In our previous post we showed you how to use the Melissa and Doug Weaving Loom to create a woven wall animal picture. Now we’re going to show you how to use the loom to create one of the yarn projects that comes in the booklet.
The Melissa and Doug Weaving Loom comes with an adjustable frame, oversize wooden needle, and generous 91 yards of rainbow yarn, illustrated design booklet, and 42 picture strips. Great for all skill levels, this Loom also includes three picture tapestries to weave and kids can choose to make a scarf, a tasseled coaster, a drawstring pouch, a crafty carry-all or whatever they design themselves. It is super affordable at just around $25.00 or less and comes with Free Shipping on Amazon.com
Once you have the loom put together you will want to figure out what project you are going to make. The project you decide to make decides where the dowel rod get placed on the weaving loom. You need to put the dowel rods in the frame to give your project stability. The rod keep the sides straight so they don’t bow in. Take one long dowel rod that is provided and put it through the hole on one end of the weaving loom. Then take the next dowel and put it on the other end of the loom or in the center if you are making a scarf or carry-all bag. The enclosed booklet will help you figure out where to put them based on the project you make.
Next, tie one end to the center or end dowel, depending on what you are making. I would suggest you just do a single tie and not a double so it is easy to take out when you are finished weaving. Pull the yarn down tight and loop up, around, down and continue until the whole vertical working area is covered. Make sure you pull the yarn very tight. An adult may need to do this step.
When you have covered the weaving area, tie the yarn off at the bottom right with a single tie.
Now, cut a 4 arms length (adult’s arm) piece of yarn and thread one end through the wooden needle. You don’t want it any long or it will get tangled and be a pain to work with. Tie the end of the yarn to the bottom right, near where you just tied off the vertical yarn.
Now the weaving fun begins. Using the large wooden needle, weave in and out making sure to GO AROUND THE OUTSIDE of the dowel rods. This is very important. You need to make sure the yarn goes around the dowel rods. This can be tricky but the needle has been designed to be flat so it slips perfectly in between the frame and the dowel rod.
When you reach the end of one piece of yarn, tie another piece of yarn to it, creating a knot and leaving at least a 1″ tail. Weave the knot and tail inside of the woven piece if possible or push the tail of the yarn towards the back of the piece if you are making a bag. You need to figure out which side will be the front and which will be the back so you have the knots and tails consistently hidden. If you are making a scarf you will need to tuck the tail into the woven area so you may want to have the tails be 2″ or longer.
What the front of the woven piece looks like when finished.
What the back of the woven piece looks like when finished and the knots tails haven’t been tucked in. You can leave the “tails” out if you are making a bag because they will be on the inside. If you are make a scarf you will need to weave the knot tails inside of the weave.
When the weaving is complete, carefully untie the corners and tie the last string to the first string you tied onto the corner. Then remove the dowel (you may need a pair of pliers to get it out) and carefully remove the loops from the frame. Now just stretch the piece out a bit to even it out.
If you are making the carry-all bag, you will need a needlepoint needle with a large eye so you can sew the edges closed. Fold the woven piece, back side to the inside, into thirds. This bag has a flap to cover it. If you want it to just be open on the top just fold it in half. We made ours with the flap.
Cut a 12″ to 16″ piece of yarn and thread it through the needlepoint needle. Make a knot at the end of the yarn. Start at the fold in the corner and place the knot inside of the bag so it won’t show. Now you will use the “whip stitch” and gather both sides to close up one side. Make a knot at the end and pull the tail inside of the bag so it won’t show.
The instructions tell you to make a braided strap and sew it on but there are other things you can do to make a strap. You could use fabric or ribbon. We decided to line our bag using felt to make it sturdier and last longer. You could just line the top flap if you want. We lined our woven bag by hand using the whip stitch. Then we added gold grosgrain ribbon to each corner of the fold and made a pom pom out of leftover yarn. This was tied onto one of the remaining end ties.
We loved using the Melissa and Doug weaving loom and will find lots of uses and other projects to make with it.
CLICK HERE to see how to use the Melissa and Doug weaving loom to create a woven photo art project.