Sunday, 11 November 2012

Sunday Weaving Guidance: How to work out your EPI when weaving

On a Sunday i have decided to help out with some weaving guidance. I hope to post most Sundays.

I best start off right at the beginning. I am going to work through setting up a loom and today i am going to be blogging about



Before you start weaving you must make a warp, BUT before you do this you need to work out your EPI (Ends per inch). Doing this you will get the correct width of cloth you desire and help to get the perfect sett. 

1. Wrap your chosen yarn around an inch on a ruler (see above). Loosely so that the yarn is just touching itsself

2. Count how many times the yarn has wrapped around the ruler.

3. This is your EPI your fabric will be sett at 

This EPI is a rough guide for what type of sett in the fabric you would like, it can change due to yarn, structure and the desired drape of your cloth . 

Normally twills have a higher EPI in comparison to a plain weave structure. If you would like a fabric that has more drape lower the EPI, if you would like a denser fabric heighten the EPI 

Sunday Weaving Guidance: What thread to use in a warp

When deciding what yarn to use in your thread you must check its strength. 

To do this:

1. take a length (about a foot) of yarn between both hands.

2. Pull on the yarn till it snaps. If it seems to break easily it wont be suitable for a warp as it will start to snap when weaving.

Yarns that are smooth and untextured also work well in a warp. When yarns are textured they tend to snag, knot and snap more than a what a smooth yarn would. 

Any yarn can be used in the weft. 

Saturday, 10 November 2012

A Day In Photos


 Making some Products 

Yarn Choices

Make a Warp

How Long Does It Take To Weave That?

I often get asked this question and I never had a definitive answer. I have timed myself and here is a rough  time scale. I will take you through the steps i take to make cloth. 

Making a Warp: 1 Hour 30 Mins 

Winding on the Warp: 1 Hour

Threading: 2 Hours

Reeding: 1 Hour

Tying on the Warp: 30 Mins 

Total Set Up Time Is 6 HOURS


When weaving i can weave 20 inches per hour

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Sunday Weaving Guidance: The Main Different Types Of Looms

On a Sunday i have decided to help out with some weaving guidance. I hope to post most Sundays.

I best start off right at the beginning.

When deciding to learn to weave it is hard to decide what loom to weave on. I am writing a blog today to help look at the main types of loom and the experience of some looms i have tried.

Ridge Heddle Loom

This is a frame loom that only has one reed come shaft, were you thread the warp alternately. You can only create Plain Weave Structures. Heddles need to be manipulated separately. 

Table Loom  - (I have used one)

Table looms are great if you only have a small space to weave in as they can be placed on a table top or work bench. These looms are great to transport also if you wish to demonstrate your skills. I sometimes take mine to craft fair with me for added impact.  

You can get table looms with many shafts, most have 4 shafts but can also have 8 or 16. The difference between this loom and other is that it is totally hand operated. Leavers let the weaver operates the shafts on the loom, these can be at the side or in front of the loom.  This looms have a front and back beam with a ratchet to keep the tension on the cloth. A Table Loom also has a beater that is either overhung, underslung or sliding - mine is Underslung. 

Overhung - Attached to the top of the loom

Underslung - moves from the bottom of the loom

Sliding - works like a draw opening and closing

DOR298.jpg (20138 octets)

Tapestry Loom

These are 

1. a simple frame with nails at top and bottom that hold the warp in place 

2. sophisticated frame for multiple warp threads with two rods to alternate warp threads. You can also move your warp and fabric round the Tapestry frame

When weaving on a Tapestry Loom you don't have to work continually across the cloth, you can select areas in the warp were you would like to weave

Floor Loom - (I have used one)

Floor Looms come in a variety of styles 

1. Counterbalance - I have used one 

2. Countermarch

3. Jack 

4. Dobby - I have used one 

Counterbalance Floor Loom 

These looms normally have 4 shaft but can sometimes have 8. Each shaft is attached to a roller pulley system. These pulleys are attached to 6 treddles at the bottom of the loom. When depress a treddle it move the pulleys and moving the shafts they are tied to. This means you can move more than one shaft at a time with your feet

Counterbalance Floor Loom

This loom  can be used on any number of shafts as each treadle is attached to every shaft.  I dont realy have much experience of this type of loom. 

Dobby Floor Loom

They usually have 12 or more shafts, and have a dobby box attached to the side of the loom in place of treadles and tie-up.  The action is similar to a table loom, and the dobby box, either mechanical or computer-driven, selects the shafts pre-programmed into the system.  The mechanical system works on pegs and lags, where lags are small bars with holes in according to the total number of shafts on your loom.  Pegs are inserted into the holes of a lag to denote which shafts you want raised for that particular pick.  Each lag denotes one passage of a weft. 

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Tying a Scarf: A Scarf with a Personal Touch

As everyone knows it is now Autumn and the weather is taking a change, Time to get out your scarves or treat yourself to a new one. I am back to wearing my scarves again but i always wear them in the same way until i come across the Knot Library on I love this site for styling ideas for scaves.

Here are my personal favorite styles:

Pinned Image

My personal challenge is EVERY TIME I wear a scarf  I aim to give it some extra personality :)

Special Christmas Offer

I am letting everyone know in advance, in November onwards i will be having a special christmas offer


Stocking fillers will be on display, offer is not valid in retail outlets

Monday, 15 October 2012

New Purse Design

I love this purse frames!! and so do you guys :) just to let you know i will be make more of them.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

After care of scaves

Once you have more than one scarf you may need to think of some ways to organise them to keeping them from damage and wrinkle free.

Remember to wash your scarves before storage to save from damage. Keep your scarves away from direct sunlight to protect bright colours from fading.

Why not think about these storage ideas:

    Scarf Draw/ Tub

scarf drawer storage

     You can fold and stack them, roll and stack them

     Hanging on a Coat Hanger

scarf hanger

Drape them over a coat hanger. If you think they will fall you can tie them in a knot also

       Use as Room Decoration

       Why not drape a scarf over a chair or even a base of a bed.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Finally Working with my Table Loom

 I bought a Table Loom a few months ago but never had the oppotunity to use it. When I bought it I didnt realise what it was like till i got it home from Scotland. This Loom was a well loved Harris Loom, there for it needed some new parts and some tlc for what i wanted it for. After buying new heddles, reed and giving it a good wax I was able to use it to weave fine cloths on the go.

This is my Harris Table Loom in working order

The warp on the loom in the photo above was a dog tooth in red and navy. I wanted to start to create cloth based on heritage cloths which i feel i have achieved. The cloth is unisex so can be used for a varriety of products and customers. Bronze purse frames work well with this cloth as seen in the photograph below

A variety of Products in Heritage Style Cloth - Purses and Glasses Case's

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Unisex/ Mens Scarves

As it is starting to get colder again, I thought it was fair that men could also wear a Laura Parkin Handwoven Designs Scarf. I have woven a few but i am thinking about weaving more ... maybe a checked scarf suitable for a man? I think these would look great as a casual piece or with a suit Jacket.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

What i thought was going to be a lazy sunday...

I thought i was going to have a relaxing day....   soon changed. Missed weaving, had a big enough break in Sunny Salou for a week back to bussiness for me.

I am thinking of creating some striped and checked fabric for cushions

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

New fairs to try..

In next couple of months i will be trying some new events (Made in Newcastle, Seaton Delaval Hall-National Trust, Daisy Green Events)as well as returning to some greats I have been to before.

I LOVE the illustations Made in Newcastle create for their adverts :D

Thursday, 28 June 2012

I LOVE weaving because ....

I LOVE weaving because of the way I came upon weaving by chance at university. I joined BA (Hons) Textile Design at  Nottingham Trent, tried tasters of all specialist areas. After the first time weaving I knew it was for me

I LOVE weaving because my parents bought me an old counterbalance loom for Christmas.  It was all wrapped up in Christmas paper. First time in my life I was speechless.

I LOVE weaving because there are so many outcomes for fabric (Texture, Colour, Pattern, Scale)

I LOVE weaving because I am a magpie for bright colours

I LOVE weaving because I like the fact that I do it all start to finish - making the warp, beaming that warp, threading heddles & reed, tying on the loom, weaving, and finishing

I LOVE weaving because I can make some extra money doing something I enjoy

I LOVE weaving because of the thrill of people buying and using my handmade goods.  Even if people don’t buy from me, I get terrific feedback from people at fairs and markets

I LOVE weaving because the process is ordered and has a clear beginning, middle and end

I LOVE weaving because all the other weavers I have met are so friendly and helpful   

I LOVE weaving because of the physical nature of the process and it keeps my mind active

I LOVE weaving because I don’t think I will ever run out of new things to learn and figure out and think about

I LOVE weaving because I love fabric and it makes me happy

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Forest Photoshoot in Boldon

 Even the odd photo of me (the one with the short hair)

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

To do list (in an ideal world)

  • More handwoven fabric and product commissions and build portfolio
  • Teach weaving to a wide varriety of people through workshops, tasters and demos
  • discover more amazing art and textiles in the UK by visiting galleries/exhibits
  • Carry on selling both online and offline, have more stockists
  • Become a local brand

How do you set up a Loom?

Many people I have met since I have started weaving always lots of questions. They seem to ask the same question 'How do you set up a loom?' or they dont understand how weaving works generally. These photographs below hopefully will briefly explain what preperation goes in before i even start weaving

Winding the Warp on

Threading Up 


Tying On  

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Thursday, 31 May 2012

Now Avaiable for Workshops and Demostrations

I am so excited i have just bought another loom!! A Harris 4 shaft table loom. I LOVE it. Spent the weekend cleaning it up.

I now am avaiable for workshops and demos. If you would be interested please message me

Photographs back and front of my loom