What I did at the weekend

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This is a piece for a specific project which I will blog about at the end, but I wanted to show you a small piece that I have made that I really like for once.  I wanted to work with the citrus green and fuschia pink scheme – given to me in this challenge project that I am doing.  So, at the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace last month I bought half a metre of a really beautiful figured silk chiffon in those colours (plus several more):

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(Not a great photo but you get the idea).  While I was at the show I came across a stall selling discontinued patterns and was looking for dolls, but came across this for two pounds:

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Another horrible photo, but again you get the idea.  So I thought I would make a neckpiece using the centre pattern:

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The photos are getting worse, but bear with me.  I could have made up my own pattern but for two pounds it seemed worth the investment to get something smooth and symmetrical.

So I bondawebbed some white felt to the fabric:

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and tacked the edges down over the felt:

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Then I made some fabric beads by rolling strips of fabric, either lovely wool felt scraps with fabric or thread bindings or the base fabric rolled to make sort of straight croissant shapes.  The thick satiny bits gave it body and the chiffon bits gave it shape.   Here’s some of the fabric I used to make the beads:

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Then I mixed the fabric rolls with glass and ceramic beads that I had previously collected.  I particularly love the big green beads that look like peas:

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I think the secret with this sort of work is to cram as much in as you can – more is more.

Finally, I made a couple of ties by plaiting thin strips of the base fabric and making little tassels on the end.  I backed the piece with more white felt and stitched green glass beads around the edge with blanket stitch to secure the backing:

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The finished piece is really heavy, which I like.  I don’t know if I will ever wear it, but it would make a great neckpiece for a kaftan.

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This gives a better indication of the colours.  I really enjoyed doing this.  It was quick to do as the fabric beads are so bulky.   I think I might make some more, and might even think about wearing them.

I have been trying to think about why this piece delights me so much, because I really like it and keep picking it up to feel the weight of the beading.  I don’t usually work with green as I don’t much like it as a colour, but I do like the zingy contrast of the chartreuse and the magenta.  The colours are so saturated that they are a delight for the eye.  Colour therapy, bead style.

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12 thoughts on “What I did at the weekend

    1. I just fancied doing a neckpiece – since the menopause I get a green line round my neck if I wear some chains so fabric seemed a way forward – this might be too heavy to wear though!

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