WEAVING IN THE ROUND

Ever since I spent a week driving to and from Austria a couple of years ago I have loved weaving. I took a small loom and some yarn in the car and learnt a few basic techniques whilst my Husband drove down the autobahn.  I have loved learning a new crafty skill and really enjoy being able to do something with wool and fibres that I wouldn’t knit or crochet with.

Anyway, I recently saw a pin that made me very excited. It showed an embroidery hoop being used as a round loom! My little mind was blown (it doesn’t take much these days) after some research I had a go and now I am hooked on weaving all over again.

Now that I have practised a little, I thought it would be something that you guys might like to try too. Once you have the basics down I bet you will be as addicted as me!

You will need: An embroidery hoop (the one I have used here is a 10″) strong string or thread, a selection of yarns, a wool needle or bodkin and some small scissors.

Step 1. Take the outer ring off the hoop and put it to one side, take the thread and tie it around the edge of the inner hoop leaving a inch or so of thread to tie later.
Step 2. Pull the thread straight down over the bottom of the opposite edge of the hoop, take it over the edge and to the back.
Step 3. Bring the thread up and over the downward thread.
Step 4. Then bring the thread over the front of the hoop about 1 inch away from where you started.

Step 5. Continue taking the thread over the edge and over the other side in a figure of 8.
Step 6. Make sure to keep the centre crossing over, until you reach all the way around the hoop.
Step 7. Before threading the last strand take the thread around the centre a couple of times to keep it all together.
Step 8. Take the last strand up to meet the first thread and tie it to the end you left at the beginning.

Step 9. It should look something like this, you can choose to put your threads closer together but I would start with them at this width as it doesn’t take too long to finish.
Step 10. Starting at the centre, take a length of yarn on a wool needle and start threading in and out through the strands.
Step 11. Keep threading in and out back and forth.
Step 12. Use your needle to keep the yarn tight to the centre and keep moving around the hoop.

Step 13. To finish off each colour simply thread the yarn back down in through the previous layers and snip away the excess.
Step 14. Keep going, changing colour when you want to. Mix it up with different colours and textures to keep it interesting.

These are some ideas for simple versions using regular and chunky yarns but they would also look great with some more textured yarns, ribbons or fabric scraps. You can of course take them out of the hoops and use them as place mats and coasters, but I love the look of them as art on my walls in the hoops. They would bring a quick splash of colour to any space for very little cost, always a winner in my book!

For more instructions on weaving and different kinds of techniques check out this cool blog The Weaving Room, Kate has lots of really great tutorials and videos on lots of different kinds of weaving.
As always, if you have a go at this tutorial please #livelovemake on Instagram or Twitter, as we would love to see them.
Sammy xxx

Ten Steps To Becoming a Macrame Master

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Macrame is so hot right now and we’re totally addicted. There’s some fantastic macrame kits out there, but to get started why not grab any yarn, string, thick thread or twine you have lying around and try some of these gorgeous designs. Or why not pick up our Lucky Dip Embroidery Thread bag to get you started. We’ve packed 20 threads in this bargain bag. The threads are usually 95p each, but this bag comes in at just £9.50! Perfect for beginners, or your next macrame party! This is a thing. Is this a thing? I might make this a thing.

1. Simply Braided

Lets start at the beginning. Here is the basic Macrame knot. Once mastered can be the base for thousands of designs and patterns. Click the image to head to icreativeideas.com’s tutorial.

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2. The Next Step

This looks tricky but is actually a lot simpler than it looks, I think it actually looks super impressive! Its literally just knotting 2 threads next to each other, together, 2 at a time. See, super simple. The creativity comes in the colours you choose, and the pattern. Click the image for the Pin I found this on, which shows the step by step images.

Here is a more detailed explanation on honestlywtf.com

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3. Up Your Game

Working with this principal, and these rainbow colours because, what could be better, why not try this slightly more detailed pattern by the dolls at Macrame School. Click the image to go to their YouTube tutorial and try it yourself. Again, its a lot simpler than it looks! And so fun!

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4. Go Glam

This super glamorous and dainty design is the natural next step. You’ll have made 100 bracelets for yourself, so now you’ll want to start making some as gifts, or maybe to sell at a craft fair? Learning different patterns like this is a great tool to your belt. Picking softer colours and neater thread for something like this works wonders. Click the image to go to another Macrame School tutorial video.

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6. Master the Tension

There are a million ways to create the tension needed to make nice tight bracelets. Here are just a few of our tried and tested favourites.

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7. Put your heart on your sleeve (wrist)

Its time to add embellishments! Start with this simple heart then the world is your oyster! This shouldn’t be hard now you’ve mastered the basics. You’ll be sticking these hearts on everything! Click the image for the tutorial.

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8. Graduate Up

Time to try a necklace? Use your skills to create a “chain” with your favourite macrame style, then add a gorgeous precious stone, rock or memorable trinket to the bottom by learning how to make a quick bespoke net. The beauty of this is you don’t have to dig out perfect beads with holes in them, you can literally turn anything, OK maybe not the cat, but close to anything, into a necklace pendant! Click the image for the tutorial from Quiet Lion Creations.

You could also try wrapping the pieces with this tutorial from Ecocrafts.

Or go back to bracelets and pop a net in one of them instead with this tutorial from True Blue Me and You.

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9. Have a Hoot!

Confident? Why not make your OWN charm? I am so in love with this owl design. Its gorgeous. Who wouldn’t love receiving this for their birthday? Wear this out and you’ll get tons of comments and questions. Click the image for another video from Macrame School – they really are the best.

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10. Get Creative!

Look on Pinterest for inspiration, and use your new skills to make something incredible and unique! Maybe something like these incredible creations by the amazing Lesh Loom. I’m in love! Have fun guys! If you delve into macrame, especially if you use any of our bits, then let us know on social by using #showcrafty or tagging us @sewcraftyshop!

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