Intro to Backstrap Weaving
The ancient craft of Backstrap weaving is still practiced by many indigenous weavers across the world today. The loom, which is comprised of nothing more than a set of simple sticks, allows a weaver to produce anything from narrow simple bands to wide pieces of cloth covered with complex pick up patterns.
In this two-day workshop, students will start out on pre-warped looms to learn the basics of Backstrap loom operation in which the weaver uses movements of his/her own body to adjust tension and open the sheds. The weaver is the loom! Other skills include making continuous string heddles, sword management and inserting the weft correctly to create even selvedges. We will set up and operate both narrow and wide warps to weave plain-weave and then be introduced to using both warp and weft to create traditional pick-up patterns drawing on inspiration from backstrap weaving cultures in Central and South America and Asia.