Isn't this just the cutest? This is the weaving my daughter has been working on using the scraps left over after I used a bunch of t-shirts to make some yarn. Now I'm no weaving expert, but this little project has definitely sparked an interest in weaving, so I have a feeling there's more in store! I honestly didn't really know what I was doing when I made a little loom out of cardboard and string, and realized after the project was under way that I really didn't know how to finish it exactly! I'm relieved to say that the little knotted fringe is just so sweet, and this is a great project for kids! Though I have to admit I want to make one too!
- T-shirt yarn (how-to here) or 3/4" strips of t-shirt fabric cut across the width of the t-shirt. Stretch strips of t-shirt between 2 hands so they curl.
- Cotton string
- A piece of cardboard (I used the side of a box) sized according to what you'd like to make
Step 1: Make Your Loom
- I used a piece of cardboard 14"wide and 19" long, and marked lines 3/4" apart, running vertically on the whole length.
- Cut 2" slits on those lines at both the top and bottom of your cardboard, and using one long piece of string, lace your loom by simply winding the string vertically around the cardboard using the slits to hold the string in place. Make sure that you have an even number of strings. Secure the ends of the string with tape to the back of the loom.
Note: While this spacing of loom strings is good for small children, I'd recommend putting them more like 3/8" apart for better construction. In our loom the strings kept migrating towards the center, though I'm really not sure why, but maybe spacing them closer together will alleviate this problem.
Step 2: Weaving
- If you'd like to make something that looks like our example, so weave according to the photo above, making sure to weave an even number of rows.
- If you'd like to make a flat piece without having to finish the edges you'll have to weave by starting each piece somewhere in the middle, and achieving exact stripes will be more difficult. Weaving with this method requires a tightly woven piece and strings close together. You weave the first piece such that the end is actually woven into the loom above the first row, and the last row such that the end is woven in below the last row. Got it?
Step 3: Finishing
- Keep in mind that because t-shirt fabric is stretchy, your finished product will most likely shrink in width once you take it off the loom!
- To finish your weaving like we (actually I, Mom) did, tie double knots between each pair of strips. It would be wise to mark the border with a piece of tape running vertically so you'll know just where to tie the knot. Otherwise your weaving will most likely be lopsided! (Learn from my mistakes!)
- After tying knots on both sides, trim fringe to desired length.
- Cut vertical strings and tie those together in pairs, and trim close to the knot.
- Instead of tying the knots you could sew the ends together by hand, or tie loose knots and then run the edges of the weaving, just inside the knots, through a sewing machine. Then you can cut the knots off and have a flat fringe, a great option!