Thursday, November 20, 2008

Potholder Loops

Do you have a child who cannot get enough of weaving potholders? It's expensive if you buy the good loops -- the ones that are made of wool or cotton instead of nylon, and which actually fit the loom. You can make your own loops, though, out of old cotton-knit t-shirts.

Go to bbmarie's photo tutorial to learn how to make the loops. Because I've had back luck sometimes with things disappearing off the internet, here are brief instructions summarizing the process (just in case I need to have my memory jogged if/after the slideshow disappears one day).
Cut 5.25 x 2.75" rectangles out of the fabric.
The short side should be with the grain.
Round the corners of the rectangles.
Cut a slit (like when you're done sewing a buttonhole) down the middle of the length of the rectangle (which will be across the grain), up to about 1/4" or 1/3" from the ends of the cloth.
When you pull the ends of the rectangle to loop over the loom-pegs, the cloth should roll up a bit, making something akin to the boughten loops.

I cut 52 loops from a woman's t-shirt, size small and not very long. So a t-shirt will provide fabric for 1½ or 2 potholders. One yard of new cotton-knit fabric would yield enough loops for 3½ potholders. It took me about an hour to cut up the t-shirt into loops, but I'm none too quick with crafty projects. It's nice to be able to take interesting prints on t-shirts that would've gone to Goodwill, and turn them into a prettier loop than can normally be found for potholder-weaving.

These loops seem to be significantly heavier than loops from the store. They make a very heavy potholder. To be able to fit the potholder into the space on the loom, I had to skip a few pegs. I'm also considering a try at making narrower rectangles for the loops -- less fabric to roll up and thus less thickness.

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