Thursday, April 26, 2012

Celebrating Blue-White!

Today we are celebrating Israel's Independence Day... that's a lot of BBQs, picnics, friends, and blue and white all over the country! So here a few of my favorite bits of blue and white!

some favorite blues that been around for a while but still make me happy

a lovely thrifty find...

new knobs on old drawers

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Beaded Bracelets


I recently read over at ikatbag about her daughters' love for Perler beads and it brought back childhood memories. As a child I especially loved a coaster at my grandpa's house that was woven from beads the same size as Perler (or Hama or IKEA PYSSLA) but they were made form ceramic or glass, not plastic. It was a beautiful coaster. Anyways, my 2 year old loves beads at the moment and I just kept thinking of patterns for woven bead projects, so we got a box of fusible beads (and some peg boards, too) from IKEA and I started out on some simple bracelets. The weaving technique is also found on the Perler/Hama website, but there it's not well explained. So here a little tutorial. I think this craft is suitable for kids from age 6 years or older depending on craft skill level and patience ;-).

DSC_0599STEP 1:
Tie a bead (I use a different kind bead so it's obvious) as a stopper to one end of your string/elastic thread).

Add 4 beads (or any even number beads)  to the string.

Note: If you use an odd number beads the pattern will not work out, there is a way to weave with an odd number, but it's a bit more difficult and can be confusing for beginners or young children. You can use any even number, for a bracelet, this will define the width of your bracelet, 4 is a pretty good size for kids arms. You can use this technique for any size projects, 12-16 beads for coasters, or even 50 beads or more for placemats.

DSC_0601STEP 2: 
 Add another bead and put the string through the 3rd bead of the first row.

DSC_0603STEP 3:
Add one bead and put the string through the first bead of the first row.

(You can totally do Step 2&3 in one step, I just separated it for clarity, this is how the kids I did this with understood)


STEP 4: 
Pull tight. Now you have the basic set-up for the weave pattern.
1-2-1-2 or low-high-low-high.

Add a new bead at the low position and pull the string through the blue bead (high) of the last row. Repeat.

Got it? Always add a bead to the low position and pull string through the high of the last row. For a 4 bead wide bracelet you will add 2 beads with each row, switching direction from left-right to right-left and back...

DSC_0611 TIP:
It's much easier and quicker to do this with a needle, as you can see in the picture to the left.

You should pull tight after every row, but you can loosen up the last row a bit to make it easier to put the string through the beads, this is especially helpful if you (or your kids) do this without a needle.


Once you bracelet is long enough and both ends fit together like a zipper, simply weave both ends together by going back and forth between one end and the other (see middle picture above.) Tie both ends of the elastic together, cut off the stopper bead and weave a bit of the long end back into the bracelet. you can pull and stretch the bracelet a bit so the knot will not be exposed on the side of the bracelet but hidden inside a bead.

Here a few bracelets I made for my baby... patterns & more coming soon. (Edit: Patterns for the bracelets are found here!)


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Week 23 - Leggings?

or maybe pajama pants? Not sure yet. As for now these are my "hang out at home in the hot weather pants"... No pattern used, just some other leggings for orientation. By mistake the back was too low, but it turned out perfect for maternity, since I added the extra wide waistband the front fits nice around the belly without bulk on the back. A perfect fit cutting mistake.

They reach just over the knee.

happy turquoise and white... makes me want to go on a sailing trip.

with little ruffles...

and the bump of 23 weeks, well almost 24.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Week 21 - Linen Skirt


Today just two shots of my latest addition to the maternity wardrobe - a simple linen skirt. I used an old skirt that I loved and that almost still fit as a pattern and added an inch or two for ease. Instead of a button or zipper I added a typical maternity stretch waistband.


The fabric for the skirt is Robert Kaufman Essex Linen (a 55% Linen, 45% Cotton blend) in colors Aqua & Linen. It was really easy to sew. After the first wash it had a really nice texture to it and I loved how it looked like - no ironing necessary. I was just not so smart to fold it up and put it on top of my dresser to wait for it's turn in picture taking... sorry for that crappy fold in the middle of the skirt.

As for the waistband - I am not sure what it is, I told the lady I wanted fabric that is used for maternity waistbands and she answered back in Hebrew 'ah, spandex' and showed it to me. It has a cotton feel to it though so i think it's a cotton knit with a higher amount of elastane added. Sometimes fabric shopping here is quite adventurous since I have yet to find a dictionary that lists all fabric names, usually it sounds somewhat familiar to English or German terms, but sometimes it's not used in the same way - similar to the different use of "Muslin" in UK/USA.
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