My Rigid Heddle Loom – A Review

My Loom

Is it possible that something so simple can create such beautiful things?

Before stumbling across the rigid heddle loom, I knew only of large floor looms, Navajo rug looms, and tapestry looms (not to mention the small potholder looms from my youth). Each of these looms seemed either very expensive or much too limited in what one could make with it. What an eye-opener I found the rigid heddle loom to be!

I’ve wanted to learn to weave for a very long time, but I never considered it much of a possibility until I discovered the rigid heddle loom.  I researched many types of looms and brands of rigid heddle looms before deciding on the Schacht 15 inch Cricket Rigid Heddle Loom. Overall, it seemed like the right fit for me. Here’s why:

  • The loom is lightweight. I can easily move it around as needed. It does not fold up for travel, but as I have no need to travel with it, I don’t mind. I do believe that it would fit easily into a large tote bag for traveling, even with a weaving currently on it.
  • It is quality-made. The parts of the loom are well-made and work well for efficient weaving. As I assembled the loom myself using the enclosed directions, I can also vouch for two things: (1) the instructions are very clear and (2) the loom is assembled very well.
  • It is affordable. If you have ever priced looms, you know that most are several hundred dollars or into the thousands. This loom is less than two hundred dollars. It comes with an 8-dent heddle, which is best for medium/worsted weight yarn. The other three single-size heddles are priced less than $40. They are a 5-dent (bulky yarn), a 10-dent (sock-weight/thin yarn), and a 12-dent (very thin yarn). A variable dent heddle in which one can insert differently-sized sections is around $75. Otherwise, the loom comes with all of the tools you need to get started including yarn. Other tools can be purchased as needed and are also reasonably priced.
  • It is easy to warp and easy to use. The loom comes with surprisingly clear instructions with photographs which instruct one in how to warp the loom using the direct warping method and the included warping peg. The booklet also gives instructions and advice in how to begin weaving. Three projects are also included in a second booklet.
  • The width is versatile. I choose the 15-inch wide loom over the 10-inch wide loom because it would allow me to make a greater variety of items more efficiently. I also feel that it will provide me with greater longevity.

Things to consider:

  • I did have a little trouble determining how to set up my loom for weaving comfortably. I cannot currently afford the loom stand as it costs about as much as the loom, so I have to be creative. The loom has notches on the back for the loom to “hook” onto a table, but I found this to be uncomfortable for me. I also tried sitting on a yoga mat on the floor with the loom in front of me, but this too was uncomfortable. I did a little ‘shopping’ around my home and found the largest of a set of nesting tables to work well. I can pull it up to the couch or a chair and put my legs under the open side of the table. Since the loom comes with two “L” shaped clamps (used mainly in warping), it can be secured to the table.
  •  In terms of efficiency, the loom is great for weaving fairly swiftly; however, I do have one complaint about the mechanics of advancing the warp. As per the instructions, the warp-advancing ratchets are both on the same (right) side. In order to advance the warp, I have to reach my left hand over the loom to reach the back ratchet while my right hand works the front ratchet. It is kind of uncomfortable and blocks my view of the piece I am working on. However, I’ve somewhat gotten the hang of how to work it without too much trouble. I have thought seriously about switching the back ratchet to the opposite side since it has the same holes in it, but I have not tried it yet. I do not know how/if it would affect the warp’s tension or cause the warp to shift in some way.

All in all, I am very happy with my Schacht Cricket Loom. I have put it to good use since I received it and cannot wait to get started on another project!

Hands on Rigid Heddle Weaving (Hands on S) – In addition to the included instruction manual, this book has been a great help.  I highly recommend it for any level of rigid heddle loom weaver.

I created this scarf using my new 10-dent heddle.  The finer yarn (obviously) takes longer to work up, but the result is stunning.  I used Paton's Lace variegated yarn.  I twisted the fringe, which took a while to do but seemed to be the best treatment for the lightweight yarn.

I created this scarf using my new 10-dent heddle. The finer yarn takes longer to work up, but the result is stunning. I used Paton’s Lace variegated yarn. I twisted the fringe, which took a while to do but seemed to be the best treatment for the lightweight yarn.

Are you interesting in learning to weave?

(I participate in the Amazon Associates program and receive a portion of all sales made through the links on this page.  I own the recommended products and have much experience with them.)

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