Sewing Vloggers

Thursday, December 23, 2021

The Speedweave, my new toy!

 


Allow me to introduce you to my new toy: the Speedweave. I have wanted one of of these for quite some time but found them particularly expensive for what they seemed to be. I first discovered them about 3 years ago. And what on earth are they, you ask? 

This is a tool that enables you to weave small bits of weaving. It's genius is that it hooks up tightly to an article of clothing,  like a sock or sweater, and you can weave right over the hole that has made its home in that garment. Below you can see it hooked up to my husband's treasured heavy wool sweater that he has worn a hole in during 25 years of wear. Like most men, he does not want to give up a favorite garment and it has sat patiently folded in his closet for years waiting for me to fix it. I never really knew how. I don't knit and it just was beyond my skill set to make a repair that would like good. Enter the Speedweave.


Why did I wait 3 years to get this little treasure? Well, they were pricey. They smallest size was running about 69 dollars and  were made in the Ukraine. I wasn't particularly comfortable sending my credit card to the Ukraine and I thought the price was awfully high. There were purveyors in Britain selling vintage models from the UK at the same price. I just wasn't sure. Every now and then I would look up the Speedweave, same pricing, same issues. A couple of weeks ago I gave it another try. The price was down drasticly and and I bit. I could get a made in China version and a few days later it was on my doorstep. Yay! 


It wasn't impressive upon arrival. It was in a small box, loaded with English misspellings and poor grammar but I figured it out. This one cost me 13.99 instead of 69.00. It was quite easy to figure out how it worked and there were scads of videos on youtube,  listed under "Speedweave",  so there were no issues learning how to use this little wonder. 

Based on what I read in reviews I got the  14 needle version.  Many regretted starting with the big large version as they realized it was too big to get into a lot of tight spaces to reweave small holes and they wished they had purchased the 14 needle size instead.  Others purchased the 12 needle, obviously even smaller, and felt they should have gone bigger. I think the 14 needle is just right.

If you look back at my husband's sweater pic with the little loom attached you will see that the top of the weaving, the bottom of the needles,  is way above the hole.  This was my first mistake. I was later weaving over perfectly fine knitting and you really don't want to do that. I lost patience and took out the weaving early rather than go all the way to the top and that made for more fussing at the top edge to make it all look well finished. I failed on that but it's all a learning curve. So the first thing I learned is to line up your hole just below the bottom of the needles.

Other than that it went pretty well. It is quite quick. Like any loom you first warp your tiny loom and then weave your weft threads through. I used Paternayan yarn, 100% wool like the sweater, and this was the closest match I could get on this heathery knit. Hubs was pleased and thought it just perfect. When I first showed it to him he couldn't find the patch. That was all I needed. 

When all the weaving is complete, the patch is gently slipped off and the loom disconnected. You then pull the weft and warp threads neatly to the back, weave them here and there and secure.  You see the blue tape on the loom? I found the edges of the metal at the top of the loom very sharp. I covered them with painter's tape to avoid cutting myself.



You can use any sort of thread or yarn you like for your tiny weaving. You can get very creative with bright colors and patterns. You can weave over denim, sweaters, you name it, just try to match thread weights for the best results.  My goal here was to just get through my first attempt and to be as unobtrusive as possible. The camera and its flash are making it show up a bit more than it does in real life but in the end I think it looks pretty good, at least good for a sweater he puts on under his heavy hoodie to go out and blow snow when the temps are blowing in the teens. He is Very happy with his patch. He has waited years for it. 

I think this little addition to my toolbox will really come in handy. I've already found an afghan and another one of his sweaters to play with . Such fun,,,,,,,, Bunny

13 comments:

  1. Say what?!! I've never heard of this tool, thank you for the introduction. I too, have a hard time parting with favourite wool sweaters and socks in need of care.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We all know that a 100% wool sweater can last decades. A nice acrylic gets pilled in not time and does not last at all. Cotton sweaters, which I detest for the most part, just fall apart everywhere. This was a good investment. I got mine on Amazon. It had 5 star reviews and as I said, was a 14 needle size.

      Delete
  2. Very cool new toy... I mean tool. I have a vintage version (Darn Easy) I found at an estate or garage sale, but never used it. It's simply a part of my vintage sewing tools collection. Using it to add decorative woven patches never occurred to me. I may have to take another look at it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's awesome. I hope you have the disc that fits it. Many use the vintage versions. A bit of history, at least my understanding of it from what I have read.... these arrived on the scene in Great Britain in World War 2 to help deal with the shortages of clothing and the need to mend everything. Many vintage versions from that time remain on the market today and seem to be in the original price range I quoted. From there, I know little other than they can be found on a lot of British web site but seem to be either vintage or made in the Ukraine. What I have recently purchased is clearly a newcomer, made in Asia, and much less cost but no shipping issues either. Mine came from Amazon. If it doesn't hold up, I will be right back to this page to let you know but it seems pretty sturdy so far. Just watch for sharp edges.

      Delete
    2. Oh, mine comes with a tiny latch hook and also a large dull darning needle which I am using to weave. The elastics are in the package as well and fit the disc to hold the fabric snug and ready to be stitched upon.

      Delete
  3. I have had one of these forever. I inherited it from my mom or my husband's mom. I can't remember. Like you, I have darned sweaters but I tend to use it for big toe holes in socks. For socks I use embroidery thread. And Bunny, Merry Christmas. Hope you can take a bit of time for yourself this holiday season. Denise
    Presently, I have a large bag of socks to repair beckoning me. Alas, the bag seems to get bigger not smaller.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Denise and Merry Christmas to you as well. I have a bunch of Hub's white sox as well that need darning. I haven't
      decided if those are worth the effort yet. Nice wool ones I definitely would take the effort.

      Delete
  4. So glad you enjoyed your Speedweave. Fantastic price!. I finally bought a Ukraine version in September this year and promptly smashed my head of the humerus! Healing well but extremely limited movement of my right arm so no sewing or weaving for probably another 6 months.... Oh well, the mending will still be there :)
    Hope today is wonderful for you, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
    Take care...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh,my, that sounds awful! I sure hope your are better before 6 months and get a chance to try your Speedweave. Take care. Thanks for reading and have a good New Year, one with improving health.

      Delete
  5. I bought one of these from Amazon last month and the sharp metal promptly cut through 2 of the heavy duty elastics while patching a hole in my daughters favorite jeans. I was looking for a way to soften the edges of the metal so it wouldn't do that and your suggestion for using painter's tape is an awesome one. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  6. That is super cool and way to go on the mending!

    At my last company, a husband and wife worked there and she asked one day what a zipper replacement costs. I told her, whatever the seamstress charges, because replacing zippers in coats is an awful task. Her husband, who was the Director of IT, had a leather bomber that he loved, but the zipper was broken and he put this coat on and off as a pullover instead of getting the zipper fixed!! Hahahaha!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh my goodness, this is amazing. What a handy thing! I just wove a tiny patch for a BRAND NEW pair of toddler pants that my daughter couldn't see returning. Barely noticeable on a galloping toddler. All the best to you in the New Year!

    ReplyDelete
  8. What a cool tool and maybe it could be used for something other than darning and repairing??? It is like a teeny tiny loom isn't it? Great job on the hubby's sweater!!!

    ReplyDelete

Engaging commentary:

About making our undies...............

  It has recently become pretty obvious that I could use some serious batch making of undies. That got me thinking a lot about the process, ...