One of our artisan groups makes a lot of ikat because it is so prevalent in all of their weaving designs and they really don’t have the money to buy ikat at the local market.
They showed me their set up in getting the yarns ready to tie. It is a simple little set up — they simply pound two iron stakes in the ground about 4-5 feet apart then take two pieces of rebar that are about 15-20 inches long and attach them to the iron bar. They have them attached with nylon rope and tied similar to the way you attach a backstrap loom to a post to be able to weave.
The thread that they use to tie with is waxed with paraffin wax so that it doesn’t absorb the dye. Next they will tie the long ikat warp to make the design they want before it is put into the dye bath.
Little Juan decided to sit down and play with the big chunk of parrafin to see if he could wax the thread.
Today the group was making simple ikat similar to that shown in the picture above — just the long dashes of color in a weaving.
If you would like to see some of their weavings that feature ikat be sure to go to our webstore.