I've always loved fiber, fabric and beads, and the more color the better! I started this adventure in creating doing needlepoint. Gradually I moved on to crocheting, knitting, quilting, counted cross stitch and beading. It didn't take long for the desire to combine all these wonderful things began to take hold. The first thing I thought of was needlepointing the front of a vest. I never have done that, although I still might some day. I think I'd use even count fabric rather than needlepoint canvas so it wouldn't be so stiff. Eventually, I began making jackets knitting the back and sleeves and using fabric for the fronts. The black one is the first one I did and it's still my favorite. I also made one with linen yarn and fabric (the second picture), which was published in the Salon section of Stampington's Belle Armoire.
When I began making knitted jewelry I used beads and buttons as I told you in my last post. But, soon I decided I had to use some fabric and possibly needlepoint canvas. The first idea I came up with was to knit I-cords and make a pendant and bail out of fabric. I decided to make folded fabric flowers and attach them to a base that I made from Timtex. I fused silk fabric to the Timtex and stitched the flowers down with beaded centers. I also added leaf beads in between the flowers. I fused the same fabric to Timtex for the bail. Then I was left with unfinished edges! Well, I decided to bind the edges with narrow bias binding. I used the sewing machine to stitch the binding to the Timtex first and then turned it to the back and stitched it down by hand. For a closure I picked up the ends of the I-cords on knitting needles and began a single I-cord, knitting for about 3 inches. I did this on each side. I then cut triangles from the same purple silk that I used for the flowers and stitched them into a bell shape. The bottom photo shows the closure.
Shortly after I finished this necklace I saw a posting about a wearable art show in California called Creative Expressions 2008. I had never heard of the show, but I decided to send in photos of the necklace just for fun. To my great surprise it was accepted!! There was an opportunity to sell the piece, and so, once again, just for fun, I agreed to put it in that category. Shortly before the show closed I recieved an email from the curator saying a collector of art jewelry had purchased the necklace!! To say I was both humbled and thrilled at the same time is an understatement! It was a wonderful experience!
Having used fabric, knitting and beads in that first necklace, I decided to make another piece and use some needlepoint canvas as well as knitting, fabric and beads! I had this wonderful knitting ribbon which had gold leafing on the ribbon. It's an interesting ribbon to knit with, but so cool I couldn't resist. I knitted the i-cord and a flower which I attached to the colored canvas with a dichroic button made by my friend TerrieVoigt (see my last post for a link to her website). Once again I used Timtex as a base. I covered it with a piece of gold lame fabric, which is something I often did when I made needlepoint Christmas ornaments. When you aren't covering the canvas with solid stitching it looks nice to have a color or some glitz showing through the canvas. I then covered the lame with the blue needlepoint canvas which I had stitched with a needle lace pattern and scattered beads. The flower was stitched in the middle of the the circle. For a backing I covered Timtex with a piece of the lame and hand stitched the two circles together. I then stitched blue and green lentil beads to the edge. I made the bail the same way I had made the other necklace, except that I used needlepoint canvas, and stitched an interlocking web pattern and scattered some beads on it. Once again, I lined Timtex with lame and covered it with the canvas. I finished the edges with narrow bias binding made with a hand marbled fabric I had gotten at a quilt show. I didn't want to leave the ends of the I-cord plain (life is too short not to embellish is my motto!) so I made stuffed tubes and attached them to the ends of the knitting. I then used the lentil beads to create a collar around the top of the tubes where they attach to the I-cords.
Both of the necklaces were really fun to create. The ideas evolved as I worked on them. I don't often have a completed design in mind when I start a project. I just have a general idea of what I want to do and the materials I want to work with, and I go from there. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. But that's all part of the fun!
Hope you enjoy seeing these pieces and thanks for visiting!