Tried and True: What a Little Piece of Tape Can Do

You never know when you’ll need a piece of blue tape. A roll of blue painter’s tape is among my essential weaving supplies. My favorite way to temporarily mark just about anything is with a piece of blue tape.

Blue Painters Tape for Temporary Markings

  1. Cut (or tear) the tape to size.
  2. Fold one edge of the tape under. This makes a little tab so that the tape is easy to remove or reposition.
  3. Use a fine point Sharpie to write on the tape.
Weaver's uses for blue painter's tape.
Tape prepared for pointing.

Three Examples

  • Keep your place. Draw an arrow on a small piece of blue tape. Use the arrow on the tape to follow along the threading or treadling draft. This eliminates confusion, especially after a pause.
Blue tape uses in the weaving studio.
Rosepath treadling for 4-shaft tapestry. Since there are plain weave picks between each rosepath row, I need something to remind me where I left off.

  • Measure the space. Draw a straight line on small pieces of tape. Measure the warp width on a tapestry frame or rigid heddle loom. Use the lines on the tape to mark where the first and last warp ends should lie on the loom. This eliminates guessing when warping the loom.
Uses for blue tape in my weaving studio.
Tapestry frame is ready for a new warp. After measuring for weaving width, and counting dents, I mark the dents with tape. No more guessing if I’m “almost there” when putting on the warp.
Blue tape to mark the rigid heddle. And other uses for blue tape.
By clearly marking the first and last slots/holes I can verify that my calculations are correct before I start warping the rigid heddle loom. This is helpful for direct warping and for indirect warping methods.

  • Number with Grace. Write out a series of numbers on a long piece of tape, leaving space between the numbers. Cut the numbers apart. Use the numbers to label pattern shaft draw handles on the drawloom. Place the numbers directly above the draw handles, arranged in groups of five for easy visual recognition. Use a separate series of numbers for border pattern shafts, if applicable. This temporary numbering system gives the advantage of being able to customize the numbering for each drawloom draft.
This is how I number my drawloom handles. Blue tape!
Using the Myrehed Combination Drawloom, I configure the numbers for the pattern shaft draw handles to coordinate with the single unit draw cords, which are grouped by tens. This makes my working chart that uses single units and pattern shafts much less complicated. For this reason, it doesn’t make sense to give my draw handles “permanent” numbers.

Have you found ways to use blue painter’s tape in your weaving studio? Share in the comments!

May your life leave marks that are more than temporary.

Have fun,

16 thoughts on “Tried and True: What a Little Piece of Tape Can Do

  1. 1) Reminders for proper hand placement on the beater of my large loom
    2) labels for current heddle count on each shaft
    3) labels on treadles
    4) securing lease sticks or rods to a beam
    5) taping fringe to the edge of a surface to make a nice even trim
    6) always include it in my workshop kit
    I love blue tape!

  2. These are all great ideas I never considered! Currently, I use blue tape on my partial cones. After using one for a project, I weigh what I have left, then mark the tape with remaining yardage and wrap around before placing the cone back on the shelf. Next time I am considering using the color I will know at a glance if there is enough for a new project.

  3. i’ve used regular masking tape for years, but don’t forget post its. my loom is littered with post its. threading drafts to treadling drafts.

  4. All great ideas!
    I am a relatively new weaver, and just about to weave my first complicated draft. So the blue tape tips are just in time!
    Thank you.

  5. I use the tape as above also, but have to guard it from “tape borrowers” here!
    I also use it if warping front to back or adding in threads. I tape 2 pencils onto my front beam and slide the cross onto the pencils. Ihave also found it prudent to tape the pencils on their front end so the cross can’t slide off the front!
    That way I can pull one thread at a time, or walk away and not lose anything, or it can be saved from people (including ME) who may step on it and end up with a mess. On a personal note, I have really damp hands and it’s much easier to not hang onto the warp.

  6. Blue tape is great, I use it for many of the reasons already stated. I have found if I am going to weave a lot of projects with the same tie up I’ll secure the metal double point needles under the treadles by running 2 pieces of tape around each treadle catching the needle at the front and back. When I get ready to beam a new warp I just drop the lamms onto the treadles to raise the shafts and the needles stay put without slipping out.

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