This piece is one that I finished recently where I’ve attempted to impart the colours of Australia into a woman’s handbag…. the purple blues of the sky, blue greens of the ocean & the vibrancy of our fascinating bush in its winter glory. Freeform crochet Gum leaf motifs, red bullion gum blossoms, metallic buttons, an assortment of beads & Vilene patches were melded together to create this Australian inspired piece… a medium size women’s handbag lined in a Royal Blue satin, with sturdy twisted cane recycled/repurposed handles – you can find this bag in my Etsy Shop
This is a delightful rainbow freeform handbag…. as cheerful & vibrant as crayons from childhood, don’t you think? The freeform fabric was built over a strong mesh base, lined with a bright, port-wine satin & has recycled, polished wooden handles
Size: 23cm (9”) at top tapering down to 28cm (11”) wide x 28cm (11”) deep (not including handle) – Handle: 14 cm (5 ½ ”) high
This piece is available for sale in my Etsy Shop
This is another piece I made some time ago after finding a pre-existing synthetic bag base to which I attached this glowing Autumn toned freeform fabric created with Gum leaf motifs, bullion Gum Nuts & Vilene patches.
It’s a medium size bag lined in a soft, coffee satin with 2 internal pockets (one with a zipper closure, the other for your glasses). The handles are sturdy cane, with a secure zipper for closure across the top.
Size: 35.5cm (14”) wide x 21.5cm (8 ½ ”) high – handle height 11.5 cm (4 ½”).
Available for sale on Etsy
This Filet Crochet Tutorial has been a long time coming &, to those of you who have been waiting for it, please accept my apologies… I have to admit that writing the instructions in ‘plain speak’ for easy understanding proved to be a bit more challenging than working the actual technique itself…
Filet crochet lace is possibly one of the easiest techniques to master. Most of you will recognise Filet as fine lace like items such as: curtains, tablecloths & runners, or ground fabric for Irish lace motifs traditionally worked in cotton thread with a steel hook… it’s delicate, old-world & lovely.
However, if you take it a step further, Filet also makes a fabulous ground fabric for your Freeform motifs, or scarves & shawls, when worked in 8 ply (or your yarn of choice) with an appropriate hook – traditionalist may cringe at this but most of you know my approach by now… I like to mixed it up & give anything a try…
In any case, whether you want to work traditionally or venture out & experiment, the basics for Filet are the same… I hope this comprehensive tutorial gives you everything you need, from reading charts to working an armhole on a vest, & becomes a good reference point that leads the way into this age-old technique.
Patterns are presented to the reader as charts or grids instead of written patterns so with a bit of graph paper you can even create your own designs if you have a mind to.
You can purchase the pattern from here,
The Filet crochet tutorial (17 pages) takes you through the basics of Filet Crochet in both written (UK & US terminology) & diagram form & covers the following:
- How to read charts (graphs) – (pg 2)
- Determining the number of chains required for foundation chain – (pg 2)
- What is a Space, Block, Lacet & Bar– (pg 3)
- Stitch Abbreviations – (pg 3)
- Stitch Guide (written & drawings): slip st, dc (US sc), tr (US dc) – (pg 4)
- Stitch Guide continued: dtr (US tr), trtr (US dtr) – tr decrease (US dc decrease) – (pg 5)
- Basic Filet Mesh Lace (written, diagram & drawing): spaces & blocks – (pg 6)
- Basic Filet mesh lace continued: Lacets & bars – (pg 7)
- Shaping: increasing space at beginning & end of row – (pg 8)
- Shaping continued: decreasing space at beginning & end of row, increasing block at beginning & end of row, decreasing block at beginning & end of row – (pg 9)
- Shaping for Garments: increasing blocks at beginning & end of rows – (pg 10)
- Shaping for garments continued: increasing spaces at beginning & end of rows – (pg 11)
- Shaping for garments continued: decreasing & decreasing blocks at beginning & end of rows – (pg-12)
- Three super easy projects to get you started
- Book Mark (chart & photo) – (pg 13)
- Scarf (photo & chart) – (pg 14)
- Purse – (chart, photo, written, diagrams, drawings) (pg 15 to 17)
Those of you who are familiar with my work will know how much I love working with colour; experimenting with unusual colour palettes, taking risks with different combinations & always testing the boundaries of what’s considered the norm in regard to ‘what goes with what.’ All those old sayings like, ‘blue & green should never seen’ ‘contrasts must never sit side by side’ are just that, old sayings, & I take little notice of them… hence I’m always on the lookout for yarns that incorporate unusual & interesting colour combinations.
Recently there’s been a trend for gorgeous variegated yarns with striking & long colour changes, of which Noro & Mini Mochi, to name a couple, being particular favourites of mine. So, imagine my delight when I found ‘California’ by Cleackheaton (100% wool) at my local yarn store… I purchased some balls right away but must admit, after initially making some headbands & a beanie a while back, a couple of which sold quickly, I allowed them to sit idle in my stash for some time until I remembered I still had some left over somewhere.
I had in mind to make a bag… & perhaps I was feeling a little lazy that day… Aussie summers have a habit of doing that… but instead of going through my stash looking for colour combos, I asked myself if working with just the ‘California’ would work & decided to give it a try … the colours are rich & bright just like our Aussie summers… Oh, but the black is extra… here’s the result & there was enough to make another headband… not bad for working with just one yarn type eh?…
‘Fern’ & ‘Bouvardia’ by Moda Vera (both wool, acrylic blends) are also great finds but I still need to think about those & what I’d like to do with them.