Last week I shared a video showing how to use the Rapid Darner in comparison to the Speedweve. If you're a fan of the original Speedweve darning looms then you may have come across the Rapid Darner already - or any of the other variations that are out there!
The Rapid Darner works slightly differently to the Speedweve as the hooks at the top that hold your warp threads in place are moved up and down with a small bar in the centre instead of left to right. This means that when the weft rows are worked you'll be going over and under two threads each time whereas with the Speedweve hooks you'll weave over and under just one thread at a time.
This hook format can be used to create various weave patterns such as the basket weave darn I created below. To do this, after working one weft row and securing it at the side, I worked straight back to weave the next row without alternating the direction of the hooks. You can also still weave in the weft threads as you would with a Speedweve, but the finished result will look slightly different.
The Rapid Darner would also be great for making a twill weave more easily; this is worked by weaving two over and two under all the way across for one row and then with every row after offsetting the stitches to one side to create the diagonal pattern. If you'd like to see more examples of these different weave patterns then let me know in the comments.
It's worth reiterating that these tools aren't essential for darning and whilst replicas are out there (I don't sell them, but try Etsy!) don't feel caught up in having to buy a new gadget to get started with visible mending. Darning freehand is often easier to start with anyway!
Having said that, if you've come across any other kinds of darning looms then I'd love to hear about them as I'm always looking to learn more about them. I'd also be interested to know if you already use any of these kinds of looms - what do you love about them? Do you find darning easier with or without a loom?