Maggie Schwartz: Self-Taught Weaver

Processed with Rookie

Q: How were you introduced to weaving? What inspired you to start?

A: I was bored over the summer and wanted to try something new. I saw a lap loom on a website and thought I’d give it a try.


Q: Are you self-taught, or have you taken art classes?

A: I haven’t taken any classes, but I am looking for some to take to better myself. I have taught myself to weave so far using the starter packet that came with my lap loom and by looking online for different techniques.


Q: Can you describe the process of weaving for us?

A: I have tons of sketches that I’ve made and once I pick one to work with and the yarn I want to use I begin warping my loom. The warp is the set of lengthwise strands that are held in tension on the loom. On a lap loom the warping process takes less than a minute. On a table loom it takes a lot longer. It took me a few hours the first time I warped my table loom. After you warp the loom, the weaving begins. There are different techniques that produce different looks. Once I have finished weaving I tuck the lose strands into the back of the weaving to finish the process. I then remove the weaving from the loom by slipping it of the lap loop or cutting it off the table loom. If I’m using a lap loom, I slip a stick into the loops left at the top of the weaving and tie a string on either side of the stick to make it possible to hang the weaving on the wall. If I’m using the table loom, I tie the ends I cut from the loom to the stick then tie the string on the stick that makes it possible to hang it on the wall.


Q: What’s your favorite part about making this type of art?

A: I like the process of weaving because it is so different than anything else I’ve done. It excites me as well as relaxes me. Warping the loom can be tedious but once the weaving begins I enjoy it so much it’s hard for me to stop working to do things like eat and sleep.


Q: When and where do you enjoy to weave the most?

A: I like working on my lap loom outside but I got my table loom in January so I haven’t had a chance to bring it outside yet. I have kind of taken over the dinner table in our apartment and work there now. When I work I listen to music like The Avett Brothers, Noah Gundersen, and The Head and The Heart. I’ve found their music puts me in the right mood to weave.


Q: What other kinds of medium do you work with?

A: I dabble in photography, watercolor, and woodworking/wood burning but my main focus at the moment is on weaving.

Processed with Rookie

Q: Do you want to incorporate art into a future career, or do you see it as more of a hobby?

A: I don’t see a future career in my weaving. I am planning on opening an Etsy shop over the summer but I don’t want it to turn into working only for the money. As long as I enjoy it I will keep doing it. If it becomes more about making money than enjoying the process, I will stop selling my work completely.


Q: How have your art classes at Wofford helped with your craft?

A: The art classes I’ve taken at Wofford have helped me think about creating art in a whole new way. I took the environmental art and installation class last semester and learned that I really enjoy making 3D art. I enjoy watercolor but there’s something about holding an object that I’ve created that really excites me.



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