Weave a custom coffee sleeve! Help the environment by saving on the paper ones AND show off your weaving know-how by learning to use small darts or short rows to curve the fabric as you weave it. Complicated looking, but simple to execute.
Yarn: Lion Brand Vanna’s Choice Yarn about 25 yds in main color, and 9 yds in contrasting color.
Tools: knitting tool, tapestry needle, scissors, ruler, a fork.
Other Supplies: Postcard or similar size piece of cardstock, a 3″ x 4″ piece of cardboard, permanent marker.
Finished Length: 2.5″ x about 9.5″
Warp – the vertical lines of yarn you weave in an out of on the loom.
Weft – the horizontal line of yarn that you weave in and out of the warp.
1. Add the loom extenders
Place one extender at one end of the loom and add the second extender in the third hole of the board.
2. Warp up the loom
With the contrasting color tie the yarn securely to a peg toward the middle of one of the extenders. Run the yarn to the peg exactly opposite on the other extender. Continue until you have 12 lines of warp. Tie the yarn securely to the last peg you’ve warped and cut.
3. Prepare the yarn
Working with the main color yarn, wind two layers of yarn around the shorter side of cardboard, then turn the cardboard and wind two layers of yarn around the longer side. Continue in this manner until all the yarn is on the cardboard.
4. Prepare to weave
Weave in your postcard or cardstock into the warp by weaving over the first warp yarn and under the next. Continue in this same pattern until you reach the last yarn. The cardstock acts as a header and will provide you the space you need later to be able to weave in the warp yarns as you finish off the project. Weave the second piece of cardstock into the warp in the same way, weaving over the first warp yarn and under the next. Use the permanent marker to mark the width of the warp yarns on the footer cardstock.
5. Begin weaving
Use the end of the fork to weave under the first warp yarn and over the next, continue in this pattern until you have woven the end of the fork through all the warp yarns, use your left hand to lift up all the warp yarns on top of the fork. With your right hand pass the yarn wound piece of cardboard through, leave a 4″ tail. Weave the tail into the middle of the warp, letting it dangling off of the back. You will weave it in later when you finish off the project.
For the second pass, use your right hand to turn the footer cardstock slightly, lifting the warp yarns, insert the fork to hold the bottom warp yarns down. With your left hand, pass the yarn wound piece of cardboard through. Rows will alternate between these two positions. Use the fork tines to push the weft down against the card as you proceed. The fabric will become dense and only the weft will show. The warp will become completely covered. Use the markings on the footer cardstock to make sure you aren’t pulling the weft threads too tight, and that the woven fabric is about the same width. Weave a total of 60 weft rows in the main color, ending with the yarn on your right. Do not cut the yarn.
6. Weave the contrast color wedge
Thread the contrast color yarn onto the tapestry needle. Weave under, then over, the 6 left most warp yarns. Pull the contrast color yarn until you have a 3” tail. Leave the tail to dangle off the back. Keeping in pattern of weaving over your unders and under your overs, weave 4 rows over the 4 left most warp yarns. Then weave one more row over the 6 left most yarns. (See the photo for reference.) Cut the contrast color yarn leaving a 2” tail.
Repeat steps 5 and 6 three more times. Next, weave two more rows in the main color yarn. Cut the yarn, leaving a 5” tail. Use the tapestry needle to weave the end in half way, and let the rest of the tail dangle off the back.
7. Weave in your ends
Flip your loom over, use the tapestry needle to weave the ends dangling off the back along side the warp yarns. Your woven fabric should be well packed down, and should have a slight curve to it. The outside curve should measure about 9.75”, and the inside curve about 8.75”.
8. Taking it off of the loom
With your knitting tool, lift the warp off of the pegs. Untie the knots you made at the beginning. Gently remove the cardstock. Cut the warp yarns even leaving approximately a length of 4”. Fold the cut warp yarns over to the front of the piece. Bring the two ends together, and knot top two warp yarns securely together, then drop them to the back side (inside the sleeve.) Continue until all of the warp yarns have been tied together. Turn the sleeve inside out. Use the tapestry needle to weave the ends in under the weft yarn, alongside the warp yarns, as you did before. Turn the sleeve inside out again, and you are done.
Mary K. Lawrie is a vegan artist and crafter. She gets really excited about eco-crafts and recycled materials.