Wednesday, December 22, 2010

'Tomten' - An old Swedish Christmas tale

I guess everybody's busy, just like I am, working on the last caring preparations before D-day ...

But maybe you have a couple of minutes to sit down with a cup of tea, rest your legs and ease your mind - and enjoy this old Swedish Christmas tale, inspired by a poem by Victor Rydberg, later adapted by Astrid Lindgren and illustrated by Harald Wiberg - this is an English/American version of 'Tomten':

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Rock carving fragments/Viking comic

A couple of new fragments, which I would call 'Viking comics', as they show moving men and animals in action ...

Although I'm not quite sure if this first motif really is a Viking one ... With no doubth it shows reindeers, and this kind of carving is more likely to be of Sami origin - there are similar Sami pictures in the book 'People of Eight Seasons' by Ernst Manker, which I once borrowed at the Stockholm City Library. (More about the Sami people in this earlier posting.)

When visiting Sweden in spring, I went to the Historical Museum in Stockholm with my drawing pad and jotted down everything which caught my eye in this pictural respect.

At the museum shop there were some fabric prints too, and I think these sheep might be influenced by those prints ...

As far as I know, this last one is really a genuine rock carving found in the county of Bohuslän (Sweden), at Tegneby, Tanum:

The embroidery technique itself is not very spectacular - I just used the common basic ones in order to keep it as simple as possible and let the graphics of these ancient, unknown artists talk for themselves.

(My friend Elizabeth/Landanna wrote in her blog today that she'll be posting about 'helleristningar' (rock carvings) tomorrow or during the weekend - so why don't you pop over and have a look - I will for sure!)

(German summary: Drei ganz simple Fragmente, aus dem Bilderschatz der skandinavischen Geschichte - die dargestellten Tiere und Menschen, alle in Bewegung, lassen mich fast an ein Comic strip denken ...)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

A little extra for the third of Advent/Kleines 3. Adventsextra

Tomorrow is the 3rd of Advent, and I guess you might be busy baking ginger bread and making Christmas decorations. Last year I made simple yet quite nice snowflakes - and this is how you make them:

What you need is a packet of basic, white pipe cleaners (available at all tobacco shops) and a wire cutter (or old pair of scissors). The pipe cleaners mostly come in a packet of 100, they're not expensive, and as you only need 4 1/2 pieces for every small snowflake and 6 pieces for the big ones, you'll get a whole bunch of them - to hang in the window or in the branches of your tree - or on the parcels or greeting cards.

For the smaller ones, you cut up five pipecleaners into half, leave three halves for the base and cut up the rest into halves again (one half or two quarters being left over for the next snowflake). For the bigger ones, you cut a third off the basic three branches and chop up the remaining two ones into thirds, no leftovers there.

There's no glueing - just twist the branches once or twice to get stability, the same goes for the small branches.

And while you're doing this, you might want to listen to Bing Crosby and David Bowie in one of my very favourite Christmas performances:

Have a nice and comfortable week-end!

(German summary: Eine kleine Adventsbastelei für den 3. Advent - Schneeflocken aus Pfeifenputzer! Und ein wunderschönes Duett von Bing Crosby und David Bowie, zur Einstimmung auf Weihnachten. Ich wünsche Euch ein schönes und geruhsames Wochenende!)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Christmas Ornament from Julochka!

This very beautiful bird sat down in my mistletoe today - it was made and sent by Julochka in Denmark. She and I both participated in the Christmas Ornament Swap organized by Elizabeth/Landanna.

And as if this would not be enough, she also gave me another handmade ornament from the Philippines, where she had been travelling lately:

Oh, I do very much enjoy this swap :-), thank you so much, Julochka! Let's persuade Elizabeth to organize another one next year, too, shall we?

(German summary: Diesen hübschen, selbstgenähten Vogel habe ich von Julochka in Dänemark bekommen, als Teilnehmerin am Weihnachtsschmuckaustausch! Sehr nett, so ein Tausch :-)!)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Fiber scrap fragment/Restefragment

I have a glass jar, where I put all the threadends and fiber leftovers when working. When punching with the embellisher - which is, as I've said before, a wonderful recycling tool - I can see through the glass if there are any convenient scraps to use with the current project.

For this fragment, I've used a handful of threads from there, which I then bound with a couching stitch.

By the way, I think there are far more ways to encounter embroidery threads than visiting your local craft shop:

at hardware stores and building centers, you can find interesting packthread or rope, made out of all kind of recycling fibers, which you can use as a single thread for embroidery -

and at flea markets and thrift shops, you might find tassels or silk wired curtain holders, which do not only provide you with the outer layer of silk, but also with an 'inner life', possibly consisting of colourful recycled cotton or wool threads ...

At garage sales, you might also find unfinished embroidery kits, where the motif might be ugly but the threads most useful ...

The threads of linen fabric may consist of useful threads, and so can a ball of variegated sock wool or a supply of darning wool ...

There are a couple of earlier postings I wrote on this subject beginning here.

(German summary: Dieses Fragment besteht aus kurzen Restfäden, die ich beim Arbeiten in einem Marmeladenglas sammele - und wenn man die Augen offenhält, finden sich bei Baumärkten und Flohmärkten auch allerhand Fasern von aufgemachten Schnüren und Kordeln, die für's Sticken taugen ... Auch Sockenwollreste und aufgeribbeltes Leinengewebe sind nicht schlecht!)

Friday, December 3, 2010

When you wish upon a star - Christmas ornament swap

"When you wish upon a star

Makes no difference who you are

Anything your heart desires

Will come to you"

This week I finished the Christmas ornaments which I did for the swap that Elizabeth/Landanna organized. I made three stars - with a touch of snowflake! - all a bit different but all out of vintage jewelry (and a bit of brass wire) that I have been collecting without no specific purpose ... just thinking that the pearls were too beautiful to be thrown away.

I like this sort of recycling - turning something once cherished, now old and worn, maybe partly broken but with a certain distinguished charm - into something 'new' and special again, which might once again be cherished ...

When being flooded now at Christmas time, with all the ads and commercials about plastic fantastic things which we are supposed to give eachother as 'gifts from our hearts' - I certainly long for more of that old, recycled stuff - both for giving and for getting ...

(German summary: Für einen Weihnachtsschmuck-Tausch habe ich drei Sterne/Schneeflocken aus Messingdraht und altem Perlenschmuck gemacht - ich mag diese Art von Recycling, wo etwas einst Geschätztes jetzt in einer neuen Form wieder zu Ehren kommen kann ... mehr Recycling und weniger Neues wäre auch jetzt zu Weihnachten eine echte Wohltat, denke ich!)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Embellished Flower Fragments/Blumenfragmente

In the beginning of last summer, I tried some natural dyeing with raspberries and blackberries, freshly picked in my garden - I filled a glass with two handful of berries, put some wool roving, handspun threads and thin cloth in, added some water and let it rest in the sun for almost a week before rinsing.

Here I've used the dyed roving for the flower heads - the background is a piece of white industrial felt, which I've embellished with some extra wool roving to get a softer and more 'natural' feeling. The threads used here are self-dyed too, but not with the berries.

Next time I will try boiling the berries (or other plants) for a stronger colour - if you visit Carolyn Saxby's blog, you'll find her wonderful easy 'recipe' for natural dyeing here.

(German summary: Diese mal gibt's zwei Fragmente mit gepunchten Blumenmotiven aus Wollvlies, das ich mit Himbeeren und Brombeeren gefärbt habe: Zwei handvoll Beeren, Wolle, feinen BW-Stoff, Fäden und Wasser in ein Glas gegeben, eine knappe Woche in die Sonne gestellt, ausgespült, fertig.

Nächstes mal werde ich aber erst einen Sud aus den Beeren kochen, wie im
Rezept von Carolyn Saxby beschrieben, um eine intensivere Tönung zu erhalten.)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Fragments of two creatures/Zwei Tierfragmente

The fragments of today picture two rather important creatures in the Celtic world: the first one is a dragon - this specific one adapted from the 'Book of Kells' -

and the second is the fish, which was of course of high a value for the daily nutrition in the Wiking era. (The outlines for this very fish are taken from a rock carving.)

I've used a simple, rather heavy couching stitch for outlining the fish, and a combination of stem-stitch and couching for the dragon; the thread I've used for the dragon is a hand-dyed variegated one - I'm quite pleased with the bi-coloured effect it makes.

(German summary: Diesmal sind zwei Tiere bei meinen Fragmenten dabei: der Fisch und der Drache - einmal inspiriert von einer Felsmalerei, einmal vom "Buch der Kelten".)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Viking metal fragment/Wikingerfragment

I'm so excited about the fragment I did today, that I have to show it to you right away:

As so often, my inspiration was boosted when I read my friend Elizabeth's posting, where she had put a very interesting link to a historical documentation on Vikings.

What catched my eye first when watching the film were the metal helmets, and so I began stitching the outlines on a fabric fragment, using a couched split stitch. While working on it, I pondered which filling stitch to use - until I remembered having some beer can metal hidden in my stash - Irish beer, mmm ...

Then I added a couple of antique sequins and beads - and there it was, the Viking metal fragment!

Even if I'm aware of that I'm spoiling you rotten by adding yet another fragment - I think this one is so closely connected to the first, that I don't have much of a choice:

If you want to see the original rock carving - the picture is published on the homepage of Bornholm's Museum in Denmark and first linked to by Elizabeth/Landanna again - here is where you'll find it.

For this 'rock carving', I've used the antique sequins again, and the stitches are - well, a bit of free style.

If you have followed the link to the historical documentation on Vikings (which I can really recommend!) and maybe had a look at the rock carvings, too (interesting!) - I think you are now prepared to lend your ear to some Viking music as well ;-) ...

and I'm pretty certain, that if you don't happen to have a son that particular age, you've never heard this sound before - click to hear here (Swedish "Amon Amarth") and here (Icelandic "Tyr"). Give it a chance - it's not that bad when you get used to it :-)!

(German summary: Ein neues Fragment, für mich aufregend, weil ich es hier mit einer Art Metallapplikation kombiniere - Bierdosenmetall, recycled ... Es geht viel um das Wikinger-Thema, als historische Dokumentation, Runensteine, Metal-Musik ... bitte folgt einfach den Links!)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Moons and stars fragments/Monde und Sterne - Fragmente

I always found it difficult to appliqué a piece of round fabric to a background - until I suddenly realized I could draw a circle with a 'Magic pen' (you know, the one that disappears by itself or when sprayed upon with water) on the background, and then follow these outlines when sewing the fabric down ...

To me, these are moons and stars - but of course you could see them as dots as well - and if they are to be dots, I guess I should link you to Jude, who's done a lot of investigation about dots!

And then I started pondering (oh, I love that word - it has been used in several blogs lately :-)) - if the Magic pen-method would work out with a more complicated form - let's say a star - too ...

Well, yes, it does!

I must admit that the fabric chosen is extremely light and soft , but a person more accurate than I am could surely do this with a normal cotton fabric as well.

I worked grain stitches through all layers to fix the yellow gauze better to the background. Filling stitches, like the grain ones, turn out very nice with a variegated thread - and here you can use up a lot of short ends, too!

In this case, both the gauze and the threads are self-dyed - products of Sara's and my dyeing last summer - and as you may recall it was very hard work - so therefore I really honour every scrap of it!

(German summary: Für die heutigen Fragmente habe ich den 'Magischen Stift' - der, der von selber verschwindet - zur Hilfe genommen, um einen Kreis vorzuzeichnen und dann entlang den Konturen die runde Applikation festzunähen. Es funktioniert auch sogar recht gut mit einer komplizierteren Form, mit dem Stern.

Die kleinen Körndl- oder Füllstiche sehen besonders gut aus, wenn man ein Stickgarn mit Farbverlauf wählt - auch Reste sind da gut aufzubrauchen!)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Another fragment - and a gadget

This is another leaf fragment - this time I've chosen a more closed form for the embellished wool and I've also pointed out the outlines with a stem stitch.

The fine nerves of the leaves were done with a normal sewing thread, in order to get them real fine.

For the background I've used the coffee-tea-walnut dye once more - I find it's being very useful for 'oldening' the fabrics a bit.

Did you know that you can re-use your teabags and coffee filters for dyeing by just drying them after drinking and then using them for dyeing later on? And that all parts of the walnut tree - hulls, nuts, nutshells, leaves, bark, root - contain 'juglon' - the dyeing content of the tree. (I've learned all this in 'Färben mit Pflanzen' by Dorit Berger - and here is another link, where you can read about the herb walnut and its medical use.)

As I'm getting back a bit more into sewing and embroidering again - and finding my eyes are growing older (unfortunately not only the eyes ;-)) - I'm happy to have found a little helper for threading the fine needles.

Even if I'm not so fond of owning a lot of gadgets for every single purpose, this is one that I've really come to cherish - it's a Japanese made (Clover) half-automatic needle threader.

You just insert your needle in the needle slot, lay your thread into another slot, press the lever, pull the needle out again - and voilà! - by magic, your needle is threaded!

It's a mechanical little thing (no batteries!) and I cannot figure out how it functions - but it works! You can however only use quite fine needles for it - on the other hand, those with a big eye I can still manage without the gadget! In Europe, the price seems to be around €15.

(German summary: Noch ein Blatt-Fragment, diesmal eine geschlossene Form mit Stielstich in den Konturen und normales Nähgarn für die feinen Blattnerven. Ich habe auch ein kleines Gerät entdeckt, daß mir das lästige Einfädeln bei sehr feinen Nähnadeln erleichtert. Und dann hab' ich noch gelernt, daß man gebrauchte Tee- und Kaffeefilter für's Färben wiederverwenden kann und daß alle Teile des Walnußbaumes braun färben!)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Bayeux stitch fragment

In ancient times, when thread and yarn were rare and precious and you were eager to have as much as possible of it shown on the front side (and not to waste it on the back side), the Bayeux stitch was often used for covering the surface of a fabric in a decorative way.

This stitch is actually an old Anglo-Saxon variation of laidwork: on the front side, it ressembles satin stitch, but instead of letting the yarn pass across the reverse side, the thread is brought back up to front again very close to where it went down. A second layer is then sewn in intervals at a right angle to the first layer and held down with a short stab stitch.

All these three elements can be done with the same or with different yarns.

It's really quite simple to learn and gives a variety of possibilities in shading colours and effects through the different layers. (A useful link for working out the bayeux stitch is this pdf-tutorial by Jan Messent herself, presented by The Embroiderers' Guild.)

Here I've tried a fragment of it, using self-dyed mouliné for the bottom layer, a thin cotton thread (hand-dyed too) for the vertical layer and for the outline stitch, and finally a metal thread for the couching stitches.

My inspiration for this fragment had its origin in this posting of my friend Elizabeth/Landanna in Denmark, where she presents a wonderful book of Jan Messent, "Celtic, Viking & Anglo-Saxon Embroidery".

(Here you have another link for having a further look into the book.)

(German summary: Dieses Fragment zeigt den Bayeux-Stich, ein sehr alter angelsächsischer

Stich, der eine Art Kombination und Variante des Plattstiches mit dem Überfang- oder Bucharastich ausmacht - damals eine wirtschaftliche Notwendigkeit, heute auch eine vielseitige Gestaltungsmöglichkeit.

Bitte folge auch den links oben zu dem Buch von Jan Messent und zu meiner Freundin Elizabeth, die mich erst darauf aufmerksam gemacht hat!)

Thursday, November 4, 2010


What is our life if not a bundle of fragments - material ones, like our scraps and collections of things; non-material, like our memories, visions and longings ...

Still, fragments do not only give testimony of earlier greatness - they can also indicate the idea of what could become splendid and meaningful if pursued and attented to.

After my divorce about six weeks ago I haven't had much power to do other creative work than a bit of knitting - but now I feel it's time to get back to 'textile investigations', as I think Sara would put it.

Do you remember the 'whatiffing-project' quite some time ago?

I enjoyed that sort of experimenting with fibers and techniques a lot and would like to continue it, just changing the size and not necessarily connecting it with the embellisher, but to keep it open for all sorts of - mostly textile, of course - try-outs that strike me: fragments.

If you'd like to join in, please feel free to do so - in a similar or in a different way, whatever suits you best - it would be just marvellous to have a bit of exchange of ideas and mutual inspiration!

My concept would be to keep the material involved quite simple: using scraps and stash material, recycling paper and cardboard for the mounting, experimenting freely with whatever comes my way - and to present it at least once a week.

I chose the format of approximately 9x13 cm (3,5x5") for the fabric, or background, as I thought it to be neither too big nor too small for a sample and allowing you to mount it on a plain A6 standard card if you like (or later on even using it as an AMC or greeting card).

I found some linen and canvas scraps, and as they were far too white, I dyed them with some teabags, a used coffee filter and a couple of walnut hulls from the garden. After rinsing and drying the fabrics, I was most satisfied with their worn and 'ancient' look :-).

This first card is a leaf, not printed, but lightly embellished (dry felted) with wool roving onto the linen scrap, then finished-up with a couple of small stitches with a thin metal thread. The backing is made out of recycled cardboard (cereal boxes have the right paper weight!).

(German summary: Nach längerer Pause habe ich mich entschlossen, ein etwas abgeändertes 'Whatiffing-Projekt' zu beginnen - Fragmente, eben - kleine textile Experimente aus einfachen und schon vorhandenen Materialien, Stoffgröße ca 9x13, mit Motiven und Techniken, die mich gerade interessieren - vielleicht möchte jemand mitmachen?)

Friday, October 22, 2010


It' s getting more and more chilly in the mornings - autumn is finally here to stay. I made a door wreath with the rose-hips from my garden and keep the wooden fire burning in my hall.

I needed a small triangle scarf and knitted it with the colourful handdyed wool I bought from 'Dornröschen' earlier this fall - it's a 6-ply sock yarn.

As a small decoration in front, I knitted a woven part for the front by dividing the stitches within a square, knitting three cords separately.

Now I'm planning to start a bit of experimenting - with the embellisher and with embroidery techniques again ...

(German summary: Der Herbst hat jetzt auch bei uns endgültig Einzug gehalten und es ist kühl und nebelig in der Früh.

Ich habe aus Hagebutten einen Türkranz gewunden und schüre das Feuer im Ofen. Mit der dicken, bunten Sockenwolle von Dornröschen habe ich einen kleinen Dreikantschal gestrickt und ihn mit einem geflochtenen Mittenteil versehen.

Demnächst plane ich wieder ein paar Experimente mit dem Embellisher und mit Stickerei.)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Just a small addition/Kleines Postscriptum

I just want to add another crazy idea to my last posting:

Yesterday my daughter was playing 'Mikado' (also known as jackstraws or pick-up sticks) with a friend - and suddenly I realized they could become great knitting needles as well ...

I measured them - and do you know what? The small (normal sized) ones are 3,5 mm and the big ones 5 mm - just the same size as the barbeque sticks and the chopsticks! Isn't that a co-incidence?

Which means I won't get any new gauges with these sticks - on the other hand, I could turn it the other way round and do another Mikado sets with those waste barbeque and chopsticks ...

(German summary: Als ich meiner Tochter beim Mikadospielen zusah, kam mir der Gedanke, auch diese Stäbchen als Stricknadeln zu verwenden - allerdings stellte sich heraus, daß sie haargenau die gleiche Stärke wie die Grillspießchen und Eßstäbchen haben! Allerdings könnte man aus solchen wieder ein neues Mikadospiel machen ...)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Taking it further .../Selbstgemachte Stricknadeln

As I've been knitting a lot with my Chinese chopsticks lately - they have a very handy length for the knitting I'm doing right now and are comfortable to knit with - I thought I would like to present them once more ...

This time I've taken it a bit further - and I still find it to be a very easy and useful way to recycle your Asian take-away cutlery !

Using a normal pencil sharpener and a fine grain sand paper, you can turn your chopsticks into a pair of knitting needles (mine are about 5 mm). This time, I used some felt-tip pens to colour them, drawing the pattern with a waterproof overhead pen, then covering them with a thin coat of transparent varnish. As my varnish was water-based, the colours were a bit blurred - which resulted in a very handsome patina, all by itself!

I made a set of five very short double pointed needles too - using them as a stitch holder when knitting braids or other patterns where you need to 'park' the stitches in between -

and another set of five double pointed needles, for socks or hats knitted with medium thick yarn - this time I didn't colour them, just polished them with a bit of a wax candle to get them real smooth.

The smaller sized set above is made out of five wooden barbeque sticks - mine are 3,5 mm, which means they are perfect for normal sock yarn!

The effort of making these is almost zero, you can colour them any way you like to - and they would make a nice treat or present with a matching strand of yarn too, wouldn't they? And they are recycled!

(German summary: Weil ich so gerne damit stricke, zeige ich nochmals meine selbstgemachten Stricknadeln aus chinesischen Eßstäbchen (5 mm) und Grillspießchen (3,5 mm) - mit einem normalen Bleistiftspitzer und einem feinen Schleifpapier kann man sie ganz einfach so formen, wie man sie braucht! Am Ende bemalt man sie dann noch mit Filzstiften und etwas farblosen Lack - oder poliert sie nur mit einem Stück Kerzenwachs!)

Thursday, October 7, 2010


While searching for some tools, I found some forgotten nuts and O-rings in my toolbox ...

... and combined with a little of those self-dyed cotton threads and a single seed bead, they were suddenly transformed into a brooch - isn't that magic?

Where is your toolbox?

(German summary: Im Werkzeugkasten fand ich ein paar vergessene Muttern und Dichtungsringe - und Simsalabim: mit ein paar Fäden umwickelt, wurden sie plötzlich zu einer Brosche! Wo ist Dein Werkzeugkasten?)

Monday, September 27, 2010

It always starts with an egg/Am Anfang war das Ei

I've been doing so much spinning and knitting lately, that I've almost forgotten about the embellisher -

though I still think this is a most remarkable tool for 'painting' with wool and fibers, instant and direct, using all kind of fibers and recycling materials ...

Last week I sat down and played a bit with different shades and sorts of whites, 'drawing' up one of my absolute favourite forms - the egg:

I used wool and fabric, laces of all kinds, yarn and thread, beads and stones - there's even a knitted part integrated, and I embroidered some words on it as well, and crocheted and sew around the edge:

(German summary: Mit dem vielen Spinnen und Stricken habe ich ja fast auf den Embellisher vergessen - dieses dolle, unmittelbare und faszinierende Werkzeug, das Materialien aller Art auf problemlose Art miteinander verbindet - hier ein Ei, meine Lieblingsform!)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Hooked on those colourful African flowers/Kleines Häkelprojekt zum 'Drüberstreuen' ...

Oh dear, I can't help that I just have to start this little extra project as well ...

I read about the 'African Flower' pattern on Sara's blog and followed her link to the South-African Moxycrochet Project - and then I thought I'd try out just one of those little colourful flowers myself ... and I was literally hooked! The only comfort is that I can re-use some of those stashed yarns and yarn ends of mine ... (By the way, I think the only thing I'm not using my sock-wool for, is for knitting socks ;-)!

I don't know yet what it will turn out to be - thought of some kind of jacket, maybe ... if I can stick to it that long ... Or a fancy bag ... But seven of them, sewn together, would look nice as a small potholder - for a teacup or so - too, wouldn't they?

But faster than I can de-stash, I'm up-stashing again: I made the 'mistake' to have a look at Dornröschen's online-shop right after she'd done some new dyeing:

Well - what can I say? This parcel arrived yesterday! There will be plenty to spin and to knit now, during the long autumn evenings ...

(German summary: Tja, was soll ich sagen - diese kleinen bunten Blumen sind so entzückend, daß ich einfach ein kleines Nebenprojekt noch starten mußte ... aber mit 'lagerndem Material', zumindest! Und dann kam noch die frische Lieferung von Dornröschen ... da hab' ich auch noch ein paar Ideen für die langen Herbstabende ...)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

A bunch of shawls/Drei Tücher

Well, I haven't been quite as lazy as it may seem: Three shawls have been knitted during the last few weeks, and today the weather was fine enough to make some photos of them - my daughter Emily is the model with the beautiful back!

This first one (above) is knitted with a Schoppel Crazy Ball (Colour: Frische Fische) in a simple pattern, starting at the upper middle and proceeding as long as your yarn ball allows -

the second one is a variation on the same pattern idea, but this time knitted with a self-dyed yarn, one of my first experiments on variegated sock wool -

and for the third one, I chose a multi-coloured, hand-dyed silk- and wool roving which I bought from Dornröschen and then spun myself. This shawl is knitted in stockinette stitch from one side to the other, increasing (and after the center: decreasing) on one side only. As half of the fibers are Tussah silk, this is an extremely soft and delicate shawl!

(German summary: So, endlich sind meine drei Tücher fotografiert, die ich in den letzten Wochen gestrickt habe - einmal Schoppel Crazy Ball, einmal Selbstgefärbtes, einmal Dornröschen's Seide/Wollfasern, die ich dann versponnen habe! Sehr angenehm, sowohl zum Spinnen als auch zum Verstricken!)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Knitting gadgets/Kleine Helferleins

Last week I visited Ikea and found this piece of fabric:

I think it's quite interesting - makes me feel inspired to use as a background, or outlining, for using the embellisher and a bunch of wool and fabric scraps ...!

My mother is visiting me right now, which means I won't get too much time for blogging and posting within the next fortnight - but I did some more row- and stitchmarkers lately:

I must admit I love these little useful gadgets - especially when they are so easy to make yourself!

A few I will keep, others will be passed on to knitting friends!

(German summary: Nur ein paar Kleinigkeiten, diesmal - ein lustiger Stoff von Ikea, den ich als Hintergrund für Resteverwertung mit dem Embellisher verwenden werde - und ein paar Reihen- und Maschenzähler, die ich für mich und für ein paar Freundinnen gemacht habe.)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Recycling shopping gear/Einkaufs-recycling

While browsing the big web, I saw some tiny Granny squares put together to a keychain coin holder somewhere ... There was just a picture, no sale, no description - and I just cannot find it anymore.

But as I thought it to be a great idea, I've tried to crochet something like this by heart - especially as you are always in need for a coin for the shopping carts, at least here in Austria.

It's basically made out of two tiny, simple Granny squares, crocheted together with a loop for your key ring.

I used a crochet hook 2,5 mm and a bit of thin sock yarn, but a strand of embroidery yarn would do as well, I think.

The important thing is just about to cover the coin required and then crochet the two parts together on three sides.

(If your little bag should turn out to be a bit too big to hold the coin, you could always diminish it at the opening with a few stitches.)

Another thing which I wanted to try out for so long now, are these recycling purses - they are quite handy as a beach money bag - or holding a travel sewing kit - or tampons, lipstick, a small mirror ...

At least I know where I found this tutorial, it's from the Austrian recycling-artist Regina Lustig's homepage - it's a free pdf-download - in German, but the pictures are so clear, you'll understand it anyway.

And while we're talking recycling, this is the link to morsbags, where you'll find a free DIY-tutorial to easily sew the plastic-avoiding bag yourself!

(German summary: Eine kleine Münztasche aus einem Rest Sockenwolle gehäkelt, ein Geldbörsel aus wiederverwerteten Getränkekartons - und der Link zum Selbernähen von einer Stofftasche - voilà!)