11th June 2013
I have to admit that up until recently macrame would have been at the end of the list of things I wanted to hang on my walls – to me it brought back memories of mildewed brown pieces I found by the dozen in thrift stores when I was growing up. One particular macrame find – an owl made out of twine – comes to mind. But as proof that tastes and trends come full circle if only you give them time (I bet that owl is fetching a pretty penny at some hip vintage boutique right now) I’ve recently found myself with a a taste for this (not so) forgotten art. Case in point – my friend Jess recently bought the most gorgeous wall hanging on Etsy (the one you see below), complete with pops of neon to lend a touch of modern cool. After I saw it I was desperate to know more about how these pieces are created – and was so happy when May of Himo Art agreed to give me the run down. May has done an amazing job of bringing macrame out of the 20th century into the here and now (perfect for recent macrame converts like me) and I’m thrilled she decided to give us a peek at her – what turns out to be pretty complicated – process. Time to brush up on your knotting skills kids!
- 70 yards (approx 63m) of rope
- a wooden dowel
- painters tape
- acrylic paint
- large wooden beads
1. May attaches the dowel to a wall – she’s using removeable hooks because it’s a great way to not have to drill holes into the wall.
2. May cuts the rope up into 14 x 4 yard pieces and 2 x 5 yard pieces. She then starts tying the rope in larks head knots, bookending the dowel with the 5 yard pieces (one on each end).
3. May continues with the rest of the ropes.
4. She then does a double half hitch knot.
And continues these all the way along.
5. When she gets to the end, May starts to tie them diagonally along the ropes.
6. May adds wooden beads here and there before tying the knots.
8. She then begins tying switch knots using 4 ropes each.
9. May ties 8 of these.
9. She then adds a double half hitch knot (as before).
10. And brings those along diagonally.
11. May adds more beads and brings the knots all the way to the ends.
12. May then trims the ends of the rope.
13. She covers off a section of the ends of the dowel to paint and add a hint of neon (a woman after my own heart!)
14. Finally, she adds a pop of watermelon colour to the ends of the ropes.
And there you have it, a gorgeous macrame wall hanging. I for one can appreciate the work that goes into these pieces – not a craft for the fainthearted or ham fisted!
Make sure to check out Himo Art for her other amazing macrame pieces.
2nd April 2013
With a litany of summer festivals around the corner, Coachella being just the first of many, it’s time to start planning our festival ensembles. I’m super happy to be provisionally booked in for Glastonbury again this year (although a freelancer can never plan too far ahead) and I’m going to be making the most of the opportunity to wear my silliest kit – fringe, frills and capes included. I recently had a crack at upgrading a simple knitted sweater to a festival essential – the fringed knit. Perfect for throwing over the top of a pair of denim cut offs when the sun goes down. This technique for fringing can also be used on a number of other items too – you could add it to the bottom of a skirt or around the neckline of a dress – winner!
- A loose weave knit
- Leather/rope or wool (I used leather)
1. Start by cutting the leather (or other material you are using) into pieces around 1 meter/yard long. I cut about 50 pieces.
2. To start your fringing, fold a piece of your chosen fringe material in half.
3. Loop it through the wool at the top middle near the neckline. Pull tight to secure.
4. Continue with this down the side of the sweater in a triangle shape – mine was great because it had the triangle in the pattern already – if yours doesn’t you can always use chalk to mark it. This is the point at which you may need some good (or bad) tv to watch as doing the fringe can take some time, but it’s definitely worth it!
5. Finish by doing the other side, making sure to mirror the pattern and angle. Voila!
I recently worked with one of my favourite brands to bring you a super cool festival inspired DIY (*cough sequins cough*) which I’ll be showing you in the next month so stay tuned.
28th March 2013
Easter has got to be hands down my favourite holiday – I used to love the annual easter egg hunt when I was younger, but sadly as I grow up it becomes less and less appropriate for me to get cover my eyes while my boyfriend hides them around our tiny apartment in Hong Kong. I was chatting with friend and creative Kit (she of the amazing macrame plant holders and pinatas!) about how we could mondernize the Easter Egg Hunt for a more mature (yeah right!) audience, and we came up with these ‘Treat Yo’ Self’ Easter Pinatas. So simple to make and the perfect Easter treat, read on for Kit’s easy as 1-2-3 tutorial!
Metallic streamers (we used silver and metallic pastel) or metallic cellophane (cut into tiny strips of fringe)
White and pastel card
Pastel crepe paper (we used pink and white)
Tiny Easter eggs
Pen or pencil
1. Print out the template (here) and transfer it to a piece of white card. With a ruler and pen or pencil, re-mark all the fold lines, then lightly score them with a Stanley knife to ensure that each fold is crisp and neat.
2. Affix strips of double-sided tape onto each tab (on one side of the template only). Trim the tape to size. Construct the pinata (the tabs should be stuck on the inside). Leave one panel of the pinata unstuck (so you can fill it with goodies!).
3. Cut a 15cm length of coloured twine and tie the ends together in a knot to form a loop. When you eventually close up the pinata, trap the knot inside and leave the loop hanging out. This forms a little hanger.
4. Fill your pinata with tiny Easter eggs and confetti (or any other lightweight bits and pieces you desire!). Close and seal the pinata.
5. Cut thin strips of fringe from the pastel crepe paper and metallic streamers. Along with our pastel pink or white crepe paper we made a metallic “feature” section for something extra special and glitzy.
6. Working one at a time, cover each panel with double-sided tape and then stick on the crepe paper (or metallic streamer) fringe. Work from the bottom of each panel to the top. When you are done, trim the fringe to the edges so each panel is neat.
7. Cut extra thins trips of metallic pastel streamer and stick double-sided tape onto one side. Cut the strips into tiny confetti-like segments. Stick each little segment in amongst the fringing on each panel in a random formation.
8. Fold a small rectangular piece of pastel card in half. Trim the opposite edge to the fold into a flag shape. Use a pen to write a cute message on one side of the flag. Using double-sided tape, stick the folds together, trapping a section of the pinata hanger string in between them. And you’re done!
Make sure you check out Kit’s website to get a glimpse at all her other amazing creations!