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The Wide World of Crafting, April Style

04/17/2007

That’s right boys, girls and other things; it’s time for another installment of “What’s Going On in the Wide World of Crafting?”

Crafters and Artisans Who are Shiny

First, I would like to direct your curious little eyes over to a triad of wonderful Etsy sellers, beginning with Roundrabbit.

Color and texture.
Color and texture.

Roundrabbit, with ceramics, fulfills all my little dreams from way back when I was a gawky little high school student throwing clay around during lunch period. I wanted to make wearable pieces but never quite managed it, and certainly never with the style and elegance of Roundrabbit’s work.

Cutest Heart Ring Ever
Cutest Heart Ring Ever

Take a look at her store for tons more gorgeous colorful and textual work, but leave this piece alone. That one’s for me, as soon as I can afford it (which might be a while).

* * * *

1ofmykind is an incredibly unique jewelry artisan even on Etsy, which overflows with unique jewelry.

For the Fairy in You
For the Fairy in You

She mixes gorgeous glass and/or stone pieces with carefully shaped antiqued metal to create intricate works of filigree’d masterpiece. I can see her work complementing equally well a pair of old jeans or an evening gown, thus giving maximum jewelery mileage.

Sparkles!
Sparkles!

I’m hoping to own these some day. I’ve really been wanting some blue earrings lately- oddly, even though I make endless earrings of every sort, I never kept a blue pair for my own.

* * * *

If the awe in which I hold my aunt’s work is any indication, I’m a sucker for fine beadwork. How anyone could have the patience to wrangle tiny glass seed beads into sheets of bead “fabric” is a concept totally lost on me, much less work those tiny little bits of patience-testing eyesight-straining glass evil into gorgeous pieces of art like these:

Red Red Rose
Red, Red Rose

This is the work of Foreverflowers, French Flower Bead Artisan extraordinaire. I would love to learn the techniques behind these things and how she manages to apply them to so many different flavors and forms of flowers- from roses to hibiscus, from iris to strawberries. They really are quite remarkable.

Pink Hibiscus
Pink Hibiscus

In a side note, after a few years at the Colorado Renaissance Festival, I’ve started a collection of unique roses -perhaps the only collection I have, if books and craft supplies don’t count. I’ve got a gorgeous metal one and one hand-carved out of wood with astounding detail; I’ve got one made in wax and bushels of long-dry real stems (any weekend I come home with fewer than three roses from three different people is a disappointment). At the fair I’m missing only the leather roses and those made of glass; should I manage to add a beaded piece from Foreverflowers, my collection will be complete.

(*cough*Hint hint future suitors*cough*)

Shiny Ideas I’d Like to Try

Speaking of French, take a look at this: Chez Plum has assembled a handy dandy glossary for translating French knitting patterns into English. This is a godsend, should you believe in such things (I don’t, so I’ll call it a Plum–send and bow before her mighty knitting intellect instead).

I Would Like to Knit This, but my French is Weak
I Would Like to Knit This, but my French is Weak

And where, you may ask, do you find good French knitting patterns? Allow me to take this opportunity to remind you of the online pattern/tutorial lists I maintain, linked to over on the right. Why, I even have a “Nonenglish” tag in the knitting section wherein all the French patterns I’ve found and adored are hidden (though I believe most of their links need updating)! I particularly love this one, and finding Chez Plum‘s wonderful glossary has moved it up to the top of my “to-knit-when-I-can-buy-the-yarn” list.

* * * *

Sublime Stitching has released new patterns recently, which is always a cause of great lust for me. This release, however, has a twist: the lovely Jenny Hart did not design all the new packs herself, but instead pulled in an independent artist in hopes of creating a line of patterns from the up-and-coming artists of the day.

Oh, Sublime Stitching, I love you so
Oh, Sublime Stitching, I love you so

Now if you’re on the internet you probably know Kurt Halsey, and if you’re on Livejournal you’ve definitely run into his work somewhere, even if you didn’t notice it. Now you can embroider his art onto anything you can stick a needle through (and some things you shouldn’t)!

Jenny’s other newly released patterns are typically awesome. I particularly love the Bon Voyage set. Designing a bunch of embroidery patterns, particularly for such a big name in the crafting world, would be quite the experience. Hmm. I’m artist-y, right? Pick me!

* * * *

I love this project so much it isn’t even funny. I adore it. I want a whole nest of them right now.

Catch Your Own Sunshine
Catch Your Own Sunshine

From the wonderful mind of not martha, homemade sun jars! They’re little lights in little jars which have solar panels to charge up during the day so they can glow softly through the night to bide we lovers of Helios through to sunrise. A row of these on a windowsill would be so evocative- to me, they speak of fireflies and magic.

* * * *

And that’s a good overview of that which has caught my mind and imagination this week. Will the inspiration never end?

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