My Tablet Weaving Books

I came across a fairly comprehensive list of tablet weaving books that had been posted online in 2006, I am working my way through that list, checking on what I have, and what really is pertinent to my collection. I know I have a number of books that have been released since 2006 and will continue to stay on top of any new books coming out, but for now, I’m going to put together a list of the books I have. I plan on reviewing each book I have, and discussing what I’ve read and seen about the books compared to my own personal review of each book.

I value my tablet weaving book collection and am determined to get my hands on any and every book, paper, thesis, etc., that I can possibly get my hands on. The more I learn, the more I can create, both historically correct, and as creative as I possibly can. I love recreating historic patterns and pieces, but I also adore finding new and interesting ways to create and use tablet woven bands.

But I digress, this is a list of the books I have at this point, many of which were not on the 2006 list. Some because they hadn’t yet been released, others because they slipped through the cracks of the author of said list.  All notes added to this list are my own.

 

Atwater, Mary
Byways in Handweaving, Out of Print. Reprinted by Shuttlecraft Books, the photos are best in the original.

Weaving A Life The Story of Mary Miegs Atwater. Very little weaving, but much about her amazing life.

 

Collingwood, Peter
The Techniques of Tablet Weaving, 1996, reprint.

 

Crockett, Candace
Card Weaving. 1991.

 

Hendrickson, Linda
Double-Faced Tablet Weaving: 50 Designs from Around the World. Portland, 1996.

Please Weave a Message: Instructions and Graphs for Tablet-Woven Calligraphy

 

Karisto, Maikki & Pasanen, Mervi
Applesies and Fox Noses Finnish Tabletwoven Bands, 2015

 

Leet, Kris & Malan, Linda

The Willful Pursuit of Complexity, 2004

 

Naumann, Rose & Hull, Raymond
The Off-Loom Weaving Book, 1973

 

Mullarkey, John

Tablet Weaving: Kivrim

Tablet Weaving Made Easy, 2 DVD set

 

Snow, Marjorie and William
Step By Step Tablet Weaving, Western Publishers, 1973. ISBN 2-249-22408-0 (Also available in French Tissage en Bande, published by Dessein et Tolra.)  (Best book for beginners available.  Check eBay and Amazon, but don’t spend more than $35.)

 

Specht, Sally & Rawlings, Sandra
Creating With Card Weaving, 1973

 

Spies, Nancy
Ecclesiastical Pomp & Aristocratic Circumstance: A Thousand Years of Brocaded Tabletwoven Bands

Here Be Wyverns: Hundreds of Patterns Graphed from Medieval Sources

Staudigel, Otfried
Der Zauber Des Brettchenwebens or Tablet Weaving Magic, Patterns from Oriental Countries and 25 Patterns in Plain Tablet Weave, Self-published, 2001

Woven Images, Unravelled Motifs, 2008

 

van Epen, Marijke

First Steps In Tablet Weaving, 2012

Special Tablet Weaves

The Unknown Tablet Weaving
Order from Marijke van Epen, Driessengweg 2, 7275 AD Gelselaar, Holland

 

Thompson & Bick

Narrow Fabric Weaving, 1952

 

Wollny, Claudia
Stola and Manipel of St. Donat, Arlon, 2015  Entire book about one piece of 3/1 twill tablet woven band.

A Lily Grove, 2016  Entire book of smaller motifs, most of which taken from the previous book.

Tablets At Work, 2017  The tablet weaving bible.  If you buy one tablet weaving book of serious price, this is THE book!

 

Zajonc, Juraj
Thanice, 2013

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Tablet Weaving Book List

I came across this tablet weaving book list on another site and absconded with it.  I’ve been collecting tablet weaving books since I first started, but there are quite a few on this list that I don’t have.  All comments on these books were written by the previous list-maker weavershand.com.  I will be following this post up with a posting of the books that I do have, so far.

 

Atwater, Mary

Byways in Handweaving, MacMillian, New York. Out of Print. Reprinted by Shuttlecraft Books, the photos are best in the original. Also included information on other narrow weaving.

 

Barker, June

Decorative Braiding and Weaving, B. T. Batsford Limited, Great Britain 1973. Out of print. This book deals with
all sorts of bands including tablet weaving, inkle, plaited, crochet, hairpin, knitted, and more.

 

Berlin Sonja Englund

Brickvävning – så in I Norden. Brickvävnad, Kalmar, Sweden. ISBN 19-630-2414-4 104 pages. English translation Tablet Weaving in True Nordic Fashion, (29 pages), 22 colors, many black-and-white photographs, and many pattern graphs. Very interesting overview of tablet weaving in Scandinavia, descriptions of historical bands and clear directions.

 

Bird, Eileen

Introducing Tablet Weaving, Faber and Faber Ltd. 1974. Out of print you but may come across it at a Book Fair or Library.

 

Collingwood, Peter

The Techniques of Tablet Weaving, Robin and Russ Handweavers, McMinnville, OR, 1996, reprint. Everything you ever wanted to know, and more, about tablet weaving. This is THE reference book.

 

Crockett, Candace

Card Weaving, Interweave Press; Loveland, CO, 1991. An excellent book for the beginner; it is inspiring and clear. This is an updated version of her original book published by Watson Guptill in 1973.

 

Dyer, Anne

New Ways With Tablet Weaving, Or, There’s A Snag In It Somewhere, Westhope College, Shropshire, U.K. 1996. ISBN: 0-9524045-1-6 Charming, good drawings, ideas work well.

 

Gray, Herbie

Conventional Cardweaving. On Loom Cardweaving, Make your tablets do things you thought only the floor loom could do. Can be ordered through Linda Hendrickson (see below).

 

Groff, Russell

Card Weaving or Tablet Weaving, Robin and Russ Handweavers, McMinnville, OR, 1969. A small spiral bound book with 53 patterns of threaded-in designs as well as instruction.

 

Forlaget

Ica, Band, Stockholm Sweden 1958. Swedish, good pictures. Also, has information on inkle weaving.

 

Hansen, Egon H.

Tablet Weaving: History, Techniques, Colours, Patterns, Hovedland Publishers, Denmark, 1990. A very technical book about reconstructions of historical bands. Impressive and inspiring color illustrations of old bands. We weavers of today have a lot to learn.

 

Hendrickson, Linda

Double-Faced Tablet Weaving: 50 Designs from Around the World, Portland, 1996. Complete instructions for making a continuous warp and for the double-faced weave, 120 pages comb bound.

Please Weave a Message: Instructions and Graphs for Tablet-Woven Calligraphy, Instructions for double-faced weave, and graphs for letters based on six Roman alphabets. 144 pages, comb-bound.

Tablet Weaving for Parents and Children, Portland 1995. An easy and inexpensive way for anyone to get started with tablet weaving. 16 pages.

Two-Hole Andean Pebble Weave, Portland 2004.This booklet is a follow-up to the article “Tablet Weaving with Children”, Handwoven, November/December 2003, p. 43. Complete instructions for making a continuous warp for pebble weave, and for weaving charming traditional Andean designs with tablets.

Tubular Cardwoven Neckpieces, Robin and Russ Handweavers. Mc Minnville, OR, 1993. ISBN 56659 076 0 A good description of continuous warping and “recipes” for necklaces.
To order from Linda, 140 SE 39th Avenue, Portland, OR 97214 (503) 239-5016 – square cardboard tablets, shuttles,
kits, books, video.

 

Joliet-van den Berg, Marga & Heribert

Brettchenweben, Verlag Paul Haupt, Bern & Stuttgart, 1975. Hardcover, 179 pages. DM 54.00 A truly inspirational book with many illustrations, historical background patterns and threadings and lots of colors.

 

Katz, Ruth J.

Card Weaving, Van Nostrand Reinhold Co. Ltd. 1977. Very clear directions for weaving fancy diagonals.

Joliet-van Den Berg, Marga and Heribert

Brettchen-Weben, Printed in Switzerland 1975. This book is printed in German. Excellent pictures and illustrations.

 

Russell, Elfleda

Off – Loom Weaving, Little, Brown & Co., New York, 1975. ISBN 0 316 76295 4. Out of print, but a “must have” if you find it. Inventive ideas for free weaving with tablets – a bit “70’s” not, but full of potential for 3-D work.

 

Snow, Marjorie and William

Tablet Weaving, Western Publishers, 1973. ISBN 2-249-22408-0 (Also available in French Tissage en Bande, published by Dessein et Tolra.) Clear drawings, good ideas for ending and joinings. Out of print but available.

 

Specht, S. and Rawlings, S.

Creating with Card Weaving, Crown Publications, New York, 1973. ISBN 0517503484. Some of the ideas are dated by original, including a 12” hammock.

 

Spies, Nancy

Ecclesiastical Pomp & Aristocratic Circumstance: A Thousand Years of Brocaded Tabletwoven Bands, How to weave brocade as well as the history of its heyday in Medieval times.

Here Be Wyverns: Hundreds of Patterns Graphed from Medieval Sources is a book of authentic patterns from the Middle Ages. The book is spiral bound and has 192 pages, plus 4 pages in color. There are over 130 quotes from primary sources.

 

Neuper, Anna

Modelbuch Early Sixteenth-Century Patterns for Weaving Brocaded Bands is a small, leather-covered book of handwritten patterns for gold brocaded tablet woven bands that resides in the Herzog August Bibliothek in Wolfenbüttel, Germany. Written in 1517 by Anna Neuper, a seventy-year-old nun in the St. Clare Convent in Nürnberg, it contains forty-five different patterns for with variations and is among the earliest pattern books for any textile technique.
Order from Nancy Spies books from her: Arelate Studio, 1725 Trotting Court, Jarrettsville MD 21084, USA (410) 692-
2076 .

 

Staudigel, Otfried

Der Zauber Des Brettchenwebens or Tablet Weaving Magic, Patterns from Oriental Countries and 25 Patterns in Plain Tablet Weave, Self-published, 2001. In both English and German an excellent book with new patterns, double-face, and threaded-in.
Available in the USA from Linda Hendrickson (see above) or from Otfried at Höppnerstrasse 108, D – 47809 Krefeld,
Germany .

 

Sutton, Ann and Holtom, P.

Tablet Weaving, Batsford. 1975. ISBN 0713428910. Full of good ideas as only Ann Sutton can produce.

 

van Epen, Marijke

Special Tablet Weaves. Special Tablet Weaves offers the double woven tablet weaving techniques of the Toraja Tribes of Sulawesi, Indonesia. Learn how to warp, read drafts and weave the 40 patterns. 40 pages with many illustrations and photographs.

The Unknown Tablet Weaving, Markijke has “translated” the double woven textiles of the Andes into beautiful tablet woven bands. The book contains 192 pages, including 4 pages full-color photographs, 32 black & white photographs, over 130 illustrations and 90 pages of pattern drafts.
Order from Marijke van Epen, Driessengweg 2, 7275 AD Gelselaar, Holland
.

Classes I Teach

I have two classes I’ve taught for the past couple of years, but I need to add more to my repertoire.  I love teaching about the history of tablet weaving as few people actually research that end of it, beyond a specific band here and there.  Now, I need to dig deeper to come up with a part two for that class.  I want to focus on specific bands, the well-known ones first, then the lesser known.

After my first Pennsic, I have a new class for next Pennsic (48), with my friend Christina.  She learned about six-holed-cards and weaving with them.  I’ve done one six-holed piece and loved how it came out, even though the weaving of it was a bit wonky.  I learned a lot more about which shed to be weaving through, and why.  Basically, I learned the first one I did was ‘wrong’ but it was beautiful!  I now want to weave that pattern again, using the sheds I’ve been told are correct (by a laurel) and see how it works out.  It’s hard picking up a lot of these tricks, hacks, and nuances when there are not any top-level tablet weavers in our area.  Turns out I need to make sure I do as much with tablet weaving as possible at Pennsic so that I can bring the knowledge home and hone my skills as well as teach smaller classes at smaller events before teaching my first class at Pennsic!

 

History & Concepts of Tablet Weaving
Join me for a discussion about tablet weaving, where it came from, what it’s about, and the basics behind how it works. This is not a hands-on, in-depth, tablet weaving class, but you will have a chance to look at a variety of tablet and looms, and possibly even weave a bit to see if it’s something you’re interested in pursuing further. I will be on-site all weekend for anyone who wants further discussion or instruction.

Bring Out Your Looms!
Do you have a (tablet or inkle) loom on hand, but don’t really have a grasp on how to warp and tablet weave on it? Have you just started tablet weaving and need help or questions? Do you want to learn the basics of tablet weaving and want to try your hand at it? I will have a number of looms with me if you’d like to try them out, or I can set you up to weave a short band off-loom (none of that mess of too long threads of the past). I’d like to keep this class small, no more than 5 people actually weaving, but I’m flexible. I will be on-site all weekend for anyone who wants further discussion or instruction.

 

(This was a partially written post that I finished to get it up on blog to clean up the back end for newer posts that are crashing around in my head.)

Tablet Weaving Tips & Tricks – Part 1

Through the short years, I’ve been tablet weaving I’ve learned a lot of little things that would have made life earlier from the start had I known these things. This will be a multi-part series. As I gather a whole new slew of tips and tricks, I’ll add another posting in the series.

Warping

– Each book, each site, each weaver, has different ideas on how the S and Z are supposed to be set up. It’s mostly trial, error, and intuition.
– No matter how long you’ve been weaving, you will continue to mess up S and Z.
– If the pattern you’ve warped for is not appearing, look at the back, the majority of the time it’s hiding back there.
– One thing most books, sites, or people will tell you is even if you warp your cards with A and B on top, many patterns come to fruition only if you start weaving with D and A on top. If things are not working out, and the pattern isn’t hiding on the back, try altering where you start your turning cycle.
– When warping an inkle-style loom, make sure the tension peg isn’t all the way to the end. After warping the loom, pull the tension bar to make sure it’s exactly the tension you want. If you don’t give yourself space to tighten, you will struggle to start weaving.

Fibers

– When starting out on your tablet weaving path, always choose the easiest thread/yarn to work with.
– The thread really should have some stretch to it when tablet weaving. That way it can be stretched to a tension that works best for each weaver.
– The thread should also be rather slippery so that if a mistake is made, it’s easier to unweave what has already been done.
– Crochet cotton is stretchy, slippery, has some good colors, and is not expensive. It’s the best thread to start with.
– If available, bamboo can be wonderful to weave with and can be found with the crochet cotton in some locations, but it has a lot more stretch so the tension post should be moved accordingly.

Avoid weaving with
– DMC (embroidery floss) as it doesn’t stretch at all.
– Linen that’s not blended with something else, again, it doesn’t stretch at all.
– Wool as it’s sticky and can sometimes be impossible to unweave.

Wool
– Wool can turn into a sticky mess if unprepared for the sticky properties it possesses.
– Warping your loom with wool that has an S-twist (the actual wool, not the direction through the cards, or the angle of the cards), then the weft should be Z-twist, or vice/versa.
– To avoid struggling the weft through the warp, weave with cotton, silk, or bamboo. It makes it easier to unweave if both directions are not wool.
– If you must weave with wool and it’s sticking together and causing issues, spraying it with either leave-in conditioner or powdered milk reconstituted with water (milk from the fridge won’t work).

Those are some of the best tips and tricks that I’ve learned, though I am sure I’ll come up with many more as I continue to learn and grow as a weaver.

6 Hole Threaded In Tablet Weaving!

I purchased a tablet weaving book that had been on my short list since I started weaving. (Tablet Weaving Magic: Patterns from Oriental Countries and 25 Patterns in Plain Tablet Weave) I was making an Amazon order and added it on a whim. As it was from out of the country it took well over a month to get here, so I’d almost forgotten that I was expecting it in the mail. When it appeared I was so thrilled with the double face patterns that I was in awe looking through the book. So much greatness, and when I found that at the end there were a bunch of threaded-in patterns back there, and a number of them were for six holed cards.

Now, I have had some very thin six holed cards for almost a year, but hadn’t really seen any patterns or anything that made me feel the need to use them. The patterns in the back of this book did just that! I got the cards (which are basically quilters template paper that Aloysius [mundanely known as Stacy] used the paper drill to make holes in for me, so they’re barely thicker than printer paper, not as thick as oak tag) out and warped Loomer according to how I thought this author was referring to S and Z. For the first time in a long time, I was right. (Can’t say the same about the band I just warped on Walter, which I had to flip completely on the loom, and the most recent band on Betty).

I took Loomer to Crown Tourney (Nov. 2016) but forgot the book with the pattern. I knew I was supposed to turn about 13 times, but I wasn’t sure it was 13 times, and my hands were quite frozen, so I really didn’t do more than a couple turns that day. But when I got home and warmed up, I went to town and learned just how much fun it was to develop a longer pattern in a simple full pack turn pattern. I think it was thirteen turns in each direction, and the pattern jumped right out and proved that six holed cards are a great thing. I’m so excited to try other six-hole patterns, and then start designing my own. Now I have to figure out how to create threaded-in patterns in GTT!

I had been worried that because the band is six threads thick, compared to the four thread thickness of bands made with four-holed cards, but this band came off soft as butter, and very pliable.

2016-11-20-21-16-23

EDIT: This band went to Birka with me and while it garnered a lot of attention, it didn’t end up being sold but rather traded for 12 yards of a beautiful plaid silk. I’ll share a picture of the silk the next time I pull out fabric for garb making. Honestly, I’m very happy with the trade, and while I have no idea what to make with the plaid, I have a serious need to make another band of the same pattern, if not the same colors.

3/1 Twill of Doom!

Yes, DOOM!

I feel as though each new tablet weaving technique I want to learn causes me more angst than it should, but each time I venture into something new, that angst is back. I felt it when I tried anything beyond 4X4, including this specific pattern that’s in both the orange book and Fox Noses, which requires both forward and back turning with each row. It was the bane of my weaving existence even until just recently, but I’ve gotten over that mental hurdle and it’s working for me. (I’ll address this in another posting.) I went through it, in a big way, with double-faced tablet weaving, but I got past it as well – and rather quickly. (This is another posting, but not this one.) But I’ve been able to, through work, get past the issues I’ve had with those techniques.

3/1 Broken Twill is scary! Not just mildly scary, but really, really scary! First thing I did was to buy what I call ‘The Big Floppy Book’ but in reality, it’s Claudia Wollny’s Die Fabelhafte Welt der brettchengewebten Stola und Manipel zu St. Donat, Arlon. Now, I knew the book had great patterns, I didn’t realize until I got the book that it was a technique that I hadn’t even heard of until that point. So I drooled over the book for a year, but it didn’t teach the technique. Further, all the patterns in the book were really wide, and I was not finding anything online that made sense and taught me how to learn this technique. So I found out that John Mularkey’s Double Face DVD is actually a two DVD set, and the second DVD has 3/1. Woohoo! Then Claudia came out with another book, Der Lilienhain. This book has very narrow patterns and really inspired me to jump in and go at 3/1.

I sat down with Mularky’s DVD, Claudia’s Der Lilienhain, Walter (one of my looms) warped and ready, and my beloved Stacy sitting beside me. It took a lot of jumping back and forth between the book, the DVD, what was on my loom, and telling Stacy that while I know he’s trying to be helpful, he’s telling me the exact opposite of what I really need to do. I know he’s trying to be helpful, but when I’m frustrated, it’s hard being told how to weave by someone who’s never done it. It’s the engineer in him.

Anyway, I have played with 3/1 a bit, and each time I try again, even the next day, I have to start all over again. So, my plan is to warp Loomer (my favorite loom) with very contrasting brights and really get on it this week. The plan is to take it to Crown Tourney and show the basics to my weaving circle. We don’t get to gather often, but when we do, we try to better our weaving and help each other in any way we can. I’m hoping to be able to inspire them with the basics and show them that while it’s complicated, it’s a crackable nut. We are all on different levels and enjoy different aspects of tablet weaving, so it’s great to help each other in any way possible.

I will write more and show pictures as I learn and conquer 3/1 Broken Twill!

Harvest Moon Shoot, AS 51 – Tablet Woven Leaves on a Vine Band

This is the documentation I put in with this band for the Harvest Moon Shoot in Malagentia, EK.

Tablet weaving is a way of creating a very strong narrow woven strip to be used in any number of ways: belts, trim, garters, girdles, reigns, harnesses, wall hangings, ropes, leashes, straps, etc. This technique was used early, and while there’s much of controversy about which Egyptian pieces are provably tablet woven, it’s thought to go back to about 945 BCE.

Tools & Materials
This band was created on my medium size loom, which is an inkle loom without an inkle bar. While tablet weaving had been around for a very long time, looms such as this were not. Much of the time the weaving was tied off at both ends to anything sturdy. This could be furniture, trees, even one’s own body. This made for easy portability but was difficult to retain constant tension throughout a piece. The first known tablet weaving loom was the loom found on the Oseberge Viking ship. This was little more than two wooden posts on a stand that one wove between.

Twenty paper tablets were used to weave this band, as they are the largest tablets I have. Throughout the medieval period tablets were made out of wood, bone, horn, leather, etc. When working with wool, a larger shed (the place you run the shuttle for each row of weaving) makes things much easier. The larger cards push the wool farther apart and keep wool’s natural tendency to stick together at bay.

A very smooth wooden shuttle slid the weft thread through the woolshed.

The warp of this band was woven of wool that was collected, spun, and dyed by two different individuals in New Hampshire. Wool was tablet woven by Vikings and other Europeans throughout the medieval period when it was available.

The weft of this band is bamboo. Bamboo is not something they would have woven within medieval times, but it’s what I had that matched the background and edging color. Further, bamboo is very smooth which makes it easier to slide between the wool threads and maintain a fairly constant width.

Procedure
This band was tablet woven using a double-faced technique. Double-faced is a more advanced technique that creates a pattern on one side of the band and the reversed of that pattern on the opposite side. This technique involves turning certain tablets forward a quarter turn, and certain tablets backward a quarter turn, twice, throwing the weft thread at each quarter turn, to create each row. With this technique, beautiful patterns, letters, and pictures can be created. The first known use of the double-faced tablet weaving technique was from the Hallstatt period in a Celtic grave, about 6 BCE.

Being that the challenge was harvest or autumnal colors, leaves changing came to mind. As double-faced tablet weaving is traditionally two colors, each threaded through two adjacent holes, I thought I was limited in my creativity, but then I decided on a variegated thread. As Loomer was being warped I slowly stepped the variegation with each tablet so that there was more of a color change in the leaves as the band progressed.

This is a favorite pattern of mine, as I enjoy playing with each row as it weaves along. Between changing the shape of various leaves here and there, as well as weaving two leaves on one side then returning to the opposite side of the vine. If I was to weave this exact band again, I would step the variegated thread more quickly through the cards, making the color change more quickly and often through the length of the band, and I would try to change a lot more of the leaves as I went, though that’s not really period.

Sources
Vines and leaves were a common design used by many different people at many different times, but to choose one, the Anglo-Saxons used scrolling vines and some serious attempts at foliage, specifically acanthus leaves and sprays on the 10th century brocaded bands attributed to St. Cuthbert at Durham. Though it’s sometimes hard to distinguish between leaves on vines and various geometric shapes.

Ecclesiastical Pomp Aristocratic Circumstance: A Thousand Years of Brocaded Tabletwoven Bands
Nancy Spies, Arelate Studio Jarrettsville, Maryland 2000

Techniques of Tablet Weaving
Peter Collingwood, Robin & Russ Handweaver’s; First Edition 2002