Tuesday 1 September 2015

On Macrame, my muse and The Monochrome Project

A few weekends ago I had the luxury of a Saturday morning learning a new craft. Add in that I did it with superb instruction, with like minded people, in a beautiful building and with tea and cake provided and it was a pretty fabulous experience.

I spent the morning at the Handmaker's Factory headquarters, in the Ink and Spindle studio with macrame tuition from Kate of Scout Gathers. It would have been hard not to have been inspired!

I made this macrame necklace and then dip dyed it. Initially in a China Blue dye and then in increasingly strong denim dye colour to get the ombre effect.

I confess I was surprised by the scale of the necklace. It's seriously chunky. You get no impression of that from a hanging on the wall picture, right? Wait for the link to it being worn....

Even before the workshop I knew that I wasn't likely to wear it, but I knew who could. And not just wear it, but wear it well. I went along to learn macrame with Ute as my muse!

Of course if you have a fangirl style crush on someone's style there's no guarantee they'll like what you've made for them. Or not find the whole unsolicited gift thing a bit weird. I put a sneak peek on Instagram and she took the bait! Private message sent, address given and it winged it's way over to Germany. And here it is being worn, exactly as I'd imagined it, by a beautiful woman in a simple linen dress. Yay!

As a bit of practice I made a necklace for A using kitchen twine and some leftover buttons and beads.

I really enjoyed making the necklaces and I'll happily add macrame to my list of skills I love to learn but have no great desire for the finished object. I just can't imagine my house covered in wall hangings or pot plant holders.

However, I confess to having just bought a book and some cotton cord off Amazon. Watch out anyone having a birthday in the next year or two!

What else is going on?
I'm over on the Oliver + S blog talking about sewing kid's clothes in black and white. The Monochrome Project is a sew along using Oliver + S patterns and no colour whatsoever in your sewing!

I kicked off with a black and white dress, which, even though it lacks any colour is perhaps one of the "loudest" things I've made in a long time. I'll show more of the dress here soon, but for a sneak preview and to see lots of great black and white kid's clothes go take a look at the blog:


  1. Your necklace is gorgeous. I love the ombre effect. And the Monochrome Project sounds cool! I wear black and grey all the time, so I think I overcompensate with my kids. It would be a real challenge for me not to use colors in my children's sewing, so maybe I should do it, ha!

    1. Thanks Emi. I was pleasantly surprised with the dyeing. I was busy redoing some of my knots to get it even and we were running out of time to use the more subtle china blue dye. So I just quickly dipped in the stronger dye and it turned out the better for it!
      It's surprising how bold a garment can be in just black and white. very striking, especially on kids.

  2. The necklace is gorgeous. It is big but looks oh so cool with that linen dress. Gotta check out your monochrome dress 😊

    1. Huge, right. It takes a confident woman to rock a necklace like this one. Ute's got it in spades!

  3. That necklace is amazing and your muse wear's it to perfection. Love your monochrome dress!

    1. Thanks Sharon. It's a surprisingly quick way to make a piece with a lot of impact!
      The zebra dress is pretty out there. Her brother, the Cheetah, will be every bit as eye catching. We're all turning into animals at our house!


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