Jun 3, 2010

The final stage of the loom invasion: the backstrap loom

It's storming as I write this (just in case I'd forgotten in the past 24 hours that it's now hurricane season), but imagine with me, if you will, a balmy Florida afternoon: warm but not hot, a light breeze that keeps you from feeling the humidity, and clear blue skies above. That's what it was like outside when I remembered a couple of days ago that I hadn't checked the mail. Duh. But I wasn't expecting anything special — just the usual spam. Advertisements, local flyers, bills, that sort of thing. Instead, at the end of the mini walk to the mailbox on that lovely afternoon, I found this:

Laser-cut backstrap loom from OSLoom

...which is the laser-cut backstrap loom that I "earned" by donating to the Open Source Loom project. Technically I knew it was coming, but I wasn't in a big rush to get it, since I wasn't sure what timeline the project was working on, and they have a ton of stuff to get off the ground, as they're still in the early development stage.

And this is what was inside:

Laser-cut backstrap loom from OSLoom
Oooh, and there are even some wrapped-up bits. It's like Christmas!

Laser-cut backstrap loom from OSLoom
Wrapped bits now unwrapped to reveal shuttles and the heddle.

Nom nom nom. It's so much prettier than I thought it would be! One of the coolest things about it is that while it was made with new-school technology (laser-cutting, woooo!), it's made of wood, and it smells like someone wood-burned it, which I associate with old-school technology.

The loom zipped from the project organizer, Margarita, to me so fast that she didn't even have time to put the assembly directions up on the Web site. Anyone have a clue what those bracket-shaped thingies do and where they go? ;)

And in a nice little coincidence (or synchronicity, if you prefer), I found out that there's a Mayan backstrap loom class — taught by someone of Mayan descent, no less — at the Dunedin Fine Arts Center, which is less than half an hour away. I see much backstrap weaving in my future...
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