A bargain purchase…

A couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to win a vintage Spears weaving loom on eBay for less

Spears Weaving Loom Box
Spears weaving loom box

than £10, It is a smart little 1950’s Spears Weaving Loom no 3.

Now, you may be thinking ‘isn’t that a kid’s toy?’ Well, yes Spears are known for making toys and kid’s stuff – but this is a REAL loom. It is what is called a ‘fixed heddle’ loom, which means you can lift alternate warp threads (the threads that are put along the loom before you start weaving) by just lifting up the ‘heddle’, a grid like part in the middle. This is MUCH faster than if you had to weave in and out of every thread.

I will do a tutorial on setting up this little loom, and basic weaving, very soon – it is lovely and easy to use, and makes ‘real’ fabric which is wide enough, and long enough to make nice things from . These elderly looms still have plenty of life in them – and are SUCH a cheap way to get into weaving!

Which size loom is the loom for you?

I highly recommend that anyone who fancies trying weaving attempt to win one of these Spears weaving looms. The No 3 is a decent size, the No 4 is bigger, but quite a lot more expensive, and the No 5 is more expensive still as it let’s you do very fine weaving. The most commonly available is the No 2 size. This is very, very cheap to buy, but do bear in mind that it is VERY small. I would personally recommend trying to get a No 3 instead.

Sturdy construction…

The loom is made of sturdy wood and varnished. The heddle is wooden, with wire

Spears no 3 weaving loom
My weaving loom in action..

between, making little loops. The warp threads, and finished work, wind on to grooved beams, which are held in place with cotter pins. It is nice and sturdy – mine looks good as new, despite being 60 years old!

It includes 3 wooden shuttles and a G-clamp to hold it securely on to a table.

Mine also had the original uncut patterns and instruction book, with information on making 18 interesting (if a little dated at times) patterns.

I have just been setting the loom up ready to make a woolen bag, which I will decorate with crocheted flowers. I will post some pictures of this as I go along – maybe turn it into a tutorial!

Spears Weaving Loom no 3 – my not-so-new not-so-toy

4 thoughts on “Spears Weaving Loom no 3 – my not-so-new not-so-toy

  • 17 May, 2012 at 3:23 pm

    I was wondering if this was worth buying or not. Thanks for your review.

  • 17 August, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    hi, ive found a spears number 4 in the charity shop for a bargain £2!!! but i have no idea how to use it, i cant find find any tutorials and im itchin to get started. the instructions are from 1957and are a little vague could you please help?

    • 19 August, 2012 at 3:26 pm

      Ooh, you did very well, that is a bargain!

      You can get books on rigid heddle looms, which would work just fine with your Spears No 4. I personally own this book, and would recommend it. It is nice and clear, has lots of ideas for things to do with your loom. Rigid Heddle Weaving
      Or try looking on YouTube for demos of setting up a rigid heddle loom. They really are super easy (hey, even I can do it!).

  • 11 January, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    I just purchased a number 4 Spear’s loom, and I can’t for the life of me figure out how to use the heddle. I’ve woven before, but the looms had places for the heddle to sit when either up or down. How do I work the heddle without any ‘place holders”?


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