The Glimakra Swedish Ski Shuttle works beautifully for this application. I bought a 2nd one from Saori Sata Cruz on Etsy. It's a very similar design to the Glimakra, but with beautifully finished woods (maple, walnut and cherry).
My loom doesn't give me a wide enough shed to use a regular rag shuttle. So the ski shuttles are just the thing! I can wind on a good chunk of yarn or rag to keep me weaving for a while.
The "water staining" you see (for lack of a better word) is actually where we stepped on it to test it out. It's where the velvet pile is laying down. So it's not actually water stained at all. Now when you look at it, you'll see a definite footprint shape--am I right?
I'm also amazed at how easy it was to keep the selvages for this project. I had purchased a temple, but didn't feel I needed it on this rug.
Even the back side is pretty.
In this picture, the top is where I started weaving. You can see as it progressed how I was not so rigid about how the weft strips were twisting. It gives a pleasing effect on the bottom 3/4 or the rug. Note to self : that this should be allowed and encouraged!
Detail shot of the back side of the Red Velvet Rug.
It makes a nice soothing texture in and of itself!
It was only last week that I started ripping the velvet from the old red theatre curtain. This piece had been washed, so dust was no longer a problem. I'm hoping the washing also took out any particulates from the fire-proofing, too. I did this work outside, since there are many pills and strings produced in this deconstruction process.
It rips beautifully! So I suspect rag rugs are an appropriate way to recycle this old velvet.
The piece I was ripping strips from was about 1/2 the length of a single panel from the velvet curtain. So my strips are about78 inches long. I ripped them into1/3 inch to 3/4 inch strips.
The next step was to sew them end-to-end, which will make it easier at the loom when I am weaving them into the fabric. Once I had 5 or 6 strips sewn together, I wound them into balls (like yarn) to keep them from tangling.
This appears to be the most I can wind onto my ski shuttles to do the actual weaving. I am using a plain common weave for this velvet rug.
I am using up the last of the warp currently on my loom. We set it up for rug-making last fall, and so far, I've been experimenting with weave structures, and using up some really soft alpaca yarn to make a twill cloth. I thought it was about time to actually use this warp as planned and weave a rug.
The velvet strips are packing in beautifully! And it goes fast! In no time, I had about a foot of cloth ready to go. I can see how this could be addicting! I could make a single rug in one evening. Not bad for productivity!