Thursday, July 30, 2020

Expressing Myself Through Crafts


LoveCrafts had a challenge for indie designers, asking how they express themselves through crafts.

I was raised in a household where traditions were deeply rooted and respected, hence handiwork was always highly appreciated, praised and practiced. The women in my family were all dedicated to creating things for the family, whether out of pure necessity or just for the mere pleasure of decoration: knitted sweaters, hats and shawls, crocheted tablecloths doilies and runners, sewn clothes. I was always entwined in this natural process of creation and encouraged to practice and develop my skills. 

Hence, expressing through crafts has been omnipresent and came naturally when I grew older, trying to preserve all those childhood memories of indulging into all sorts of crafts, which eventually paved the way to create a handmade, inspirational life for me and my family.   By treasuring crafts, I not only reinforce the bond I shared with my predecessors, successfully keeping it from the tooth of time, but at the same time, make a warm and cozy nest for my family, employing my skills.

In time, crochet has become a steady and strong constant that magically turned into a small business. I love creating jewelry, accessories and little pieces of clothing, as well as home decor. I am happy to be able to share my skills with the people who enjoy crochet as much as I do, and that love to make things that I design. 

I am forever grateful for that.


Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Doily & Lace Necklaces Inspiration


 I recently acquired a large amount of lace and doilies, which I have a soft spot for, and understandably, not failing my inner urge, I started looking for ideas how to repurpose them. I have made doily necklaces before - you'll find them at the end of this post, but first let me show you what I have found on the Internet. So many lovely ideas. Some of these are DIY tutorials, so click the links under the photos, if you are interested.



Both of these Via




Friday, July 24, 2020

A Bubble Dress into a Yarn Bag - repurpose project

I am always in a search for a good piece I can refashion, or use a piece of fabric to make flowers for my projects, so I've asked family and friends to consult me about interesting clothing / fabric before throwing them out, and so it happened that I received this bubble dress.
The minute I saw it, I knew it would make a perfect bag for my crochet goodies. Whenever, we go on a trip, I always carry my ongoing crochet projects with me, and I thought this one would be great to carry everything I need.

What I did: I cut off the upper panel and sew that part up. Turned the bag upside-down, so the bottom came up, made a hole on the other end so that I can pull the straps on the other side as well. And lastly, I sewed flowers to decorate it. 

We are going on a trip soon, and I cannot wait to see how and if this would be practical.


Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Puff Roses Necklace and Earrings - free pattern

I am working on a beige summer blouse that has an intricate pattern, plus it is decorated with flowers, so I thought a minuscule jewelry would be appropriate (if I am not mistaken), one that would not be overly dominating, but still effective, so I made these puff roses. They are quite tiny (see last picture), but immensely beautiful as such.

I documented the process, so you can make them if they catch your eye. 

*crochet thread #5 in 3 colors
* 1.70 mm hook 
* pearl beads, jump rings, earring hooks, metal chain, lobster clasp.

Puff Rose Pattern:
Foundation and round 1: Ch5 and join to make a ring. Sc4 in ring, then sl st in 1st to make the 5th stitch. 
Round 2: ch1 and make a 5dc puff, ch1 and sl st in the next st. Repeat this pattern for all the stitches.When done, leave a long tail that you'll use to sew on the bead and the neighboring flower.

Make 3 flowers in all of the 3 colors. Sew on the beads. Work on the arrangement of colors and then sew the flowers together at the back. 

Add jump rings in the center of the set you want for earrings and attach an earring hook. I added a small chain to the bottom of my earrings to make them more interesting, and because I thought they were too bare. I tried adding a bead(s), but it appeared to bulky, and I didn't like how it looked. Attach jump rings on a chain at the side of flowers for the necklace. 


Perfect, aren't they? The right thing to make as a last minute gift. 

Monday, July 20, 2020

Vintage Crochet Inspiration


From today's perspective, I feel a bit sad I didn't urge my grandma to teach me make lace crochet blouses. Not that she made any, but that woman had a incredible brain and I believe she could whip up one just by looking at it. At least that is what she did when she set up on making some intricate tablecloths there was no pattern of. 

She did made me a ton of woolen sweaters though and a couple of dresses, because those were quite popular when I was a teenager. I developed my love for lace crochet blouses in my twenties, when my style started to shape up and I have retained that love for them ever since. 

For this post I selected several pieces that make me swoon every time I revisit my boards on pinterest.

Do you like vintage crochet? What in particular? 



Saturday, July 18, 2020

Scarlet Beaded Necklace


Happy Saturday! I started with the beading process on my freeform necklaces and this is the first one to be finished. Rushing to have it done, I forgot to take the before photo, but in the end, it is the final result that counts. 

Meet Scarlet. I used my favourite 3-color palette for this and different shaped beads to accentuate the pattern play and flow. Beading was painfully slow, but truly relaxing. Just what I needed after a heavy week on my shoulders. 
Until later!    

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Summer Headbands - crochet pattern release


I am currently elbow deep in creating a summer collection that consists of crochet accessories, jewelry and garments and these lovely summer headbands are a small part of it. 
There are 3 patterns I just added in the shop: the bobble, crown and ladder headbands. I love them all dearly, but somehow the bobble headband managed to steal my heart. 
We plan a little photo-shoot when we have everything ready, and honestly, I cannot wait for it!

The pattern is here

Friday, July 10, 2020

Lace Crochet - Origin & Short History


The sole mention of lace crochet makes my heart skip a beat. As a sworn lover, I find it wondrous and beautiful to look at and wear, with intricate, versatile and fragile designs that breathe out a notion of the past.  

There are two theories about its origin:  it originated in Arabia, spread eastward to Tibet and westward to Spain, from where it followed the Arab trade routes to other Mediterranean countries, and the second is that it comes South America, where a primitive tribe was said to have used crochet adornments in rites of puberty. 

It appeared in Europe in the 1700s, in the hands of Ursuline nuns who had learned the technique in France, where it had developed as a shortcut for making Venetian point needle lace. More about the history of crochet here.

The most famous and prominent type of lace crochet is Irish crochet.  Irish Crochet Lace was traditionally made with a very fine steel crochet hook and fine crochet linen thread, though modern Irish Crochet lace is made with mercerized thread. More on Irish crochet here.

I have used lace crochet for many of my jewelries, accessories and my halter tops, and now I am on a mission to start making more elaborate garments. 

The two pictures show my use of lace crochet. The tablecloth is a dear heirloom. My grandma made it for me - she actually made two of these with different designs and this one is simpler in appearance, with a plain surface and enriched border. This type of crochet is called filet crochet - something she was immensely masterful at.  

What type of crochet are you most attracted to?

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Summer Necklace - free crochet pattern


This is quite different from the freeform crochet necklaces I am getting ready, but I had the design for this necklace for such a long time, and actually planning to post it at the beginning of spring, as a "welcome spring" post, but alas, not everything turns out as planned. 

Nevertheless, if you like it, here's the materials and the pattern: 
* sport yarn and a 1.9mm hook (UK 3) (US 5) 
* sewing thread in color of the necklace (preferably)
* sewing needle for sewing the flowers and beads on, tapestry needle for weaving ends.
Optional: glass / pearl /seed beads, sequins.
Stitches: chain (ch), chain space (ch-space), skip (sk), slip stitch (sl st), single crochet (sc), half double crochet (hdc). 
American terminology used.

Leafy necklace
Foundation and row 1: Ch40 and starting from 2nd st from hook, hdc1 in all sts across (39). 
Row 2: Ch3, turn work, sk1, sc1 in next st. Repeat this pattern across. There should be 19 chains. Cut yarn, tie a knot and weave the tail.
Row 3: We are going to work the leafy part now. With necklace face, up front, insert same yarn into the 7th ch-space and ch10 (5 for the stem and 5 for the leaf), sl st1 in 2nd st (of the 10 chain), next hdc1 in next 2 sts., sc1 in the next. One leaf made. Next, ch10 again and repeat the above pattern for the leaf. Repeat this once more but this will be the ending leaf, so crochet the leaf pattern, but after the sc stitch from the leaf, sl st1 in the existing stem 3 times. From there, ch5 and work the leaf pattern. When the leaf is done, sl st again in the same st you started the leaf, sc1 in next 2 stitches and when you come to the leaf on the other side, sl st in that st too. Sc1 along the stem for 2 sts, sl st in the third (where you'll begin to make the next leaf) ch5 and work the leaf pattern. Repeat working the stem and leafs until you reach the ch-space. Sc1 in the ch-sp. We will call this "the side branch". Sl st in the st dividing 2 ch-spaces and from there, ch 3 (thus here we skip this ch-sp.) and sc in the next st dividing ch-spaces. Sc in next ch-sp and ch10 for the next "leafy branch". The two central branches are a little longer than the side ones. You repeat the same pattern for this, except that you add an extra leaf, so instead of 2 on each side +plus the central one, you make 3 on one side (+central one) and 4 on the other. When you are done, repeat the chaining part. After the third branch, work the pattern for the side branch. Finish as for all branches. Cut yarn, and work the tail. 


Flower pattern: Ch3 and hdc1 in 1st st. Ch3 and hdc1 in 1st st of that small petal, then sl st in very 1st st. Repeat this pattern 3 more times, each time sl stitching the petal in that very 1st st. Make as many as you like. I made 8 - 2 on each branch. 

Work on the arrangement of the flowers that appeals to you. Sew the flowers on. Decorate with beads if you want to add a bit of soft glam. 

Insert yarn at the side of the necklace and chain as many as you deem necessary so as to make the tying adjustable. Finish it by using the leaf pattern, so it ends with small leaves. 
Do so for the other side. 


Do let me know if you make this. I would love to see it!

Monday, July 6, 2020

Crochet Inspiration - Namaste & Crochet


Dominique Calvillo, the driving force and the creator of Namaste & Crochet, is using her knack for crocheting to shed light on the importance of art therapy. 
In building her clothing line, she hopes people to see beyond the product and recognize the power of meditation and art therapy. 

 "Amidst the daily hustles of life along with constant stimulus and distraction, It’s easy to forget to take a moment to center the mind and spirit. Sometimes we are diverted from pursuing the art and passions that are in our heart to create, for fear that no one will understand, that it will be poorly received or that it isn’t important enough to make. It’s easy to belittle our gifts and place them low on the priority list. I hope to encourage others to let go and let themselves be healed by their creative expression. It is my personal belief that if God has given someone a creative gift, not only is it a gift to the soul of the creative, but also to those who will experience the creation.  Sure - not everyone will resonate with your art but you never know how your expression could speak to someone or remind them of their own connectedness to the divine."

Apart from working on her brand, Dominique, invests herself in aiding organizations that work with women who are being reintegrated from human trafficking and need a way to support themselves and their families. One day she hopes her clothing line will benefit the lives of women affected by human trafficking.

Dominique on Instagram



Saturday, July 4, 2020

Beaded Bohemian Necklace


Hello all! How's your weekend going?
Here, I've been swamped and taken over by beads and sequins and I still cannot fathom the size my collection has grown during the years. 
As it happens rather often with me, this necklace was the last to be made, but the first to be finished with the beading. 

With this one, I stepped away from the freeform crochet I've been working on, to design an effortless crochet necklace using simple stitches and believe it or not - this design does not go beyond chains and hdcs. Can you believe it? And yet - the result is an interesting gypsy necklace that doesn't reveal the simplicity of design.  

Well, that is all for now. Have a wonderful Saturday!