Hey guys! I'm having some issues with my backstrap looms, keeping tension when its tied up. The only place I have to weave is my bedroom, and my room is very rectangular shaped with the worst part - the width of it being very small lol. So I thought about building a navajo loom, if you look at them it looks exactly like a backstrap loom just on a sturdy base lol. So thought this would be a great alternative. I saw were some people were building them out of old window and picture frames for various sizes, which I find great because you can have small ones that are great for travel! So if anyone else has ideas, pictures or building instructions they'd like to post of projects they found or did themselves please feel free to post as to help inspire other people. So to start us off.. Heres a picture thats close to what I'm going to build except mine will be on a much larger scale! I'll be using an old picture frame, and a few spare pieces of wood so to make the back prop so I can work on my giant computer desk lol. I'll definitely be back to update pictures of my finished product. Its a great alternative then spending money on new things when you can recycle unused trash! http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_fUx24xo81z0/Sb1VO-EavKI/AAAAAAAAARs/tnm2whOqwqw/s400/student+navajo+frame+loom+n+stand.jpg


AutumnSun (not verified)

Also found a good instruction plan for something similar.. It also has pictures as you go. http://weavinginbeauty.com/loomplan.pdf

jeannine (not verified)

For a small project I attached the warp to this frame loom. I use it for small tapestries  so it has nails in it ; But it also worked this way.I could weave nearly double the hight of the frame by using a continious warp. The thin rod above the cross is where the warp comes together.

This would be a great project to post in the DIYlooms and tools group.

bolivian warmi

I wove all my first wide Andean pick up pieces on my Navajo loom because I wasn't confident about being able to manage them on my backstrap loom. Then I started tying my backstrap loom to the lower loom bar of my Navajo loom...it was very handy but that was in a bigger home. Now I do everything on my backstrap loom. I am the opposite to you. I have a good place to tie up my backstrap loom but there is no way I could fit a navajo loom in my little home. My Navajo loom was BIG.

Backstrap looms are body tensioned and this is the big difference. With a backstrap loom you can alter your tension as needed with the slightest of body movements. When you have been using one for a while you often are not even aware of these adjustments that you are making...relaxing tension to do pick up, tightening to beat, relaxing again to open the heddle shed, tightening to snap open the other shed, ...etc.

I sometimes use an inkle loom and very occasionally my RH loom to make a pick up band that I would normally do on my backstrap loom. These are just experiments and I always miss the freedom to adjust tension that  my backstrap loom gives me.

I had the Navajo loom that I used to have in Chile built using the directions in the Bennett/Bighorn book.



Claudia Segal (not verified)

Hey Autumn Sun,

You might really enjoy the DIY group and the Navajo weaving group both of which have great ideas for building and creating looms and tools.  The loom from Weaving in Beauty is a good example of a Navajo loom and Mary Walker is an excellent teacher if you are interested in learning Navajo style weaving.  


AutumnSun (not verified)

Oh Thanks everyone!! I still havent mastered the site yet, so these links help out a lot! I'll definitely be joining those groups too they sound great!

Marsha A. Knox (not verified)

One of the reasons I got sooooooo involved in tapestry was because of the Navajo weaving mentality.  I figured if they can accomplish it in the middle of a desert then I should be able to make one here with a Home Depot around the corner.  It has only been recently, and I have been weaving about 15 years, that I could afford to buy my equipment.  In the beginning I even made my own knitting needles and spindles, along with the loom.  I have found that by building them myself often I can tweak them to my own needs. 

I love my homemade looms just as much as the little Mini Wave I have and even the Krompski Harp that I recently sold.  The only thing I didn't try to build was my spinning wheel...and now that I have one I find I even prefer my home made spindles. 

You go girl...can't wait to see the pics.