Amulet Bags

thread crochet necklaces and candle holders

So you’ve seen me crocheting necklaces, and purses; now here is both at once. Amulet bags go around your neck so you can carry something special close to your heart: a lucky penny, a crystal, a ring you can’t wear on your hand.  Or you can carry something practical like a spare key or bus fare.  The beads make a nice texture; come over and feel it at my next show.

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Candy Corn

Knitted candy corn hat

Hooray for silly hats!  I knitted this candy corn hat out of acrylic yarn.  I made it to go with a skirt I made in candy corn fabric.

Candy Corn skirt and hat

It is one from my collection of summer skirts, which will make their debut this weekend at Hydra Comic Con.  They are knee length, with a nice twirl, and most importantly: two pockets.

Victorian Beaded Purses

two crochet beaded purses

Having some fun designing with beads.  These reticules take quite a while to crochet, because the stitches need to be tight enough that nothing can poke out through the holes (even a bobby pin, or the tip of a pencil).

The grey and black one was a commission, which also included these matching gloves.

crochet fingerless gloves

Printed Canvas Waistcoat

dandy damask vest

I have made many waistcoats for men over the years, but this was my first one with piping going all the way around.  Piping is made by sewing bias strips around a narrow cotton cord, and it provided the purple edge you see in these pictures.

back lacing on vest

The back laces up, 1830s style, for decorative adjustability.  And here you see close up, my painstaking matching of the printed pattern.

matching printed damask

lacing tabs with grommets

 

Extreme Pattern Matching

When setting out to make a garment, one way to increase the level of difficulty is to use a patterned fabric instead of a solid color. The designer needs to make the stripes, dots, or other motifs line up nicely on the body of the wearer.  This project is an example of a pattern matching challenge.

Sewing lines on brocade fabric

Normally one would draw a sewing line with a black pencil on light-colored fabric, or use a white pencil on dark colored fabric.  When presented with this high-contrast brocade, neither black nor white pencil would show up against all of it; so I had to use both pencils and trace each pattern piece twice.

The person requesting the garment wanted me to use both sides of the brocade, so I had the challenge of matching the pattern not just to itself, but to its flip side, balancing the slight difference between the two.

Matching brocade on seamsMatched brocade pattern on pant leg

These are a pair of trousers, and here you see the pattern was carefully matched up each leg. With that accomplished, there came one more hurdle.  Extra pockets were to be placed on the sides, like cargo pants.  Somehow the pocket’s pattern had to blend in with the two brocade patterns already present, even though the pocket is a different grain.  Here is my design.

crochet pocket over brocade pocket

The crochet rectangle on top of the cargo pocket is not just a decorative element, it is also another pocket.  I made it the ideal size to hold ID or business cards.  If you want to make a card pocket like mine, use a V stitch in Speed-Cro-Sheen (a stiff cotton thread about size 3).