Fingerweaving is the art of producing useful textiles without the use of a loom. Various forms of fingerweaving are found throughout the world. This book, however, will deal only with two forms of fingerweaving commonly found among the people of the first nations of North America: warpface weaving and openface weaving.
Each person who does fingerweaving seems to develop their own style. Therefore, you will find people who do things differently than what is presented in this book. The fact that they do things differently does not mean they are wrong. It only means they are different. Observe the differences, they may work for you.
The presentations in this book rely on graphics to illustrate what is happening to the strands as the weaving is done. As you are weaving, concentrate on what is happening to the strands and the patterns of movement of the strands. The hand positions shown in the illustrations are only relative and are intended only to clarify the positioning of the strands.
It makes no difference if you are left-handed or right-handed, you will need to use both hands. The first two fingers and the thumb of each hand are used to manipulate the strands. The remaining fingers of each hand are used primarily to hold the strands and apply the needed tension to the strands.
No attempt will be made to associate a particular pattern or style of fingerweaving with a cultural group or historical period. That debate will be left to the historians and archaeologists.