How to Make Scarves on a Lap Loom

scarfs image by William Burnett from

A lap loom is perfect for a beginner crafter who is just getting interested in weaving. As the name implies, it is small enough to fit on the lap, which means it is also portable enough to take out of the house, allowing you to weave wherever you like. There are many styles of lap loom, from simple homemade frames to more complex looms with pegs to hold the yarn. No matter what style you use, you can immediately start weaving useful items without any practice.

Tie one end of yarn around the frame in the lower left corner of the loom. Run the yarn to the top of the loom and loop it around the top of the upper bar, pulling it underneath and back down toward the bottom. This vertical thread is the first part of the warp, which forms the foundation for your woven scarf.

Run the yarn back down to the bottom of the loom. Loop it around the top of the bottom bar, just to the right of the knot. Pull it underneath and back up toward the top.

Repeat this process, working each run of yarn from left to right, always looping over the top of the bar before pulling it back under. Stop when the warp is the width of the final scarf you want to make. Tie off the end of the yarn and cut the excess.

Examine the warp threads cross in the middle of the loom. The open space above the point where the threads cross is called the shed. Slide the dowel or chopstick through the shed and pull it down toward the bottom of the loom, pulling the strands tight.

Roll 3 to 4 yards of yarn into a tight ball. This thread is the weft, which is woven across the warp.

Pass the ball of weft yarn through the shed from right to left. Leave a tail of about four inches hanging from the right side.

Weave the ruler in and out of the threads forming the warp, pulling the lower threads up and pushing the upper threads down. Twist the ruler upright and pull it down toward the bottom of the loom so it forms a new shed just above it.

Pass the ball of weft yarn through this new shed from left to right. Pull the yarn snug against the leftmost warp thread but do not pull it tight enough to cause the warp to compress.

Turn the ruler flat against the warp and pull it out of the warp to the right. Use the hair pick to gently pull the thread down toward the dowel. Remove the dowel and replace it in the shed, pulling it down on top of the two woven rows.

Repeat weaving through the natural shed and the shed formed by the ruler until the warp is too tense to easily continue. Keep the weft yarn tight enough to form a closed weave but loose enough that it does not distort the warp.

Thread the large-eye needle with a piece of yarn about two yards long. Sew a zigzag pattern between the last two rows of weaving at the top of the project. Repeat this stitching at the bottom. Cut the warp threads close to the stitching to remove it from the loom.

Repeat all steps to create additional squares of fabric until you have enough for the length of scarf that you want.

Thread the large-eye needle with another two-yard piece of yarn. Use this to stitch the squares of fabric together to create the scarf.

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