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Friday, July 28, 2006

Busy Bee!

Where does the time go??!! I've just worked out that I should be okay to do all the things I want to do if I have about another six lifetimes at my disposal or, failing that, I suppose I could make do with five at a push. I'm sorry that I haven't had time to drop by people's blogs for a few days as I've been so busy but that's next on my list of 'to dos' and it's one of the few 'to dos' that I really enjoy! Thanks for all the comments on my last post and I think I'd better start by answering questions that were asked as I don't seem to have had time to do that either! So, here goes.

Kelly asked if I had a wire jig. Well, Kelly, no I didn't have one but I do now and thanks for bringing their existence to my attention! LOL

Piglottie asked if Stash had any Handmaiden Seasilk. Yes, they did but not a lot when I looked as I'm told it had been flying off the shelves. They did say they'd be getting some more in though.

Piglottie also asked about my e-Shop. I'm hoping to work on it this weekend and get it up and running in the next week or so and I'm so excited that some of you have expressed interest in the jewellery and offered me so much encouragement. Peeps, you're the best! As soon as it's up and running, I'll let you all know my website address.

Now, just look what came in the post today! This is the beautiful spindle that I received from Stacey!

It's called 'Tribal Sun' and Stacey also included some instructions on how to spin and a very generous amount of fibre for me to practice with in my favourite colours. Thank you so much, Stacey! (This is where I do my enabling bit!) As well as the wonderful spindle designs she has in her shop, 'Made by Ewe', she has lots of yummy handspun yarn, too, so why not go have a look see?!

I also bought something that I've been intending to buy for some time and that's a Colour Wheel as I think it'll be invaluable for both knitting and jewellery designs.

One of the latest pieces I've made is this 'Rainbow' Necklace which is much prettier in reality than the photograph shows and is made from eight different colours of Swarovski Crystal Bicones interspersed with silver spacers and Gutermann beads with a star pendant as a focal centrepiece.

The star pendant I felt complimented the rainbow theme of the varicoloured crystals because, although it isn't exactly a light catcher, it does change colour as you turn it this way and that. No matter how many photos I took, none could quite capture the light reflection of the Swarovski Crystals or the subtle changes in colour of the star pendant.

As I said, I also bought a wire jig but, at present, it seems easier shaping the wire with the round nosed pliers as before and certainly easier with them at the moment to get uniform shapes/sizes. I suppose it's just practice, practice, practice. I made these practice earrings (left) on the jig but I'm not at all happy with them.

Despite the old adage that it's a bad workman who blames his tools, part of the problem is that I actually DO need the right tools now that I'm going into things in more depth so I think I shall have to make one or two more investments. It would also be somewhat helpful to use the gauge of wire that is recommended for the jig but I didn't have any and figured that the wire I was using would probably work out cheaper for practicing with as I was bound not to get it right first time!

Now, just to prove that this is still a knitting blog, I finished all the pieces for the Rapunzel baby cardi and they're now blocking on the kitchen table (hopefully they'll be blocked by the time DH sits down to dinner or else he'll just have to share the table with Rapunzul! LOL

The front and neck bands have now to be knitted in one piece on a 2.75mm circular needle which I didn't have so DH has kindly bought me one today in London in his lunch break. As the edges were so curled (being stocking stitch) I thought it might be easier to give it a blocking before doing the finishing. I got some lovely flower shaped buttons for it from C&H Fabrics and I also still need ribbon to slot through the eyelets of the edging.

I've finished the front (or back as they're identical) of the long top, too, but Blogger has decided I've had enough photos for today so you'll just have to wait to see that one.

Now, all I have to do is go get dinner ready and then water the troughs and pots in the garden after another sweltering hot day here in the Garden of England! Then I can relax and go blog visiting.


  • At 9:48 pm, Blogger Mary-Lou said…

    That little cardi looks very pretty!

    I've been meaning to buy one of those wire jigs, but haven't done so up to now. I was going to suggest that you need a thicker gauge wire for the earrings, if you're going to use the jig, but I also see that you've made a note of that anyway! Meanwhile, keep practicing with it, because I think it will come in useful for shaping the wire for the bracelet that Sue was wearing at last Maidstone Knitters meeting!

    Thanks for the enabling re the spindle - Emily wants to have a go at spinning, and although I know Jan said you could do it with found objects (ie the potato and cd), I think a proper spindle might be just the thing, especially since it's her birthday soon, so I'm off to have a look ...

  • At 10:14 pm, Blogger nanatoo said…

    Rapunzel is soooo pretty :)

    The spindle by Stacey is lovely too, and I keep thinking about a colour wheel as you know my abilities with colour ;o)

    The jewellery you're making is so good Hazel. If I had pierced ears I would HAVE to have those earrings!

  • At 1:19 am, Blogger Kelly said…

    ohhhh glad to hear you got a jig :) They are fantastic, you be pumping out beauties in no time :)
    Those butterflies in rapunzel are gorg!

  • At 8:43 am, Blogger Seahorse said…

    The spindle is rather jazzy!

    Rapunzel is going to be absolutely adorable!

  • At 9:35 am, Blogger Rain said…

    The jewellery is gorgeous as always. I think an online shop for it would be really successful.

    Rapunzel is adorable, the little butterfly motifs are very sweet.

  • At 11:31 am, Anonymous Silvia said…

    First up I am tired just reading what you have done!! Secondly I been meaning to get a Jig since last Christmas to make wire christmas ornaments..may have to do so now!!
    And last but by no means least that Rainbow necklece!!! The picture realy does not do it justice AT ALLI know as I am looking at the real thing right as i type. Hazel you are just wonderful and thank you so so so much for the Necklece it is a work of Art and I will wear it with pride!!

  • At 1:09 pm, Blogger acrylik said…

    Oooh, what a beautiful spindle! Looking forward to seeing the results of your spinning!

    As always your jewellery is just beautiful - those earrings are especially lovely! Please do let us know as soon as your website is up and running!

    The baby jacket looks gorgeous, looking forward to seeing it all sewn up.

  • At 1:40 pm, Blogger modelwidow said…

    I just love rapunzel, and your `practice` earrings are gorgeous, DD is coveting those as we speak! (I would too but have no holes to hang them from :-))

  • At 3:30 pm, Blogger Piglottie said…

    Thank you for answering my questions. I shall get some Handmaiden Seasilk one day (and have just noticed that kangaroo are also selling it!). Lovely spindle - and good luck on your adventures in spinning!

  • At 10:59 pm, Blogger dreamcatcher said…

    Love the cardi, so pretty :-)

    The earrings look great, even if you do need different tools really, they are a lovely shape and very "balanced".

    Great to hear your online shop is progressing in the planning.

    Love the silk you bought (previous post), Blogger wouldn't let me comment that day! A colour wheel is a great idea, there are lots of books on the subject too, I have one here *somewhere* which I've used to help me with websites colour schemes. BTW if you need any help with the website just yell!

  • At 11:01 pm, Blogger dreamcatcher said…

    And I forgot to say thanks ever so much for the link about downsizing garments. Oddly enough I'd thought about that kind of thing (steeking came to mind) when I first saw the problem. In the end I've decided I don't like it enought to warrant trying it out (and I've never really used a sewing machine beore LOL!) but definitely bookmarked the link.

  • At 9:09 am, Anonymous Dipsy said…

    I know I'm repeating myself, but I LOVE your jewellery! Seriously, it's certainly one of the most beautiful handmade ones that I've seen for ages! Whenever I come along something similar in shops, on fairs or wherever, I stop and have a look, but there's usually nothing half as lovingly made as yours! Looking forward to browse through your shop!
    Oh, Stacey's present is so lovely and thoughtful! And I'm totally impressed by Rapunzel, the butterfly-pattern is so very cute - I'm looking forward to see it all finished!

  • At 1:24 pm, Anonymous Annarella said…

    I know, this business with us having just ONE terribly short lifetime sucks, doesn't it??! Well, it seems you're putting to extremely good use every single second, if your creations are anything to go by. The earrings look lovely imo, they may not be what you had envisioned, but I really like them!! You're a natural!! :)


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