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6 Steps To Get Started With Rigid Heddle Weaving

by Sarah Resnick

If you're obsessed with knitting or crocheting, just wait until you start learning to weave! Weaving opens up a wonderful world of new projects - home textiles, apparel, scarves, shawls and more. And it's not as daunting as you think...we'll tell you everything you need to get started.

1. Download the Beginner's Guide to Rigid Heddle Weaving.

This free guide is packed with helpful info and tips - from choosing your first rigid heddle loom to selecting yarns for your first project. Drop your email address below and we'll send it right over.


2. Buy a loom

If you're eager to get started weaving and are overwhelmed by the options, we made it very easy for you by compiling everything you need to start weaving.

Rigid Heddle Loom Starter Pack

Everything you need (but the yarn) to get started with Rigid Heddle weaving! This is our most popular 24" rigid heddle loom, made in New Zealand by Ashford, and comes with 3 heddles. Ships free in the US.
If you'd prefer not to buy a starter set, we have lots of options for you to choose from. You can see our advice on choosing a loom here, and reach out to us with any questions at hello@gistyarn.com.
 
rigid heddle loom

3. Gather materials for your first project

For your first project, you want to choose something relatively simple, and lots of fun. We suggest you start weaving with our Beginner Cotton Towels or Textured Cotton Scarves. Each project has kits in multiple colorways, with all of the yarn you need to make the project, plus a free downloadable PDF of the pattern. You can also explore all of our rigid heddle patterns here.

Beginner Cotton Towels
 
Beginner Cotton Towels - Free PDF Pattern

4. Join our rigid heddle weaving community on Facebook.

We have a wonderful community of over 1,000 friendly rigid heddle weavers on Facebook, who are eager to help out newbies, share their projects, and support you in your journey. Join our free group by clicking here.

5. Assemble your loom and start warping and weaving!

Your new rigid heddle loom comes with all of the instructions to assemble it and start weaving. If you purchased an unfinished loom, we recommend finishing it with wax polish to best protect it long into the future. You can use Ashford's Wax Polish, or any finishing wax from your local hardware store.

The first step to using your loom is warping. This means putting the yarn onto your loom, threading it through the slots and holes, and winding it around the back beam in tension so that you are all set up to start weaving. Your loom also comes with warping instructions, but sometimes a video is the easiest way to envision the process. Liz Gipson from Yarnworker put together this wonderful warping how-to video.

The next step is weaving! You'll want to wrap your weft yarn around the stick shuttle included with your loom. Follow the instructions included in your loom for raising and lowering the heddle, and you'll quickly get the hang of it. There are many YouTube videos on the rigid heddle weaving process, so you can search over there if you want to see a video of the process.

Curious about all the weaving terminology and loom parts? This blog post breaks it all down for you.

6. Get inspiration for further projects, and get lost down the weaving rabbithole ;-)

Once you get started weaving, you'll see that a whole world of possibilities awaits you. We collaborate with weavers in our community to design fun and creative weaving patterns. Explore all of our rigid heddle patterns here. Enjoy!

 

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