Spinninglizzy's Weblog

Falling down the slippery fibre slope

Bergman Treasures And A Reprieve

For all you Bergman lovers out there, this one’s for you.

I’ve been looking for a portable table loom.  Today, I happened on an ad placed by a woman who is selling… drumroll please… a Bergman table loom and floor stand with treddles.  I had to go and see it, if only to find out if this was the mythical Bergman suitcase loom.

Moments after I see the table loom, I turn around and see… drumroll please… yet another Bergman loom.  A 36″ floor loom!  I almost pass out from shock.

Both the floor and table looms were purchased new from Margaret Bergman’s son more than thirty years ago, when they still had a store in Poulsbo, Washington.

I didn’t get a picture of the table loom before it was taken off the floor stand.  My brain was completely addled with all the excitement, so even though I had my tape measure out and actually took a measurement of the width, I’ve completely no recall of the reading.  If I had to pretend to remember, I would say it had a 25″ weaving width.

Following are closeups of the springs connected to the harnesses:

Here is a closeup of the levers centred atop the castle:

This is the floor stand with treddles:

The floor stand is interesting; it’s not a Bergman stand, but a universal floor stand.  The treddles were not tied up, but I was told to use texsolv with a lark’s head knot through the metal loop on the treddles, then run up and over the roller directly above (seen on the horizontal crossbar near where the hand is pictured), then under and up from the rollers to the left side, and finally to the metal loop on each of the levers (previous picture).

Here is the floor stand folded up:

The floor loom is in beautiful condition!  I was so excited, I only vaguely remember the lovely woven items around the room, and am kicking myself for not taking more pictures of them (especially of an incredible doublewoven wall hanging produced on the floor loom).  I was too busy hyperventilating, and already felt rude clicking away so much.

Even the bench is original.  The weaving on the loom uses some yarn she dyed by herself.  She said she used dyes which are no longer available due to toxicity, so she doesn’t have plans for any more dyeing in the future.  When she warps her loom, she puts on twenty-five yards at a time.  I took a look at her warping reel (sorry, no pictures) — and saw a smaller version of my own!  It’s good to know my warping reel (Bad Boy, Humungo-Warper 2000) is an original Bergman.

In the end, I decided not to purchase the table loom.  Mostly because the castle is nailed into the loom frame, and does not collapse or even come apart for portability.  So, I don’t think this is the suitcase loom, as it definitely wouldn’t fit in a suitcase smaller than a steamer trunk, if that.  But I hated leaving behind the treddled floor stand.

Which brings me to the reprieve part.  Thank You, Trapunto, for prodding me with the virtual pitchfork.  You were right, as well as being a voice of sense.  I haven’t actually woven on the Dutch Master Box Loom, yet (another story there), but lifting up the harnesses by hand does seem like it might be extra work.  So I took a closer look at the table loom I brought home (see earlier post “Hi And Goodbye”).  I searched online, but it doesn’t look like either a Kessenich or a Mountain Loom.  There are no markings to indicate the manufacturer.  Here is a closeup of some of the knob and the levers (side-, not castle-top-mounted):

On even closer examination, I discovered that it can collapse with the weaving in place:

I don’t know why, but I find this charming.  (Still no name though.)  So I’m giving this loom a probationary stay of execution eviction.  DH commented: “Of course you’re getting another loom; last time was Father’s Day, this time it’s my birthday!”

9 August 2008 Posted by | Weaving | , , , , | 9 Comments