Intro: Woven Tapestry for Beginners
Bring new light to your home with the century old art of weaving! This is a super easy, beginners guide to making a beautiful woven tapestry. (Rainbow colors optional!)
Step 1: Supplies
-Weaving Loom (I made mine with an old picture frame and 60 trim nails (30 on top and 30 on the bottom 1/2" apart)
-Shed Stick (I am using a large knitting needle)
-Strong Thread (this will be used for the warp [vertical threads] and should be durable for a sturdy foundation)
-Assorted Yarn (for the "weft". Any assortment of colors, textures and thickness will do)
-A Dowel or Stick (for hanging purposes)
Step 2: Creating the Warp
1. Tie the string onto the first peg at the top
2. Pull thread down and around the bottom peg directly below the one with the knot
3. Bring the thread back to the top and wrap around the second peg
4. Repeat until desired width is achieved
5. Tie the string onto the last peg used
TIP: Make sure the warp strings aren't too loose or too tight, this will make weaving much easier.
Step 3: Bottom Row Tassels
1. Cut folded string to twice the desired length of tassels
2. Fold in half once more and insert over the first and under the second warp (vertical threads)
3. Pull the ends through the loop
4. Tighten the knot
5. Pull the tassel to the bottom of the pegs
6. Repeat until the entire bottom row is complete
Step 4: To Begin Weaving
1. Start at least three warp threads in, leaving a 2"+ tail of thread on the back.
2. Weave in an alternating over/under pattern
3. Weave back the other direction in the opposite over under pattern.
4. Make sure all weft (horizontal strands) are pushed tightly together.
If you run out of thread or want to switch to a different color:
1. End the current thread so the tail in in the back, preferably at least 3 warps in.
2. Push strand down
3. Start the new strand at the end of the previous one. Leave a 2"+ tail in the back an continue the weaving pattern.
To make weaving easier a "shed stick" can be used. I used a knitting needle, a paint stirrer or ruler also works well!
-weave the object through in an over/under pattern. Then pull the needle and thread through for faster&easier weaving.
Step 5: The Rya Knot
1. Cut tassel strands to desired length (the number of strands will depend on the thickness of the yarn as well as desired bulkiness)
2. Three warps in, weave the strands under two warp strand and out
3. Pull the strands up through the middle of the two warp strands
4. Push the tail ends through the loop created in step three
5. Gently pull the ends to tighten the knot
6. To put more next to each other skip one warp strand the create another knot
Continue until satisfied.
Step 6: Fill in the Holes
The rya knots likely lefts some gaps on the sides and in the center. Fill those in by weaving in an over/under pattern.
Step 7: Large Rya Knot
Follow the same steps for a large knot as for the small.
TIP: keep strands as flat as possible for a tight knot. If strands are overlapping it's more difficult to pull the snug.
Also, the more strands there are, the harder it is to get a clean knot.
Step 8: Weaving After the Large Knot
I did this in two parts. Wove on the left side and then the right side (in an over/under pattern) until above the large knot.
Then started a new thread with an over/under pattern above the knot.
Step 9: The Soumack Stitch
1. Start from the edge and come up from under the outer warp strand
2. Wrap back around the first warp and come back up between the first and second warp strand.
3. Pull tightly and repeat this pattern.
4. TIP: to speed up the process during step two you can bring the strand back through two warp strands instead of one.
5. Continue until row is complete and then begin weaving with an over under pattern.
6. Push firmly down.
To go in the reverse direction
1. Wrap the yarn around the first warp (inward to the left), back around to the outside of the first warp (to the right), back over the first warp, under the second warp and over the third warp.
2. Pull tightly down. Then pull the yarn back over the top of warp strand two and under warp 2&3 and over 4. Pull tightly.
3. Repeat until row is complete.
Step 10: Continue Weaving (Chunky Yarn)
Continue weaving with desired colors.
I wove a stripe of orange and decided to switch to a chunkier yarn.
TIP: when weaving with a thick yarn I started 4 warp strands in and wove under and over every two strands (instead of every single strand). Remember to push the wefts tightly together between rows.
Step 11: Continue Weaving (Small Rya Knots)
1. Before adding a row of rya knots I created a foundation for it to sit on by weaving a thinner/stronger yarn above the row of chunky yarn in an over under pattern.
2. Start the rya knots two warp strands in. Since they are small I did not leave an open warp strand between knots. So they are directly next to each other.
3. Continue weaving as desired.
Step 12: Cleaning Up the Back
Flip the loom over and clean up the loose ends!
Either by tie strands together and cutting excess (this can get bulky) or by sewing the tails through the back of the tapestry.
Step 13: Taking the Tapestry Off the Loom
1. Cut the warp strings about 3-4" from the top of the tapestry
2. Double-knot every two warp strands together
3. Sew the loose ends through the back of the tapestry
Step 14: Attach to Dowel/Stick/Etc.
1. Thread needle with yarn, tie a knot at the end and see through the outer edge of the tapestry
2. Wrap around stick and back through the tapestry
3. Repeat until finished
4. Pull needle through, knot off the yarn and cut the strand
Step 15: Finishing Touch
Lastly tie the ends of a long piece of yarn to each end of the stick and enjoy your new wall hanging!