Weave Extra Texture with Roving Knots

Knotted roving weaving tutorial from Rachel Denbow of SmileandWaveDIY for www.aBeautifulMess.com. Learn to add even more chunky texture to your next woven wall hanging with this step-by-step tutorialThe weaving craze continues! If you haven't already joined the ranks of fiber-loving weavers, this project might be the one that gets you there. It's an easy weave as far as stitches and technique go, so it's truly a great option for anyone who feels like they want to get started but also want to end up with something they can be proud to hang on their wall. This larger wall hanging relies heavily on color pairing and varying textures to make a strong statement, and each of the techniques you learn can be used to customize your own unique woven wall hanging.  

Knotted Roving Accents from Rachel Denbow of Smile and Wave DIYThis weaving uses regular cotton and wool yarns as well as fabric yarn (the yummy peach color) and cotton candy colored merino wool roving (it will have you headed straight to the state fair to get the real stuff). The wool roving is knotted once in each weft row for a multi-dimensional effect as opposed to being bubbled out in between every few warp rows. It's just one other fun way to experiment with your weaving skills to see how you can customize your wall art for a truly unique piece. 

Supplies1Supplies:
-18"- 24" wooden frame loom
-colored cotton yarn for warp (not shown)
-2 oz. of salmon merino top roving
-natural cotton yarn for fringe and weft
peach fabric yarn for fringe
-coral worsted weight yarn for weft
-1" wooden dowel cut to about 4" wider than your wall hanging
12" stick shuttle
-10" x 15" piece of cardboard
-3" tapestry needle
-yardstick
-scissors
-weaving comb or fork

1-2Step One: Warp your loom to the width you prefer. Wrap your stick shuttle with about 8' of your natural cotton yarn. 

Step Two: Weave your yardstick through your warp. This is going to act as your shed stick. When you place the yardstick perpendicular to the weft, you'll open up a shed where you can slide your stick shuttle through quickly instead of having to go over and under both ways. This will only work weaving in one direction, but it will still save you time. 

Open your shed and run your stick shuttle through the shed. Then place your yardstick flat again to close the shed. 

3-4Step Three: Push your yardstick to the top of your warp so it's out of the way. Weave back in the other direction with your stick shuttle going over and under. Pull your yarn through to the top corner and then pull it down to create an arch. 

Step Four: Press your arch down in the center and on each side of the center so you get a wave effect. Then press the entire weft row down with your weaving comb, fork, fingers, or shed stick. 

5-6Step Five: Open your shed up again with your shed stick (yardstick) and push your stick shuttle through. Repeat with an arch and the wave and press your weft row down. Continue for a total of 8-10 weft rows. This plain weave will create support for the row of rya knots you'll add in step seven and help the warp rows stay evenly spaced. You can do this section nearer the bottom of your loom if you want a taller wall hanging.

Step Six: Wrap your cardboard around the longer end about 40 times. Then make one cut through all 40 wraps of yarn. This will give you 40 strands of yarn for your rya knots. You'll need more than this, but 40 at a time is a good bundle to manage. 

7-8Step Seven: Take a bundle of 6-7 strands and wrap it around the first two warp rows on the left side of your loom as shown. Then gently pull it down and center it so that it's resting on top of your weft rows. 

Step Eight: Keep adding rya knots and cut more as you go. You'll trim these up at a later date, so don't worry too much if they're not even. 

9-10Step Nine: Weave another 1.5" of plain weave. This will add some height in between rya knots and keep your warp threads from spreading apart. 

Step Ten: Wrap your peach fabric yarn around the shorter side of your cardboard about 20 times to create your next row of rya knots. Add 2-3 strands of fabric yarn per rya knot. 

11-12Step Eleven: Weave 1" of coral yarn on top of your fabric rya knot row, and then follow that with 2" or more of the peach fabric yarn. 

Plan out where you want your roving knot pattern to be on your wall hanging. I chose to do a cluster of three to one side. I started weaving my roving from the left and pulled it up after the twelfth warp row. I gently tied it in a knot and then skipped about six warp rows (roughly the width of my knot) before continuing to weave the rest of my weft row. 

Then I wove my second row of roving and pulled my roving up about 3" before the knot below and tied another knot. Then I skipped another few warp rows before weaving the rest of that weft row. For my third weft row of roving, I only wove in about eight warp rows before pulling the roving up and tying it in a knot. Then I skipped a few more warp rows and wove the rest of that third weft row. I wrapped my roving around the outer warp row and tucked the tail end behind the warp rows for a cleaner edge. 

Step Twelve: Once you've finished your roving rows, add in a few more inches of fabric yarn plain weave as well as more coral. You can continue adding in more layers of roving but you want to make sure you provide some support to the structure of your warp rows with a thinner row of plain weave if you choose to do much more roving in one section. Three rows won't make this wall hanging lose it's shape, but much more than that will cause it to spread out a bit at the sides. 

13-14Step Thirteen: Remove your warp rows from the top of your loom one at a time and tie a knot flush against the last weft row. This is only one of the ways you can finish your wall hanging, but it's a great option for beginners. Work your way in from both sides towards the center to keep your wall hanging from getting wonky on one side. 

Step Fourteen: Remove your wall hanging from the bottom of your loom and tie two warp rows together at a time. You'll end up with an extra warp row, so tie your last three together in a knot. You can trim these pretty close to the knot to keep them from showing through the white fringe.

15-16Step Fifteen: Wrap your loose roving tail end around to the back and tuck it under warp rows. Wrap loose fabric yarn under warp rows as well. Stitch your worsted weight yarn down through the weft rows (see next step).

Step Sixteen: Thread your tapestry needle with your loose ends from the top of your weaving and stitch them down through the weft rows as shown. You can trim the ends but not so short that they pull out. 

17-18Step Seventeen: Cut a 9' length of cotton yarn and tie one end between the warp rows on one side under the knot. Then stitch your yarn through the back of the warp rows but under each knot. Leave enough slack between each stitch to put your dowel rod through.

Step Eighteen: Insert your dowel rod, adjust your yarn so that it's even all the way across, and tie a knot at the other end of your weaving on the last warp row knot. Cut another length of 3' of yarn, tie a knot at each end and loop it around your dowel rod so you can hang your wall hanging up. 

Knot your roving for a highly textured weaving accent. Tutorial by Rachel Denbow of Smile and Wave DIYWeaving with roving by Rachel Denbow of Smile and Wave DIY for www.aBeautifulMess.comThis 22" wide wall hanging can easily hold its own on any wall and would be so sweet in a nursery in pastels or neutrals.

If you're brand new to weaving and would love step-by-step images with a wide range of weaving stitches and techniques, my beginner's weaving book, DIY Woven Art, is now available for pre-order on Amazon. With 15 projects that range from the simplest little weaving on a cardboard loom to a 3' statement piece using a range of fibers, it's a great resource for beginners and experienced weavers alike. Happy weaving, friends! –Rachel

Credits//Author: Rachel Denbow. Photography: Rachel and Janae Hardy. Edited with A Beautiful Mess actions