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Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Chancellors Sheep and Wool Showcase

Last Saturday, the weather turned out nice for the Sheep and Wool Showcase at Clermont State Historic Site in Germantown NY.  I brought my new book on Tape Loom Weaving... and  some samples along with looms and accessories.

Such a pretty spot on the Hudson River... and it did not rain!

There were some critters...

Lots of folks showed up for the fun...

There were flowers too, along with yarn, roving, woven articles, knit products, and lots of other wool related stuff.

And spinners, weavers and knitters all had a nice day.

Come to our next festival this coming weekend, April 27th at the Tolland Agricultural Center for the Connecticut Sheep, Wool and Fiber Festival 2013!

Buy some wool and knit or weave something special!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

My new book from

Its here!

Finally!  I have been working on this book for over a year.   It's amazing how hard it is to do a simple how-to book.  I had to do research on the history of the loom and tape loom weaving, not only in the USA, but around the world. Tapes and bands were woven around the globe for thousands of years.  People needed narrow bands of cloth, and it would be silly to warp a big loom.  So some people just invented the tool they needed to accomplish this.
Proof reading... you can never go over the spelling, punctuation and grammar enough. How many times have you found spelling errors when reading a novel?  It all becomes a blur as you go over and over your copy.

The folks at did a wonderful job. They were courteous, got back to me right away when I had questions and were very helpful.

The proof came overnight, the printing took less than a week. In a flash I received my books and they look just as I ordered.  They look quite pretty if I do say so myself.

And I am already selling them, mostly to weavers who have inkle looms and are interested in rediscovering the small loom and the wonderful things you can achieve on them. A new challenge. And now they can weave on vacation with a loom so small, so adaptable they can throw it and a ball of yarn into their suitcase or purse and off they go.

The reason I went with  instantpublishers was because I wanted full control over the look and content of my book. I had worked in printing companies years ago and I enjoyed setting up my own graphics. 

And it was so quick and easy with instantpublishers. I just uploaded my copy, they have a PDF converter. And you can change and reload if you need to make changes.

I had a good experience with them, and hopefully will be able to reorder more books very soon!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Tape Loom Weaving project

Make a Pin Keep...

Yes, this is a pin cushion, but I found an old one on a web site and thought it would be nice with one of my woven tape samples wrapped around it.  It works very well.

I used an old wool blanket, but you could use batting, or a piece of felt.
Cut the wool  24" long, 3" on one end and 4" on other end. I cut a 4" circle of flannel for the bottom.

Fold in half and roll up tightly starting with the 4" folded end and cut edges on the bottom. attach circle as shown. Sew on your new tape 1"-1 1/2" wide, sew both edges.

Finished keep is about 3" diameter and 1 1/2" high.

Happy Weaving!

Miss the book?  Check out    Tape Loom pages!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Reenactors Clothing

Living History Museums Clothing and Pastimes
French and Indian War Clothing and Pastimes
Revolutionary War Clothing and Pastimes
Civil War Clothing and Pastimes
Colonial History Clothing and Pastimes
Early Setlers Clothing and Pastimes

A Tape Loom is There!

Weaving outside is easy. I measure warp on my tent pegs. I hang the loom from one of the posts.
All I need is a chair or stump to sit on, my compact loom, shuttle and some wool yarn.

The loom above is a replica of a Scandinavian style gate loom. This one can fit in my hand bag on the plane. I have woven on this in the truck, a passenger across the state of Utah.

And weaving is so simple, I set one up for others to try out.  If you go to google images and type in "Tape Loom", you will find hundreds of antique styles, painted, carved, simple, elaborate... they are wonderful pieces of folk art created by average folks, (most people made their own, usually a man would carve one for his sweetheart or wife).

There are many folks catching on to reviving this old tool and you will find places to buy a new one.

The old ones are pretty sturdy. My paddle loom is based on a board I found in my attic, mid 1800s probably cut out by a farmer for his wife.

My attic loom on the left. Probably made by Nathaniel for his wife Olive. They lived in my house in the 1800s with their 3 girls.

The girls would also learn how to weave on this loom. One could weave yards of tape ready to use for hats, bag ties, apron strings, any article that needed a narrow band of cloth. 

In my area of Connecticut, people then were growing flax. Nathanials grandmother, Mary lived across the street and had 3 sons in the war. She was a weaver and wove a tent for the Revolutionary army....

"For the comfort of the militia when they should go into the service the assembly directed that each town should provide one tent for every 1,000 on the list and Torrington standing 5,816.15 was required to provide five if not six tents Hence Dea John Cook then town treasurer paid one order to the widow Mary Birge by the hand of her son John Birge for tent cloth amounting to five pounds and six shillings and also paid Capt John Strong one of the selectmen seven pounds and sixteen shillings lawful money for tent cloth" ... History of Torrington by Samuel Orcutt

A box loom like the one on the right, is bulky to carry around, but in a way is easier to use in a situation where you have to get up and talk to people or move around. This one is contained in the box and the woven tape is wound inside.

No matter what loom you buy or make, each one is an individual piece of folk art. You will become attached to it in many ways, and it will be something you can share producing tapes you can use.

Check out my book at:

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Saturday, April 13, 2013

How to Weave on a Tape Loom

How to Weave bands

Weaving bands or tapes on these small looms is easy once you get the basics.

In my new book, Tape Loom Weaving... Simplified, I take you through the learning process step by step.

We start with simple stripes. How easy can this be?

The patterns are quick and attractive and has many uses.

Then we go on to other styles of weaving on this little tool.

 The Warp Floats...


turn into this...

And finally the more
interesting Pick Up patterns...


The Pick Ups... 
And the finished Pick Up bands!

Check out details of my book at

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Tape Loom Weaving.... My book is finally in print!

It all began about 20 years ago, when I found this board with holes in it... in the attic of my families old house.

I kinda knew what it was, but had no intention of using it... yet.

I started as a costumed demonstrator at my local Goshen Fair about 15 years ago. I demonstrated pottery, and from there I found I liked the life of crowds of people every day asking me questions and I found it was rather fun.

I was soon hired by Storrowton Village for the Big E.  I like being around history people. We are a simple, back to basics group. We love sharing our crafts and our experiences and our way of life.

I remembered the board in my attic and a few years ago, I made a replica. I painted mine blue with milk based paint and added a painting of a couple from the old days and gave them the names of my great grandparents from Brooklyn NY, George and Elizabeth Jeppe.

After I figured it out, I started making striped bands. I was by that time, demonstrating at Mercer Museum In Pennsylvania and met a lovely woman weaving on tape looms there who gave me advice and showed me her beautiful weavings.

Eleanor Bittle
Eleanor Bittle is an expert on these old looms.

I started bringing my loom to more and more demonstrations and fairs.
At Alifia in Florida
I went to Florida to the Alifia group of reenactors in winter one year. I met many lovely folks using inkle looms. Inkle looms are a modern (1920s) version of the same style of loom.  They are based on the looms that Carl Larson painted in Sweden. All these looms were created to make simple narrow bands of cloth. The Scandinavians, Germans, Russians, Africans... everyone needed these bands for ties and decorations.

liverwurst sandwiches
Then I met Roger. He is of Norwegian descent. I just had to learn how to weave the fancier bands. There was no books on how to. The classes I found in Massachusetts and Minnesota did not coincide with my shedule. So I had to figure it out myself.  The set up is a little different than inkle looms. Lots of folks know how to set up the string heddles on them, but I couldn't find help on the rigid heddle of the tape loom.

When it finally clicked in my head, I had to write this book. I want others to enjoy this simple way of weaving bright bands. I take one on the plane in my suitcase, I weave in the truck on vacations. I have a million things I want to make, banjo straps, legging ties, head bands, hat bands, arm bracelets.... and so many patterns I want to try. I want others to get excited about this too. I want museums to show guests how to use the looms they have in their exhibits. I want people to talk about them again!

I did some drawings.

I charted patterns.
I made samples and took photographs.

And I finished the book.
Check it out.
Thanks to all who helped!