Deluxe Adjustable Wooden Bead Loom

NATIVE AMERICAN BEADING LOOM USE – CRAFT FOCUS JUNE 2009

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Building a Better Mousetrap . . .

It’s not often that someone is truly able to build a better mouse trap. But when it comes to the classic bead loom, that’s what Crazy Crow has done with the introduction of their new Deluxe Adjustable Beadloom. For making loom beaded strips, the ideal loom should have certain features: Able to accommodate a variety of lengths and widths, can be used with a wide range of bead sizes, easy to store, adjustable with minimal effort, economically priced, easy to use, and suitable for the needs of Beginners through Advanced Beadworkers. Following are details regarding the features and use of Crazy Crow’s loom which incorporates all of these features.

BEAD LOOM PARTS:

The Deluxe Loom consists of 3 main pieces: (A) Slotted Base section; (B) Sliding Base section; and (C) Traveling End Piece. In addition, there are 3 bead spacers, a bolt, wing nut, and large and small washers.

Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom from Crazy Crow Trading Post

BEADING LOOM DEFINITIONS:

For those new to loom beading, we offer the following definitions:

  • Warp Threads: lengthwise threads that are used to string up the loom before starting
    to bead.
  • Weft Threads: thread upon which the beads are strung when fitting the beads between the warp threads.
  • Bead Spacers: the synthetic comb-like pieces at the end of each base and the Traveling End Piece.

SPECIFICATIONS:

Beadwork Sizes:

This loom will permit you to make loomed strips up to 3″ wide and in
lengths from a maximum of 39″ on down to the shortest piece possible.

Bead Sizes: You can use seed beads down to size 20/0, pony beads, or wampum beads, depending on how far apart you space the warp threads.

HOW THE ADJUSTABLE WOODED BEAD LOOM WORKS:

Following is a simple description of how the loom works: For medium to long strips, the Sliding Base sits on top of the Slotted Base. The wooden runner on the bottom of the Sliding Base is positioned in the slot of the Slotted Base. The two units are held firmly together by tightening the wing nut which goes through both bases. To change the length of the loom, loosen the wing nut and slide the two bases apart to the appropriate total length, then retighten the wing nut.

For short strips, replace the Sliding Base with the Traveling End piece and use the same bolt and wing nut assembly to tighten the Traveling End piece at the appropriate distance.

Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom from Crazy Crow Trading Post

To store, move the Sliding Base as far up as it will go on the Slotted Base, set the Traveling end piece on top of the Slotted Base, run the bolt through all three pieces, then tighten the wing nut. The total length for storage will be 23″.

DETAILS OF OPERATION

The above description gives a brief summary of how the adjustable wooden bead loom works, but here are the real details:

To make bead strips 27″ and longer:
Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom from Crazy Crow Trading Post

  • Place the Sliding Base on top of the Slotted Base. (Set the Traveling End Piece aside.)
  • Adjust the Sliding Base (B) to the desired length on the Slotted Base (A).
  • On the Sliding Base, find the hole that is nearest to the center of the distance between the end pieces of the 2 bases. Slide the large washer onto the bolt, then insert the bolt from underneath the Slotted Base and through that center hole so that the threaded end is above the surface of the Sliding Base. (Figure 1)
  • Place the small washer on the bolt, then screw the wing nut down, being sure to keep the Slotted and Sliding Base pieces in straight alignment. Tighten the wing nut as much as possible, by hand.
  • Slide the bead spacers in the ends from the side. (Figure 2)
  • String up the loom with Warp Thread and proceed with beading.

Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom from Crazy Crow Trading Post

To make Shorter Strips:

  • Set the Traveling End Piece on the Slotted Base so that the hole of the Traveling End Piece is centered over the slot. (Set the Sliding End Piece aside.)
  • Slide the large washer onto the bolt, then insert the bolt from underneath the Slotted Base and up through the hole in the Traveling End Piece.
  • Place the small washer on the bolt, then screw the wing nut down, being sure to keep the Slotted Base and Traveling Piece in straight alignment. Tighten the wing nut as much as possible, by hand. (Figure 3)

Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom from Crazy Crow Trading Post

Stringing the loom:

Apply beeswax to a long section of heavy cotton thread which you intend to use for the warp threads, then wrap most of it back onto your spool. To string the warp thread on the loom, tie the thread end to the center brass nail at one end of the bead loom. (Figure 4) Bring the thread up and through the exact center of the comb-like spacer, across to the opposite end and through the center of the spacer on that end. Wrap it around the center brass nail and bring the thread up and through the slot next to the first thread. Continue to string the loom in this fashion until you have the correct number of threads. The number of warp threads should equal the number of beads plus one. For example, 27 beads wide will require 28 threads. If desired, the final outside warp threads may be doubled to add strength to the outside edge.

Remember to keep an even tension on the thread while stringing. As you string the threads wider, you will wrap threads around the other brass nails. This will help keep the string tension from being centered on one pin.

As you let out thread from the spool, apply beeswax to the unwaxed warped thread just before stringing it up.

Fine Adjustments:

Sometimes when stringing up a loom, the warp threads that are first strung become somewhat loose as you continue to string toward the other end of the Bead Spacers. This loom is designed so that you have some ability to adjust the tension on those loose warp threads.

Notice that the Sliding Base has some side-to side movement when positioned in the Slotted Base and before tightening the wing nut. Also note that the Traveling End piece can be rotated clockwise or counterclockwise when the bolt is loose. The ability to turn these pieces from side to side is the key to tightening those first warp strings.

After the loom is strung, do the following:

  • Slightly loosen the wing nut on the Sliding base (or Traveling End Piece)
  • Now simultaneously push the Sliding Base/End Piece away from the Slotted Base as you slightly rotate the former piece so that the loose warp threads become tight.
  • With tension now being held on the strings, tighten the wing nut.
  • The result will be that the Bead Spacer on the Sliding Base/Traveling End piece is not quite square with the Slotted Base end piece, but all the warp threads should now be tight.

Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom from Crazy Crow Trading Post

Beginning the Beadwork:

Starting with a thread that is about twice as long as your arm, thread the beading needle, leaving one thread end slightly longer then the other. Then wax this thread well, as the wax is very helpful in preventing tangling as you bead. Tie the long end of your weft thread to the outside warp thread, just in front of the upright. Next, weave back and forth through the warp threads a few times, going over and then under each consecutive thread, as shown in Figure 5. This helps anchor the thread and provides a beginning for the work.

Some bead workers prefer to start in the middle of the design and work to the right, then, come back to the middle and work left. That way, the piece will not be too long or short with the design off center. In this case, simply tie the weft thread to an outside warp thread in the middle of the loom.

Next, begin stringing beads on the weft thread as indicated by the first row of your design. Pull this first row under the warp threads and push the beads up through them, holding them in place, if necessary. Then, run the needle back through the beads, this time making sure it goes above the warp threads. Pull the thread all the way through, gently snugging it up against the outside warp thread. You can work from right to left or left to right, but if you are right handed, it usually works best to tie the thread to the left warp thread to begin.

Once this first row is complete, it’s a simple matter of repeating the same steps to continue beading. Just follow the pattern color by color. With each consecutive row, be sure to keep even tension on the weft thread. This will help keep the bead strip as even as possible throughout its entire length. As beads vary somewhat in width, this is extremely important in producing a good-looking strip.

Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom from Crazy Crow Trading Post

Adding New Thread:

When you are about to run out of weft thread, complete a final row then tie off the warp thread with a simple clove-hitch around the outside warp threads. Take the needle and run the thread through the last 3-5 beads on the previous row, then pull the needle out and cut off the remaining weft thread as close as possible to the beads.

Attach a new weft piece by tying its end securely to a warp thread in the middle of the work. This knot should be as close as possible to the center of the last row you beaded. Trim the end short. Now pass the needle and new thread through the last half of the last row of beads and continue beading. In this way, you can avoid exposed knots on the finished work by turning the strips over when mounting.

Completing the Work:

When you reach the end of the piece, weave some of the remaining weft thread in and out of the warp threads as you did in the beginning. Several rows, or approximately 1/8″, is plenty to complete the work, and a small strip of adhesive tape can be used over the weaving for extra security if desired. Now, tie the warp threads together in groups of 6 or 8 as shown in Figure 6. This will all be securely folded under the strip when it is mounted.

M A T E R I A L S   &    S U P P L I E S

  Click any link below to view detailed product and ordering information.

Needles & Thread

Beading Needles – For use primarily in loomwork, these long thin needles also work quite well when doing gourd stitch and beaded earrings. The needle size indicates the smallest bead size for which it is designed. However, a smaller size needle must be used when it will pass through the bead twice, as in gourd stitch or earring work.

Bead Craft & Beading Thread: Bobbins, Spools, Cones -Generally, Nymo nylon thread is best for gourd stitch, earrings, lazy stitch, applique and weft threads on loomwork. Size “A” or “00” Nymo is best for 13/0, 14/0 and smaller beads; “B” is good for 12/0 and 11/0; “D” works well with 11/0 and 10/0 beads; and “F” is quite heavy, good for 5/0 and 8/0 pony beads. “F” is also good as a craft thread for heavy duty sewing …such as moccasins, clothing, drumstick heads, etc.

For loomwork warp threads, Crazy Crow recommends cotton as it does not stretch like the nylon thread. Use Quilting thread for 12/0 and smaller sized beads and Button and Carpet thread for the larger size 10/0 and 11/0 beads. Nymo thread can also be used for warp threads, but it should be pre-stretched before use. Both types of thread should be coated with beeswax before use, as this prolongs the life of thread and helps prevent tangling.

Bees Wax – A very fine quality 1 oz. cake for waxing thread, which increases thread life and prevents tangling.

Seed Beads

Czech Seed Beads – Sizes 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 16 in regular and special colors. Crazy Crow Trading Post is a direct importer of many of the most popular styles and sizes of Czechoslavakian seed beads. We have a huge selection of all the seed beads needed to create contemporary, traditional and historic Native American Indian and Mountain Man style beaded crafts, outfits and accessories.

Beading Looms – Related Products

The following items are used in the above-article, or may provide added reference and helpful information.

American Indian Beadwork

American Indian Beadwork

Product No. 4103-005-021

$17.00

W.Ben Hunt and J.F. "Buck" Burshears - Step-by-step procedures for doing American Indian beadwork, from loom beading to rosettes, with descriptions and illustrations of each technique. Photos of Native American beaded items like belts, bags, moccasins, clouts, etc.

American Indian Beadwork includes:

  • Directions for beading stitches
  • Directions for making and stringing a loom
  • 54 black & white photographs of actual Indian beadwork
  • 14 full color pages of 132 authentic Indian patterns for your own beadwork
  • Tribes include: Apache, Sioux, Ute, Ojibwa, Blackfoot
  • 65 Pages~ 8 x 11~Full Color & Black and White Illustrations~Softcover

About W. Ben Hunt: Traveled widley, visiting pueblos and hogans of the Southwest and reservations of the Midwest and Canada to acquaint himself with Indian lore. While he was living and camping with the Indians, they gave him the name "Tasunka Witko", which means Crazy Horse. He was also known as "Kachina Ben" because of the Kachina Indian dollshe was so adept at carving. In addition to being a well known Boy-Scout leader and adviser, Mr. Hunt was a writer who regularly contributed to professional scouting magazine articles on Indian and other handicraft projects. View illustrated Mark Theil article about Ben Hunt (PDF file)

About J.F. "Buck" Burshears: a longtime Boy- Scout leader, formed within the Scouts a unique group known as the Koshare Indian Dancers. The boys interpreted native dances, made costumes, and studied the history and lives of various tribes. During his travels with the koshares, Mr. Burshears amassed one of the most extensive collections of Indian artifacts and handcrafts in the country.

Beadwork Starter Kit

Beadwork Starter Kit

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(Loom not included)

$22.50

This is the best bead-working kit available today, with detailed illustrated instructions explaining the best methods for loom, applique, lazy stitch & peyote (gourd stitch) beadwork techniques, along with instructions showing you how to make a simple but very serviceable box loom. Materials & instructions for making a beaded medallion, keychain, earrings and a strike-a-lite bag include: Size 10 Beading and Sharps needles, Nymo and cotton thread, beeswax, dowel, loom and peyote graph paper, buckskin, 4 oz. of 10/0 seed beads.

Loom not included with this kit. Please see our Deluxe Beadwork Starter Kit in the Related Items section!!

Wire Bead Loom Kit

Wire Bead Loom Kit

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(23")

$19.95

This is a great "starter" kit for learning beadwork. It includes a high quality wire loom that will accommodate projects up to approx. 2" wide x 18" long. Includes 4 colors of seed beads, beading needles, thread and illustrated instructions.
Ojibway Bead Loom

Ojibway Bead Loom

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Crazy Crow's Ojibway Bead Loom is a popular, rugged wooden bead loom that will accommodate beadwork up to 5" wide x 18" long. Longer dowels may be added for even longer loom beadwork projects. We also include instructions for loom beadwork, with pattern suggestions and bead graph paper.
Mini Bead Loom

Mini Bead Loom

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Crazy Crow's Mini Bead Loom is great for smaller beadwork projects and beginners and is very economically priced. Comes in 12" length which will handle strips up to 10" long and 24 beads wide. Easily changed to accommodate longer strips by simply adding a longer dowel (not included). End pieces are made of hard birch wood, pre-grooved for warp threads, and come with locking screws.
Beadworking With Today's Materials - Woerpel

Beadworking With Today's Materials - Woerpel

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Woerpel - Photos and sketches accompany concise instructions for loom beading, lazy stitch, applique, gourd stitch and more. Information on estimating the amount of beads needed, needle, thread, bead sizes and other materials. 28 pp: 19 photos & 12 illus. SC
Beads & Beadwork of the American Indian - Orchard

Beads & Beadwork of the American Indian - Orchard

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Orchard - First published in 1929, this is the classic reference on American Indian beadwork, beginning with primitive beadmaking techniques, tools and materials (shell, bone, stone, metal, etc.). Features numerous photos of clothing articles and tools, plus a multitude of techniques and variations employed by Native Americans, such as loom, heddle, lazy stitch, side-stitch, edging, overlay, & net or gourd-stitch, shown. 168 pages, 41 photos (16 in color), 136 illustrations. SC.
Bead Buddy - Portable Beadcraft Station

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$35.00$31.50

Why leave your beading projects at home when you can take them with you in the Bead Buddy; a fantastic portable beadcraft station. This durable 15" x 11-1/2" carrying case contains many useful features: 18 clear stackable canisters with easy-open hinged lids, flocked bead board, large tool compartment, and extra storage for books, projects, etc. The case itself can easily be unhinged to lay flat for tabletop work. The Bead Buddy is a perfect way to store and carry your projects, beads, tools, threads, and more.
How to Bead, Vol. 1 - Loom Beadwork - DVD

How to Bead, Vol. 1 - Loom Beadwork - DVD

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Vol. 1 - Loom Beadwork - How to make your own loom & create your own designs for this popular form of beadwork. Includes graph paper and a supply list. Beginning project is a colorful beaded strip for a friendship bracelet of headband. 25 minutes.

Full Circle How to Bead DVDs

These instructive videos guide beginning beadworkers through projects, from buying supplies and drawing designs to actually beading and finishing a project. Beading tips from experienced beadworkers and instructions on modern adaptations & techniques are presented, along with examples of related beaded items. Each video shows how to bead step-by-step using "larger-than-life" examples and includes a printed instruction sheet. Each is approximately 30 minutes in length.

Other Reference

Typical Native American Tribal Bead Color Preferences

About Full Circle (FC) & Indian Lore Seminar (ILS) Videos

Full Circle videos are selected for quality, content and authenticity and will help you learn all about Native American & Buckskinning craft techniques, outfits, dance styles and much more. Produced by master craft workers, long-time Buckskinners, and champion dancers themselves, they are the finest available to help you improve your skills and knowledge. Full Circle videos feature highly accomplished American Indian craftworkers and dancers, while Indian Lore Seminar videos are an hour or more in length and were conducted by an experienced craftsperson in the field, sharing the tips & techniques gained over many years of first-hand experience. Nothing is more valuable when learning a craft than observing an expert.

Beadwork Techniques of the Native Americans - Scott Sutton

Beadwork Techniques of the Native Americans - Scott Sutton

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Beadwork Techniques of the Native Americans by Scott Sutton- Unlike other beadworking books, this one not only teaches the basics but imparts many tricks of the trade that a beginner usually picks up only after much trial and error. Sutton is a long-time accomplished beadworker with several hundred projects to his credit. With dozens of photos and illustrations, Scott discusses loom beading, applique, gourd stitch and moccasin making. One of the book's highlights is the color photo gallery with an array of fine beadwork examples, both historic and contemporary.

96 pages & 300+ color photos, SC.

Customer Comments:

I teach High School in Oklahoma and I am contacting you in regard to Beadwork Techniques of the Native Americans book by Scott Sutton. We do different rotations with some classes and at times teach different beading techniques. Using your book, I was able to teach myself to do Peyote beadwork. I would like to offer that as an option to some students on our next class rotation. I would like to commend you on how well written and illustrated this section of the book is. I was able to follow the steps and produced a lovely finished piece. Vonda

Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom - 3 Piece Set

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Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom - 2 Piece Set

Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom - 2 Piece Set

Product No. 4976-002-038

$26.00

Crazy Crow's revolutionary new Missouri River 2-Piece Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom is fully adjustable, compact, sturdy and easy-to-us. Designed for a wide range of beading projects, this innovative loom will handle 1" to 23" long strips up to 3" wide, and it breaks down in sections for easy storage. A traveling end piece for short projects makes it infinitely adjustable between 5" and 23", and the fine bead dividers make it perfect for all bead sizes from 16/0 up to Pony Beads and Wampum. No other loom today is this easy to adjust nor has this kind of versatility. Simple, fully-illustrated instructions for set-up and use, along with beading tips, make it perfect for beginners and pros alike. This 2-piece loom allows strips up to 23" long, and features the uniquely important ability to tighten the warp threads after the loom is strung, thus making beading much easier. Designed and built in our shop, this loom will serve you for the rest of your beading experience.
Deluxe Beadwork Kit with Adjustable Bead Loom - 3 Piece (41")

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These Deluxe Beadwork Kits with Adjustable Bead Loom - 3 Piece (41") contain all of the materials of our Beadwork Starter Kit, PLUS our fantastic new Missouri River Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom in either the 23" or 41" version, along with the excellent book, Beadworking with Today's Materials.
Deluxe Beadwork Kit with Adjustable Bead Loom - 2 Piece (23")

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Product No. 4847-000-004

(41")

$53.00

These Deluxe Beadwork Kit with Adjustable Bead Loom - 2 Piece (23"), contain all of the materials of our Beadwork Starter Kit, PLUS our fantastic new Missouri River Deluxe Adjustable Bead Loom in either the 23" or 41" version, along with the excellent book, Beadworking with Today's Materials.
Bead Storage Containers: Bottles & Jars

Bead Storage Containers: Bottles & Jars

Product No. 799-80

(7 sizes: 1.6"x0.75" to 3.5"x1.26")

$0.39

Here at Crazy Crow Trading Post, we like the old, clear plastic prescription bottles for storing small parts, but they're no longer used. So, we found bottles and jars and now have 6 handy sizes which are perfect for storing your loose seed and metal beads, needles, findings, spots and other small parts so you can see the exact color and size. They're great for keeping colors separated while beading, because you just pour some beads into the lid, use what you need, and then pour them back when you finish.

The smallest bottle holds one hank and the largest holds 5-1/2 hanks of 13/0 cuts, or 2 hanks of 11/0 seed beads. 2 ounce jars hold 6 hanks of 13/0 cuts or 2 hanks of 11/0 seed beads; 4 ounce jars hold 12 hanks of 13/0 cuts or 4 hanks of 11/0 seed beads.

Bottles & Jars Sizes:
2 oz. Jar 1.9" x 2"
4 oz. Jar 2.4" x 2.3"
Small Bottle 1.6" x 3/4"
Medium Bottle 1.6" x 1"
Large Bottle 2.2" x 1"
Extra Lg. Bottle 3.5" x 1-1/4"
12 Assorted: 3 of each size bottle/per set

2016-12-21T23:16:31+00:00