Saturday, March 10, 2007

The Knitter's Loom

I haven't had much time for posting lately because I bought one of these widely advertised, and I might add, completely overhyped table looms that you may have seen on the Ashford site and lots of other places. It's actually just a heddle loom that folds up.

It's quite a nice little loom, and I do like it now that I'm used to it, but don't for a minute fall for the ads stating that anybody - even people who know nothing about weaving- can learn to use this loom in no time and soon be making scarves in only two hours! Ha! I've been at it for three weeks and still can't begin to make a scarf in two hours. All day maybe if everything goes well, but if you're thinking of buying this thing in the hopes of being able to make scarves really fast - forget it!

They call it the Knitter's Loom because supposedly you can make a scarf on it quicker than knitting. Of course it depends on the length and width of the scarf, but I believe that if two people set out to make the same size scarf - one knitting and one using the loom - the knitter would definitely come out ahead!

It is of course very nice to have a folding loom, however, you will most likely need to also buy their bag to store or carry it in. There are various bits that are likely to get lost if they aren't kept together in the bag. That's an extra $65 most places.

Then there are the instructions that come with the loom. Well, it took me all day to figure out how to work everything, partly because of me, but mostly because the instructions tend to leave out the bits you really need to know and concentrate on the bits that you eventually find out are actually unimportant. I had to call two people for help before I finally was able to use the loom. One of those people was a distributor who admitted that she was having all the same problems I was having. I ended up buying the full size instruction book for another $30.

Since I have a wholesale account with a very nice distributor that I've been doing business with for years, I got a good price on everything, but for someone buying at the full price, I'd suggest some careful consideration. If you just like to knit as a hobby, then this loom is probably not going to save you time, be as handy to carry around with you, or produce a dramatically better looking scarf than a knitted one. Two hour woven scarves are very unlikely to happen any time soon for me, or as far as I've been hearing, for anybody else either! It takes one hour to set the darn thing up (ie. "warp" it.)

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