I visited Avon Stitchers, a group of enthusiastic crafters in Bradford Upon Avon, this week. As the name suggests, they are mainly into embroidery and sewing, so I thought I would try and use fabric on the Butterfly Loom.
Blue Fabric Daisy
Blue Fabric Daisy close
Blue Fabric Daisy closer
I took apart an old blouse and cut the sleeves into about 1″ wide strips.
I knotted the strips together and wrapped around my Small Butterfly Loom – I then unwrapped as I realised the ‘wrong’ side of the fabric would be uppermost when I removed it from the loom.
So, starting again, I wrapped the loom making sure the front of the fabric was face down on my board. I wrapped two rows then used embroidery thread to do the knotting, which I did in a daisy pattern.
Rummaging around in my box of bits & pieces I had small (11″) cushion and, rather conveniently, a piece of navy felt which almost exactly matches the flowers on my fabric.
I attached the daisy to the felt by simply sewing the 4 corners of the knotting (leaving the loops free) and then made an envelope style back for the cushion and sewed it all together.
I will be at Nottingham Yarn Expo at the Nottingham Conference Centre which is held over Saturday & Sunday. I will have lots of items on show and I will demonstrate how to make pom poms and daisy patterns and using crochet to join your squares together.
The Knitting & Stitching Shows are always popular and they are expecting a great turnout as usual, the Notts Yarn Expo is on its maiden voyage, but it has been very well received and looks like it will become an annual favourite!
By making just 2 motifs on the Large Butterfly Loom you can create this lovely pom-pom fronted cushion.
Loom used Large Butterfly Loom
Techniques used Knotting – Ladder & Cross stitch
Joining Double Butterfly Twist*
Materials 400g Aran weight wool
Cushion pad approx. 32x32cm
Wire dog brush (optional)
Follow Basic Wrapping and Knotting in the Instruction Booklet.
Front – Make one motif by wrapping 9 rows. Use the ladder knotting techniques.
Back – Make one motif by wrapping 6 rows. Use the cross stitch knotting technique.
Hold wrong sides together and using the Double Butterfly Twist* technique join the front and back together, when 3 sides are joined insert the cushion pad and complete the joining. (* If the yarn is too thick it is ok to use single Butterfly Twist).
To make the pom-pom effect, leave the first row of each edge and using a sharp pair of scissors, cut ¾ of the way through the side of each knot so the underneath strands are still intact. Using the dog brush, brush each pom-pom to make it fluffy.
We had a great time over the week-end at Proper Woolly an event to promote natural wools and yarns held at the livestock market in Holsworthy, Devon. Very well organised, good footfall and plenty of interesting stalls to see.
I am going to experiment with their Blacker Swan range, a joint venture between Blacker Yarns and Andrez and Ali Short who farm at Swan Inlet Farm on the Falkland Islands. I am going to match 3 colours from the range Buttonweed, Seagreen and Seafoam.
I had a good chat with Sharon Driscoll of Newhall Naturals. Sharon spins and sells her own creations. She went off with a Magic Butterfly Loom to experiment, so it will be interesting to see what she comes up with. I also met Lyn Soutar of Aneed2BeadnCraft, she runs lessons in knitting, crochet, Kumihimo and beading and thought the loom would make a nice addition to her repertoire!
The local WI groups and various Brownie and Guide troupes all expressed an interest in workshops and it was great to be invited by a whole range of groups from Brownies to seasoned spinning & weaving guilds to either give talks or workshops to their members, so a busy time ahead!
I came away with a skein of mohair from Julieann at Noteworthy Mohair, beautiful yarn hand spun from their own goats. She had a whole set of the Looms she was hoping they would keep the kids occupied! I am going to use the mohair on the loom and see what I come up with.
All in all, a great weekend, disappointed I didn’t get time to buy much yarn myself; still, there is Yarndale to look forward to!
I joined 6 together in 3 rows and then joined these rows together to give a 6×3 strip. I then joined 2 of the 3 rows together on the short edges, giving me a back and front of 9 motifs each with the top squares open to form the armholes. The 2 remaining motifs I attached to the top to create shoulders. To finish I simply used butterfly braid to tidy up the edges around the neckline, the armholes and the bottom.
I am going to see if I can make some sleeves using the rectangle loom.
Butterfly Looms are available from my shop Croft Looms.
Here’s a couple of shopping bags I’ve made; they are supposed to be reminiscent of the string shopper from the 60’s & 70’s.
This one is made using the Magic Butterfly Loom for the body, the Rectangle Butterfly Loom for the handles and Baby Butterfly Loom for the flowers. The wool I used is 4 x 50g of Drops Fabel Blue Sea Print from Wool Warehouse.
I made 8 motifs wrapping 4 rows on the magic. I used the wool from the centre of the ball and the outside together (2 strands) to even out the variegated pattern.
I then made:
2 handles wrapped 6 rows on the rectangle.
2 flowers wrapped 6 rows for the string pull.
1 metre (approx) of i-cord using a lucet.
4 stiffeners for the handles from felt.
I will make up some instructions on how to put this together for a later post.
I made 7 motifs on the Rectangle Butterfly Loom, wrapping 2 rows.
This was very easy to make up, I simply joined 6 rectangles lengthwise using the Butterfly Twist, joining the last with the first to create a tube. I sealed the bottom using Butterfly Twist and tidied the top edge using the Butterfly Braid technique. I used the Butterfly Twist lengthwise to create the handle and attached to the top of the bag.
As usual my photography skills do not do these justice – the second bag in particular is very lightweight and slightly stretchy, so holds more than you might expect – but make sure you sew the handle on tightly!
Butterfly Looms are available from my website Croft Looms
Add a festive touch to a plain jumper or pop over your coat for that Boxing Day stroll.
The whole set takes about 2 hours to make!
One small Butterfly Loom
50g Wendy Shimmer – Red (2107)
50gWendy Shimmer – Nickel (2112)
Small amount of 2 ply for knotting (approx. 1 m per motif)
2 large buttons for the collar
Using both yarns together and wrapping one row, make up 10 motifs following the instructions included in the Butterfly Loom pack or on the CD.
Use the ladder technique to knot the motifs.
The collar takes 6 motifs, the cuffs 2 each.
For the collar: following the instructions on the CD slip stich the 6 motifs together in a line joining the knots on the back to leave a frill on the front side at each join. Using the butterfly braid technique tidy the two short ends. On the front side attach the two large buttons and loop through the opposite end to complete the circle to make the collar.
For the cuffs: Using the same technique join the two motifs together to create a tube which makes the cuff. Turn front side out.
Fru-fru out and pop over your jumper!
Note: I have quite slim hands, so if you need something larger add another motif; if this is too large insert a small piece of elastic inside using the knots as your anchor points.
All instructions are in the booklet or on the welcome CD.
Made on the Magic size Butterfly Loom this shopper measures approximately 33 x 33 cm and is made from a sturdy worsted 100% Aran wool. The colour is cherry and has a subtle blue fleck. This has been lined with black felt and finished with a woollen covered button and faux leather handles.
Instructions to make the Troon mini shopper
Troon Tweed Aran Collection
A gorgeous aran weight knitting wool spun in Scotland in a range of tweedy and marled shades, packed full with character
I used Cherry, a deep red with blue fleck.
250g Troon Tweed
Butterfly Loom – magic
Butterfly Loom – small
Piece of felt or fabric for lining 35x70cms approx.
1 pair of sew-in bag handles
1 button form
Needle & thread
Using the magic loom, make 8 Butterfly Loom motifs of your choice wrapping 4 loops.
Using the small loom, make 1 Butterfly Loom motif of your choice wrapping 4 loops.
If you are making daisy patterns lay the motifs out and decide where they need to be placed, 4 back and 4 front.
To join I have used the Butterfly Twist technique – but I have used 2 sets of loops at a time (1 from each motif) to give a more defined, sturdy join.
Take 2 motifs and hold them back to back, starting a one corner put your crochet hook through the loops of both motifs. Put the crochet hook through the second pair of loops and make a butterfly twist (i.e. draw the second pair through the first pair). Continue to the end and put an odd piece of wool through the end loop (to stop it unravelling). You should now have a herringbone patterned join on the right-side of your work. Repeat this for the remaining 3 pairs of motifs until you have 4 pieces, 2 back and 2 front.
To join the 2 front pieces together, hold the 2 front motifs back to back making sure the 2 end loops (with the odd wool through) are together. Using the edge that have the end loops, start at one corner and repeat the twist described above. When you get to the joins pick up the 2 loops and crochet them together through the first loop. You will now have what looks liked 2 bulky loops (16 loops) on the hook, pick up the next 2 loops and crochet through leaving the 8 loops and carry on to the end and again put an odd piece of wool through the end loop. Repeat for the 2 back pieces. Now you have one back piece and one front piece. Using a damp cloth press both pieces and the small motif.
On the edge where the end loops are, use the butterfly braid technique and braid the top edge to make a neat top for the bag, do this for both of the bag pieces.
To make the lining fold the piece of material in half along the longest edge, this should roughly be the size of your bag. Sew the 2 sides up leaving the top open. Turn the open edge over about 1cm to hide the raw edge of the fabric and using the needle & thread slip-stich this to the wrong side of the top edges of the 2 sides of the bag, hiding the raw edge. I used double thread for a bit of extra strength.
Lay the outer part of the bag flat on the lining and put the sewable part of the handles through the outer – I put mine 3 holes down and 3 holes in. Sew the handles in place using the needle & thread, again I used double thread and went round twice for strength.
Join the sides of the bag using the twist technique, when you get to the joins you will come across the beginning join of the original joins, pick up ‘start’ loops and treat them as one (as you did for the end loops). The edge will go in slightly but over time this will stretch out.
Using the Butterfly Braid technique edge the small motif. Find the centre of the small motif and place it on the back centre seam, using the twist technique attach one edge of the small motif to the 1st row.
Cover a button template with a contrasting wool and sew onto the front centre seam lining up with the central hole on the small motif, this will create the ‘button hole’.
Instead of using a covered button you could use a chunky wooden button or leave the top open. If you do not have the small loom but want a closure you could crochet a simple loop for the button to pass through.
If you do not want to buy handles, you could use the rectangle loom to make straps or use a peg loom or weaving sticks to make a handle.
All materials are available to purchase off my website Croft Looms.
If there is a design you want us to try on the Butterfly Loom let me know!
I will be at the Marlborough Town Hall Craft Fair on 22nd March 2014. Marlborough is a lovely market town full of gorgeous shops housed in beautiful buildings and on Wednesday and Saturdays there are well stocked markets along the High Street, the second widest in Britain.
I will be selling Butterfly Looms, knitting looms and accessories to make blankets and scarves, I will of course be sitting along side showing passers by how to use the looms.
So if you are in Wiltshire and fancy a stroll around one of the prettiest towns, in an area full of pretty towns, visit Marlborough on Saturday 22nd March.
Marlborough Town hall
5 High Street
I’ve had a delivery from Wool Warehouse. I have bought a brand called Drops and so far I am very impressed. They have a large selection of different blends and fibres, cottons, alpaca (my fave) 100% wool, mohair and all the usual weights. The great thing about Drops is the price – Alpaca 50g £2.10 + VAT
The ‘Paris’ cotton is only £1.79 +VAT for 50g and you probably can’t see it in this picture, but the colours are VERY bright!
As I say, I’m going to do a bit of experimenting and will post the pictures when done.