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Ric Rac Rose Roundup

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ric rac rose

I’m absolutely in love with this simple technique for making dainty fabric roses, and as promised yesterday, I wanted to share links to my favourite tutorials, and a few tips along the way.

ric rac roses

Firstly, I came across 3 different ways to form these roses.

1. One length of rick-rack rolled up.
This technique is especially good for making rosebuds (like the ones in the photo above) and using up shorter lengths of ric rac. Here’s another blog with beautiful necklaces made in this way.

2. Two lengths of rick-rack twisted around each other and then rolled up. (here’s another tutorial)
This is the technique I used for my roses. The only difficulty is unwinding the twined ric rac which has a tendency to twist around itself.

3. One length of rick-rack folded in half and then rolled up.
This technique produces roses that look just as nice, but I’m not sure I’m adept enough with an iron to be able to press ric rac in half. Perhaps there’s a trick?

I had never realised how much fun ric rac is! So many sweet colours to choose from…

ric rac
ric rac
ric rac
ric rac

Tips

– I used 5mm ric rac, which makes dainty, relatively shallow roses. When I tried with 1cm ric rac, I found the rose was too tall.
– You can sew your rose if you like, but I think a hot glue gun is probably faster.
– Pretty hardware will make these roses even nicer as gifts.
– However, you can easily slide one onto a bobby pin for a pretty hair accessory, or a paperclip to make a bookmark.
– If you have hot glue strands on your rose, just hold a blow dryer over it and they’ll melt away.
– I made the purple rose with two shades of ric rac twined together, which produces a really nice effect.
– With furled petals I think the roses look rather like ranunculus (see my orange flower above).

ric rac rose
ric rac rose

I hope you enjoy making these flowers as much as I have! And don’t forget to finish your gift off with a printable gift tag

ric rac rose

15th March, 2012  // How To // tags: , , , .

Watercolour Gift Tags & Card

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I made these to accompany my Mum’s birthday gift. Perhaps you’ll find them handy? Especially if you’ve forgotten that it’s Mothering Sunday this weekend, which I’m sure you haven’t! There are two gift tags and a card which you can print out and customise.

watercolour gift tags

You can use an image-editing program to add text to the front of the card, although I think some ink calligraphy would make the whole thing look more hand-painted and less inkjet-printed. Print them on cardstock if you can, and if you’re like me and diligently save tiny lengths of leftovers, use them for the tie.

watercolour doodle & flower

Doodling with watercolours is almost as relaxing as knitting, as long as you don’t try too hard. I’ve particularly been enjoying this ebook: Fearless Watercolours.

DSC_3567

Here’s another way to use your gift tags. These little roses are shockingly simple to create for last-minute gifts, party favours or just for yourself. I have prepared a post about them for tomorrow so don’t miss it! :)

14th March, 2012  // Downloads // tags: , , , , .

Free Pattern: Fringe Arm Warmers

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fringed arm warmers

FRINGE ARM WARMERS
Queue on Ravelry

This project may be even simpler than the Bow Pouch. Great for a beginner knitter, and great for experienced knitters looking for something super-quick, cute and mindless. :)

I’ve seen fringed arm warmers in a few photos around the web and I really like the way they look. Things that swish and sway as you move are so much fun to wear (especially if you ride a bicycle!).


If anyone knows what show/designer this is from, please let me know!


Tassel Arm Warmers (£13.00) from River Island.


Fringe Arm Warmers (£12.00) from ASOS


Cashmere Fringe Gloves from Minnie Rose.

I feel like these arm warmers would work with many different styles, from mori girl to cowgirl to rock chick. They’re so simple to make that you can knit several in different yarn weights and colours. I look forward to seeing how you’ll knit & wear them. :)

instructions

YARN: Approx. 120m / 130yds of DK/Worsted weight yarn
NEEDLES: 4.5mm (US 7)
GAUGE: 16 sts / 32 rows over 10cm / 4in
FINISHED SIZE: 8cm / 18cm (+ 15cm fringe)

CO 33 sts (26 for armwarmer, 7 for fringe) using knitted cast on method, leaving a 20cm / 8in tail.
Work in garter st (knit every row) until piece measures 18cm / 7in (or desired length).
Cast off 26 sts, cut yarn, leaving a tail long enough to sew seam + 10cm / 4in.

fringed arm warmers - 1

Unravel remaining 7 sts*.

fringed arm warmers - 2
fringed arm warmers - 3

Fold arm warmers in half. Using cast off tail, mattress stitch along fringe edge. Work one stitch in from the fringe, or things get loose!
fringed arm warmers - 4
fringed arm warmers - 5

Don’t bother weaving in the ends. Just trim them to the same length as the fringe. You can cut your fringe loops open, or leave them as they are, it’s up to you.

fringed arm warmers - 6

All done, now make another!

fringed arm warmers - 7

TIP: If you can’t be bothered to swatch, just cast on as many stitches as you think will be enough to go around your wrist, then a fourth of that number of stitches again for the fringe. The fringe will end up about twice as long as it looks when knitted. Then if your armwarmer ends up a bit big, unravel a few extra stitches for the fringe and trim the fringe to length.

* It seems illogical that knitters would have so much fun unravelling their own knitting, but unravelling on purpose is so incredibly satisfying!

12th December, 2011  // Downloads // tags: , , .
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