarn from previous projects I has started and stopped knitting and crocheting. I bought some classes from Hello Hydrangea which I highly recommend. I have a problem following written instructions (this is why I started developing my own recipes!) and flat pictures of techniques and her classes are shot in a way that makes things very clear.
I quickly made like 25+ weavings of all sizes. Not quite tapestries but what I’d think of as “modern weavings” with a lot of color and texture. So much fun! They are fairly quick to make, I used up a ton of old and new yarn and
In poking around about weaving I came across people mentioning making like actual cloth on looms. I was intrigued and while I had seen floor looms before and knew I really didn’t want to leap into that, we have an old house and as I said, my husband has situated himself into what had been called the “craft room” to work 8+ hrs a day.
The rigid heddle loom seemed perfect for me–you can use readily available knitting/crochet yarns for some projects and many of the looms even fold up for storage. Win-win.