Friday, November 11, 2016

The ultimate prize-winning pin-loomed Mother of Groom outfit




Caroline Fylpaa, designer-weaver of the Prairie Points technique, shares her most recent creation, a prize winning summer outfit worn with great style at her son's wedding.


She reported, "the shell was made with a stripe on the left side front to back, the skirt was made of alternating striped and plain blocks set on point, wool and rayon, rayon mix, stripes were rayon boucle, perfect for a summer wedding and party."

And in addition to winning all our applause for the "Fabulous Hand Designed and Handmade Mother of Groom Outfit of the Year," she took home a two ribbons as well!


Stay tuned, Caroline has promised to send further information on her pattern including how she worked that perfect fit.  I am hoping that she will also give us details about those two ribbons. Congratulations, Caroline!

If you haven't seen Caroline's Prairie Points blanket, check it out here.


Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Pin Loom Christmas II

Here's a couple more Christmas ideas-- scalable snowflake squares to use for coasters, place mats or a winter throw... plus poinsettias!


Idea #3  Make a snowflake square, then make a bunch more snowflake squares, then turn them into very cool presents. 


These are 4" pin loom squares embellished with snowflake patterns in white yarn.  The top square has a single crochet edge, the bottom square was supposed to have a more "icicle" look.

Here are the directions to crochet the bottom square's icicle edge: There should be one icicle point in each of the double loops. In the first loop, chain 3, sc2 back down the chain, then in the second loop, sc1. Repeat all the way around the square. 

Either style makes a great coaster.  Weave four squares, embellish with four snowflake patterns and you've got a pretty nice hostess gift (or add a bottle of wine for a great hostess gift.) Snowflake patterns are easy to make up or find online.

Or scale it up, turn 12 squares with a variety of snowflake patterns into a winter themed place mat. Make a table runner that is just the right size for your table. Keep in mind that the single crochet edge makes a very pretty join, just whip stitch the squares together.



Make a set of place mats or just keep going and make a cozy winter blanket as a gift for yourself  or someone you really care about (I mean, come on, its going to take a lot of squares).  I would suggest only embellishing a few of the squares so that it doesn't get too busy. Consider using a number of different shades of blue for the larger project to add more depth/texture to the design. 


 Idea #4  Make a pin loom poinsettia as a Christmas pin or to embellish a gift, make a whole bunch of pin loom poinsettias and decorate a tree!


This is a pulled thread pin loom flower, also known as a Loom Bloom, originated by Jana Trent of Eloomination.com fame. It is made with two 4" x 4" squares.

Make the bloom by finding a thread right in the middle of the square and pulling on it to cause the square to pucker in. Then pull on the other thread (you're pulling on one horizontal and one vertical thread) to create four petals. Do the same to the second square and stack the two squares to make a multiple petal flower.

Add a bunch of french knots in yellow and light green to create a poinsettia like look. This sample flower has a 4" green square, folded diagonally, attached to the bottom.


My plan for this sample flower, and the other seven that I'm going to make, is to turn them into holiday napkin rings. The two points of the green square will be joined to make the napkin ring. The cool thing is that people at the dinner can take the flowers home with them, which is really fun.

There is no end to the fun things that can be done with the flower. We've all got a hat or a purse somewhere that could use a little Christmas cheer.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Pin Loom Christmas

Christmas and other, equally challenging gift giving holidays, are going to be here before we know it. I've been thinking about a number of small, thoughtful gifts I could make but its already clear that I am going to run out of time before the samples are all woven and finished. So instead of putting it off for another year, I am going to list the ideas in the next several posts, using older, finished samples or drawings so that I can share the ideas with you.

Idea #1 Make a woven gift bag that could end up being just as treasured as the gift itself. 



Make a bag in sparkly reds and greens or make it in the recipient's favorite colors. The simplest bag is two 4" x 4" squares, joined together. This sample was made with two squares, each with a single crochet edge in the same color as the square with a contrasting color used to whip stitch them together. The top has a double crochet edge with yarn threaded through for a tie. Here is the pattern for the little heart sewn into the bag. You could just as easily add a little Christmas tree or, as you will see in the next post, a snowflake.


Idea #2 Make a Pin Loom Christmas tree for the holidays. 


Foam cones are available everywhere, they make a fun and easy decorative touch for the holidays. Wrap a foam cone in 4" squares, using colored pins as embellishments. You could add on chains, charms and all sorts of extra decorations. Wrap some smaller cones in yarn to make an entire fiber forest!



Don't forget to check on past posts for ideas on Advent calendars, wash clothes and other heartfelt woven gifts.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Florencia Campos Correa pin loom weaving projects

We know Florencia Campos Correa as the author of 100 Pin Loom Squares: 100 Exciting Color Combinations to Try, Plus 15 Stylish Projects.  Florencia was kind enough to get in touch and share information on her newest project, bias woven pin loom clothing patterns to be made with her own modifiable pin loom boards. Check out her unique pin looms as well as the exciting patterns at her website: www.Ullvuna.cl  Florencia noted, "I am dedicated to converting my Ullvuna designs, my seven year brand of knitwear, to DIY kits."






The Ullvuna Mely is a customizable weaving loom set that lets you weave a variety of sizes of squares and triangles using a continuous weave or bias weave process to make easy to wear styles. 


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Check out Florencia's site for a new FREE 4" pin loom weaving pattern.


This pattern uses a traditional weaving pattern on the pin loom (laying down all the warp, weaving through all 32 lines to produce this "Heart Stitch" pattern.

Florencia noted that she is a native of Chile. Her website and this pattern are available in both Spanish and English.

Thank you, Florencia, for sharing your delightful pin loom patterns and fashions.







Monday, August 22, 2016

Pin Looms at Convergence

If you have read any of the posts in Pin Loom Weaving, you may have noted my conviction that pin looms are the NEXT BIG THING, a craft that has been overlooked and undervalued for far too long and is poised for a resurgence.  Pin looms were very much present at HGA's 2016 Convergence in the vendor's booths, in the workshops and in the fashion show.

Marcella Edmund of Marcellaedmund.com has forwarded the pin loom field particularly in the area of woven garments. Two of her pin loom woven jackets, each featuring crochet or knit joins and embellishments, were a highlight of the the "Moving Forward" Fashion Show.

This is Marcella's Ginger Cardigan

Handwoven on pin loom, sewing, crochet. This is an original pattern using variegated thick and thin cotton yarn and wool sport weight yarn.  I got to see this item up close and it looked gorgeous and very comfy.


This is the Mosaic Jacket

Handwoven on pin looms, with knitting and sewing. This is an original pattern using hand-dyed, handspun New Zealand wool. Notice that in this Mosaic Jacket, the body is made of woven squares while the sleeves are knitted. What a great combination!

Marcella has built a library of clothing patterns that use both pin looms and either crochet or knitting to complete her garment.

Interested in seeing more of Marcella's fabulous work? 



Check out Marcella Edmund's new publication, The Pin Loom Primer at  Marcellaedmund.com  She notes that this is a book about the different ways to weave and join squares. Familiar methods like crochet, sewing and knitting can all be used to join squares. Marcella offers a dozen projects, each a new learning opportunity with diagrams and tips to help you at every step.  Check it out!  

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Zebra's a STAR!

The Sept.-Oct. issue of Handwoven is now out and features an article on the Pin Loom Zebra.
Check out the dazzling article at A Dazzle of Zebras.


Zebra recently returned home from the Handwoven magazine shoot and may have gotten a big head over the article.  I mean, sunglasses?  Check out the series of companion animal weaving patterns called Pin Loom Primitives now available through the Pin Loom Weaving Shop.

Free Pin Loom Rabbit Pattern

Update: This free pattern is now located in the Pin Loom Pattern Shop.

This is a new pattern based in part on the approach of using one square to make rabbit ears, head and body. This rabbit is made with a 4 x 4" square for the body plus several 2 x 2" squares for the front and back feet. This is a free pattern just in time to add a few bunnies to an Easter basket. This is a fun pattern to make and may explain why there are so many rabbits running around.


The rabbit pattern has just been updated to include a fun, easy pattern for a little carrot to go with the little rabbit. Click HERE or click on the Pin Loom Pattern Shop page to download the free PDF instruction sheet for rabbit and carrot.



Thursday, June 30, 2016

Weave a Sheep Pin


Looking for a simple woven gift or badge? This is a great little sheep pin that is made using two 2" x 2" squares sewn together with a little batting and a pin back.  I can't wait to make a bunch of them!

If I need a small gift its going to be perfect. If I have a big gift to decorate, this little pin will make a great embellishment. And if I need a pin loom related item for multiple goody bags, this little Lamb Pin hits all the marks.

Choose your favorite fleecy looking yarn, add head and feet in satin stitch.



What better way to introduce pin loom weaving--it's ease, it's usefulness, than by sharing an easy to make and unique gift.




This is a simple 2" pin for scarf or embellishment. Its made with two  2" x 2" squares, a couple of very small squares (about 1 1/2" x 1 1/2") of quilt batting or other soft cloth like fleece to add some body, plus a pin back.

The sample shown here uses a 1 1/2" pin back. The body of the pin back is buried between the two layers and sewn to the back layer. All that shows is the pin and clasp.



Friday, June 17, 2016

Weave a summer camera bag

Cameras have always been an important part of summer activities and this camera bag captures that sense of summer adventures while being an easy to weave accessory. Phones have taken over all the duties of picture taking, but this bag reclaims the spirit of the camera.


This pin loom woven camera bag is constructed from 4" x 4" squares. The brown side and bottom panels have been turned in to make a slimmer side profile. On the inside there is plastic needlework screen stitched to the side and bottom squares to give it a more rigid frame. I wanted a very easy and carefree finish for the inside, so the interior is finished with bright pink duct tape. Its waterproof, makes it easy to see into the bag and adds some stiffening to the sides.


The turquoise body of the camera bag was joined by using a single crochet around each square, then whip stitching them together. The brown sides were joined using a double overcast stitch (you can find more information on the joins in Pin Loom Essentials) turned in around the plastic screen and stitched to the turquoise front and back with a whip stitch. You can see that there is a crocheted tab in the back. The black button on the tab covers the top section of a purse magnet. The little red button on the top of the purse is just a little red button that appears to have been created specifically to look like an old camera shutter button.

I wanted the purse strap to look like an old-fashioned leather camera strap. It is a 32" crochet chain with one line of half double crochet. The ends have a long chained loop to allow them to loop easily over the brass buttons on each side.


This is the camera before final assembly. I was in the process of sewing on the purse magnet closure when I took the picture. The yellow stitching was to help me determine where the top should fold down the back.

I am hoping to someday put together a whole collection of funky, pin loom woven faux camera bags. These are other cameras that I would like to recreate as woven bags.  After all, can the world have too many fun handbags?  I think not.


Monday, May 23, 2016

New Pin Loom Weaving book is on the way

When I finished writing Pin Loom Weaving; 40 Projects for Tiny Hand Looms, I turned to my husband and friends and said, "That's it, never again." After all, I had just written down pretty much everything I knew about pin looms and I found out that writing a book is more difficult and way less fun than weaving.

Two things happened shortly after I made that statement,
1) I had a bunch of ideas about how to make pin loom animals and
2) I began to think about a cool new ways to weave. So for the past year I have been working on two plans. Regarding the animal patterns, you should soon be seeing more pin loom animal patterns online- starting with the free rabbit pattern.  And I have been writing a book with lots of new pin loom patterns using a variety of approaches to pin loom weaving. FYI, it turns out that writing a book the second time is just as difficult and frustrating as the first time.

You can be sure that I will proudly let everyone know when the new pin loom weaving book date gets closer. Right now it looks like it will be available in March, 2017. In the meantime I wanted to give you a look at some of the ideas that have gone into the book.

Pin Loom Weaving on a Potholder Loom

I have always wondered if it wouldn't be possible to pin loom weave on a potholder loom, considering that the potholder loom also has pins all the way around. But I was never happy with having to use loops and finish it off with a crochet type edge. So there are a series of patterns in the new book that are woven, with a finished selvage, on a potholder loom.

The effect is more open and loose than using a 4" loom like the Zoom Loom. The potholder loom works very nicely for scarves and shawls. It also makes it possible to weave large pin loom squares with much heavier yarns. The scarf below is woven from Isaac Mizrahi super bulky yarn, which makes it a colorful choice for Minnesota winter wear.


So keep an eye out for more animal patterns, its taking a while but they will be available soon, and I will be posting more information on the new pin loom weaving book as the publication date gets closer.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

New pin loom patterns and publications

If you're interested in lively conversation with other people who are passionate about pin looms, consider checking out the Facebook Pin Loom Weaving Support Group.  This is a closed group, which means that you have to ask to get in, but if you care about pin looms you will be welcomed.

Right now there is a weave-along exploring an incredible variety of designs specifically intended for our little 4" looms as well as a helpful, supportive environment for pin loom weavers new and old. Of course, if you are signed up with the group, you already know this is true.

There are new people signing up every day. It is so much fun to see everyone's excitement and the unique skills and perspectives that each weaver brings to pin loom weaving.



More exciting news! 

There's a brand new offering by Interweave coming out very soon. It covers weaving projects on a number of small looms including the Zoom Loom.

This is a link to the information on Easy Weaving with Little Looms.

Its getting intense, there are a crazy number of people flocking to Zoom Looms and other small looms.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Pin looms love Crispina Ffrench blankets

I am posting these images primarily as a feast for the eyes. These are all Crispina Ffrench designed blankets, made from upcycled, felted wool sweaters. Don't forget to visit her website at crispina.com. 

Considering that most of the people who look at this blog have lovely little looms, capable of producing perfect 4" or 2" squares of cloth, an alternate method of celebrating these lovely patterns comes to mind.  It looks likes Ms. Ffrench has used 3" squares of felted cloth... which might work perfectly if one were to weave in wool and then felt the 4" squares. Beautiful.





Sunday, March 27, 2016

2016 Pin Loom Workshops




I am lining up a number of workshops for this summer and fall. Please check on the 2016 Pin Loom Workshops page for the dates and locations. I am still working on the list and there are a few late-in-the-year fiber fairs still pending so you may want to check back in the future. I hope you find something that interests you!


We will be doing 2-D and 3 -D projects as shown here.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Classes at Convergence

This is the year of Convergence, happening this summer from July 30 to August 6, 2016, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I am going to be teaching three courses on pin loom weaving! Yes, I am very excited.

I am doing an introductory course for people who have not woven on pin looms at all. I am doing two courses for pin loom fans that will be all about weaving and constructing objects that can be completed during the class: sheep, owls, and cats.  Check out all the details on the Pin Loom Classes page. 

Click this link for the main Convergence page to go to the official website for registration. Because Convergence only happens every two years, class openings can go fast, so check it out. 

We will be weaving an Owl and Pussycat with plans for a Pea-Green Boat.

You can weave a pasture full of sheep. You can weave a sample sheep for each sample fleece!


Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Crispina ffrench weaves with a REALLY BIG Pin Loom

As pin loom addicts, I mean fans, many of us began our weaving journey as kids, playing with that most humble of hand looms, the potholder loom.  I have long considered the potholder loom to be a great potential pin loom and recently discovered a way to pin loom weave on it (but that's another story).

What I never considered asking myself was "What would a potholder loom be like if it was really, really large?"


Luckily for all of us, Crispina ffrench has asked and answered this question, sharing a vision of potholder loomed rugs made from upcycled materials and marvelous design. Crispina introduces herself as a  recycled textile artist, author, teacher – creator of many things. She shares her work and inspiration at Crispina.com.



Tired of using teensy little pin looms? Go to the EVENTS page to find out about Crispina's planned workshops including an opportunity to make your own potholder rug.


Here is a closeup of a potholder rung under construction. I would be interested to learn what they use to beat in the space between the weft rows, maybe they're just using their fingers.

As brilliant as these random colored weaves are, I was especially drawn to to the rugs that emphasize one color. What fun to think about searching out all of the gold or red cast off clothing one can find!

Many thanks to Crispina for sharing her vision. 

Sunday, January 24, 2016

The Mystery of the Hanging Thread

This is a question from a new pin loom weaver.

Hello. I have searched the web for this annoying problem that I have with my 4 In. square loom. I just started weaving these lovely squares but I am doing something wrong because when I pop them off, they all have one side where the yarn is loose, almost looks like a picture hanger wire at the edge. What am I doing wrong? Thanks for any help.


I am so glad that you have written about this. This is a common problem for all or most new pin loom weavers (it happened to me a lot and I have a feeling that there are other people out there nodding, too). What is happening is that you are not completing the weaving, you are leaving either the first row or the last row of weaving (probably the last) unsecured. I have actually managed to leave a loop at each end-- yes, I missed weaving both the first and last rows.

The problem is that it can be difficult to figure out exactly where to start weaving and the last row in particular is very easy to miss. 

Below are some pictures that I copied from the Schacht Zoom Loom weaving instructions to illustrate the issue. Start weaving in the same corner as the #2, you will be inserting the needle between the first and second pin. For the last line of weaving, you are inserting your needle into a small triangle. This last line is often pretty tight and may take some patience to weave. This is a great place to use your fork as a beater to move the lines of weaving down and give yourself more space to see and weave this last line.

 I hope this helps. But please don't be discouraged, you have just taken the second step into pin loom weaving. 

Monday, January 18, 2016

Pin Loom artistry and technique at Windswept Mind

For me, one of the delights of the web is the ability to see what other people are doing and weaving.

I have been particularly delighted to see the weaving being done by Sue Burton at Windswept Mind.

I was introduced to this site by a friend who is using Burton's carefully laid out instructions to weave houndstooth squares in linen. This is an example to the right.

She notes, "I learned the houndstooth check pattern from the book 100 Pin Loom Squares by Florencia Campos Correa. Loved the square, but thought her instructions were insufficient, so I’m writing my own–with photos. I took LOTS of photos and I hope they help anyone who wants to learn this stitch."

Ms. Burton has taken the time and care to weave some extraordinary squares and to explain how to get consistent results. I would suggest that you bookmark her site and visit it often as she builds a library of stunning weaves and techniques.

To find the information on weaving techniques, click here or go to the home page and click on the category, "Pin Loom Patterns."


Check out Sue's innovative fix for the Hourglass Pattern as well as illustrations for edging and joining squares

Sue's Zoom Loom friendly patterns are demonstrated on a Weave-It Loom as well as on a Loomette. I especially want to give her props for the use of the Loomette, a really handy and underutilized vintage loom design.

My work has emphasized tabby weaving combined with variable yarns or strong color contrasts. Sue is weaving squares that beg to be turned into scarves, hats, vests and other people friendly wraps.

Thank you for sharing your lovely work with all of us. Check out the site: Windswept Mind; Pin Loom Patterns.