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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

ABC's of Creativity - Y is Yarn

Yarn is defined as a long continuous length of interlocked fibres, suitable to use in the production of textiles, sewing, crocheting, knitting, weaving. Since I’m approaching this from the beading angle, I’d like to present a few examples of how yarn is used as the carrier of beads and show a few examples of how the combination works. 
"Bobbles by the Yard" by Flo FLory
Project in A Needle Pulling Thread, Summer 2011

I’ve been told the beads have to be put onto the yarn before beginning to knit or crochet. This is something that needs to be prepared in advance. You can use and finer thread and needle to hook your yarn into a folded knotted thread OR use a split needle to catch the yarn and string seed beads for your project.
"Threading beads", Knitting with Beads,
VOGUE Knitting has an excellent intro to Knitting With Beads. There are two ways: random or planned placement called “beaded knitting” where the beads fall over the stitches rather than between them. There's the stockinette and the slip stitch method for single beads embellishment of knitting.
"From the wrong side", Kntting with Beads,
'From the right side", Knitting with Beads,
The other was is ”bead knitting” where the beads are placed between each stitch for a solid beaded look. I haven't found a video tutorial on bead knitting. Guess you'll need to take a class with Flo and learn from a master.

Knitting with beads was developed in the 18th and 19th centuries and used for purses of other elaborately decorated items. It’s called “bead knitting” or “purse knitting”. It is created by placing on bead between each stitch, so that the knitting stitches are completely hidden by beads. Intricate patterns can be created in bead knitting by threading beads in reverse of the design which  must be completely accurate.

"Hearts", knitted reticule by Flo Flory, ON
I have had an opportunity to get a closer look and feel at Bead Knitting through fellow Toronto Bead Society member, Flo Flory’s work. Flo designs and teaches bead knitting and was kind enough to come over with her beadwork when I was preparing an inspirational visual presentation, “Beadwork: The Most Versatile Art Form” in Oct. 2011. Better yet, it was great when we were able to pass around her finished knitting work during my presentation. Folks got to feel how soft and fluid the purses and accessories were. The larger the piece, the heavier it gets because uses glass Czech see beads for knitting. Haven't found a video tutorial on bead knitting. Guess you'll need to take a class with Flo and learn from a master.

"Looped Evening Bag" bead knitted bag with bead trim, 2011
by Flo Flory, ON 
"Sea Breeze  Bag & Bracelet, bead knitted bag and bracelet
by Flo Flory, ON
Project in A Needle Pulling Thread, Summer 2007
'Houndstooth" bead knitted zipper case, 2008
by Flo Flory, ON
"Magic Tube Necklace", bead knitted
by Flo Flory, ON
Beaded Tie, bead knitted by Flo Flory, ON
(l.-r.) "Teddy Bead,, 2005, TIe and Beaded Star, 2010r,
all bead knittedby Flo FLory, ON

There are a lot of video tutorials on adding a few beads here and there. See Theresa Grisnati’s tutorial of how to add a single bead into your knitting by using a crochet hook as a tool to add beads as you are about to for the knit stitch.

Theresa Grisnati, knit hat with bead embellishment. See youtube video

Bead can we used as trim in a knitted piece. There are many different technique for effects, but single space aout beads are the simplest embellishment. 

Beads and yarn also go together in crochet. My sister-in-law Lynn Wasylkevych crochets with beads on yarns for a soft hand and on wire for a harder edge where the beads appear to float, but that’s a different story.

"Winter on the Blue Ridge", by Lynn Wasylkevych, NC,
for a competition at a Bead Society, 2009

Detail of "WInter on the Blue Ridge". Crocheted base with wire crochet trim.
"Green Apples", bead crochet bracelet
by Lynn Wasylkevych, NC, 2009
Hope this blog gives you an appreciation of how well beads and yarn go together. It's yet another great way to show a little creativity.

Happy beading,

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