So, you’re interested in weaving.. but you have questions – we’re here to help!
When it comes to beginning your weaving journey, the choice between a rigid heddle loom and a table loom is one of the first questions that comes to mind. Both loom types are relatively compact and easy to use, but also unique in their own way that will influence which weaving loom suits your interested and objectives best.
Below we will explore the characteristics, benefits, and versatility of both rigid heddle looms and table looms, and hopefully provide you with the insights that will give you a clearer path forward
What is a Rigid Heddle Loom: A Gateway to Weaving
A rigid heddle loom is typically the perfect introduction to the world of weaving. These light, portable, user-friendly looms offer a hassle-free weaving experience, with some models ready for immediate use without requiring any assembly.
How Rigid Heddle Looms Work
With just two shafts, a rigid heddle loom creates woven patterns by raising and lowering the rigid heddle. Rigid heddles are firm and have standard sizes. The heddle size can be swapped to cater to your choice of yarn, providing versatility in your weaving projects.
Top 5 Reasons to Love Rigid Heddle Looms:
- Portability: The Kromski Presto, Kromski Harp Forte, Beka Fold & Go, and the Schacht Cricket Loom are some of the most lightweight and transportable looms on the market. Take your creativity anywhere and conveniently store them, even in compact spaces.
- Direct Warping: Save time and accelerate your weaving process with direct warping. No need to spend hours winding warps or threading heddles before weaving begins.
- Weave on the Go: Enjoy the freedom to weave whenever and wherever inspiration strikes. Rigid heddle looms are perfect for all ages, allowing even kids to explore the art of weaving.
- Accessibility and Affordability: Rigid heddle looms offer an affordable entry point into weaving. They strike the perfect balance between cost and value, ensuring an excellent investment for beginners.
- Versatility in Weaving: From scarves and shawls to dishtowels and placements, our range of rigid heddle looms come in various weaving width options (typically from 10 - 40 inches). Explore your creativity and craft beautiful, functional textiles.
Our Best Rigid Heddle Loom Recommendations
- Kromski Presto Loom
- Schacht Cricket Loom
- Kromski Harp Forte Loom
- Schacht Flip Folding Loom
- Beka Fold & Go Loom
What is a Table Loom: Unlocking Creativity
In contrast to rigid heddle looms, table looms provide a broader canvas for intricate weaving. With options ranging from four shafts to eight shafts, to sixteen or more, these multi-shaft looms offer unparalleled design flexibility.
Unlike rigid heddle looms, table looms have shafts that move up and down instead of remaining rigid (hence the rigid heddle loom name!). This capability of the vertical shaft movement is what allows for the greater flexibility of design and pattern complexity.
A table loom is also a great choice for learning to weave if you’re not quite ready for a floor loom. Floor looms typically cost much more than table looms, and they are large and stationary. Once you have a floor loom setup, most crafters keep it there. If you don’t have space in you studio / residence for a floor loom, then a table loom is a great option for you.
How Table Looms Work
Table looms feature moving shafts that allow for both simple and complex weaving and are available in a much greater variety of weaving widths. Although warping may require more skill, the rewards are worth it, as the patterns you can create are vast and captivating in comparison to a rigid heddle loom.
Revolution Fibers' Top 5 Reasons to Love Table Looms:
- Portability and Versatility: Table looms are designed with portability in mind. Easily move them within your home or take them to classes, workshops and travel destinations! These compact looms require minimal space.
- Tailored Options: There are many table loom options available across various manufacturers. Different shaft configurations and weaving widths ensure you’ll find the perfect match for your creative aspirations.
- Endless Weaving Possibilities: With table looms, you can explore many intricate patterns (any pattern your shafts will allow). There's no need to worry about tie-ups or treadles.
- Enhance Your Weaving Journey: Table loom manufacturers offer an array of accessories, from loom stands to treadles, making your weaving process more efficient and enjoyable as you become more skilled.
- Beginner-Friendly and Economical: Table looms strike the ideal balance between affordability and functionality. They are excellent for beginners while accommodating more complex projects as your skills progress. These are looms that keep advanced weavers engaged in a variety of projects, while allowing beginners to grow into their loom and skill-set.
What to Weave on a Table Loom
Both rigid heddle looms and table looms offer a world of creative opportunities. Rigid heddle looms are well-suited for weaving scarves, shawls, dishtowels, and various homeware items, while table looms are great for producing intricate fabrics for clothing, towels, cowls, scarves, napkins, and table linens.
Our Best Table Loom Recommendations
- Louet Erica Loom
- Schacht Table Loom
- Schacht Cricket (with Cricket Quartet Conversion Kit)
- Louet Jane Loom
Choosing the Perfect Loom for You: Which is Loom is Better for Beginners?
Selecting the right loom depends on your preferences and weaving goals. Rigid heddle looms offer simplicity, portability, and affordability, while table looms provide the capability of creating intricate designs and weaving versatility. Consider factors such as price, ease of use, and weaving complexity when making your decision. For simplicity, we’ve listed a few pros and cons of both loom types below.
Rigid Heddle Loom
- Very lightweight and portable for any travel
- Easily attaches and detaches from a stand (if you choose to purchase one)
- Simpler to learn on and creates little yarn waste
- Fast warping and doesn’t need a warping board
- Cost is much cheaper than other loom types
- Heddle options are limited
- Best suited for thicker yarns
- Can’t weave complex patterns
- Can weave complex patterns
- Can be attached to a stand
- Still a portable and lightweight loom compared to a floor loom
- More economically priced than a floor loom but has similar features
- More yarn is wasted compared to using a rigid heddle loom
- You must warp the loom and you will also need a warping board
- Needs a solid, sturdy surface to weave on
In most cases, rigid heddle looms are the preferred choice for beginner weavers because the cost to learn is lower and the looms are a bit simpler. Just remember – there is no wrong answer! The loom you think you should start with - is the perfect loom for you at that time!
Explore the World of Weaving with Revolution Fibers
Revolution Fibers proudly offers an extensive collection of weaving looms, supplies, and accessories suitable for weavers of all skill levels. Visit us to discover the perfect loom for your weaving journey, whether it's a rigid heddle loom or a table loom.
Our team is always available to assist you in finding your ideal. Our goal is that your weaving journey is fun and educational, at the end of the day that’s what it’s all about!