When I reach the top of a tapestry I do what I tend to refer to as 'evening things up.' That's what I am doing in the photo above - I am making sure the top edge is all evened up (it isn't yet, in the photo) and that all the bits of yarn end up in the same shed. Then I weave my row of soumack across, followed by about an inch of hem.
I have all that done, in this photo, and have loosed the tension on the loom and have begun cutting and tying off every other pair of warp threads. After that is done, I will roll the tapestry forward from the lower beam and will loosen the bar across the bottom that the warp is tied onto, and will begin the tedious task of needle-picking the warp knots undone to untie the bottom of the tapestry from the lower beam. THEN, I can finally cut the rest of the tapestry off the remaining warp at the top, and pull the tapestry away from the loom. So, cutting off isn't really the quick snip-snip of the scissors it can look like at a cutting off party. I get everything pretty much done except for the final cutting of the top warp and pulling it loose at the bottom, then wind the tapestry up again to look like it is still all attached before a Cutting Off occurs. Otherwise, it would take a long laborious time before we could celebrate the finished tapestry.
Today, I am not having a Cutting Off party. This evening, I will keep at this process, and will cut this tapestry from the loom probably very late this evening. I have not yet seen the tapestry in it's entirety, but I am looking forward to seeing if it looks like I had hoped it would. I usually lay the cut off tapestry face down and cover it for a few days (mostly to protect it from Gus, who loves all the ends coming out of the back.) Then I will be ready to look at it and assess how I feel about it, and to continue with the finishing process.
When that is all done, I will post a picture of it. In the meantime... back to the cutting board (cutting loom?)