A shed stick is an essential tool for weaving.
What is a shed stick?
A shed stick is a tool woven between warp yarns to open the warp shed on the loom. The shed is the opening created between the warp yarns when they are lifted by the shed stick in a horizontal position. Creating a shed organizes yarns in a pattern and allows the weaver to weave faster.
What is the shed stick made of?
A shed stick is normally made of flat, thin wood. A shed stick can also be made from paper or plastic. The dimensions of a ruler are ideal, but whichever material you decided to use, the shed stick should be longer than the width of the warp.
How do you use a shed stick?
A single shed stick is usually used with tapestry looms or lap looms. A shed stick makes weaving a bit faster because it holds in place one set of a pattern. For example,
Plain weave is formed by weaving over one warp yarn and under the next. Starting with the first yarn, weave the shed stick under it and then over the next. Continue this to the last warp yarn. Pull the shed stick through and center it. Using a tapestry needle or yarn bobbin, continue in the next row by weaving over the next yarn and under the next one. Continue weaving to the end of the warp, pull the yarn through and using a loom comb press the weft yarn into place. .
Find more weaving patterns ideas here on a previous blog post.
How to make a shed stick?
A lightweight piece of thin wood is strong and sturdy enough to hold the yarn shed open and stand the pressure of the yarns. When the shed stick is woven between the warp yarns it must lay flat horizontally, therefore it is ideal that the shed stick is thin.
At a hardware store you can find a thin piece of wood with the dimensions of … x … x …. . Once the piece is to your desired measurements, sand it so that there aren’t any wood pieces sticking out. Smooth down the wood on all surface and edges. Then, the shed stick is ready to be used.
Another alternative is using cardboard. You can find a tutorial here for making a cardboard shed stick. There is also the option to using a ruler.
A shed stick is a staple tool used to make weaving faster but also more efficient. For a list of 10 essential weaving tools, check out this blog post.
Which type of shed stick do you prefer? Leave a comment below and let me know.
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