Woven wall hangings are great for up-cycling scraps of yarn and wool roving. A new wave of creative individuals are exploring this traditional textiles technique with fresh patterns, various surface textures from tassels (rya knots), pom poms and feathers to the use of interesting yarns and trimmings.
I spent about 5 hours creating this wall hanging (a few evenings at home watching Christmas movies with hot chocolate). The fun thing about creating your very own wall hanging is that you can make them as big or as little as you want depending on the amount of time you’re willing to spend.
Read on to see how I created this simple circle design using wool roving, rya knots and one skein of wool yarn.
an assortment of yarns in varying sizes
cotton warp or rayher warp
wool roving | merino wool
*stores the thread of your weaving yarn | weft yarn
Start by tying a knot at the end of your cotton warp yarn and placing it between the ridges of your weaving loom. Pull the thread straight and place into the slot directly opposite your knotted thread. Lay the thread in the next slot to the top right and pull towards the bottom slot. Repeat these steps until your weaving loom is wrapped across the full width. Secure the final slot with another knot. You have created your warp threads in preparation for weaving. Warp threads go vertically along your weaving from top to bottom.
Create a circle template using any shape tool on Word, PowerPoint or Photoshop. This will help guide your circle pattern when weaving. Next place underneath the warp of your threads in your desired position. Use a sharpie pen to mark out the circle on each individual thread from your warp.
You’re now ready to weave your first weft. The weft is the term used for the yarn that goes horizontally across your warp threads creating your woven piece. I find it easier to draw out my weaving design before starting.
Play around with a mixture of colours, yarn sizes and textures for a fun and unique outcome.
To begin weaving the circle design we are going to create a support for our tassels (rya knots). First cut a piece of yarn to about 130cm. Thread your tapestry needle, starting from the bottom of your warp threads thread your weft thread under your first warp, then over, repeat until the end of your first row.
I like to weave in an arch shape before using a weaving comb to brush the weft into place, this creates a sturdier weave and prevents the edges of your weave design from pulling and creating an uneven piece. By going under and over your vertical (warp) threads you are creating a plain weave. Once you reach the end of your row begin weaving back towards the end to where you started from.
Repeat the weaving steps 7 more times by working on the opposite side of your warp thread from where you started to prevent unraveling your weave.
Don’t forget to use your weaving comb or a fork to comb down the middle of your arc before the sides. This is a vital step for each row, it gives your final piece a sturdier look with no slack.
After your eighth row cut the remaining thread to leave a 5 inch tail. This will be sewn in at the very end of your weaving project.
Add tassels (rya knots) by preparing sixty 61cm strands of yarn in your desired colour. I used 6 strands between every two warp threads.
STEP FIVE | RYA KNOTS
Take six strands together and fold in half before centering under your first two warp threads
*see image above
Use your index finger to pull the strands through the centre of both warp threads.
Pull the left loose strands through the top and into the middle of the loop created by your index finger, repeat this for the right loose strands. Pull through and slide your first rya knot down.
Repeat this process for every two warp strands.
Weave 17 plain weaves across the top of your rya knots in your desired colour.
Next add wool roving(merino wool) by simply weaving through just as you would with your yarn.
Gently pull the wool roving towards you to create a bumpy texture.
Leave about 5 inches on each end.
Plain weave 13 rows above your wool roving.
Add a new colour wool roving just above your plain weave.
Weave around your design by increasing and decreasing your weft weaving leaving out the circle as you weave each row.
Weave in another row of wool roving before pulling gently towards you to create a bumpy texture.
Continue weaving to the very end of your warp threads.
STEP EIGHT | CIRCLE DESIGN
Use a different colour yarn to weave in your circle design. Don’t forget to increase and decrease your yarn with each row of weaving.
To finish off your loose threads on each end, thread a needle and tuck the thread through a series of four/five threads. Trim off any excess.
Weave the roving through the ends onto the back of your piece.
Turn the loom around to finish loose threads on your back circle design. Thread the loose threads through a needle and tuck it under a series of yarn.
Finish off by gently picking out your warp threads on both ends.
Hide your warp threads on both ends the same way as you did with the loose threads on the back and sides.
Hang your wall hanging by simply threading a yarn through your woven pieces and around your desired shape (drift wood, brass rod, dowel rod etc).