Tools of the Trade- What’s in my Little Bag?
Recently I’ve gotten a few questions about the tools I use to weave with, and “what’s ON my loom?” I admit I’ve built up quite the collection of cool tools and gagets. I love sitting at my loom, and I’ve created a happy world where I have everything I need in arms reach.
I sit in a straight back chair with a Kiss My Back lumbar support. Technically not “on” my loom, I love the little 3 drawer unit I have next to my loom. It holds my shuttles, bobbins and binder clips for supplemental warp weights and other random items I need. On top sits a basket full of “Treasure” – bits and bobs, ends and knots of leftovers.. a cornucopia of color and texture.
I have some helpers sitting on my loom shelf.. A LED Clip On reading light is very helpful with a bright wide coverage. I find it exceptionally helpful when I’m threading the loom. They start at about $10 on Amazon. I recommend a cordless one with an articulating head so you can move it where you need the light most.
I also have a wonderful bobbin holder, $45, made by my friend Hanley at HanDen Studio. These hold 12 bobbins and sit on the top of the loom. A shuttle can fit perfectly underneath resting on the loom shelf. One of my greatest loom additions is my cup holder ! It sits right at the end of my shelf. It can hold my beverage.. or my pin cushion (a gift from my amazing artist friend Juliet Martin) or whatever else I need. It’s actually a self leveling cupholder for a stroller, so it that screws gently on. It’s the best $12 I spent in awhile!!
Finally, my newest shelf treasure is this awesome pottery pig that my good friend Lexi Boeger made. It holds all my small tools-mini shuttles and picks. It’s so great not to have to dig to the bottom of my loom bag for my smalls!
My loom bag is so important!! It hangs off the side of my loom and keeps all my important, must be in arms reach at all times, things! Mine is a beautiful handknit bag I got from my friend Marian. She has an etsy shop- BeautifulPlace. It’s importance if you choose to have a loom bag, that it hangs at an easy to reach height, but it also doesn’t interfere with the moment of the reed. Next to my loom sits my supplemental beater. This is a really cool tool that creates a wavy effect in my weft.
And inside my loom bag are my most important tools. I can’t be too far from any of these essentials!! I’m always surprised at how many little shuttles I need. They are perfect for finger fringes and inlay. I also love my assortments of crochet hooks and needles. These are perfect for embellishments and tapestry techniques. I have a couple little picks for moving weft threads. These are really helpful for undoing knots as well. Small metal double pointed knitting needles are great for becoming this tool!! My most loved small tool is my weaving comb. The SAORI weaving comb is handmade and has a perfect balance. Scissors that have never even seen a piece of paper are SUPER important!! Finally, one of my most used tools is my “treasure hook”. This is another of Hanley’s creations ($25) that has become indispensable for my weaving. It’s perfect for bringing across that last thread or placing a treasure right in the center of my cloth.
I love all the treasures that are on my loom. They are helpful tools, and some make me smile and think of the friends who gave them to me. These bring me happiness, which I can feel in my woven cloth. What are your essential treasures and tools that you keep at and on your loom?