Monthly Archives: February 2012

Video tutorial-How to shape fabric by pulling the warp strands

Yesterday, I posted a blog entry about a shrug that I sewed from my handwoven fabric. (LINK)

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And, then, was asked- ‘Yes, but what does it mean when you say: Pull warp strands?’

So, I have made a video tutorial, showing how to pull warp strands to shape ruffles, like the lower edge of the shrug,

or the upper edge of the ‘Woven Woman: Butterfly Transformation” LINK (to see the full piece)

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Or, you can pull and ease the warp strands into a more graduated curve, like the yoke of this tunic:

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Here’s a closer look:

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And here’s the video:



Filed under inkle, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, tutorial & how to, weaving & handwoven, Woven Women tapestries and woven works

Woven Women-Butterfly Transformation

I am weaving a series that I am calling: ” Woven Women”. They are mixed media fiber art pieces that are a celebration of the Feminine Divine.

I showed the Butterfly Transformation Woven Woman piece in a how to video today, so I figured that I should show a few more photos of her.

So, here she is:

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The Woven Women are all woven on many different small looms.

I wove Butterfly Transformation Woven Woman on inkle looms, tablets, a 4 harness Structo loom (8 inches wide), and a tapestry loom.

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In the photo above, you can see how I gathered the upper curved section by pulling up warp strands to ruffle the weaving.

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The lower curved sections were drawn up in more graduated curves to make a flatter arc and not a ruffle.

And, here’s the Butterfly at her heart and in her prayer…

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Butterfly Transformation (Prayer) Woven Woman is my prayer for wellness for all the creatures of this beautiful planet, no matter how small or large.

All images are copyright protected and are owned by Noreen Crone-Findlay.

(I  posted about one of the other Woven Women, and will post more photos of other Woven Women soon. LINK: Green Empress)


Filed under weaving & handwoven, Woven Women tapestries and woven works

Saori freeform woven shrug shaped by pulling warp strands

About a year or so ago, I wove up quite a few yards of very playful fabric.

I love the gentle Saori philosophy of creative freeform weaving that is an expression of creativity and an exploration of imagination.

My plan was to use this fuzzy Saori inspired fabric to make a soft, cozy wrappie jacketie sort of a thing to keep me warm in the studio when winter wails away outside.

BUT- I just couldn’t settle on how to use the fabric.

After much teeth gnashing, I thought: ‘Aha! I am going to make it into one of my most favorite things: A shrug!’

So,  I laid out the fabric on my cutting table, cut it in half (it was about 3 yards long and only about 14 inches wide).

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I sewed the 2 halves together lengthwise to make a wider, shorter piece of fabric.

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Then, I cut a slight curve at the top for the neck, and curves under the arms.

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And then, I folded the shrug in half, and pinned the living daylights out of it.

Looked at it and groaned…. I had pinned it together the wrong way.

Sigh….this is why I pin pin pin pin pin…. pins have saved my bacon more times than I care to remember!

Okay, unpinned, flipped, re-folded, and pin pin pin pin pin pin pin pin….. and stitched the under arm seams.

Then, I pulled up the selvedge strands of a long narrow piece (about 6  inches wide by about 3 yards long) to gather it into a gentle ruffle. This length of fabric was one that I had woven on my Cricket rigid heddle loom – originally for another vest (but I saw how perfect it would be for the ruffle, so I ‘re-purposed’ it for the shrug 😀 )

I stitched the ruffle around the outside edges of the shrug, forming a collar, front facing and lower back edging.

I sewed the short edges together at the lower back edge.

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Here’s the back view:

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The cuffs are 6 inch by approximately 18 inch lengths that I gathered by pulling up a couple of warp strands at the selvedge.

I stitched the short ends together, and stitched them onto the sleeves. Voila! Bell shape cuffs.

By pulling the warp strands up to gather the trim piece and the cuffs, I was able to avoid cutting the hand woven fabric any more than was necessary.

I stitched the shrug together on my machine, with a stretch straight stitch and zig zagged the edges of the  seams to add a little more security.

And, there you have it- a VERY playful and cozy one of a kind, hand woven freeform shrug!


Filed under weaving & handwoven

Book Review-Vogue Knitting Stitchionary vol one

This morning, bright and early, much earlier in fact, than I was planning on starting my day, the doorbell rang.

The courier took one look at me and apologized several times for waking me up (there was no faking, the “I’m really awake” thing… nope. No chance of that). He then assured me that it was -20 and truly horrible and I should go back to bed.

I did.

We had been out monstrously late at an annual event that we cherish- dear friends of ours who have the hospitality gene big time, have a gorgeous gathering once a year. It’s their ‘Chocolate Party’. They make fabulous handmade chocolates and then invite their musician friends and spouses to make and enjoy gorgeous music and eat heavenly chocolate.

I ate too much chocolate and enjoyed the bliss of spectacular music and promised myself a late start to Monday morning.

Which didn’t quite happen, but believe me, the package that arrived was worth hauling my post-chocolate weary self out of bed for.

See what I mean? Wouldn’t you jump out of bed, no matter how few hours you’d slept and how much chocolate you’d eaten the (verrrrrry Late) night before?

If you knit, you want this book.

If you don’t knit, you will want to learn.

The VK Stitchionary is better than chocolate, and that is saying a lot.

Although…. I have to warn you that it may interfere with your sleep, as it is a real page turner and ‘Ooooh…. gotta have that, gotta do that….’ is certainly going to be a theme as you browse through it.

Yep. It’s a winner.

And, of course, the usual declaration: Yes, I did receive this book as a review copy and no, I do not profit in any way by telling you that I love love love it.  (To be honest, if I receive a review copy of a book and I ~don’t~ like it, I just won’t review it. I know how hard it is to create a book, so I am not going to say anything that will hurt the other author.  So, when I review a book, you know that I DO indeed like it, or in this case, LOVE it.)

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Filed under book review/book/books, knitting

A tiny pair of woven pants for Rosie Recycle doll

Yesterday, a lady who had just bought my Rosie Recycle doll book (link)

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asked me a very good question. (I love good questions!) 🙂

She said that she always wears pants to work, and would like to be able to make pants for her Rosie Recycle doll, too, and how could she do that?

Using regular fabric to sew them would be a real pain, so how to do this?

Like I said: Great question!

Here’s one answer: Weave a tiny pair of pants on a 2 inch square loom.

I used a vintage Weave It loom to weave two 2 inch squares with embroidery floss:

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Stitch the 2 squares together for 1 inch to make the first body seam:

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Fold one of the squares over, and stitch the leg seam.

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Fold the other square over and stitch the second leg and the remaining body seam. Weave in the ends.

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Thread a strand of embroidery floss through the waistband, pull up to gather and tie a bow.

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And, there you have it! A pair of pants for Rosie Recycle.

Actually, they are a touch short, so for the next pair, I would either make her legs a little shorter, or crochet cuffs onto the pants.

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Vintage Weave It looms can be hard to come by (they are really pricey on eBay), but luckily, there are loom makers who are building lovely little 2 inch square looms (and other sizes, too). The one in this pic came from Dewberry Ridge looms

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I love it when people ask questions….. 😀   (Well, not ALL questions, but you know what I mean!) 😀




Filed under doll & dolls & dollmaking & doll making, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, weaving & handwoven

How to embroider the face on a tiny teddy bear face

I’ve been making video tutorials for how to’s for Edward and Anastasia Bear.
Here’s a video tutorial on how to embroider the face on Baby Brownie Bear:

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Happy Knitting!


Filed under knitting

How to spool knit without a spool knitter

You can use spool knitted cords to decorate and embellish your crochet in a million different ways.

One way to do a thicker spool knitted or i cord is to use several strands of yarn held together.

And, if you don’t have a spool knitter, not to worry! You have your fingers!

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I have made a video tutorial on how to make a spool knitted cord on just 3 of your fingers.
It works great!

Here’s the  video tutorial:


Filed under eco crafts & green projects, spool knitter & spoolknitter & spool knitting & spool knitting, tutorial & how to

Edward and Anastasia Bear announce

I am so delighted to be able to announce that Edward and Anastasia Bear have some thrilling news!

The stork has made a delivery!

The Stork prepares to fly to California with baby Brownie copyright Noreen Crone-Findlay

Baby Brownie Bear has arrived, safe and sound and you can see for yourself that baby is truly adorable!

Hope Brownie isn’t keeping Edward and Anastasia up all night…

here’s a sneak preview: -previews/stork-bear-mobile

Edward and Anastasia with baby Brownie copyright Noreen Crone-Findlay

BTW, if you don’t know what I am talking about, Edward and Anastasia Bear are tiny knitted teddy bears that I designed for the magazine, ‘Your Knitting Life’, back when it was called, ‘Knitting Today’.
Every issue has a different set of outfits for Edward and Anastasia, including their wedding outfits.

My sister likes them best of anything that I have designed in the more than 40 years that I have been a professional designer. 🙂

So, that makes them extra special to me!


Filed under knitting

Video tutorial on how to pick up knitting stitches with crochet hook

Today,  I was working on a new design for knitted clothes for Edward and Anastasia teddy bear.

It struck me that it might  be a good idea to get a little bit more specific when I say: ‘pick up x number of stitches along this edge’.

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So, I wrote out how I like to pick up stitches – which is with a crochet hook.

And, then it struck me that showing how to do this is probably even better than just writing about it.

So, I made a video tutorial, demonstrating on how I use a crochet hook to pick up the required stitches.

This technique works equally well for knitting flat or knitting in the round.

And, here’s the video tutorial:


Filed under knitting, tutorial & how to

Delightful dolls woven with 4 weaving sticks

Stick weaving looms are probably the easiest loom on earth to work with.

They are just little dowels with points on one end and holes in the other.
BUT this does NOT limit the incredible creative possibilities that they have!

See my Stick Weaving page on my website to order this pattern: LINK

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I have designed 13 enchanting little dolls (they are about 5 inches tall) to weave with only 4 of the weaving sticks. They are adorable!
In this PDF pattern, (16 pages), you will also learn how to carve the neatest faces from avocado pits (really!) in a tutorial with step by step photos.
Another step by step photo tutorial shows how to make Cornstarch clay and carve simple but effective faces with it.

Avocado faces end up looking like carved wood, and both they, and the cornstarch clay faces are remarkably sturdy and durable.

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There are also how to photos for faces made in unusual ways: using buttons, paper, wood veneer, found objects, stones and twig slices.

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There are many different methods shown for how to finish the heads, and as always, with Noreen’s patterns, the step by step photos showing exactly how to do each step are comprehensive and clear.

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These little woven dolls are delightful on their own, but are also great to use as embellishments on bags, pillows, throws and wall hangings.
They are a great way to use small amounts of treasured yarn, whether it’s handspun or not.
The pattern shows how to use fabric strips, handspun paper, jute, and even sewing machine thread to weave these dolls.
They are delightful!!!!
This pattern is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT than the dolls woven with the 6 stick technique.


Filed under doll & dolls & dollmaking & doll making, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, Peg and Stick Loom weaving, peg looms and weaving sticks, weaving & handwoven