Let’s talk rigid heddle reeds! There are 5-, 8-, 10-, and 12- dent reeds available for the Cricket and Flip looms, in addition to variable dent reeds.
5 dent reed: Bulky!
Contrary to some people’s belief, bulky yarn is great as a warp yarn. Use a fingering yarn in the weft to really show off the warp—thick and thin handspun or hand-dyed chunky yarns will pop. It is also great for beginners because it goes fast.
8 dent reed: Worsted
The Cricket looms come with 8 dent reeds because worsted weight is the most common yarn for beginner weavers.
To create a balanced weave, use a worsted weight in the weft as well and beat lightly. Remember, when the tension is taken off the fabric, the spaces in between the yarn will fill in a bit, and when washed, the yarn will “bloom” and the spaces will fill in even more. Make sure to give it enough space by just “kissing” the yarn in place with the beater instead of pounding it in place. An 8 dent reed is perfect for a blanket, and even blankets can be made with the rigid heddle loom by sewing strips together.
10 dent reed: Sport
This reed allows us to start to get into the finer gauges of knitting yarn. Sport weight can have a nice drape to it if “kissing” rule (above) is followed. You should be able to see squares in between the threads while the fabric is still on the loom. Sampling is important to see what kind of fabric each yarn combination of fiber and color can make. Some yarns shrink at different rates and others won’t shrink. Variegated yarn tends to pool for a beautiful faux ikat pattern. Using a solid or semi-solid in the weft with a variegated in the warp gives fabulous results.
12 dent reed: Fingering
I know there are probably loads of sock yarn stashes out there just waiting to get used. Those skeins make great lightweight scarves for friends and family! Pick-up patterns with the fine weight yarn are delicious.
Variable Dent Reed
There are so many things you can do with this, the sky really is the limit! Mix up yarn sizes. Warp with textured art yarns—it's especially fun with handspun. Pack warp ends close together and far apart in the same fabric. Make a bold statement with funky combinations.