I was never really keen on tablet weaving but recently I had the feeling like I had to start another tablet woven band. And, well, therefore I started my third tablet woven band ever… 🙂
It is really odd – sometimes I feel a sudden urge to create something special even if it means that I have to pick up a craft I normally don’t do or to learn something new. This feeling can be so overwhelming that I have no other possibility than to follow my gut feeling and to start creating…
And recently I again had such an overwhelming urge to create. This certain urge even surprised me quite a lot as I really wanted to make a tablet woven band. Well, what shall I say, some of you already know my usual feelings about trim – why shall I apply trim to my garment if I can embroider it… *lol*
But it seems that with every year that passes and gets added to my age, I tend to enlarge my repertoire and horizon a bit. Last year I made the very first tunic embellished with a tablet woven trim for my husbands christmas present for which I used some tablet woven band I made. Well, that’s not completely true – my sister Martina actually started the band and when she gifted the weaving frame to me with the half finished trim.
I happily picked up where she stopped and finished the rest of the trim. Already when I was trying to figure out the rotating system she used to finish the first part of the trim I really learned a lot about the system behind the tablet rotation. I think it’s really true – you learn a lot by simply trying to correct your own mistakes or by trying out patterns and correcting them until you get the correct pattern you are aiming for.
Well, I have to admit that I did not really start by Adam and Eve when I put my hands on her trim and my now very first own tablet weaving frame. I attended a really great tablet weaving class at my very last event in Drachenwald (SCA in Europe) – Double Wars, where I made my very first tablet woven band – thanks to the detailed instructions and very helpful assistance of my teacher. At this point I would love to thank her but I unfortunately forgot who was actually holding this class – but I definitely learned a lot and I think that it actually took away my initial hesitation for this craft.
And now, several years after creating my very first tablet woven band and nearly two years after I finished the tablet woven band my sister Martina started, I found myself with an overwhelming urge to pick up the craft again. A longing which made me want to start immediately with a new tablet weaving project. Well, I was stunned about this feeling but I was willing to comply. Therefore I took my only book about tablet weaving, my tablet weaving frame and some silk threads and refreshed my memory a bit. A quite simple tablet weaving pattern was found very fast and I started to thread my weaving frame (or however this process is called for weaving)… 🙂
I am really not ashamed to admit that I already miscounted after the very first turns. Yes, my husband can be quite a distraction at times. And he was quite amused when he heard my relieved shout after some time: “Yeah, I found the pattern again”… Well, that’s how we learn, or shall I say – how I learn? Nevertheless this counting mistake gave me the possibility to play a little bit with the card rotation and the pattern.
And now let’s take a look at the progress of my third tablet woven band – enjoy! 😀
Above you can see the already finished band on my frame – the first line on the left actually shows the backside of the band. Not so bad for a first try after such a long time, isn’t it… 🙂
And here a picture of my frame and the set up of my thread:
When I set up my frame for the very first time, I didn’t actually lay out the thread the way where I could get the best use of the whole range of the frame. I was only concerned with getting started and didn’t think much about a more economic way to get a much longer trim out of it. However, after I got the trim going, I had quite some time to think about a much better way for the future…
And here a close up picture of the actual tablet woven trim at which I was working as well as sneak peek at the basic pattern I used to set up the frame. When you take a look at the picture underneath, you will see that I didn’t follow the pattern completely. As I was playing with the cards to find my way back to the pattern after my initial mishap, I discovered that I could actually do this pattern instead which I found a little bit more appealing:
Yeah, some mistakes can lead one to see a pattern a little bit differently and furthermore help to discover slightly different ways to do things… 🙂
And last but not least the only book I actually possess about tablet weaving. I highly recommend this book to you as it comes with all necessary information to get one started with tablet weaving:
“Omenaisia ja revonneniä – Suomalaisia lautanauhoja”
Applesies and Fox Noses – Finnish Tabletwoven Bands
by Maikki Karisto and Mervi Pasanen
Available through Salakirjat
Though this book doesn’t actually describe how to set up a frame, it provides one with all necessary information about the technique itself – tablet direction, weft thread, twist, correcting mistakes, broken warp thread, finishing the bands,… It furthermore also shows the starting position as well as the rotation pattern for several beautiful tablet woven bands – divided into the sections: simple patterns, challenging patterns and demanding patterns with half turns. The only thing you need to get used to is that the text always starts with a finnish text part but is immediately followed by an English translation. It also contains many very useful drawings which tremendously help to understand the technique better as well as many helpful hints along the way…
And just some last words about the frame I use – my tablet weaving frame is actually an inkle loom from the company “Ashford Handicrafts” in New Zealand. The wood is lovely smooth and the frame is very easy to handle. Not to mention that it also gives one the possibility to use the frame for its initial purpose – as an inkle loom. You can find a very helpful video about how to set up and weave on the inkle loom in the “Download” section right underneath the picture.
…and in the next posting I will show you how I put my new, third tablet woven band to very good use. 😀