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Archive for the ‘wire crochet’ Category

If the image at the left looks like a large blob of grocery bags, you’re halfway correct. It’s plastic bags cut into strips to make a “material” suitable for crocheting.

This weekend I went to another craft day at Lissa’s house with two other craft-a-teers. Learning to make plastic bags into a big ball of yarn that could be crocheted into just about anything I wanted is one of the things we did together. Carrie was the “pro” at the idea, and she and Lissa demonstrated how to fold the bags then cut them with a rotary cutter. While they folded & cut, I attached the strips together, making my very own ball of very plastic yarn. Now to figure out what to do with it. Carrie had a couple of bags she’d already made which were really cute, and Lissa was working on one for herself. I’m sure I’ll make a bag out of it, but I don’t know yet if I want to look for a pattern I like or just wing it. I guess time will tell what this plastic glob will become.

Among the other things we did: a knit hat was finished and we all checked the washer when it was time to see how much it had felted, a pair (actually a single) flip-flop was attempted to be made with some very thick jute, and we all crocheted and knitted, whichever was our preferred way of doing things at the time. We also talked, laughed, munched, and had an overall good time.

Jenn was a little late so she missed out on the plastic glob yarn making demonstration and the felting, but she jumped right in and started working on a market bag she’d been crocheting. I was totally delighted when she said she thought crocheting was so much easier than knitting and that she may just have to switch back to it. Now I don’t feel all alone when I bring out my hook and yarn. It’s good encouragement for me to start going to the Wednesday night “knitting” group again since she’s usually there as well.

Too, last time I was at craft day, I took a few of the things I’ve made over the year. One was a really pretty wire crochet bracelet done with gold wire and golden-hued beads (liked the one shown at the right). It was gorgeous, if I do say so myself, and I gave it to Jenn. She told me when she arrived this last time that a friend of hers wants me to make a couple of bracelets to try to sell in her store. How cool is that! So, in the next couple of weeks or so, I’m going to add some wire crochet projects to my WIPs.

All four of us decided we were going to try to get a table together at a couple of upcoming craft fairs in our area for the holidays. One can’t be signed up for until the first part of September and the other I need to call on and see what information I can find out. It’ll be my first  shot at a craft fair, and having a few other people to hang out with and craft with doesn’t hurt. I’m looking forward to it. Not only are my crochet WIPs going to grow in the very near future; my other crafty venues are going to get some attention as well.

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Marbles Wire Crochet Bracelet – Tutorial/Pattern

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Below is a list of tips I’ve found helpful when crocheting with wire:

  • Relax. If you can crochet with yarn and thread, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to crochet with wire. If you’ve never crocheted with thread, practice with that first to get used to handling something way thinner than yarn. Size 10 is recommended.
  • Know that wire isn’t as forgiving about mistakes as yarn/thread is. If you try to frog it, you’re either going to break it, or just end up with a very fragile piece of wire that will more than likely break sometime down the road. Having said that, it’s sometimes easier to cover up a mistake using wire.
  • Start out using inexpensive wire in a thin gauge. I’ve found that 28- and 30-gauge work best for me. A thicker gauge is sturdier for some projects, but it’s a lot harder on the hands–and hooks. Hobby Lobby has some cheap wire that is great to play around with. If you decide you’re going to stick with it, try purchasing wire from Artistic Wire. It’s a bit more expensive, but you won’t be disappointed.
  • Wire doesn’t wrap around your hand and move as smoothly as yarn does. You will probably need to find a comfortable way to hold the wire that allows it to move, as well as keeps your tension consistant.
  • Good lighting can make all the difference in the world.
  • If making an item that uses a lot of beads, thread more than you think you’ll need onto the wire before you begin. That way, you don’t stand the chance of running out before you finish your item. Too, be sure to thread the beads in the opposite order you plan to use them if you want them in a specific order.
  • There is no right and wrong. Find what works for you personally and run with it!
  • Most of all, have fun!

There’s also a couple of books out there that I recommend. One is Crochet with Wire by Nancie Wiseman. It has some great projects in it, and it’s easy to understand. Another is Crochet Jewelry by Sophie Britten. It’s a really fun book with 35 different jewelry patterns–some in wire, some not.

Of course, there’s always the almighty internet, although I’ve found very little on-line on the subject of wire crochet. I’m sure there’s more, but here’s a few links I’ve found:

          Crochet Wire & Bead Bracelet
          “How-to” With Wire
          Wire & Bead Crochet Instructions

Personally, I think that part of the beauty of wire crochet is the “fabric” created with the wire. In many cases, it’s as pretty as–or even prettier–than the beads chosen for a particular piece.

Have Fun & Happy Wire Crocheting!

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I created this wire crochet bracelet for my mom for Mother’s Day. The name “Marbles” comes from the beads, which, to me, look a lot like marbles. I plan to write out a pattern for this, since it’s fairly quick and simple. It will be posted in the near future.

Marbles - braceletMarbles - bracelet

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