What are the different types of weaving looms?

Weaving Looms Explained

Are you looking for the best weaving loom for a beginner? Maybe you have been weaving for a while on a particular loom, but are interested to learn more. Below is a summary of each of the most popular Ashford weaving looms that we sell at The Good Yarn.

Rigid Heddle Loom

Rigid Heddle Looms

Rigid Heddle Looms are known for their versatility and are by far, the most popular weaving loom sold.

They are smaller than multishaft or table looms, creating easier portability.  Due to their ease of use they are fantastic for both beginner and experienced weavers alike.

The weaving looms have a ‘rigid heddle reed’ that consists of a firm frame with hard nylon inserts, through which the yarn is threaded, creating the warp.

The reed, also called a heddle, has eyes and slots that the warp threads pass through to create the weaving shed. The reed is also used as a beater to push the rows of weaving into place. This reed spaces the threads at 30 threads to each 10cm section of reed or 7.5 threads to 1inch.

The shuttle is used to carry the weft yarn from side to side through the shed to make the fabric.

The warping tools, a warping peg, a threading hook and clamps, are used to warp the loom. The warp threads are put onto the loom first. They are held on the loom, under tension between the front and back roller. The weft threads pass over and under the warp threads to form the woven fabric.

What can I weave on a Rigid Heddle Loom?

You can weave any piece of cloth on your rigid heddle loom up to width of the loom you choose! Rigid heddle looms are wonderful for weaving scarves, shawls, towels, fabric for apparel, and home textiles.

We stock all sized rigid heddle looms, including our incredibly popular Rigid Heddle Weaving Loom Kit

Knitters Loom

The Good YArn Ashford Knitters weaving Loom with caterpillar cotton thread

Knitters Looms

The Ashford knitters loom is a type of rigid heddle loom that was designed to use up left over knitting yarn. It is a very easy loom to start learning the art of weaving. It fold in half, even with your latest weaving project in place. Meaning you can take with you wherever you go.

The reed on the knitters loom, has large holes and slots to accommodate a larger variety of yarns. This is used to create the woven fabric and to beat the rows of weaving into place. The warp threads pass through the holes and slots. This reed sets the threads at 30 threads to each 10cm section of reed or 7.5 threads to 1 inch. The shuttle is used to carry the weft yarn from side to side to make the fabric.

The warping tools, of a warping peg, threading hook and clamps, are used to thread the warp into the loom.

The knitters loom comes in three sizes, the 30cm, 50cm and 70cm. You can find them all here

SampleIt Loom

What is a SampleIt Loom?

The Good Yarn - Ashford - Complete SampleIt Weaving Kit Weaving Loom cotton reed shuttle

The Ashford SampleIt Weaving Loom

The SampleIt loom is also another type of Rigid Heddle Loom. It is the beginners loom of choice. They start off in a smaller size than a standard rigid heddle. They are the perfect loom to learn to weave or just learn and practice new techniques.

Weaving on a sampleit loom is the same as weaving on a standard rigid heddle loom. However, as they are smaller, the ideal project tends to be scarves, table runners, wall hangings and the like. It os also worth noting that even as a smaller loom they still maintain wonderful function

The SampleIt Loom comes in both a 25cm and a 40cm and you can find them here or you can see our SampleIt loom starter kit

Table Loom

What is a table loom used for?

The Good Yarn  Ashford Table Loom

The Ashford Table Loom.

When Im asked “what are the different types of weaving looms?” it can get very hard sometimes to adequately explain the differences between some of the different styles of table looms.

Table looms enable you to become engaged in multishaft weaving, without having to sacrifice space that a floor loom would require. This also means they are more affordable that the average floor loom.

Table looms are also enjoyed for their portability. Both the four shaft and eight shaft Ashford table looms fold down flat with your weaving still in place. Making it the ideal loom to take with you to workshops, holidays or your craft group.

Stainless steel reeds are used with the table loom and these also come in multiple sizes, allowing for a large array of weaving projects

You can see our range of Table Looms right here

Katie Loom

The Good Yarn - Ashford - katie table loom eight shaft

The Ashford Katie Weaving Loom

The Katie loom is another of Ashfords popular weaving looms. It is a compact table loom, with eight harnesses allowing for different and complicated weaving projects. The Ashford Katie loom incorporates a bounce back overhead beater (which flips up out of the way for easy threading up) and smooth action levers for effortlessly lifting the shafts.

Its compactness size makes it also perfect for travelling and moving around

Jack Loom

The Good Yarn - Ashford - Jack Loom

Ashfords Jack Loom

The Jack loom shafts work independently from each other. Jack looms open sheds by making some of the shafts go up. The shafts on a jack loom are connected to jacks. These are levers that pivot so that if you pull down on one side of the lever, the other side of the lever goes up. The most common type of jack loom has jacks placed below the shafts. The shafts are pushed up when the jack is pulled by the treadle.

The Ashford Jack Loom features eight shafts and ten treadles. It has an easy action warp advancement with steel ratchet and a friction rear brake. It also has both removeable front and back beams.

Inkle Looms

Ashford Inkle and Inklette Looms

Inkle Weaving Looms

Inkle looms are the perfect loom for weaving belts, guitar straps, bands, leads and other narrow types of braided fabric. They also make fantastic trims for larger weaving projects or even sew multiple bands together. The bands an inkle loom creates are usually known for being incredibly durable.

We stock both the Inkle and even more compact Inklette Loom. Both are also available in weaving kits

Tapestry Looms

The Good Yarn Ashford Dimensions Tapestry Weaving Loom

Tapestry Weaving Looms

Tapestry Looms create weft facing weaving and are renowned for being easy to use. They are brilliant for weaving your own pictures or rugs and are remarkably simple to use. Warping is quick and straightforward, with the revolving frame and tension adjustment.

A tapestry loom is designed to hold warp threads at high tension and is sometimes regarded more as a weaving frame than a loom. Therefore, giving you a clean even shed. A tapestry loom is not designed for more balanced weaves, for example projects such as shawls, fabric for clothing, or tea towels. These are better suited to a Rigid Heddle Loom

Weaving Frames

The Good Yarn Ashford Weaving Looms Explained

Weaving Frames

Weaving frames are the perfect solution when you want to create highly textured home décor such as wall hangings. They are also useful for creating other homewares such as placemats, cushion covers or even small pieces such as coasters.

They are highly portable and suitable for weaving for all ages.

We stock both a small and a larger weaving frame, made from solid timber. They are also available in kits that contain yarn & fibre to get you started with wonderful and fun weaving art. See them all here

You can also see more weaving tutorials on our YouTube channel