Weaving is big right now and has been for some time, and you can see why, any craft that encapsulates gorgeous squishy yarns, pom-poms and tassels is kind of guaranteed to be a hit. Especially one which effortlessly crosses the bridge between modern design and traditional techniques (check out this pinterest board if you want to see some stunning examples...).
I've tried weaving once before with the freebie kit that came with issue 58 of Mollie Makes. Obviously I loved it, but didn't really know where to go with it next. So as soon as I spotted the Rico weaving kits on Sew Crafty Shop I knew what my second Design Team make would be! Ever ambitious (or fool hardy) I decided to try the circular weaving loom with some gorgeous DMC Natura Just Cotton yarns in blush, coral and teal.
The yarns are just beautiful, super soft cotton and as soon as I saw the shades I knew they would be perfect for a rose. I couldn't help myself and added the pom-poms to finish it off which work well with the bowl shape I ended up with (see tip 5!). There's something so special about sitting down with a weaving loom; it's such a relaxing craft, the movements are rhythmic and it's not something you can rush so it's the perfect craft to unwind with after a day at work.
The Rico weaving loom comes instructions to warp your loom, weave and cut off, which were invaluable to a novice like me. But here's five extra tips I learned along the way:
1. At the start of your circular weaving, keep pulling the yarn tight
After warping (setting up) your loom, the fun bit starts. But the first few rounds of weaving on mine looked anything but pretty, until I pulled the yarn really tight and the wobbly ovals transformed into smooth, even circles.
2. Free-hand is fun
There aren't many crafts where you can pick up the materials without any prior plan or design and create something beautiful. Embrace it.
3. Trying to 'draw' shapes while weaving in a circle will blow your mind
If you do decide to try to weave a particular design do keep the 'free-hand' bit in mind, my rose shape evolved very naturally and halfway through I did try to draw how to finish it off, but of course you are constantly working with a curve shape which didn't translate to my drawing and mainly just caused me a bit of a headache! As soon as I abandoned the drawing and went back to free-hand, the rest of the rose appeared just fine.
4. Make the most of your edging
Pom-poms and tassels, need I say more?
5. Iron your piece after cutting off but before tying your ends together
Or if your piece uses big bulky yarns that aren't really suitable for ironing at least be sure to hold it flat before tying your ends together. Otherwise your weaving will curl into a bowl like shape, like mine has!
Have you tried weaving on a circular loom before? Let me know if you have any extra tips too!
*some of the materials for this project were supplied by Sew Crafty, but all opinions are my own.