First Weaving Projects

Cut strips from tag board, file folders or perhaps the sides of a milk jug. They should be 4 inches long and 1/4 inch wide. You can also ask the children to do the measuring, marking, and cutting. If you want to be more ambitious, use wide blades of grass, palm fronds, willow, or corn stalks (soak these in water to make them more pliable).

1. Hold four strips in the left hand in a fan shape. Weave in a fifth strip horizontally, alternately over and under. Push this strip near the point where the four end strips for the fan are held together, and put in a sixth so that the strips which were help up before are now pressed down, and fice versa.  Add two more horizontal st  rips in the same way (see figure 1). Trim the ends that stick out. You may wish to tape or glue the edges. Washi paper tape would look pretty.  This can be used as a hand-fan or as a garden trellis in the doll or farm house yard.  Paint flowers or little birds on the strips if desired.

2. This form is called a window.  Make the fan above (no. 1), but then instead of trimming the edges, shift the slanting strips to a vertical position (see figure 2).  Here we get a change in direction, form, position, and repeating pattern of 3 rows of 3 squares each.  Vertical and horizontal oblongs appear when the two middle vertical or horizontal strips in one of the ‘windows’ are pushed near together.
As it is, you can pin this to a bulletin board and hang wire earings over it, or paperclip pictures to the strips.  You can push the strips closer together for a tighter weave, continue the pattern of weaving strips in and out and use it for other projects- glue it to a square of felt for a trivet for houseplants or knick-knacks or hot dishes at the table. Use longer strips to make woven placemats.

3.Make another project like figure 2. With a corner towards you, push it by the right and left corners, into a diamond shape so the little squares become rhombuses. This makes a pretty wall-pocket or rack for autumn leaves, feathers, dried flowers, and other finds.

4. Make the 2nd weave pattern and change the middle strip to stlanting lines, which suggests a gate.

5. Picture frame: Make the window (2) and push the strips outward to as to leave a large open square space in the center. Notch the ends of the strips and put in a few stitches to keep them strips in place, tape or glue a picture to the back (something cut out of an old calendar or card, perhaps, or a picture a member of the family has painted. Use glue, tape, or a staple to attach a loop of ribbon or cord to the back for hanging.   You could make smaller versions for Christmas decorations.

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