Monday, May 29, 2017

Insta love: Crochet Girl Gang

Happy Monday guys! A couple of days between us and June eh? So exciting!

I feel so relieved when June comes and start to unwind gradually, mostly because school's out on the 10th and there is no grading, no homework, no projects, nothing. Except administration work. We get swamp with all sorts of reports and what not - you wouldn't believe the amount of boring stuff we have to do up to the middle of July, but all is done merrily because we do not get to be controlled by the hellish bell. Gosh! I just can't stop blabbing. Sorry about that.


Today I wanted to talk about an account I am happy to contribute to that is run by Emma Potter and it is called
Crochet Girl Gang.

Emma started the #crochetgirlgang hashtag on International Women's Day 2016 with a single-minded determination for creating a space for women to share their crochet makes in a happy, vibrant environment.

She says: "One year later and the hashtag now has over 100,000 amazing crochet pictures to its credit and almost 50,000 girls in the gang. It is an incredible community and I'm not just saying that because I created it, it really is.
The support from the gang when pictures are reposted is overwhelmingly lovely; girls saying congratulations to other girls, asking for patterns, sending love. Also if I get something wrong (it happens), it's so lovely to see that girls other than the image owner will pull me up on it, so cool to see that kind of community spirit. The #crochetgirlgang makes me happy every. single. day."

Join the happy community today and share some inspiration of your own.


Saturday, May 27, 2017

Bohemian Cuff Pattern: Mardi Gras


You are looking at my new bohemian cuffs and pattern I called Mardi Gras, which I am sure you can tell by the look of them.
The cuffs are going to be a part of my new summer collection that celebrates the esprit bohème, which is actually a continuation of my Frida inspired collection and traditionally, we cannot miss a summer without contributing to the celebration of the bohemian trend.
The pattern is very easy and a cuff can be made in about half an hour sans the beading that is. The beading is up to the maker / wearer although the pattern contains the exact number of beads I have used for it.
The pattern will be added to my shop and shop.
The cuffs will be available for purchase once the whole collection is ready.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Granny Square Motif - free pattern & chart


Good day!
We haven't had a crochet chart read out for quite a while, so I thought it is high time we have something new added to the How to Read Crochet Charts Series.
This is a granny square motif I found on pinterest and wanted to test my new variegated yarn to see how it goes with squares. It does have an interesting effect and while the rest of my family thought the square was  extraordinary I, being a granny square traditionalist felt a bit nah... so I will let it grow on me for a while, to see if I change my opinion. Understandably, I had to try it with solids and I like that light pink one much more.
Ok. So let's start. This is the chart.
And it reads this: (with my tiny variations simply because I have to add some and because some stitches do not make any sense {to me})
Ch12 and join to make ring.
Rnd 1: (in the ring) ch 3, dc2, ch1, dc2, ch3, sc1. Repeat this pattern 3 times more to finish the round. In the last set instead of finishing with a 3-chain, make 1dc.
Rnd 2: ch5, sc int 3-chain below, ch 3 skip 2 st and make 1 dc in the chain st between the dc sets below, ch 5 and dc1 in the same stitch, ch 3 and sc in the last 3-chain of the set. Repeat this pattern 3 times more to finish the round. In the last set instead of finishing with a 3-chain, make 1dc.
Rnd 3: ch5 and dc1 in the 5-chain below, chain 5 and make another dc in the same chain, ch 5, skip the 3-chain below and sc in the 5-chain. In that chain space, ch3, dc3, ch3, sc1, and repeat again the same pattern (ch3, dc3, ch3, sc1).
Repeat the pattern from the beginning 3 x. As before, in the last set instead of finishing with a 3-chain, make 1tr.
Rnd 4: ch 5, sc1 in the chain space below, ch 5 and sc in the 3-ch of the petal set, ch3, skip the dcs and sc in the end 3-ch. Ch7 (this chain goes between petal sets) and sc in the 3-ch of the second part of the petal set, ch3, skip the dcs and sc 1 in the very end 3-ch of the set. Repeat the pattern from the beginning of this round 3 times. 

If you join 4 of these, this is the look you are going to get. Lovely isn't it? The beauty of this pattern is that it is so easy and fast to make.
Happy hooking!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

5 Interior Design Trends for 2017 We Love

1. Greenery
Pantone’s color of the year – Greenery, set the trend for the interior design in 2017. The soft green symbolizes the desire to bring freshness in the home and emphasize closeness to nature and hence - rejuvenation and revitalization. Plants as the unique natural element are widely present in decorating the living place. 
2. Mismatched Patterns
The mismatching pattern trend that started in 2016 is having a huge swing this year too and it encompasses furniture, wallpaper, home décor and accents. What is popular? Large geometric prints showing strong lines, folk / native motifs, tapestry tiles or anything botanical.

3. Textures
Along with the mismatched patterns there are the textures. The manipulation of textiles like pleating and folding of cottons and velvets is gaining on popularity especially in trend are velvet sofas and armchairs. Interior designers recommend layering many different type of textures, from suede, linen and wool, to mohair and cashmere.

4. Granny Florals
What makes me almost giddy about this is the comeback of granny florals and other vintage patterns. They are certainly on the rise. Interior designers are incorporating these big vintage blooms via wallpaper and wall décor, throw pillows, rugs and more. But the blooming blossoms are not restricted for the home exclusively. They took over the runway too.

Source                                                              Source  
Source                       Source

5. What also makes me love this year's trends is the Blush tones. They are taking the throne off the neutrals. Powdery pink, terracotta, sand, ochre, cinnamon and rust will be all the rage this year.

Are any of these trends to your liking? Which one do you like the most?

Monday, May 22, 2017

"Peekaboo" by Ana Jecmenica


Happy Monday all!
Let start the week with beautiful things I say. Something to dictate the course of the week. 
Today I have the pleasure to introduce Ana Jecmenica, a young and talented designer who makes exquisite, OOAK jewelry.
Please introduce yourself in a couple of words.
It took me a long time to admit to myself that I am an artist and that I should refer to myself as such, considering that I design jewelry and lamps, do photography, draw and paint. So yes, I am an artist. Since I am quite shy I let my work speak of myself.

Peekaboo implies a hiding game. How does it relate to your shop? Can you tell us the story behind your brand / shop name?

The name was born some 10 years ago, when Internet showed up, when I was in a search for a catchy nickname for various forums. It came quite spontaneously  from a make-up catalog and it stuck with me as a trait. I liked it because it made people smile and it made them remember their childhood. It was a logical step to name my brand the same, because I always imagine someone wearing my jewelry breaks into a smile and says "Peekaboo!" : )


With your eye-catching designs featuring bold and expressive backgrounds and extraordinary use of clockwork material you bring steampunk to another level. How long have you been in jewelry design and how did it all start?
Even as a child I loved taking things apart to see what they are made of. Because everything in itself - just like people - contains so much invisible beauty that wants to be shown and expressed. I have been working on Steampunk for ages and it  always fascinated me how something so small and tiny can grow into something so beautiful and detailed. I simply adore details. The minute I learned about epoxy resin I wanted to try my hand at it. Seeing other people's steampunk work, I noticed they more or less use the same colors for their jewelry so I wanted to differ. At first, it wasn't my intention to stand out. I just wanted to add a little color into that world and I think I am successful at that for the last 5 years : )

What part of the process is the most enjoyable? Is there a particular place where you like to work?
I get old clocks from the clockmakers and antique shops, so my job is to take them apart and I can honestly say that is the most interesting part because I never know what waits for me inside. There were cases when out of 200 -300 clocks I would find a single gear different from the others and I always keep those for special inspiration. I am a perfectionist at work, and I always try to keep the balance and make everything centered while designing, hoping my buyers will notice that I had invested lots of effort, love and time making a particular piece. I work on a work bench in my flat and have never really thought if I loved that or not, but because now I started working with wooden jewelry, I will have to look up for a workshop. The whole creative process is immensely long and strenuous. Dismantling clocks, cleaning parts, choosing backgrounds, matching and gluing the parts, to be topped with applying resin that has to be dried for 24 hours. There mustn't be a mistake because there is no turning back. I cannot fix a thing once it is done. All this takes a couple of days, but when I see the final result and the reaction of people, I am truly happy.


Lately you started working with wooden jewelry. What triggered the transition from steampunk?
I am in love with trees, because the designs and the beauty nature offers cannot be replaced. I have worked with steampunk for quite a long time and I do not feel the challenge any more; I also think I have achieved an enviable level in quality and design so I sought new challenges. I have been working with wooden jewelry for a couple of months now and I am still researching all the possibilities it offers. For the time being I find it entertaining to match shapes and colors and my next plans include matching wood with steampunk.

What other materials you like to work with or would like to try in the future?
I keep to wood and gears for now, but my plans include introducing leather into my designs. Let's see where wood takes me first : )


Where does inspiration come from?
When steampunk is in questions, I find inspiration in myself. I sit and watch the parts until I have a picture in my head how to join them. If I lack ideas, I try another day. I never force myself because it always reflects on the final result.
As for the wooden jewelry  - inspiration is everywhere because colors and geometry are everywhere around us. 

How do you fill your free time?
I never make a difference between free time and working at home : )
Since I  have a full time job, when I get home I use my free time to make jewelry or make photographs for the shutterstock.
However, there are the long walks, hanging out with people, trips, my friends, sketching... I try to be out in nature  as much as I can because it fills my batteries and it is a great source of inspiration for me : )
I hope you enjoyed meeting Ana. Visit her shop and Facebook page.

Friday, May 19, 2017

A Tribal Mix - Crochet Tube Necklaces

Happy Friday all!
I have some exciting news to share today - we are preparing tribal mix kits that will include amazing variegated and solid colored cotton yarn and our tube necklaces pattern.  Tribal mix is the working title for the time being, because when I posted the tubes for the first time back in 2011 I said the inspiration came from the tribal necklaces African women wear.
I am immensely satisfied the way the color work goes and gets this look using a simple stitch. Ant the cotton is also perfect for this project, so this is a match made in heaven.
What do you think? What is your experience with variegated yarn? Also, what kind of projects use it for?
If you are new to the blog here's how the tubes progressed here, here and here.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

11 Delightful Pom Pom Projects

Pom - Pom Blanket Pillow

Pom Pom Blanket                                    Pom Pom Pillow
Boy, do I love pom-pom projects! There is something magical in those attractive little fluffy balls that suddenly make everything brighter and joyful and full of life! I have made quite a lot of projects using them - actually this post features four of my DIYs, but I am always on the lookout for new, exciting projects I can make myself.
So, I am sure you'll agree they are an instant beautifier added to plain blankets and pillows. An excellent choice if you need appealing decoration is to turn to pom-pom garlands, buntings or wall hangings for permanent display. 
Pom - Pom Decor
Pom-Pom Garland                                                  Wall Hanging
Pom - Pom Garland
Giant Pom-Pom Garland

             Pom-Pom Bouquet                                                   Pom-Pom Flowers        
Pom - Pom Bouquet
Pom - Pom Earrings
 Pom-Pom Earrings                                             Pom-Pom Necklace.
They also make unique statement jewelry and old sweater refreshers.

Pom - Pom Sweater
Have you got your next project lined up?

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Trending: Embroidered Shoes


The embroidery trend that started with the clothes, more specifically with the shirts and jeans, moved on or rather down to the shoes. And it couldn't be more beautiful. At least for me.
I love this trend and hope to find the right pair to spice up my summer. Embroidered footwear has a vintage vibe and it gives a strong statement  as such, yet is often meshed up with fashionable, modern shoe styles. For this post I chose mostly high heels, but you can find vivid, vintage and romantic embroidery on clogs, flats, sandals, pumps...
In case you missed it, the embroidered jeans post.



Monday, May 15, 2017

Anne-Julie's Nebulous Kingdom


Welcome to another inspiring Monday!
The artist I am going to feature today is an illustrator extraordinaire, whose world is an incredible, colorful and captivating tale I am sure you are going to enjoy. I first came upon her art journals and have immediately fallen in love with her illustrations and jewelry designs.

A small introduction of the artist in question: 
Anne-Julie was born in 1980 in a small town in Eastern France. While still very young, she developed a passion for art and crafts. She kept on creating throughout her teenage years to maintain her creative desires.
In 2001, this passion is embodied by her graduation of l'École de l'Image, Fine Arts school (Beaux-Arts) of Épinal, with a specialty in illustration.
In 2005, and after a few years to find her way, Anne-Julie became a freelance illustrator. She worked on commissioned orders for various publishers and her work appeared in various catalogs, books and magazines for children in France and all over the world. At this time, her style was exclusively colorful and dedicated to toddlers.
In 2006, she developed a world that has both a dark side, inspired by the adult she became, and one side bright and colorful, which is a kind of reminiscence of her childhood. Her inspiration comes from her everyday life, people she meets, but also from fairytales, nature, music and movies, and her dreams.
I first came upon her art journals and have immediately fallen in love with her illustrations and jewelry designs.
Explore her world further through her blog, Shop and Facebook.