The story of “Tabitha” a very sad little Dryad loom that I purchased unseen and wondered if I had gone mad!
Tabitha was left unloved and unused to get dusty and dirty and covered in paint splatters for what must have been many years. When I got her home and looked at what I’d bought I did wonder about my sanity but as with many things in life you have to look beyond the surface to see the potential that lies beneath and so it was with Tabitha.
I’ve called her Tabitha as I already have a harp called Lazarus which I rescued after it had been broken in an accident and another smaller harp called “Talitha Khum” as it also had to be resurrected from the dead (both were Biblical references) and so when I took on Tabitha I was looking for another resurrection story and this name was from a miracle of St. Peter who I always thought had been overlooked by the church ever since Paul arrived on the scene; anyway I digress.
Tabitha looked very sorry for herself – so I took pity and started the job of bringing her back to being not just a working loom but also a nice looking piece of furniture as I do believe these small looms should look good if they are going to have house room.
Siezed up ratchets
Paint splatters everywhere
A puppy had obviously enjoyed quite a few bits of it
And the stings, heddles and aprons were all well past useable
All in all this was going to be quite a project!
Time to get started – it is freezing outside quite literally so I didn’t do that much today before bits of me became so numb that I had to give up but I’m in no rush with this project so that is fine.
First job is to free Tabitha from bondage – so out came the scissors and all the old strings and heddles were removed – they were too dirty and frayed to be kept.
Cutting off the old stuff left the wood so that I could see what was still usable and what I might need to replace. I should add that I’m also going to modify this loom by adding an extra four shafts to it whilst I’m restoring it.
The original shaft sticks are generally ok but I’m thinking I’ll replace them as the wood matches what is already part of the loom and these are the same section as the countermarch levers of which I’m going to need another eight – so they will not be thrown away but re-used in the modification of the loom.
Although the treadles are well chewed they are all still useable but I will need to add four more when I make this an eight shaft loom so I may just make new treadles for all 10 so that they match.
An hour and a bit with the finishing sander used before taking anything apart has removed most of the paint and the old laquer and lef nice clean wood and just a few bits to complete when the loom is stripped a bit further.
Time for a cuppa and to thaw myself out!
This is going to become a very nice and pretty little loom.
Watch this space for the next steps