Tablet weaving: belt patterns from Muhu island **
Teachers: Astri Kaljus and Kati Kuusemets
The oldest tablet woven ribbons from burial grounds in Estonia date back to the 12th century. The oldest wooden tablets have been found from Lõhavere stronghold, dating back to the first half of the 13th century. Some of the best-preserved fragments of belts from the Parisselja bog finding date to the 14th century. Later ethnographic examples are from the 18th-19th century.
The technique was used in localities where traditional clothing persisted longer, such as South Estonia and on the islands. Tablet weaving was used for making belts (in Setomaa, Mulgimaa and on Muhu island). Tablet woven bands were used for lining shawls and skirts, and to make reins for horses.
In the workshop, participants learn setting up the warp threads through the tablet holes, weaving and reading the pattern schemes. Weaving means turning tablets to create a shed through which the weft is passed. By the end of the workshop, a key chain and a start of a full-lenght Muhu belt are made.
The participation fee includes woolen yarns and tablets for making a key chain and a belt. In addition, the participants can purchase tablet weaving equipment such as bandlocks (3€) and large safety pins (1€). This workshop is suitable for participants with prior experience in tablet weaving.