In pictures (mostly)!
First: measure the warp. I forgot to take a picture of this part, but it just means measuring out the lengths of yarn. The shawl is 72″, plus about 20″ for tying on the warp and stuff.
Second: put each strand of yarn through the heddle. Here’s the black stripes done, in a pic from panel one of the shawl. The red is waiting on the warping board on the other side of the table. In total there are 180 strands. It… takes a while.
Once all the yarn ends are put through the heddle, it’s time to tie the ends to the loom and start rolling on the warp. This is a pic from tonight’s work.
The white-and-taupe stuff on the rolled side is shelf liner. It helps keep the warp even. I had been using long, narrow pieces of cardboard — warping sticks — but they never did as good of a job as I liked. So I’m trying the shelf liner this time.
And then you tie the other end onto the cloth beam (so called because as you finish weaving the cloth goes around it). I didn’t take a pic of that part tonight, so here’s a picture from the first panel of the shawl. (You can see how the wound-on part of the warp looks uneven. That’s what the shelf liner is supposed to prevent.)
Back to a pic from tonight: I’ve put a cardboard tube over the knots. It’s another trick I read to help keep the tension even.
Then you run thick waste yarn through the warp to space out the strands, and then you’re all set! I haven’t gotten to that part yet, because I just finished warping. I’ll start the actual weaving tomorrow.
Hope this has been a fun look at how a rigid heddle loom is set up. I’ll definitely post about how the cardboard tube and shelf liner work out. wish me luck!