Thanks to fairy tales like Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel, most kids know that cotton is spun into thread, and thread is woven into cloth, but most kids these days have never seen a spindle or a loom in action, let alone know how to spin or weave. Most of the looms available in craft stores are the rainbow kind, but if you want to give your child a basic idea of how to weave thread into cloth, all you need is some yarn and a paper plate.
We first tried paper plate weaving at St. Fagan's National History Museum in Wales, and I couldn't believe how it kept all 3 of my kids occupied -- they were 11 and 8 at the time, and they hadn't done yarn crafts for years! They wanted to stay in the crafts center and continue weaving, allowing Alfie and me the opportunity to enjoy a romantic walk around St. Fagan's Castle (hey, when you have 3 kids, you take romance whenever you can find it!). The resulting circle is perfect as an American Girl doll rug!
- Draw 8 lines through the center of a paper plate, dividing it into 16 equal wedges. Cut about 1" off the edge of the plate.
- Wind yarn through the slits formed by the cuts you made, forming spokes of yarn...
- ...coming across the back of the paper plate.
- Starting at the center, weave yarn in and out of the yarn spokes.
- Once your rug is the desired size, slip off the loops of yarn, cut and tie.
- Flatten your doll rug. Iron and starch if necessary.
Head over to my latest post on Bedtime Math for more detailed, step-by-step instructions (with photos at each step). It's a lot of fun, and it will keep kids of any age busy for hours......