Through the eye of the heddle…

Here’s where I am so far – chose the yarn (check!), measured the warp (check!), and sleyed the reed (check!). Next up, the reed will slide into the loom and each yarn will be paired with a heddle.

Empty Beater Bar

The reed’s in place!

The reed is wedged into the beater bar. The beater bar is the piece that moves forward when weaving to press (or beat, depending on the day you’re having!) the yarn into place. I faced the reed so the short knots are facing the back of the loom and the long, luxurious twists of yarn are facing the front.

View from the back

Now that the reed is all settled, it’s time to thread some heddles! Heddles are thin, metal strips with eyes in them. They live in the shafts of the loom. (A shaft is a frame that can lift up when you’re weaving.) My loom is a 4-shaft loom and each yarn is paired with only one heddle. So, I have to choose which shaft (1, 2, 3, or 4) and which heddle I’ll use! It’s a little tricky to explain. I’m hoping the photos will more accurately illustrate what I’m trying to describe! (Especially for all the visual learners out there!)

Waiting for heddles of their very own

See the 4 shafts?

I like to start in the middle & work my way out

Heddles are done!

For this particular project, I used a fairly straightforward pattern with the heddles (1-2-3-4-1-2-3-4, etc.). As you can imagine, threading the heddles can get wildly complicated! But, I’m looking for something simple this time around. So, the finished fabric will be heavy on color and texture, not pattern. It makes this step easier – definitely! Next up, I’ll be winding on!

A close-up for the road!

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