There Is No Place Like A Handwoven Home

Handwoven HomeWith Handwoven Home, I set out to write a book chock full of project ideas and know-how as it relates to weaving cloth that lasts for your home. It is a follow-up to my first book Weaving Made Easy, where I assume you are new to weaving. In this book, I assume you have some experience and offer you techniques to solve some of your most vexing weaving problems.

In this new book, I talk about how weaving cloth is like baking a cake. You select the right ingredients—Have you put salt in a recipe instead of sugar? Selecting the wrong yarn can be like that. Apply a know-how—fold dry into wet, don’t beat. Then finish it off so that your hard works shines—You get the metaphor, finishing is the icing on the cake.

I was writing this overview in a social feed, and it inspired me to write this post. Here is look at what you will find inside the pages of this new book:

The yarn section is succinct and focuses on the most asked questions from my students about yarn as it relates to weaving—not all cotton is the same; what’s the real difference between weaving and knitting yarns; synthetic fibers are good or bad for home use.

The know-how section highlights my most used techniques for weaving for the home, including ply splitting for seamless joins, why an s-hook fixes almost all tension and selvedge issues, how to make sure that all your things are the same size or the decorative elements fall in the right place, and answering questions like: Do you measure your cloth with or without tension.

I also include a section on reading a weaving pattern, since that is not often discussed. Weaving pattern instructions includes a lot of information that a knitter or other yarn crafter might not be used to seeing—yd/lb for instance, and weaver’s charts.

The projects show techniques you may or may not be familiar with—one heddle Theo Moorman, anyone—in a wide variety of forms. I also sprinkled in other information like: How to read a weaving draft and create a drawdown to make a front-of-the heddle pick-up patterns; tips and techniques for composition and color selection; direct warping log cabin; how to cut rag strips on the bias and why you might want to; and a small section on the relationship between two heddles and four shafts.

The brief warping section was designed to give you that quick, easy place to refer for the basic steps, information why you may want to use one warping method vs. another, and tips for managing wide, long, fine warps that are often required when weaving for the home.

I really tried to push the finishing section. I know this frequently where my students would like to see more options. It’s one thing to see a finishing in a finishing book, but I think seeing them in the actual project helps you think about them differently. I also included information on washing and spot cleaning, because these handwovens are meant to be used, not worshiped.

Books are a form of dissertation. You have a big, sweeping thesis you set out to explore—and you don’t do the work in a vacuum—you have the benefit of lots of feedback. I would like to thank, from the bottom of my yarn-laden heart, everyone who ever offered me another point of view—from my mentors, students, editors, and the folk that I inexact with online. All of these perspectives help me be a better writer, teacher, mentor, and student.

In truth, this is the book my students wrote. They showed me how to hone the information to be the most useful to the widest majority of weavers. Students teach me far more than I’ll ever teach them.

Heddles Up!

Liz

 

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7 comments on “There Is No Place Like A Handwoven Home

  1. My copy of your new book is on its way to me. I do have your first book also.
    The question that I would most like answered is “how to wind on the warp on a rigid heddle loom by myself?”
    Do you have any hints suggestions please?

    • All methods of waring on a rigid heddle loom should be totally doable without an extra pair of hands. Are you using your helper to hold the warp while you wind on? If so, it really isn’t necessary to get good results and it can sometimes be detrimental. I prefer the crank and yank method where wind the warp on the back beam for a few rotations and then pull firmly from the front to take up any slack. Rinse and repeat. I talk about this in both my books and in demonstrate it in my video workshops slots and holes. You can also get an idea from this brief video on my YouTube channel of the entire process.

  2. Hi there. I am relatively new to the weaving community-meaning I have been making all my mistakes on my own, and trying to maneuver through yarn varieties, weaving nomenclature, and what works with/for what, without much input from anyone. Recently, I saw one of your you tube videos (about making a sample before you do the real thing) and WOW! a light bulb went off. What a concept!!! So I decided to try joining your school/community/become a Liz Gipson blog groupie, etc. Also I thought I might try some “Weave Along”s you offer. I have learned much from my spectacular mistakes, so much so that I could probably engage an audience of weavers with a stand up comedy routine for at least an hour, with mistakes only beginner weavers would appreciate! Anyway, to my point. I have purchased a myriad of books on weaving, (half of them for 4 and 8 shaft floor looms- omg!!!!) (I have a Schacht 15 in rigid heddle loom). Well, that said, I wanted to express that HANDWOVEN HOME is far and away THE BEST of all of the books I have on my ever growing weaving bookshelf.. Since purchasing it, I have watched some of your YT videos, Liz, and have found them incredibly enlightening. Just wanted to say thank you….for your gentle style, super informative videos, and clear blogs, and most of all, that awesome book!. I still have a long way to go, but am looking forward to engaging with community now, and maybe even sharing some experiences. Thank you again for all you do for the weaving community!

    • WOW! I was just sitting down to edit the videos for the next weave-along, and having a hard time getting my energy up and BHAM, you just gave me an energy booster shot. It’s because of weavers like you, I enjoy what I do so much. I so remember what it was like to want to learn everything, and yet not getting it. I am still learning. That’s the good news, this weaving journey can last a lifetime. Welcome aboard the weaving train!

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