Warping a Mirrix, part 1

I recently bought a Mirrix loom from a friend. The loom I have is the “The Little Guy,” the smallest loom designed for heddles. I can (in theory) weave a fiber or bead tapestry up to 9″ wide and 22″ long.

So, I started warping it. The last heddled loom I warped, back in the 70’s, was an inkle loom. I can’t even promise that I did that on my own, I just don’t remember.

I used the print instructions that came with the loom, the Mirrix online instructions, and the instructions on My Father’s Beads. There is a Mirrix Yahoo group, which I will likely be joining. There is a DVD which I can purchase from Mirrix.

All the instructions say to do something small first. I don’t want to; I want to loom what I want to loom! I’m doing something similar to the vessel in the header of this blog, and on the front page of my website. I’m taking an abstract painting and beading it. The idea is that I’ll tape the picture behind the loom, and just bead the color that’s next. If I can loom this way, that would be great. I really don’t want to be counting beads, like doing counted cross stitch.

So, I’m warping for a 6 1/4″ x 5 1/2″ piece. In two hours, this is how much I have done, slightly over 1/2 of the width. Some of that time was figuring out the instructions though, so I am moving faster now.

mirrix-header.jpg

I’m at a stopping point for two reasons. The first is that I have to go to work. The second is that I’m warping with this:

thread-cone.jpg

This 8oz spool of bonded nylon now just barely fits between the header bar and warping bar, the thread and the side bar of the loom. Each dent in the spring coil has 2 threads in it (2 threads to allow for the heddles and essentially a double warp). To get those 2 threads on requires picking up and putting down this large cone 6 times. I have to put the cone up over the top, down under the bottom (I have it elevated on a couple of boxes), between the header and warping bar, and between the warping bar and bottom bar.

So here’s what I have to do before I can continue warping: I have to figure out how many yards of thread it takes to fill each dent, I have to wind that much off the cone (plus 25%?) — while it’s still attached to the loom — and then wind it onto something smaller. So I’m going to have yards and yards of thread piled on the floor, and I’m going to have to wind it on something (cardboard tube?) from the cut end. Without tangling it.

Surprisingly, I’m not frustrated!

Please think positive thoughts that I’m doing this right. After I warp it, I have to put on the heddles. At that point, I’ll know if I’ve done it right.

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