Pin Loom for Weaving Fabric Squares

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Introduction: Pin Loom for Weaving Fabric Squares

It may be the simplest loom you can use. Still, it is great for experimenting, and if you decide to pursue Diagonal Weaving, it makes the Best Dishcloths In The World. True, they're only dishcloths, but they're the Best In The World!

Here's the basic process for making a square pin loom out of a 12x12 artist's canvas:

  1. Remove the artist's canvas from the frame.
  2. Use a piece of plastic canvas as a template.
  3. Drive a few brads into the plastic canvas just to hold it in place on the frame.
  4. Put a brad in each square on all four sides of the plastic canvas.
  5. Remove the plastic canvas.
  6. That's it!

Step 1: Tools & Supplies

  • Square frame from stretched artist's canvas (I use 12x12 inch.)
  • Plastic Canvas for a spacing template (I use 5-count, which has 5 holes per inch)
  • #17 or #18 x 1 1/4 brads for pins. The smoother the heads, the better, but you may have to shop around a bit.
  • A brad driver like the GreatNeck BD1 Magnetic Brad and Nail Driver
  • A permanent marker

Step 2: Setup

    There are a couple of things that you can do to make the job easier.
    First, mark barrel of the brad driver where you want to stop pushing. (Set the height of the pin.)

    Then, wrap the barrel with duct tape or something to make a stop. This will help keep the pins a consistent height, which doesn't affect the function much, but certainly looks nicer.

    Step 3: Size, Mark, and Center the Plastic Canvas Template

    1. I like to trim the plastic canvas to the size of the frame, leaving closed cells all around.
    2. Then, mark the center rib (even number of pins) or center hole (odd number of pins) of all four sides.
    3. I also like to mark every 5th hole (every inch on 5/in. canvas). That makes it easier to assure that all four sides have the same number of holes to either side of center.
    4. Center the canvas on the frame, and set a few brads to keep it in place. Bend the brads outward for better grip. (Don't use the rows that you're intending to use for pins.)

    Step 4: Set Your Pins!

    This is really the easy part. Set a pin as vertically as possible in every square of the chosen rows of your plastic canvas template. It's a bit repetitive, but it actually goes pretty quickly.

    You can see in the photo that I usually work all over the loom, rather than starting in one spot and working my way around. I might start with all four centers, then add every 5th pin to all the sides, then fill in the missing pins. That keeps errors from stacking up on one side and throwing the plastic canvas out of alignment.

    Don't worry too much about pins that aren't perfectly placed or perfectly vertical. The fabrics made on the loom are very forgiving of minor variations in spacing.

    When all the pins are set, remove the bent-over brads that held the plastic canvas to the frame.

    Remove the plastic canvas, and you're ready to weave!

    Step 5: The Finished Loom

    Here's a finished loom, ready to make finished projects!

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    Participated in the
    Hand Tools Only Contest 2017

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      12 Discussions

      0
      sgsidekick
      sgsidekick

      2 years ago

      I made something similar last year. Sure wish I'd known about the brad driver! That would have saved me a lot of pain! LOL. Good job!

      0
      ronphillips
      ronphillips

      Reply 2 years ago

      Thank you!

      0
      Tephra
      Tephra

      2 years ago

      I've read a lot of tutorials about making pin looms and this if the firs one I have seen that uses plastic canvas as a guide. That is brilliant!

      0
      ronphillips
      ronphillips

      Reply 2 years ago

      Thank you!

      0
      jking39
      jking39

      2 years ago

      Can't wait to make my own!

      0
      ronphillips
      ronphillips

      Reply 2 years ago

      Great! Please post any problems you run into so I can update the tut.

      0
      reblos50
      reblos50

      2 years ago

      wow. Great tutorial. Very exact. I’m wanting to make one now!!!!!

      0
      ronphillips
      ronphillips

      Reply 2 years ago

      Thank you -- do it!

      0
      ShethraJ
      ShethraJ

      2 years ago

      I love this! I want to make one. Nice job!

      0
      ronphillips
      ronphillips

      Reply 2 years ago

      Thank you! It's easy, really.

      1
      seamster
      seamster

      2 years ago

      This is a really neat, simple idea. Thank you!

      0
      ronphillips
      ronphillips

      Reply 2 years ago

      I'm glad you like it!