Hand Looms Supplement #17 – April 2014


• The Looms and Weaving of Margaret Bergman
• Three Bergman Looms
• The Saunderstown Weaving School
• The Loom at the Old Chelmsford Garrison House
• Khmer Looms of Cambodia


In this edition we learn about a Swedish-American weaver who, besides teaching, designed and patented two compact looms in the 1930s, and we see three different examples of these looms. We meet a contemporary weaving teacher who runs a weaving school in Rhode Island and explore some of the unusual looms that she has. A weaver in Massachusetts recounts her adventures restoring a barn-frame loom in an old garrison house museum. Then we learn about looms used by weavers in the Khmer communities in Cambodia to create their lovely silk textiles.

The Looms and Weaving of Margaret Bergman

Theresa Trebon has been studying the work of Swedish-American weaver Margaret Bergman [1872–1948] for many years. She tells us about Margaret’s weaving career and her work as a teacher and a founder of weaving guilds. Margaret also patented two compact looms in the 1930s.

Three Bergman Looms

Traveling to give lectures, I found that each of my hostesses had a different style of Margaret Bergman’s patented looms. Louise Gould in Connecticut, and my two hostesses in Texas, Sharon Joiner and Gwenn Lasswell, tell how they acquired these looms and, with photographs by Bennett Joiner, we look at the features related to the patent.

The Saunderstown Weaving School

Pam Howard visited the Saunderstown Weaving School in Saunders town, RI, and its founder, Norma Smayda. She introduces Norma, who studied weaving in Norway, and describes some of the unusual looms that she has at the school.

The Loom at the Old Chelmsford Garrison House

Penny Lacroix is restoring an old barn-frame loom in a garrison house in Chelmsford, MA, with help from her husband Dan. She recorded her adventures in a blog, describing the many challenges that they faced and how they dealt with them. This is Part 1 of her adventures.

 Khmer Looms of Cambodia

Winnie Nelon often travels to Cambodia. She describes all the steps and the tools involved in creating silk textiles. Her photographs, taken mostly at the Institute for Khmer Traditional Textiles, Siem Reap, Cambodia, show silk reeling tools, frames for tying the silk to be dyed, and the special looms that are used.