Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Learn a technique - Naalbinding (or knotless knitting)

What I have never shared here before is that I am a co-founder of Haemus which is a Center for Scientific Research and Promotion of Culture whose president is my first cousin Ms. Dimitrovska. The Center is in the middle of preparations of a unique event which is called Scupini Romani and will focus on what life was when the Romans were present in these parts. I will write more about the event soon.
Doing research for the event and not wanting to show crochet or knitting, I found out an amazing technique called Naalbinding (or its other variants like  nalebinding, nalbinding, nålbinding) which is an ancient fabric construction technique that predates knitting and crochet by some 2000 years.
Naalbinding is literally needle-binding, or in English known as knotless  knitting. The technique is distinct from crochet in that it involves passing the full length of the working thread through each loop, unlike crochet where the work is formed only of loops, never involving the free end. It also differs from knitting in that lengths must be pieced together during the process of nålebinding, rather than a continuous strand of yarn that can easily be pulled out.
The oldest known samples of single-needle knitting include the color-patterned sandal socks of the Coptic Christians of Egypt, and this technique was widely popular among the Vikings and it has kept its importance as a technique with the Scandinavian people until today.  

The needle used for naalbinding is flat and blunt and varies in size, having a very large eye.  There are several stitches I had to master and the videos helped me a lot. I learnt how to make rows and rounds using several stitches. More of my baby steps in naalbinding soon.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Amazing Crochet from Adinda's Word


I spotted Adinda Zoutman's work when I came upon a shawl of hers. And her shawls are such magnificent creations you cannot be left indifferent. Vibrant, full of colors and different textures, uncoiling flowery enchanting masterpieces.

Researching about her I couldn't find much information except that she is Dutch and organizes workshops where she teaches how to make things her style. Her website is still under construction and I believe once it is done, it is going to be a gem itself.


However you can always follow her magic on Instragram and Facebook.


Saturday, October 22, 2016

Autumn Brooch - a crochet pattern


I've returned again to my most beloved Irish roses, using them to create this eye-catching autumnal brooch. For this one I  also designed a more elaborate and textured leaves.

The pattern is here: here.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

When Quilting Meets Crochet

A while ago, going through my "pile of probably not going to ever finish them" projects, I came upon a project I started eons ago. A cheat quilt as I used to refer to it - which today has a more sophisticated name- or so pinterest told me - and it's called quilted and crochet fusion blanket.

Well, at the time, I as a very eager mother to make my firstborn a cheat quilt she was supposed to treasure forever, cut and sew laboriously pieces of her clothing she admired, of which there is a glimpse you can actually see here, and that was it. I put the pieces back into the "forgotten drawer". I didn't want to return to it  - yet I might try this in the future using my vintage fabric scraps I've been jealously holding onto.

So when the very first quilted / crochet blanket above appeared in my pinterest feed, it flushed back all the memories. And the desire which I hope will resist other whims my mind gets tackled with on daily basis. Until then, enjoy these beauties.

<a href="http://lilliansstitches.blogspot.mk/2013/05/fusion-blanket-complete.html">Via


Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Barley,Pumpkin & Avocado Salad

From  time to time I want to escape the crochet and craft oriented content of my blog and write about something that would freshen me up and give more value to the blog and in line with this,  I want to share a mouth watering and body reviving recipe written by a compatriot of mine who runs the food blog called Sitno Seckano which would mean Finely Chopped in English. Boyana, who is the master of all those senses tickling recipes, writes her posts bilingually so you can enjoy them too without needing a translator.

This is what Boyana says:
" I must admit that we rarely eat salads like this, with whole grains, although I know they are tasty and healthy. This colorful salad has a few interesting ingredients that make it really unforgetable, but it is also easily adapted to your taste and the things you have in your pantry. You can substitute millet or bulgur or cous-cous for the barley, use beets or carrots instead of squash. Put almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds if you don’t have pistachios… or add broccoli and lettuce.

The recipe:
1 cup barley
½ medium pumpkin or butternut squash, peeled and cut in bite-sized cubes
1 avocado, peeled and cubed
a handfull of raw pistachios
seeds from ½ pomegranate

lemon dressing:
1 – 2 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
olive oil
¼ moroccan preserved lemon, roughly chopped (or juice from ½ lemon + salt)
a lot of fresh parsley

Place the pumpkin in a pan in one layer, drizzle with a little olive oil and sea salt and bake in a preheated oven at 200°C about 20 minutes, or until soft.
Put the barley in a pot with water and cook about 20 minutes, or until the barley is tender. Drain and transfer to a salad bowl.
Put all the dressing ingredients in a food processor to make the dressing. Pour the dressing over the barley and mix well. Add the pumpkin, avocado, pistachios and pomegranate seeds and serve.


This recipe on her blog is here and there is a print option so you can print it directly from her blog.

Thank you Boyana for joining us today and sharing this heavenly salad with us!

Let me know what you think in the comments!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Coats and Jackets - Bohemian Fall Inspiration

Inspiration Monday is drawn from beautifully embellished coats and jackets by flowery appliques, embroidery or hand sewn patches. These beauties are another confirmation that winter clothes can escape the bleakness of the season and add a bit of a color to it, sometimes with a wonderful twist!

As always, all relevant links are here.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Bohemian Ruffles Necklaces - new pattern

There is a new pattern in my shop!
As all my Bohemian Patterns, this too is the project you turn to when you have to whip up something fast because it makes the perfect, beautiful, last minute gift. You can make a set of three in no time while you sip your tea in the afternoon. It employs easy crochet stitches thus being suitable for beginner crocheters too.

Find it here.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Make a Shabby Chic Brooch

Hello dear crafters and brooch makers!
Today I want to share an extremely lovely and easy DIY for a textile brooch. I have made a couple of these textile brooches for my newest collection, which has been ready for quite a long time now, and I wanted to share this with you so you could also create something beautiful for yourself and someone you love. For these make the perfect gifts!
Supplies come from your trinket boxes and that's the beauty of this - you can use scraps of fabric and ribbon too.
Basically you need a couple of different fabrics in texture. For this brooch I used an elastic lace piece, an irregularly cut off rectangular piece of organza, a fabric rosette, three pearly beads and metal findings. I mustn't forget the white (transparent) ribbon. I wanted to add the pink ribbons also included in the picture as well but discarded them afterwards, and that is why you don't see them on the brooch. Mystery solved; let's resume :)
The rosette was already made. As for the dangling rose, I folded the organza in half and then folded / stacked it up. When it was all gathered together I sew the lower part in place and then capped it with a filigree cap.
On the fixed part of the brooch pin (and this is important to mind the fixed and non - fixed part of the pin) - first place the ribbon and the lace piece over it.

Secure them both by sewing them near the brooch pin, as closely as you can. Sew the rosette on the upper left corner.

Sew / attach the beads under / on the bottom of the rosette.
Add (sew / attach with a jump ring) the capped flower and you are done!
 Hope you make it and love it!


Monday, October 10, 2016

Knit Colorful Stockings

It seems we are having a Nordic week here on the blog :)
Today's inspiration comes from a Finnish stocking designer Anelma Kervinen, whose colorful and vivacious designs will add cheerfulness to the bleak winter ahead.

I couldn't pick a favorite. They are all wonderful eye-candy!

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Norwegian Love - Oleana Knits


I came across Oleana Knits a couple of years ago quite by accident and the love at first sight was immediate and deep. Their sweaters and cardigans -  which are not the only items they produce, are made of natural fibers like wool, silk, alpaca and cashmere so wondrously weaved and designed to radiate a fairytale quality about them.

Oleana started in 1992 in the hope of creating new jobs in the textile industry in Norway. Most of Western Europe’s production has been moved to countries with far cheaper labour, but Oleana wanted to show that it is still possible to produce in a high-cost countries like Norway.


The designer behind the industry is Solveig Hisdal. She is regarded as one of the best textile designers in Norway, and her signature is clearly visible in the Oleana collection, through her colourful and well-developed sense of ornamentation and shape.

What they say about their employees:
"Oleana has a fantastic group of employees with extensive experience in the textile field. With their skillful  and clever hands, they start work every morning, and the advanced knitting machines don't stop until night has fallen. The employees' ages range from 20 - 85. They are hired on the basis of their expertise, the pleasure they take in their work, and their good humour."


"We place great emphasis on the professional and social environment and on an understanding of the proud tradition of which we are a part. Each year we close the factory for a few days and take a study trip, at home or abroad, to learn and to see more of what other textile people have been working with.
The production premises are open for visitors and are located in Ytre Arna near Bergen."

Isn't their philosophy stunning? To learn more about this brand and see their fall collection click here.

Would you love to have an Oleana piece in your closet? I certainly would!!!


Friday, October 7, 2016

How to read crochet charts: Irish Crochet Flower - free pattern

Hello and welcome to another post in the How to read crochet charts series! Today's precious find comes in the shape of a lovely Irish crochet flower.
Pattern: {for the flowers I use sport cotton yarn and 1.9 mm hook}
Ch 6 and join to make a ring.
Rnd 1: Sc 6 in ring
Rnd 2: sc2 in each st (12)
Rnd 3: sc1 in one st, 2 in the second (18)
Rnd 4: repeat rnd 3 (27)
Rnd 5: sc1 then ch5, skip 4, sc 1 in the next st. Ch 5, sk 3, sc in next st. Repeat this twice more. There should be 4 chains.
Rnd 6: Ch1 (I added this - it's not in the chart)and sc 10 on the chain you made last. sc 8 in the rest of the chains.
Rnd 7: Ch 7 and sl st in the st between chains. Repeat this 3 times. There should be 4 chains.
Rnd 8: {On the 1st chain} sc3, ch3 and make a picot, sc 3, make another picot, sc3, make the third picot, sc 3 {that makes 12 scs and 3 picots - consult chart). Repeat this pattern for all the other chains. When you make the last sc on the last chain, sc 9 along the body of the flower. You will come to the center of it. Next ch 9 and return back making sc starting from the 2nd ch from hook. When your each the body again, st in the 1st st that comes and finish the work. I made the orange flower first and didn't like how the stalk turned out so instead of sc I made hdcs.
The flower works very fast and makes for a gorgeous applique or whatever you want to use it for. I hope you enjoy hooking it!