Thursday, 9 July 2009

Fountain of Beads

Perpignan Aeolian

Finished my Aeolian this week & I'm thrilled with it. This is the first lace shawl I've made that I have kept. I thought the green was a beautiful colour and could be dressed up or down. Quite like the idea of wearing it with jeans.

It looks so fine and the Posh Yarn Diana has blocked beautifully. I've mentioned on my project page on Ravelry that the beading though lovely is a bit too heavy for me in this shawl. I've done the yucca sections as recommended then I've changed the rest to lighten it a bit.

The beads are fantastic and I've bought them from Spellbound Beads, which was recommended to me by a friend. Must say I don't think I've had anything delivered that quickly before. I've used them twice now and each time they've dropped through the letterbox the next morning.

Got a few parties coming up so hopefully I'll get to wear my new shawl.

Golden Waterfall Shawl

I'm very lucky to have a wonderful Mother-in-Law who I get on with extremely well. I always share all the crafty things I do and I've always had at the back of my mind to make her something absolutely gorgeous. I was going to make her a handmade quilt but it generally takes several months and I've just not had the time.

So now I'm into the swing of things with the knitting I thought I'd make her something special. The only problem is she doesn't like wool! However, I found the perfect yarn. Her favourite colour is gold; shoes, handbags, clothes, jewellry - definitely the colour to go for. I bought a skein of Fyberspates Infinity Lace in gold - 3000m in all. It's 100% silk so no wool involved. It has a wonderful sheen to it too. Only downside was winding 3000m onto balls by hand but it's done now. I am using the yarn doubled because it is so thin and there's so much of it anyway.

Next issue was what to knit; initially I had settle on Fiddlesticks Peacock Feather Shawl but when I came to start I then realised that there was no download so it would have to be sent from Canada at a slightly higher cost than I thought plus I couldn't wait that long ( I have about 0% patience).

So researching away on Ravelry I found Mystic Waters by Anna Dalvi which looked to be an interesting pattern. The only fly in the ointment was I couldn't figure out which size I wanted to do and the details didn't really specify how the two different sizes of this pattern were made. Whether I had to decide from the outset or not.

I decided to buy the pattern anyway and it turns out that both the small and large size are the same up until a certain point and then for the small size it changes to the small size patterns with only 13 rows to do. Which is great because I don't have to decide on the size until I get to that point.

The other issue was I wanted to include a few beads to the pattern but nothing was specified in the pattern so I've added them in (details on my project page). Using Spellbound beads again but this time they are clear with a lustre to them and they really catch the light and add just that bit of sparkle that a I wanted.

Below is the shawl in progess:

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Rolling Star Quilt

Rolling Star
This Rolling Star quilt is one of my proudest creations. It was made as a Christmas present for my Mum. Her favourite colours are purple and green; so this was the colour theme.

The whole thing is pieced and quilted by hand; no machine involved. The design was inspired by a lovely book by Jinny Beyer called Colour Confidence for Quilters. It was borrowed from a friend but the basic ideas that I took from it were to use a dark (black in this quilt) and a bright (the bright jewel green) and then all the shades in between. Jinny Beyer had made several different quilts by just using one quilt block and then fragmenting each shape into little versions. The quilt block I used is the Rolling Star.

I'm a bit of a Jinny Beyer fan and I used her Quiltmaking by Hand for all the techniques to make the quilt. Out of every book I own (which is a lot) this is my favourite by far. It is just beautiful to dip into and the quilts in there are to die for. It is crammed full of information and beautiful photography. Plus the techinques make hand piecing a lot quicker and simpler than the original English Paper Piecing I have used in the past.

Edo Temari

Edo Temari
This is one of my favorite temari balls that I have made. It is from Edo Temari (ISBN4-8377-0394-1) which is a beautiful Japanese (no English instructions) book of mainly geometric patterns. It took a little figuring out as only one side of the temari was shown and the other side didn't seem to mirror it.

Though it turned out well (I think so anyway) and was given as a present to my mum. I've added a tassel and loop so it can be hung up - this was destined to hang as part of a curtain tie back.