A New Way To Warp? (For bead weaving.)

On Sunday we visited Caravan Beads and while Claudia taught, Barry (the lovely owner of Caravan) and I sat down and tried to figure out an easier way to warp. (All his idea.) We expanded a bit on a fairly new method that was developed at our last workshop and although this has not been sufficiently tested I thought I’d share our ideas with you blog-readers out there and perhaps I could get some input.

This new warping method has two parts. Those of you who are already pros at putting heddles on might not need the second part (the comb). It was developed with beginners in mind and just helps to separate the warp threads and allows you to see what you’re doing much more clearly. (Note: This blog post is meant to be understood by those who have warped the loom before. Once tested more thoroughly, we will post more detailed instructions.

Here we go:

The first step is to make a small, cardboard comb from anything you have lying around. Cut slits in it (as shown) on both sides. You should have as many slits on one side as warp threads you plan to have. On the other side, cut the same amount plus one extra. We will assume that you will be working on the left side of your loom, and putting your heddles on right to left. In this case, the extra notch should be on the front right. (see picture.) If you were warping in the other direction, the extra notch would be on the front left.

Tie onto the warping bar like you would when you are warping the loom normally. 
Loop the warp over the loom and through one dent in the coil. Then put the warp in the first RIGHT BACK slit of the cardboard comb. 
Bring your thread around the bottom of the loom and back to the warping bar. Instead of doing a U-turn at this point, simply WRAP YOUR WARP THREAD AROUND THE BAR and CONTINUE BACK TO THE TOP. (This is the new, easier way to warp and can be done without the comb.)
When you bring your warp thread back to the top, put it through the same dent in the spring as your last warp. (Note: This is only done when bead weaving with the shedding device.)
Bring this warp thread down and into the front notch of the comb. Make sure you put it in the notch that is on the exact opposite side of the one your last warp thread was put in. Leave the extra notch empty. 
Bring your warp thread under the loom, around the warping bar and back up to the spring as you did before. This time, bring your warp thread to the next dent over. 
Continue to do this. (This is the sequence: Up over the loom, into one dent of the spring, into a back notch of the comb, under the loom, around the warping bar, over the top, back into the same dent as the last warp thread, into a front notch of the comb (make sure this is done sequentially), under the loom, around the warping bar, into another dent of the spring… etc. etc. etc…..) This should create a scenario where you have two warp threads per dent in the top spring of your loom and each of those is separated in the comb, front and back. 
Two warps in each dent: 
Tie off on the warping bar when finished. Remove clips. 
Move warping bar down, and then move comb down to just above where shedding device will be. 
Place shedding device on loom. Unscrew bar. Take one heddle at a time and loop it around the FRONT warp threads, one at a time, right to left. Because of the comb, they will be well separated and easier to see. 
Next, flip the warping bar around so the bottom small bar is on the top. 
Move the front right warp over from the current notch it is in to the “extra notch”This will leave room for you to grab the warp thread behind and make it easier to see. It will also insure that you bring the back warp thread to the RIGHT of the one in front (If you were doing this in the opposite direction, to the LEFT.) At this point you may want to loosen your tension slightly to make it easier to grab the back warp threads. 
Loop your heddle around the first back warp thread and onto the bar. Easy to see, isn’t it?
Now, move the front warp thread that is second to the right over one notch to the right. This opens up a space for you to see the next thread you will be looping your heddle around. 
Continue to do this in sequential order, remembering to move each front warp thread over to the right before you grab the next back warp thread. It isn’t hard to remember to do this since the comb sets everything up very clearly. 
Remove the comb.
And you’re done! Ta da!
*We recommend any of the C-Lon threads of cords for warping your loom depending on the size of bead you use. 

Our Day At Caravan Beads

Getting ready for a day of teaching at Caravan Beads:  www.caravanbeads.com.  The guy to the left is Barry. His head looks just like a camera with a big lens.  Folks are wandering around collecting their wits and their beads. I will eventually remember to take my coat off.  Oh, that’s me to the right.

Who is that lovely woman above in the blue shirt?  That’s one of our “social networking” winners, Christina (Good Quill Hunting). She lives in the Portland, Maine area so was able to meet us at Caravan Beads to pick up her loom. As terrific in person as she is on paper (or on computer). Check out Christina’s blog:  http://goodquillhunting.wordpress.com/

It begins.  We’re off.  Smooth sailing all the way. I barely had to teach.  Indeed, even though the Caravan staff had not woven on the Mirrix Loom before, they were able to translate all their other bead knowledge into instant success. Eventually, I just sat back and watched Elena and Barry invent a new way to put on heddles.  



Look at those smiles!!!

One of many walls of beads and other great things to buy. If you’ve never had the pleasure of visiting Caravan in person, maybe you should. It’s worth a plane ride or a long car ride. It’s just plain worth it. Plus, the staff there knows how to set up and use the Mirrix Loom.  

We’re Ready!

Yesterday Claudia and I went up to Caravan Beads in Portland, Maine http://www.caravanbeads.net/  to visit with Barry and his family and employees and so Claudia could teach his employees on the Mirrix Loom. We also met Christina Neit (one of the participants in Social Market for a Mirrix) there and gave her her loom! We can’t wait for her to start blogging! This blog will now be handed over to our social marketers although I’ll probably still poke my head in and write sometimes. Check back!!!

Elena

Congratulations to Christina and Sherri!


CONGRATULATIONS Christina Neit & Sherri Woodard Coffey, the chosen participants for our “Social Network for a Mirrix” campaign! Keep checking back to follow their Mirrix experiences! Congratulations also go out to our runners-up! Thank you to everyone who applied! We had some amazing applications and it was very difficult to choose just two people to participate.  We picked several runner-ups who will receive a 30% discount on a loom. If this whole project is successful (and we are guessing it will be) we will do it all over again in a few months.  Keep watching for notices.

SOCIAL MARKETING PARTICIPANTS CHOSEN!


This is very exciting! Christina Neit & Sherri Woodard Coffey were chosen yesterday as the two main participants in our campaign, “Social Market for a Mirrix”! We also chose four (I know, I know, we said two… but it was so hard!) runners-up who get a discount and, if they decide to purchase, will also do a bit of blogging for us. 


Congratulations to everyone! We were very impressed with both the quality and quantity of applications!

Now we need to spend a little time sorting out contracts and sending looms and making sure everyone is on the same page. Keep checking back, though, because soon this blog will be about Christina and Sherri. We hope you’re as excited as we are!

In other news… Claudia has been working hard making fantastic tapestry kits. They will include all you need to begin tapestry weaving and the yarn is GORGEOUS! I’ll be happy when the first batch is done and the studio is no longer filled the the squeal of the yarn winder, but I think it will be worth it. 

Right now I am in the middle of a big huge giant site redesign. We have a new logo, a new look for the site and even new navigation. Hopefully this will make the site uber-easy to navigate! We’re really trying to get things polished up! I’m hoping to get the new site launched by the end of April, but we’ll see. Keep checking back! 

-Elena 

So much going on!

You should see my list of Mirrix to-dos. It contains everything from “work on new website” to “buy new boxes for kits”. We’re doing an overhaul here at Mirrix and everything is going to get bigger and better! Our newest undertaking is creating kits. Lots and lots of kits. Bead kits and tapestry kits that will be made for three different levels of weavers. We’ll have “easy” kits for beginners, “intermediate” kits for those with a bit more experience and “expert” kits that will be a bit more complicated. We will color code the kits and are buying cute boxes to make the whole package as fun to look at as it is to use!

Would you buy a Mirrix Kit?
At this very minute, Claudia Chase (Mirrix President) is weaving an inkle band on [one of] her Mirrix Loom[s]! This is a whole new way to use a Mirrix!