Tuesday, April 03, 2012

The Crown Jewels

contributed by Shawn

It might be a bit colder than it was a couple of weeks ago but the sun is still shining and that brief taste of 80 degree weather sure got everyone thinking of spring. New spring yarns are in the shop and we've been looking for ways to take a skein or two and turn them into a special little accessory that makes any outfit. We always love to sample our new yarns and fibers so we know how they work and can make the best, most well-informed recommendations to our customers.   

Barb was intrigued by a cowl project one of our customers wore into the shop recently. Originally intended as a cold weather accent, the Sev[en]Circle cowl by Kirsten Johnstone (Free pattern available through this Ravelry link), looks great as a spring fashion piece too! Barb took a look at the pattern and adapted it to create this necklace/scarf. Our version takes just 2 skeins of Berroco Captiva and produces 3 rings of knitted fabric. 
Necklace in Berroco Captiva yarn
Barb wore it in the shop several times and this necklace was like a magnet! So many customers wanted to make it immediately. It was such an easy knit and a neat project, that Barb grabbed some leftover Blue Heron Rayon Metallic yarn  and created another version with a few more rings that are shorter in length.
A customer of ours made a few of these with the Captiva and attached pendants to each ring so that the pendants hang in a progression when the piece is worn. Great idea!

While I'm not a huge jewelry wearer, the idea that knitted fabric can be adapted to different types of accessories got me thinking about one of the favorites in my Ravelry queue. I wanted to try it because the pattern offers an interesting construction to complete the piece.  The Braided Cable Necklace by Olga Buraya-Kefelian is a free pattern on Ravelry. It is two separate strips of knitted fabric with button holes worked into the center of the strips along the entire length.  When you've completed the two strips you weave them together to create this lovely single cable. I used a skein of Berroco Captiva and added a crochet loop to the end so that I could close the band with a button.  It makes a great choker style necklace.
Another yarn that I really wanted to try for accessory knitting is the Stacy Charles Crystal.  I have a friend that loves sparkly accents and the Estee Necklace and Earrings in Crystal were a perfect match for her.  

I was surprised at how soft the necklace was when finished, and how nicely this yarn knits up even though it is metallic and looks like it should be 'crunchy'.  It is NOT at all crunchy and is fun to knit with! (Note: I had to use a pair of Addi Lace needles with this yarn - they had better grip on it since it's a bit slippery!)  Estee is a free pattern available from Tahki Stacy Charles.

For our jewelry fans, there are some other knitted jewelry and accessory patterns that look like they would be fun to try in the Stacy CharlesMoonstruck Pattern Booklet.

The Leighton Y-Necklace in Stella:
The Lieber Rosette Necklace & Bracelet in Crystal and Stella:
And the Winston Infinity Necklace in http://www.kyarns.com/product/stacy-charles-stella:

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