Weaving with Nature on a Homemade Loom
It’s easy to make your own cardboard weaving loom at home. Add some yarn, natural materials and creativity and you will soon have a beautiful nature weaving to hang up and enjoy. To prepare for this project, gather up natural treasures you can find during your next nature walk, trip to the beach or adventure in your backyard. Keep an eye out for shells, driftwood, seedpods and dried flowers—anything that will add color and texture to your final product.
Gather your supplies:
- Back side of a cardboard box or cereal box
- Yarn (one or more colors)
- Marker, pen or pencil
- Natural materials such as shells with a hole, sticks, seed pods, grasses, dried flowers, driftwood, feathers, etc
Cut a rectangular shape from the back of a cardboard box. The rectangle in this image is 4” by 10” but you can make the rectangle a little wider or longer if you wish.
With you ruler and a marker, make a line every half inch along the top and bottom of the cardboard rectangle.
Cut slits with scissors over marked lines on both ends of the loom, about ½ inch deep.
Leaving the end of yarn attached to the ball or the skein, tape the end of the yarn to the back of the loom.
Flip the loom over and loop the yarn around both sides of the cardboard, going in between the slits as you wrap the yarn around.
When finished wrapping the yarn around the loom, cut the yarn from the ball or skein and tape the end piece down on the back of the loom. You now have your warp completed, which will hold your design.
Cut a piece of yarn as long as you can stretch your arms apart. This is about a yard for most people. You will use this piece to begin weaving back and forth. This piece of yarn can be a different color than the yarn you wrapped around the cardboard if you choose.
Take the end of the yarn and start weaving it by going over the first sting and under the next. Continue to go over and under the strings until you get to the end of the row. Then turn and go back in the opposite direction—over, under, over, under. (If you have an even number of strings you will always start by going over the first string in each direction.)
If you want to add a shell or bead or anything that has a hole in it, slip the end of your piece of yarn through the hole and then pull it into the weaving, going under the strings to place it where you would like it to go.
When you are ready to change colors or weave with grasses or other materials, snip your yarn off after the last completed row. Start with a new color. Push up with your fingers to tighten.
Continue weaving and adding shells, seeds or beads. This weaving example has a space in the middle, which will highlight an added starfish. The starfish was added by tucking the points of the starfish into the weaving.
Cut the strings straight across horizontally on the back of the loom.
Pull the strings out of the slits on one end of the loom at a time.
Tie every two strings together in a double knot.
Tie strings in a double knot to sticks at the top and bottom. Add a string for hanging.
Now that you have finished your weaving, find a spot to show it off! You can reuse your loom with different colors and patterns. Try adding beads, feathers or dried flowers to your next weaving.