We have shared many Paper Weaving Projects for Kids before, but wanted to bring together our favourite Beginner Weaving Projects for Kids using YARN – as we have quite a few projects that we have created over the years. Working with yarn is a wonderful sensory activity and a great introduction to textile art. These projects can be made using regular inexpensive yarn, but can also be explore using alternative materials such as recycled ribbons (we love saving these from gift packages), fabric strips and homemade T-shirt yarn. Weaving is a great way to use up odds and ends of materials, making it thrifty and eco friendly.
You can start quite young children doing weaving projects – as mentioned, it is great for fine motor skills, but it is also good for sequencing and basic maths skills (counting patterns etc). For younger children, use simple projects, where the focus is purely on weaving and using up different yarns.
If working with elementary aged children, middle school children, tweens or teens, you can go a little more complex and explore patterns and designs. Older children can also have a go at making their own looms.
Weaving is wonderfully versatile in that way and can really be adapted to the skills of your students whether at home or in the classroom, as well as interestes levels.
All weaving makes gorgeous weaving wall hangings and wall decorations, but we will also explore some woven baskets too.
The most popular forms of weaving include:
- Cardboard Loom Weaving (most traditional method)
- Free Style Paper Plate Weaving (a great weaving project for younger kids)
- Circle Weaving with paper plates
- CD Weaving or Cardboard Circle Weaving (they are effectively the same)
- Stick Weaving
- DIY Bowl Weaving
- God’s Eye Weaving
- Straw Weaving (nice and quirky!)
So let’s take a look at these wonderful weaving projects and inspire a new generation of young crafters to have a go at one of the oldest worldwide craft traditions!
Basic Weaving Terms
Loom – this is the frame that holds all your threads. In our examples, we have used things like cardboard and CDs or upcycled a plastic milk carton.
Warp – the threads that hold the tension – the part you have put on your loom before your start weaving. On a cardboard loom their are perpendicular, on a circle loom, they go from the centre outwards, on a milk carton example, you cut into the milk carton to create these.
Weft – the actual “weaving”. So the threads that you weaving in and out of the warp to create your woven patterns.
Yarn Weaving on a Cardboard Loom
Making a cardboard weaving loom, is one of the simplest ways to get kids weaving and a great way to weave a Wall Hanging – a super easy project for kids! This weaving method, is probably what most people think of when thinking about yarn weaving with a loom. All you need is some cardboard, a stick (for hanging) and your yarn. Though you can also use this technique to make pot holders or coasters.
Our lovely friend over on The Artful Parent, shows and example of the simplest of these cardboard loom weaving techniques. I love the use of the stick for hanging, as well as the fact that it uses up ribbons and fabric scraps. This is a really satisfying technique for younger children, as you make progress quickly in your weaving and can create your wall hanging in one session.
If your students are more advanced/ skilled or you have more time to create your weaving project, you can have a go at these fantastic weaving dolls! These woven dolls, are a great example of how you can incorporate patterns into your weaving, quickly and easily. I also love the addition of beads and buttons to really personalise your weaving project.
Here is another example of introducing patterns when weaving as Cassie Stephens did with her students inspired by our weaving dolls!
Or why not make your cardboard loom part of the design, the way Pink Stripey Socks did here as part of this cutest of cute Llama Weaving Project!
Paper plate weaving – Freestyle for Young Children
Before we move onto the Paper Plate Weaving (up next), I did want to quickly share the “free style” paper plate weaving for younger kids. Technically, I would NOT call this weaving. However, it does give younger children a chance to have a go at working with yarn and patterns – and maybe a needle used a shuttle when weaving. Here is an example of a sweet and popular project:
This woven paper plate hearts are a wonderful way to get children experiencing weaving for the first time. They go “free style” or try and follow a pattern if they wish.
This also applies to these lovely paper plate dream catchers.
Circle Weaving with Paper Plates
Circle Weaving with Paper Plates is a beautiful project – especially, if you decide to shape the paper plate incisions into petals and make paper plate woven flowers. So pretty. We have some great clear step-by-step instructions for this (both in step photo format and as a video tutorial – in fact checkout the video tutorial on auto play for a peak!).
Paper Plate Weaving – if you cut the paper plate spokes into petal shapes, these make lovely flowers! You can play around with the colours of your paper plates and even turn them into poppies for Remembrance Day or Sunflowers as summer crafts.
Circle Weaving Other Methods
Circle Weaving isn’t restricted to paper plates! You can create any kind of circular woven craft (and in fact turn them into coasters too!!). Here are some examples.
Happy Hooligans shows us how pretty circle weaving can look on regular cardboard too.
Or see Lindsay Overmeyer’s CD Weaving Coaster Craft. So clever.
Or go one step further and turn your CD weaving into these gorgeous woven Owl Wall Hangings! Make your basic CD weaving and then glue on the owl’s features with felt cut outs.
God’s Eye Weaving
God’s Eye weaving is also a wonderful traditional crafts for kids to have a go at. As with traditional loom weaving, you are still following squences and patterns. Especially if you have a go at the beautiful “Flower God’s Eye” projects:
The fun thing about god’s eyes is that you can use sticks, craft sticks, popsicle sticks, chop sticks, plastic straws.. anything you can find really as your frame. And then you have fun with colours and patterns. Here are our tutorials:
- Traditional God’s Eye (also with horse chest nut centres)
- Flower God’s Eye
- Quirky Watermelon God’s Eye
Recycled Basket Weaving Projects
There are some fun Recycled Basket Weaving Projects you can try out too!
Turn a milk carton, into a cute woven gift basket.
Or have a go at turning paper cups (you could recycle a coffee shop cup for this) as per Laughing Kids Learn here.
Design Improved also uses upcycled popsicle sticks to make these cute little planters.
Quirky Variations – Stick Weaving
Using forked sticks, is another fun and quirky way to have a go at weaving. This one can get fiddly though, so a simple Shuttle (needle) would help! See Babyccino Kids Insta for info.
Straw Weaving or Stick Weaivng 2
Using drinking straws for weaving has gained in popularity in recent years, as it is so quirky and “clever”… but it actually has it’s origin in Stick Weaving.. yes, another form of stick weaving and it is a super clever way to create long items – e.g. a belt, a bag strap or if made wider a scarf.
Here is a great detailed blog post on how to make your own weaving sticks and work with them.
Natural Surburbia also has a great post with fantastic step by step photos. What a lovely rainbow weaving project.
And Suzy Sitcom shows you how to use straws instead. These make fun little bracelets using the straw weaving method.
Tottie Talks Crafts – Weaving Stick Dolls
Paper Weaving Projects for Kids
Paper Weaving Crafts for kids are almost a whole new project on their own.. and I couldn’t decide on whether to include them here or not! I have a special blog post dedicated to paper weaving too.. but thought that maybe I should highlight my favourite paper weaving projects for kids here.. just so you don’t miss them!
In paper weaving the strips of paper become your Weft as you weave into and out of another sheet of paper. Paper Weaving Hearts – adorable Valentine’s or Mother’s Day Cards. I love the use of “old” artwork to make these beautiful and colourful woven heart craft!
Printable Woven Chick & Egg Cards – a small version of the Chick & Egg Weaving Craft – this one opens up as a lovely Easter Weaving Card DIY. Younger kids should still be able to manage, but it is a perfect printable activity for KS1 and KS2
Harry Potter Paper Weaving Bookmarks (with house logo printables).
I hope you feel inspired by today’s Beginner Weaving Projects and that you will have a go and let your creativity run wild!
In the meantime, do pop over and see the rest of our Paper Weaving Projects – many of which come with free paper weaving templates!