Build Your own Rag Rug Loom
Want to make rag rugs? This loom is the perfect way to get started.
This is another project that has been a long time in the pipeline. This package includes 35 drawings along with 20 photographs that show you how to build your very own Salish Loom. If you want to learn how to weave or make your own low-cost rag rugs, then this is a great place to start.
This is a very easy project, so anyone with just basic woodworking knowledge will be able to complete this. The only specialist tool recommended is a drill press, but even this machine is not essential in order to build a perfectly serviceable Salish-style Loom.
The downloadable plans package includes two versions of the Salish Loom, together with a floor stand to make the loom even more versatile. The plans also include full drawings to make a multi-functional easel that will not only place the loom at the perfect working height, but serve all of your art and craft projects.
The loom can be built for as little as fifteen dollars. It is small enough to slide behind a chair or sofa for storage and yet large enough to make a six foot long rug.
Rags have been converted into rugs, probably for centuries. In fact, rag-rugging might even qualify as one of the earliest deliberate recycling efforts. Rags are plentiful and cheap and with very little effort, they can be converted into attractive and hardwearing floor-covering.
Salish Weaving History
The Salish are coastal people indigenous to the Pacific Northwest, extending from Washington State up to Bella Coola in British Columbia. The Salish people have a long history of fiber working and are renowned for their beautiful weaving. Weavers were highly revered for their craft., as well as the necessary dyes and paints. Just harvesting and converting the raw materials, whether from plant, tree, Mountain Goat or the specially bred woolly coastal dog into useable fiber took great skill and much time. A Salish woven blanket would become a treasured item, with tremendous spiritual and tribal significance. These blankets were woven on a very simple loom, consisting of two upright poles and two cross members, lashed together to create the desired size blanket.
It is this extremely simple design that attracted me to the loom. I have known several would-be weavers who splashed out thousands of dollars on looms, only to have them sit dormant in their homes, sometimes occupying an entire room and yet producing nothing. Why? Complexity! Modern looms have become so complicated that without training and persistence, they become mechanical follies; destined to gather dust for years. I have no doubt whatsoever that I lack the perseverance to sit at one of these all-singing, all-dancing looms for hours on end, if I managed to fathom out how to warp the thing in the first place!
It’s time to get started!
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