Warping, beaming, tying in and pirn winding…in video! I first posted these on social media and felt that a wee warning/disclaimer was in order before viewing as I didn’t want these videos to cause over excitement…you have been warned!
First one up is warping. This is where you arrange the lengthways ends of yarn in sections on a wheel in order to build up the width of your warp (tweed). I filmed this in fast-mo and unfortunately I couldn’t find anywhere to place my phone in order to see the finer details, but that’ll make for another video someday!
Next is beaming. This is transferring the warp onto a beam which will then sit on the loom. Again, this was filmed in fast-mo and makes for funny viewing. I do wish I moved this quickly in real life!!
Once the beam is on the loom, the new ends of yarn are tied onto the old ends, after you’ve arranged them in order of the draft (pattern/weave) to be woven. This is quite simple, in that you just tie each end together in a knot. After making 672 knots, it’s finished and can be pulled through!
The last thing to do before weaving can begin is to make pirns or iteachain. These are ‘mini bobbins’ that sit in the shuttle which flies back and forth on the loom delivering the weft (horizontal ends of yarn in a tweed). To change things up a bit, there’s a bit of this filmed in slo-mo!
Although there are a few other bits and pieces that need to be done before weaving can begin, these are the main preparatory steps and can take a whole day to complete. You can see why weavers will often say that sitting down behind the loom is the easy part!