You might think that with a rigid heddle loom your weaving projects must be simple in design. After all, such a loom is inexpensive and lacks the “sophistication” of those big floor looms. Not so. There a several ways to add texture and visual appeal to work done on a rigid heddle loom. One is with the use of a pick-up stick.
Pick-up sticks are flat pieces of wood that are sized to work with your loom. Your Kromski Harp loom comes with one pick-up stick. One end is beveled to help you use it.
How is it used? The stick is used behind your heddle. One way to look at it is that with a pick-up stick you trick your loom into thinking it is something it is not; you temporarily change the way the warp interacts with the slots and holes on the heddle. The result is a stunning range of patterns.
With the heddle in the down shed position, pick up the slot threads behind the heddle using the beveled end of the pick-up stick. One pattern, for example, requires every other one of these slot threads to be picked up – over, under, over, under… Once the stick is completely inserted, bring it forward to the heddle and put it on edge. You can see how this imparts a different, temporary shed opening.
There are a number of books and videos that address the use of pick-up sticks. Some sample patterns are shown right. Whatever you are weaving, give it a special look using your pick-up stick.