Picture of Make a Frame Loom for Weaving
This past spring, I spent a couple of weeks vacationing on one of the Gulf Islands.  The islands are home to a lot of artist and the place I stayed at was showcasing some of their work in the dinning area and lobby.  One piece that caught my eye was a woven tapestry, it was quite stunning.  It occurred to me that I didn't know a thing about weaving.  When I got home I did a bit of Google searching and payed a visit to the library to try to learn more about weaving.  I actually did not find a lot of information for beginners wanting learn how to weave online and the library books were old and had to be retrieved from storage, but I did figure out how to make a simple frame loom and weave on it.

Here is my instructable on How to Weave on a Frame Loom.

I included a glossary to help with the weaving terminology.

The following links were particularly helpful:

Step 1: What you will need

Picture of What you will need
  • Wood: two pieces 26in X 1.5in X 3/4in
                       two pieces 20in X 1.5in X 3/4in

                       two pieces 2in X 1.5in X 3/4in

                       twp pieces 12in X 1in  X 3/4in
  • Hammer and nails
  • Measuring tape
  • Sugru
  • Wingnuts and screws
  • Drill
  • Saw
  • Wood glue
  • Wood: Four pieces16.5in X 1in X 1/8in
  • Rigid and flat plastic
  • Utility tool
  • Glue
  • Clamps
  • Wood: several pieces 7.5in X 1in X 1/8in
  • Saw
  • Sandpaper
bgirl0294 years ago
What sites did you look at online? I love weaving, as well as knitting, crocheting, felting, pretty much all fiber arts and I'm really suprised to hear you didn't find anything online.
Ravelry.com is a great place for weaving (it's not just for knitting). There are tons of groups and forums there for weaving so you can get ideas, tips, questions answered, find patterns, see other people's work, tons of stuff! Here's a sample of a search I did on people's weaving projects (some of these are just INCREDIBLE pieces of work) - http://www.ravelry.com/projects/search#craft=weaving&view=thumbs&query=weaving&sort=best
Also, youtube.com has an ungodly amount of instructional videos that are wonderful and VERY helpful. This link is just an example search I typed in (there are countless videos you could search for) - http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=loom+weaving+tutorial&aq=1&oq=loom+weaving
Also, a lot of the yarn stores also carry weaving supplies. Knitpicks.com has a good selection of VERY affordable small beginner looms as well as the supplies (and of course yarn :)!
I'm also suprised at your lack of library books. Where do you live? I know my local library (Englewood, Colorado) has a bunch of fiber arts books. I love to check out knitting books that have patterns in them. They also have a system set up where they can get books from the surrounding library districts (metro Denver area) so if I want something they don't have, they can order it in from another nearby district for me to check out. Last year I bought a great spinning and weaving book that has instructions on how to build your own floor loom. I could go home and get the title if you are interested at all. I found it at my local bookstore/coffee shop down the street from my house. It's also the place where I like to hang out and knit!
And if all that fails, Amazon.com has a fanstastic selection. (again, this link is just a search result on amazon for "weaving for beginners") - http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_3_21?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=weaving+for+beginners&sprefix=weaving+for+beginners
One more idea, most Local Yarn Stores have weaving supplies, books and classes, or at the very least be able to direct you to a store that does. I remember I had a small loom when I was young and when I started knitting 2 years ago, as I was learning and looked through Ravelry.com and all the other yarn supply places, I was reminded of it and how much I loved weaving. I've done a few small things on homemade stuff, like you have here, but I'm hoping I can get a small tabletop loom one of these days. Hopefully you can stick with it and enjoy weaving as much as I do! Feel free to let me know too if you need any more info on links or stores or anything. Good luck!!! :)
ChrysN (author)  bgirl0294 years ago
Awesome! Thanks for all the links, I obviously didn't do a great job searching.
7Dogs3 months ago

Since deciding I wanted to weave I have spent hours trying to understand looms and the bits and pieces that go with a loom. I have learned more in the last half hour viewing your loom and instructions than previous numerous hours. Well done and thank you!!!

ChrysN (author)  7Dogs3 months ago

Thank you, that makes me happy to hear that.

DebiDrink7 months ago

Very good instructions. I feel quite confident that I could build a loom from these directions. The only thing that concerns me is the heddle. You glued the plastic shafts between two pieces of wood. Does the plastic hold reliably? If I were making this heddle, I would staple the plastic shafts to the wood and then glue the other pieces of wood. Seems like it would be sturdier. Just a thought. Thank you for sharing this.

ChrysN (author)  DebiDrink7 months ago

My heddle has held up quite well, though I don't use my loom as often as I would like to. I think stapling the plastic to the wood is a great idea to make it sturdier. Let me know how it turns out!

faeygirl11 year ago

I was wondering what is the largest item that can be made with a loom this size? Do you have measurements? Great instructable.

You can make these looms as big or small as you think you want to use. I've got one that has bolts holding all the pieces together so it can rolled as you complete the weaving and it will hold aproximately 3 yards of weaving. It helps with searching if you use the specific type of weaving/loom you want info for. This is a ridged heddle loom; a similar one is a tapestry loom and some of them are rug size even. Plain weave or stiff material at the beginning can help hold the shape but tension on the shuttle turns is important to keep it from drawing in on the sides which is something experience helped for me :D very nice instructable keep after it and I hope to see more from you in the future.

ChrysN (author)  woodland sprite1 year ago


ChrysN (author)  faeygirl11 year ago

Sorry, I don't have any exact measurements, I usually make smaller items like the one shown. What limits the size of the piece you make is the heddle, my heddle has 27 shafts so your warp is limited to 54 strands wide (which can vary with the thickness of the yarn). If you don't use a heddle you can weave something almost as large as the frame (about 26inX20in). Alternatively you can make a heddle with more shafts. I hope that helps.

RingoWild1 year ago
Amazing! Thank you for such a wonderful instructable!
amadawn2 years ago
This is pure genius. This is the simplest loom I have seen which actually includes a reed/hedle. nice work.
ChrysN (author)  amadawn2 years ago
This is GREAT! Thank you. Love Mirko and LOVE your instructions!
Excellent step by step photos and explanation. I especially liked the way you did the legs. I built a similar frame using inexpensive canvas stretcher frames from the hobby store. You buy them in pairs and they slot together. Use glue at the slots and they stay rigid. They come in different lengths so I was able to build a custom size loom with no problem.
ChrysN (author)  Yorkshiregirl3 years ago
Using stretcher frames sounds like a great way to make a loom. Thanks for the tip!
gserrano7014 years ago
great instructable, great description, great loom, thanks for sharing
ChrysN (author)  gserrano7014 years ago
Thank you!
pwallis4 years ago
Excellent instructions! I have been weaving for years (everything from inkle loom, to card weaving) but have never made my own stationary loom. Kudos to you!!
ChrysN (author)  pwallis4 years ago
White_Wolf4 years ago
I want to know if your inspector/supervisor approved of all your work or was the kitty just giving you pointers..... LOL
ChrysN (author)  White_Wolf4 years ago
Yes, the supervisor kept me in line! ;)
I had looked at buying a new loom - simple, 2 warp. Wow, talk about pricey! Then, my neighbor died, who had a 2 warp loom from her mother (neighbor was in her 80's when she died). I was sure I couldn't afford it, but so much cheaper than new and the construction can't be beat! 100 y.o. and in perfect condition for $200.
I'll be learning and it will pay for itself inside a year.
It's a Union Loom. Some 40,000 were made and most are being put to the curb or cut for fire wood. No one knows how to use them anymore.
I have two Union looms! Great for making rag rugs.

Love this instructable. Especially making the Heddle.
ChrysN (author)  Spiraling Homesteader4 years ago
Looms are very expensive. Your union loom sounds really cool, I guess back then they built things to last.
mikeasaurus4 years ago
Awesome throwback to an ancient art, the design and the results look great!

(your cat seems to get into almost all the shots, too!)
ChrysN (author)  mikeasaurus4 years ago
Thanks! My cat always comes around when I'm working on my projects, he is quite curious.
This is very cool. Do you have an instructable on how to use it?
ChrysN (author)  Doris Sudduth4 years ago
rickharris4 years ago
You can make a very effective shaft by twisting 2 lengths of solid copper wire together with a suitable sized drill in the middle to make the hole.

Twist with a hand drill or cordless its very quick.

You can get suitable copper wire from the earth wire in most 3 core domestic wiring cable - The grey stuff (IN THE UK) that has a solid core.

ChrysN (author)  rickharris4 years ago
Thanks, that is good to know!