How To Make Your Own Bead Loom
By Robyn Rokar
I just made myself 4 looms over the weekend and had the foresight to take some pics.
It’s a very simple loom…no need to mess with screws,nails, etc….
Supply list: 1″ x 4″ board, wide Strapping tape
I bought a 8 foot board and had the lumber yard cut it in half to fit in my car.
Here’s a pic of the strapping tape I used and one of the spacer blocks I cut out.
Of course the lumber yard didn’t cut my board EXACTLY in half, so I took the longer side and cut in 3 equal pieces about 18 inches long.
If I was thinking I would have had my measurements ready and had them cut all my pieces right there with their nice saw.
I cut various spacer blocks from the shorter piece of wood ranging from 2 1/2 inches, 3 inches, 3 1/2 and 4 inches until I had a 24″ piece of board left.
I didn’t know which dimension I would like best for the spacer blocks so I thought I’d try several. I like the 2 1/2 (maybe would even like 2 inch) spacer for the shorter loom and 3 inch for the 24 inch long one.
I’ve seem looms up to 36 inches (for LONG belts) and I think a 3 inch spacer would still be ok for that size. You can also get a wider board for wider projects.
Take about a 3 inch long piece of the strapping tape and tape over each end of the longer loom boards and the spacer blocks. Pull the tape snugly and don’t get any puckers.
I’m only making loomed strips 13 beads wide. If you were going to make something wider than the tape, you can slightly overlap 2 pieces the tape, matching the fiber strands.
Secure the end of your thread to the bottom of the loom board. I just used tape, but am looking for a couple flat tacks to tie the thread ends too.
I didn’t get a pic of the actual threading, but you set the spacer block in the middle of the loom, hold it with your thumb, and wrap the tread clear around the loom.
The thread will naturally fall in the spaces between the fibers in the tape. It’s not important to get all the threads in the correct spaces right now. Just remember to wrap one more thread than the number of beads in your design.
IE, my design is 13 beads wide so I wrapped 14 threads around.
You can just tape the end of the thread when done. I usually do this at an angle, cuz it’s easy to pull loose when taped straight down.
You’ll need to adjust the threads so they fall in the correct spacing between the fibers in the tape, and are all parallel. Long fingernails work good for this or a pencil or safety pic. A small crochet hook (0 or 00) would be superb.
After we got the threads right, we taped over all the threads on the bottom of my daughter’s loom. I didn’t feel the need to do that, plus I’m going to adjust mine later on.
Your threads should be very snug. When you push down across all the threads you should feel the slightest bit of bounce. If it pushes down too much, you can loosen the spacer block, take off the end of the thread, pull it tighter, then resecure, and then stand the spacer block straight up again.
This pic shows how the spacer block is not attached and can be slid in either direction as needed or for tightening the thread.
Here’s the strips I beaded Sunday. It was very cool to be able to place my pattern under the spacer block to keep it in place.
Now (to save thread) I’m going to loosen the spacer block, rotate the threads so the already beaded strips are on the back on the loom and make a couple more strips on the top.
This is also how you can make a LONG belt on a 36″ loom. You just rotate it around and could actually get a 70 inch strip on a loom that size.
I “burnished” this loom with a brown crayon by rubbing it all across the wood, then buffing with a paper towel. I could not see the white thread across the white board when I got started.
Posted on the PowWows.com Forums by wyo_rose.
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