Posts Tagged ‘flowers’

No. 10 Crochet Cotton Flowers are Perfect Quilt Embellishment

Tuesday, November 1st, 2016

Evolution of Minimalism, by Suzann Thompson, detail

I wondered and planned and fretted about how to strongly stabilize a quilt so it would hold up a bunch of crocheted flowers.

As it often happens, my projects change as I work on them and begin to understand how they are developing. So instead of my original plan of crocheting flowers with yarn, I decided to crochet with No. 10 crochet cotton. The flowers turned out to be so light, the quilt didn’t need extra stabilizing. Yay!

My collection of Aunt Lydia’s No. 10 crochet cotton had the perfect colors to make the “Five Point” flower from Crochet Bouquet (above), and “Forget Me Nots” from Crochet Garden (below).

Evolution of Minimalism, by Suzann Thompson, detail

You can use crocheted flowers to embellish bed quilts, too. To attach them, use sewing thread to sew all around the flower’s edge. Tack down the flower center. Use your judgement whether you need to add more stitching between the center and the edges of the flower.

Most of the time, sewing thread disappears between the loops of crochet, but use a sewing thread that closely matches the color of your crochet thread or yarn, just in case.

The wall hanging is called Evolution of Minimalism. You can read more about it at Suzann’s TextileFusion.

Evolution of Minimalism, by Suzann Thompson, detail

Three Stories, Three Stories

Wednesday, October 12th, 2016

TextileFusion wall hanging, Three Stories

This wall hanging is called Three Stories, and I also have three stories to share with you in this post.

First Story

I’m putting together an exhibit called “Celebrate Doilies!” which will run from July through September 2017. The exhibit will feature photos of doilies and stories about their makers.

For the next several months, I will be collecting photos of doilies and stories about them and the people who made them for the exhibit, which will be at the Cross Timbers Fine Arts Council, River North Gallery, in Stephenville, Texas.

This means that if you have family doilies hidden away in drawers or proudly displayed in your home, I would love to hear from you. This blog post has lots more information.

To learn even more about how you can join in this project, visit www.textilefusion.com/doily-heritage-project and click here to see a sample doily story.

TextileFusion wall hanging, Three Stories

Second Story

The three stories of the wall hanging called Three Stories are the stories of the filet crochet house, the vintage quilt top, and the doily that I cut into quarters to embellish the corners.

I picked up the cute filet crochet house from Ebay. It may be a placemat, a table mat, or a chair back cover. Whenever I find vintage crochet for sale, I consider it having been released from its previous story. My job is to give it a new story.

Same with the vintage quilt top—I found it at an estate sale. The piecing and stitching are far from perfect, but the overall effect is charming.

The white doily in the corners is also from Ebay. The thread is small and the stitches are firm and well-made.

We don’t know anything about the people who made these things or what their lives were like. It’s fun to imagine the history of the doilies and the quilt top.

Three Stories and other wall hangings that feature doilies will also be part of my exhibit next year.

Third Story

Three Stories seemed a little plain to me, so I decided to fancy it up.

How? With crocheted flowers! And buttons!

A couple of crochet flower books I know came in handy. I crocheted “Sweetheart Rose” from Crochet Bouquet, and “Twirl Center Rose” and “Paired Leaf Frond” from Crochet Garden.

I arranged them in an old-fashioned garland-y way and appliqued them to the quilt during last Sunday’s Dallas Cowboys football game. The Cowboys won and Three Stories is finished.

Next, I’m looking forward to hearing your doily stories—one, three, or however many you have!

TextileFusion wall hanging, Three Stories with Twirl Center Rose

Red Vases with Crocheted Flowers

Saturday, August 6th, 2016

This is Red Vases, my latest crocheted flower wall hanging.

step by step TextileFusion wall hanging, Red Vases

How many flowers and leaves from Crochet Bouquet and Crochet Garden can you spot? Many are the samples that appeared in the books. I’m glad to finally find a place for them.

My friend Peggy suggested adding beads to the Bluebells from Crochet Garden. What a great idea!

step by step TextileFusion wall hanging, Red Vases

Read more about the making of Red Vases at Suzann’s TextileFusion, beginning, middle, and finished.

What are you doing with your crocheted flowers?

Millefiori from Crochet Bouquet Explained

Thursday, June 25th, 2015

Crocheted Millefiori Motifs

“Millefiori” on pages 25-26 of Crochet Bouquet: Easy Designs for Dozens of Flowers offers small flowers in five different petal shapes. Four of the petal styles are joined with a technique that gives an attractive and neat finish to warm the cockles of your crochet heart.

“Rounded Petals” is shown in the photos. In the book, patterns for “Pointy Petals,” “Rounded Petals,” “Baby Stars,” and “Heart-Shape Petals” should refer you to page 15 for finishing instructions.

Here’s how joining the petals works.

Crochet Millefiori Motif Tutorial

Following the instructions in Crochet Bouquet, crochet four or five petals in the shape of your choice (Photo A). When you’re done with the last sl st, cut the yarn, and pull the yarn straight up out of the last sl st.

The petals are numbered to keep track of them more easily.

Crochet Millefiori Motif Tutorial

Thread the final yarn end into a tapestry needle. Arrange the petals face-up. Beginning with petal 1, skim the needle under the visible loops of the first ch st of the petal and the final sl st of the petal as in Photo B.

When I say visible loops, I mean the ones you see as you look at right side of the petal. They are just one loop of the chain plus one loop of the sl st.

Crochet Millefiori Motif Tutorial

In Photo C, I have skimmed the needle under the first and last loops of petals 1, 2, and 3.

Crochet Millefiori Motif Tutorial

I pulled the yarn through the first three petals, and in Photo D, I’m skimming it under the loops of petals 4 and 5.

Crochet Millefiori Motif Tutorial

Tighten the yarn end to draw the petals together. Once again, skim the needle under the first loop of petal 1 as shown in Photo E.

Crochet Millefiori Motif Tutorial

Take the needle through the base of petal 1, from front (right side) to back (wrong side).

Crochet Millefiori Motif Tutorial

Tighten the yarn end once more, tack to secure the yarn, and weave in the end (Photo G).

Crochet Millefiori Motif Tutorial

If you haven’t already done so, weave in the end at the start of the flower. Take a moment to stretch the petals from side to side before blocking.

These are truly quick and easy flowers.

Crocheted Millefiori Motifs

You Can Pre-Order Crochet Garden!

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

Crochet Garden by Suzann Thompson

Just on a whim, I checked at Amazon to see if my new book is for sale yet. It is!

Crochet Garden will be released in May 2012, but you can reserve your copy by pre-ordering it at Barnes & Noble or Amazon.

This is the first time I’ve seen the cover, though the cover may change between now and next spring. This cover shows several designs from the book:

  • “Sulfur Butterfly”
  • “Samarkand Sunflower” in the O of ‘Crochet’
  • “Grandmother’s Windmill Flower”
  • “Trillium and Fronds” (the fronds are the stems of the flowers)
  • “Russian Picot Daisy” featuring a little-known vintage crochet stitch
  • buds from “Pinks of Any Color”
  • another Trillium
  • “Candy Cornflower”
  • “Pasque Flower”
  • and half of a “Mini-, Midi-, Maxi-mum”

I am looking forward to May!

Crochet Bouquet is About Variety!

Saturday, July 23rd, 2011

Polymer Clay for Everyone, by Suzann Thompson

When I wrote Crochet Bouquet and my first book, Polymer Clay for Everyone, I wondered about my readers’ favorite colors. Would they like bright colors? Pastels? Dark colors? Browns and tans? Metallics?

The answer seemed to be YES. Think of any color, and somebody, somewhere, will love it. To please all the somebodies, everywhere, I set out to include a wide variety of colors and color combinations in my books.

The plan worked well for Polymer Clay for Everyone. The cover shows bright projects, but inside the book, every one of the color groups I mentioned (and more) is represented in the many different projects. By “and more” I mean glow-in-the-dark. My scary, bloodshot, glow-in-the-dark eye ball necklaces were brilliantly captured by photographer David Sherwin.

Crocheted Triple-Crowned Flower

With Crochet Bouquet, I ran into a snag. Early in its childhood, the Art Department at Lark Crafts decided that Crochet Bouquet’s “look” would be bright and happy, with crisp white paper and designs with bright garden colors. And of course, it’s beautiful. I’m glad they chose the bright, happy look.

I did crochet some designs in browns, metallics, and darker colors. I feel a little sad for those pretty designs, not being included in the book. So here they are. This is their moment to shine. I hope you like them.

These brown and cream flowers are called “Triple-Crowned.” You may recognize the petals as Trimmed and Picot Off-Center Rounds from pages 27-28 of Crochet Bouquet. They’re sewn to a 15-dc circle and then the “crown” is added.

I made these with luxurious Crystal Palace Yarns: Party, Popcorn, and Cotton Chenille (the red/orange crown on one of the flowers). The feathers were from my parents’ guinea fowl. One Triple-Crowned is embellished with Mill Hill bugle beads.

Crocheted Stacked Flower

The Stacked Flower is made with Loopy (pages 57-58 of Crochet Bouquet) and the Large Star Flower (page 92). The other flower in the stack didn’t make it into the book.

The large specimen was crocheted with Plymouth Yarns Alpaca Boucle and decorated with feathers from the craft store. The small flower is made with Coats Aunt Lydia’s Fashion Crochet Thread, size 5 (metallic). The medium sized Stacked Flower is Louet Euroflax Sport in brown, black, cedarwood, and green.

Would you like me to post the instructions for Triple-Crowned and the Stacked Flower? (You’ll still need Crochet Bouquet to make Loopy, the Large Star Flower, and Off Center Ovals).

(Polymer Clay for Everyone is out of print, but you can usually find it online. It was published in England under the title The Polymer Clay Sourcebook. Same contents, different cover. Oh, and also in France! Same contents, different language.)

Reader Project!

Friday, November 14th, 2008

Thank You Note with Crocheted Flowers

Susan, who blogs at humblethreads loved the idea of decorating greeting cards with crocheted flowers from Crochet Bouquet!

She made this one as a thank-you note for her daughter’s swimming teacher. She crocheted “Petal Arches,” “Large Fancy Five,” “Small One-Row Leaf,” and a couple of “Millefiori” from embroidery floss. Floss is a great choice for such small motifs, because of its wide range of colors.

After experimenting quite a bit, Susan settled on this attractive arrangement. On the inside of the card, she stamped “Thank You” with a rubber stamp from Michael’s.

Susan has several other creative projects in the queue, including a crocheted flower bouquet, which she will put into a beautiful carved frame, and a bulletin board ‘picture’ which features changing combinations of flowers around the edge.

Watch this space for more Crochet Bouquet Reader Projects.

Flower Crochet Workshop at the Taos Wool Festival

Sunday, July 20th, 2008

Millefiori from Crochet Bouquet

Fall is an especially beautiful time to visit Taos, New Mexico. The mountainous backdrop, the golden trees, and the pretty buildings look especially clear and warm in the autumn sunlight. If that isn’t enough, the Taos Wool Festival comes to town around the first weekend of October.

I’ll be teaching a Crochet Bouquet workshop on Monday, October 6, where we’ll make several flowers from my book. Participants will learn applied crochet embellishment, ribbon flower technique, how to use padding threads, and how to join a line of petals into a perfect round. We’ll design one or more flowers in crochet, using critical observation, shaping techniques, and crocheted details that add to the realistic look. I will present many ideas and examples for using crocheted flowers.

Crocheted maple leaves, by Suzann

On Sunday, October 5, you can learn to crochet my beautiful oak and maple leaves. They are stunning, and will amaze your friends and relations.

Go to http://www.taoswoolfestival.org/Workshops.html for more information (including how to register) on the many workshops offered as part of the Festival, October 1-11.

The Wool Festival itself is October 4-5, with fiber and textile vendors, fiber animals, contests, and good food. It’s a treat for the senses.

I hope to see you there!

* * *

In other news, my friend Cari Clement, Director of Fashion and Design for Caron and NaturallyCaron.com yarns, is also running a flower crochet along. The project is a stunning sunflower, designed by her assistant, Liz Walsh. Check it out at Cari’s Naturally Caron blog. http://blog.naturallycaron.com/2008/07/02/stitch-a-summer-sunflower-with-lizzie/, and subsequent posts.

Showers of Flowers is an Amazing Yarn Shop

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Showers of Flowers

A week ago today, I saw Showers of Flowers for the first time. Everything I heard about it is true! Amazing! Enormous! The owner Sharon Sturm is a wonderful hostess and a veteran flower-crocheter. Jinger, the store manager, worked hard to promote my Crochet Bouquet book-signing, even creating the fabulous banner below in addition to all her other duties.

Crochet Bouquet banner at Showers of Flowers

We had a small but enthusiastic crowd for the book-signing party. I talked for a while about the making of Crochet Bouquet.

Columbine from Crochet Bouquet

Since the columbine is Colorado’s state flower, I demonstrated how to finish the crocheted Columbine on page 49 of Crochet Bouquet. You’ll probably recognize the colors from last post.

Shelly Rose from Crochet Bouquet

Then I showed how to gather a Shelly Rose (page 68). It’s one of my favorites, because it is so simple to crochet, yet it is such a stunning flower when finished.

Sharon put out a spread of delicious snacks. Really, it was enough for everyone to have an evening meal! Her husband, Bob, worked alongside her.

Sharon Sturm

Showers of Flowers started a number of years ago, when Sharon badly broke her leg. During her long recuperation, she started crocheting flowers to put in flower arrangements. Everything grew from there. It’s a lovely story of turning a set-back into something great.

Sharon’s arrangements are displayed throughout the store, and if you only glance at them, you would think the flowers are real. Kits are available, which include the silk greenery, yarn, and pattern. Here’s a photo of her geraniums, in the evening sunlight. Aren’t they pretty?!

How Color Happens

Sunday, June 8th, 2008

Filet Center-or-Not and two Large Ray Flowers from Crochet Bouquet

Even as a kid, I noticed and admired color. I must have been seven or eight years old, when I decided to study it. Ever since, that’s what I’ve done.

the scraps that inspired the flower colors

Color inspiration happens all the time, if you just watch for it. I was weaving yarn ends in a few days ago, piling the trimmings together. I glanced at the pile, and wow! The combination of peach and dusty coral and burgundy took my breath away.

I had to crochet some flowers in those colors right away. First, I looked carefully at the scrap pile, to see the proportions of the colors. There was a lot of peach and coral, some variegated yarn, and just a tiny bit of burgundy. Proportions are important.

Large Ray Flowers (page 31) and a Filet Center-or-Not (starts on page 21 of Crochet Bouquet) were perfect for a multi-color experiment. You can change colors however you want, either following the pattern, or following your own instinct.

And when your color instinct talks, listen to it! You’ll find color inspiration in all kinds of places.

Speaking of inspiration, how about this flowery tractor? We saw it in Knox City, Texas.

flower tractor in Knox City, Texas