Thursday

Embroidery Hoop Weaving

One of the best parts of my job is getting to try new things and though I am not new to weaving (see previous posts), making a weaving loom on an embroidery hoop was completely new to me!  After testing it out, I am in love with this form of weaving.  If you have used a loom before, you know that it can be somewhat precise with a little bit of randomness, but when you create a loom out of a simple embroidery hoop, all of your weaving becomes random!  Which you know if my thing.


Randomness with tons of texture is really my thing....just saying!

To create a round Embroidery Hoop Weaving you will need a simple wood embroidery hoop that you can pick up at any craft shop and some yarn or string.  That is the beginning of something fabulous!  You will want you yarn or string to be thin so it will disappear into your weaving and not stand out between "stitches".



1.  To begin, take the outer hoop off and set aside.

2.  Tie a simple double knot to the top of the hoop with the lightweight yarn or string.  Make sure to leave a two to three inch tail for later.

3.  Wrap 4 or 5 yards of yarn/string around a shuttle and cut off of the skein.  I used a make shift shuttle (a glue stick).  You want it small so you can work it around the inside of a tiny hoop.


4.  To begin wrapping you go across the hoop to the opposite of where you ties it on and holding it tightly, wrap the string under the hoop.


5.   You are going to bring the shuttle of string up to the top and off to the right about one inch from where you began, and go across the top holding tight.  Wrap it under the hoop and...


6.  ...cross over the center and go under one inch to the left of the first loop.  In essence you are making figure eights all the way around the hoop going over and then under keeping the yarn tight.




7.  Continue wrapping the yarn/string every inch until you get to your starting point.  The center will look like a messy "Cats's Craddle".  It's ok!


8.  After you arrive back at the starting point take the shuttle and wrap it around the middle cluster of yarn.  Think it like a clock center that you are going to wrap the string around several times at a 12, 3, 6, and 9 o'clock time place.  Pull tight.  This will bring all of the threads into the center.


9.  Once you have wrapped the string around the center a few times, pull the string up to your starting point and knot the string to the tail from the beginning knot.


10.  Trim off any access and tightly push the outer round of the hoop onto the inner warped loom!  Yes, it is now a loom not an embroidery hoop.  So cool huh!


I always begin my weaving with a pretty center.  I find it best to either use the same yarn/string you used for the warp or another thin yarn.  Use a yarn needle (available at any yarn supplier) and knot the end of the threaded yarn to the the back of one of the spokes.  This will secure it.  

Bring the needle up and do a simple over and under each of the warp strings to create a small woven circle.  You can make it larger if you like, but I usually keep mine to about the size of a dime or quarter.



Once you have your center secured, wrap the end  of the yarn piece under a spoke and you are ready to add more.  I love to use wool roving in my weaving.  The colors and poofy textures make the piece extra special and fill in gaps quite quickly.  You can finds wool roving on Amazon or at most craft stores.  It will come in a ball which can be unwound and separated to get the thickness or width you desire.  



To make this yellow wool center, I used a simple Tabby method of looping the wool over and under alternating spokes, tucking and poofing it up to get the look I desired.  This is what I mean by randomness.  You can play with different yarns and wool, fabric too to make your weaving unique to you!


Here I added a thick grey yarn by tucking the end under a spoke and coming up to the front.  Once I had my yarn on the top of the weaving, I wrapped it around each spoke with a simple loose knot and then after a few rows, I skipped every other spoke to give it a larger stitch.  No needle needed!



For the next layer, I made a wood shuttle and strung some thick variegated yarn through the weaving by going over and under each spoke.  As I went around I used my fingers to push the layers close together which created a cool fan type pattern.



I continued to do this with the blue yarn and will finish this one tonight with some of the thick wool white roving as a braid around the outside.  Weaving is one of those arts that is simple, but takes a little faith.  When you begin you will for sure think you are doing something wrong because it "won't look right".  Trust me, I know.  Every weaving I feel that way until I keep going and then it magically takes shape.


I hope this has inspired you to take out one of your unused embroidery hoops and your bin of wool yarn and make something fabulous!  You can watch my KUTV Fresh Living segment to see a hands on tutorial for how to warp your hoop into a loom!  I'll post the link as soon as I have it.  



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