This is a beginner's project in making a loom and using it for the simplest type of weaving. Materials used will depend upon the material available in abundance in the camp. Suggestions for preparing the material are to be found in Chapter XV (Camper'S Correlation With Nature) on Correlation with Nature.

A Mat Of Natural Materials

Equipment needed: knife; ruler; pencil; sandpaper; scissors.

Materials needed: sticks for loom, lashing twine, pegs or brads; string or twine for warp; for weft-rushes, palmetto, lauhala, grasses, etc.-gather with good conservation practices -strips should be approximately the same width and long enough to go across the loom.


1. Make frame, and string it (see preceding pages) .

2. Weave one piece of material as in darning stitch (Figs. IX-7-9). Let material protrude about 1" beyond warp at each edge.

3. Weave second row, as above, repeating until all of warp is covered (Figs. IX-16 and 17).

4. Trim ends at sides evenly.

5. On side edges, weave an extra piece of warp thread for strength. It may be a different color, for variety.

6. Finish as in Figure IX-15.

This may be a place mat, table runner, "sit-upon" mat, or door mat, depending on size and material used.

Strips of rags may be used for weft, in the same manner.

A Mat Of Strips (Without Loom)

This is a simple weaving project that calls for no loom; the mat, sometimes known as a "sit-upon," is useful for camp floors, campfire seats, etc. Natural materials such as palmetto may be used, or heavy wrapping paper, oilcloth, newsprint, cut into strips. Salvaged pieces of canvas or paper are also suitable. The mats may be painted and shellacked or varnished to waterproof for outside use; plain paper and cloth may be decorated by stenciling or block printing. These mats make a good group project for camp equipment.

Equipment needed: scissors; working space, as a table or board; thumbtacks.

Materials needed: 12 or 16 strips of material, about 24" long and 3" wide; paper should be double width, folded in half, lengthwise, for strength.


1. Lay half the strips side by side close together, vertically, to form the warp. Thumbtack the top of each strip to hold in place on table.

2. Weave a strip as in darning stitch (see Figs. IX-7-9) over and under the vertical strips, and push up toward the tops that are tacked down.

3. Weave the next strip in alternate fashion, under and over, and continue until all the cross strips are in place. Remove tacks and even off the ends, leaving about 6" on ends for folded edges.

4. To finish: fold each strip over end strip; tuck end under same strip (Fig. IX-19). No. 1 strip is folded back, over and under A strip; No. 2 strip is folded forward, over and under A strip; continue, alternately folding back and forward across top and bottom. At sides, A strip is folded in back of No. 1 strip, and under right side of No 1.; B strip is folded in front of No. 1 strip, and under right side of No. 1; continue alternately to bottom of side.

Variations; The shape of this mat can be varied by the number and size of the strips. For a rectangular placemat, make strips 1" to 2" wide, vertical strips 14" long, horizontal strips 20" long.

Belt Of Tube Weaving

Tube weaving, also known as cylinder and Swedish tube weaving, is a beginner's weaving method. Small-bore tubes are used to hold the warp threads; the weft is woven around the tubes, and the woven material slipped off as the work progresses. This is a good pocket craft. When hollow reeds or bamboo shoots are found on the campsite, they make very satisfactory tubes; metal tubes are usually used; macaroni may also be used, but being easily broken, is not too satisfactory.

Equipment needed: 6 or more tubes of hollow reeds or bamboo shoots or similar material about 9" long, 1/16" in diameter.

Materials needed: 6 strands wool, cord, string, etc., each length of waist plus 12"; 6 small bits of wood for stoppers to keep ends from slipping through reeds; toggle button (see Chap. X on Woodworking).

Steps To Weave

1. Thread strands through reeds, knotting 6" ends together with an overhand knot (see chapter on Braiding and Knotting, Fig. 11-21); tie stopper bits of wood on each strand (Fig. IX-20). Tie other ends of strands loosely at other end.

2. Tubes are kept at top of strands. Start weaving at bottom of tubes (Fig. 20 x) with long, single strand of weft (yarn, cord, etc.), over and under, from left to right, then back from right to left. Start, join, and end weft strands in middle of tubes, not on edges of material.

3. When weaving covers about half the length of tubes, slide it off tubes, in direction of arrows in Figure IX-20, pulling up for new weaving. As the weaving progresses, it will cover the remaining parts of the six strands, and be at the loose knot at opposite end from the tubes.

4. When desired length is reached, untie top knot, slide tubes and stoppers off, and finish as desired.

Steps To Make Belt

1. Weaving should cover strands, except for about 6" on either end. Make a loop at one end of one or several strands of the warp. Sew ends together, trim off extra, and cover with whipping (see chapter on Braiding and Knotting, Figs. 11-10-14).

2. See Chapter X (Whittling, Woodworking And Woodcarving) on Woodworking for suggestions for buckles, buttons, or toggles; attach toggle or buckle as shown in Braiding and Knotting chapter, Figures 11-8 and 9. Or, tie whittled bits of wood or shells, acorns, or similar objects to ends that are made by braiding three double strands on each end of belt (Fig. IX-21); knot with square knot (see chapter on Braiding and Knotting, Fig. II-16).

Steps To Make Belt