i’ve recently been looking forward to the time when i can start sharing my love for textile crafting with M (as opposed to painting, gluing and glittering where she’s already waaay ahead of me). she’s fairly adept with a blunt needle - she can thread really tiny beads - but she’s not ready for real sewing, crochet or knitting just yet. but i hoped that perhaps weaving might be manageable at a slightly younger age.

to that end i got her kids weaving by sarah swett for her birthday. to be fair i’ve seen it recommended as a great beginner’s guide for adults, with its design for a bargain loom made of plumbing pipes, so let’s call it a joint present (who was it doing all the hard work 4 years ago, eh?).

i was really impressed at how quickly she picked up the first project, weaving paper strips together, i only had to show her once and she was away.

and while i knew she wouldn’t have anywhere near the patience for the little woven bag, made on a cardboard loom (hell, i barely had the patience to finish the thing… ), i was impressed at how she maintained her interest in the project as i worked it. she did manage to thread the needle through the warps, even though she found it really tricky, but it became her main job to flatten down the “hill” of yarn with a plastic fork. she got really into it, insisting she could do it without further direction “don’t tell me what to do mama!”. my willing assistant did tend to wander off at intervals taking her fork with her though, as the tale of mrs fork she was weaving concurrently with my efforts took her in other random directions :D

as for the finished article, i’m quite impressed. i remember rigging up similar cardboard looms as a kid, but not having any guidance i had no idea how to warp them to actually produce a useable item at the end. so i’d end up with a piece of cardboard with raggedy bits of wool attached that would eventually get binned. this on the other hand is a proper little baggie. not having a vast stash of wool yarn and not reading the directions to the end i used cotton yarn for the weft, not realising it was supposed to be fulled to hold it all together. as it is there are fewer holes than i expected and the only modification i would make for using cotton yarn is to knot in the ends of new threads rather than just overlapping. it’s supposed to have a drawstring that weaves through the little square sections (that have gaps between) but once it got to this stage we discovered it made a perfect sleeping bag for a gruffalo - his arms go out the side holes :D - so we never felt the need.