The weaving process.
First I choose what color yarn to weave with--this is my favorite part!
I select five colors for a "run" (or batch) of scarves, blending from dark to light. Each strand of yarn must be measured and counted to ensure the correct color progression as I am weaving. For the scarves, I use my trusty warping board for this job, shown below. The finished "warp" is about 20 yards long.
I carefully remove all those threads off the warping board forming a "chain" of yarn. It looks like a tangled mess, but it really isn't!
I wind the chain onto the back beam of my loom--no tangles, please!
Each of the 143 strands of yarn must be threaded through the eye of a heddle. This makes the pattern in the fabric. Even after 30 years of weaving, I double check my threading to eliminate misplaced threads.
Then each yarn gets threaded through the reed.
I tie all those yarns to the front of the loom...
The whole process detailed above is called "dressing the loom" and is the most lengthy and challenging part of the weaving process. It requires detail, focus, and concentration--strangely, this is my favorite part of the weaving process.
Now I am ready to throw the shuttle, which is what most people think of as "weaving". In the photo below I have already woven several scarves--can you see them wound up on the front beam of the loom?
After I have woven to the end of the warp, I cut the scarves off the loom. Then I wash, dry and press each scarf. The end result? Super soft, colorful, velvety, warm scarves!