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Ep. 7 Sleying the Reed

In Episode 7, we are talking all things, “sleying the reed”. There are many steps involved in setting up a loom or “dressing a loom”. Sleying the reed is my favorite, no question! There is something about the process of placing each yarn in the appropriate dent that is completely satisfying for the left side of my brain. It’s a bit like when I was a page at the local library, for example. I absolutely loved that job! There was one goal – put the correct book in the correct spot on the shelf.  Ahhh, those were the days…

Now, I simply look forward to that sweet step right after winding the yarn on the warping board, and right before I thread the heddles. And you guessed it – this week’s episode of A Handwoven Experience is all about sleying the reed. The goal of this particular step is to move each yarn into the reed, which will then keep everything at the appropriate width in the loom. And now, I present Episode 7 – enjoy!


Show notes –

Planning a project – the first step in a weaving project (usually involves a bit of math)

Warping a project – measuring yarns to the same length, in order, using a warping board

Sleying the reed – threading each yarn through a slot in the reed

Dressing the loom – the series of steps required to set up a loom

Reed – a narrow, rectangular frame with evenly-spaced dividers that will then slide into the beater bar of the loom

Warping board – a large, wood frame with pegs drilled into it, meant to be a structure for measuring warp yarns

Weaving cross – an intersection of yarns that showcase the order, which is critical for sleying the reed

Lease sticks – a pair of  connected wood dowels designed to hold the weaving cross

Dent – slot in the reed (ex. an 8-dent reed has 8 slots per inch)

Higgledy-piggledy – in confusion or disorder (definitely NOT the goal when dressing a loom)

Slip knot – a knot that releases with a simple tug on one end


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