Braids 2025 Techniques – Inkle Loom and Other Looms

Aso-Oke Nigerian Inspired Inkle Bands

1D1

Jennifer Williams

Description: This class is inspired by the beautiful Nigerian narrow strip cloth called aso-oke (ah-show-kay). Asho oke is a highly prized warp-faced narrow strip cloth. Weavers of aso oke use unique warp manipulation techniques to create distinctive supplementary weft inlay float patterns, lace like holes, and elongated warp floats. Interpreted for the inkle loom, this class will teach students to weave aso oke like inkle bands.

Experience:. Students must be able to independently warp an inkle loom and have some experience of weaving

                   

Asa Oke 1                                                                     Asa Oke 2

Materials:   Warped, open-sided inkle loom, weaving yarn, belt shuttle, scissors, pen, and paper.

Instructor will supply:    weaving tool kit and original weaving drafts and handouts

Materials fee: $15

Pattern Heddles and What You Can Do With Yours

1D16

Mari Voipio

Description:  Besides standard slot-and-hole rigid heddles, several types of “pattern heddles” are known from historical sources and sold today (eg. Stoorstålka’s Sunna, Sigga and Beaivi). Some so called “double-slotted heddles” aren’t actually truly double slotted, but instead meant for Baltic pickup, and if you have less pattern threads than slots, you need to know how to work around this to avoid structural problems. But there are also true double-slotted heddles with extra slots across some or all of the heddle as well as rigid heddles with a half or full second row of holes. Figuring out what patterns can be used with just your heddle and how you can expand your options can be hard if you don’t have access to a good library in multiple languages. In this workshop we identify and discuss the different types of heddles, choose a suitable pattern for each heddle, make the chosen backstrap warps and practice the weaving. There will also be a few extra warps to try so you can experience several types of pattern heddles. If there’s time and interest, we can also discuss using the heddles with an inkle loom, and adapting some of the more unusual techniques for a plain rigid heddle and an inkle loom with just string heddles.

Experience:  Some experience of band weaving on either an inkle loom, rigid heddle or backstrap should suffice.

       

Inkle Braid in Progress 1                                         Inkle Braid in Progress 2

Completed Inkle Braid

Materials:   One or several pattern heddles. Cotton yarn suitable for weaving in 3-4 contrasting colors. It is a good idea to check that the intended yarn fits through the slots and holes of the heddle they have.  A belt and a band locker/freezer bag clip/safety pin/pin. Some sturdy string and a C clamp. [i.e. the heddle and all the basic backstrap weaving equipment]. 

Instructor will supply:   I will provide the patterns. There will be some printouts at a nominal cost, but more will be available online, and hopefully way in advance.  The tutor will also provide information about suppliers of pattern heddles in advance of the conference to allow students to purchase these in advance.

Materials fee: $5, possible pre-ordered kits – cost not yet calculated

Mapuche Inspired Band Weaving on a Frame Loom

1D18

Jennifer Williams

Description:  For centuries the Mapuche weavers of Chile and Argentina have woven intricately designed bands on frame looms made of sticks from trees. This class introduces students to Telar de Mapuche, the Mapuche style loom and band weaving techniques. Highly portable and perfect for travel or weaving sample bands, in this class, students will learn to weave bands on the ingenious, yet simple frame loom. Students will learn how to warp the loom for plain weave and simple pick-up techniques.

Experience:. For those who have some experience of weaving

         

Band Weaving on a Loom 1                                     Band Weaving on a Loom 2

Materials:  scissors, pen, and paper

Instructor will supply:   wooden adjustable frame loom, weaving yarns, belt shuttle, shed stick, string heddle yarn, weaving tool kit, and original weaving drafts and handouts

Materials fee: $6

Three Color Pickup

1D25

Annie McHale

Description:  For weavers who have already been doing Baltic-style pickup work, you will be amazed at how easy it is to add more color and complexity to your pattern motifs and create fantastic new ones. Unknown to most modern weavers, Three-Color Pickup is an older technique for which pattern books have not been readily available until now. To weave this variation, it’s very helpful to have a working knowledge of regular Baltic pickup.

First, we will look at samples and discuss what makes this different from the typical Baltic patterns. By viewing the samples, students will get an understanding of the difference between asymmetrical and symmetrical threadings as well as tips for choosing colors to make the patterns pop. We will also look at charts and learn how to follow them as well as how to create them using a free online tool.

Students will then warp their looms and practice weaving various motifs using pattern charts supplied by the instructor.

Experience: For experienced inkle weavers only. Students must be proficient at warping the inkle loom and be comfortable doing plain weave. Experience with Baltic pickup is also strongly recommended.

       

Three Color Pickup 1                                                Three Color Pickup 2

Materials: 

  1. Inkle loom (preferably an open-sided standard loom. If you have a loom with warp and cloth beams, contact me prior to class to discuss.)
  2.   30 heddles which fit your loom’s requirements (either string or texsolv)
  3. Sharp scissors
  4. Stick or belt shuttle (suggested length 6-8”)
  5. Note-taking materials (paper + pen, OR students can take pictures if they prefer)
  6. COTTON YARN: 3 colors with high contrast to each other in balls, cones or easy pull skeins and ready to use.

Suggested cotton yarns: Size 3 crochet cotton or perle cotton, DK weight or similar knit/crochet cotton which is non-stretchy. (ex. Knit Picks Curio, Tahki Cotton Classic, Lion Brand 24/7, Omega Sinfonia, Paton’s Grace, Schachenmayr Catania)

  1. Optional: Pickup stick
  2. Optional: If wifi is available in the classroom, students may bring a Laptop or tablet to use with the free online design program “Pattern Editor”

Instructor will supply:   Handouts with patterns, rubber table mats

Materials fee: None