A challenge and a Jacaranda

A couple of months ago, at the same time my beading passion started, I began experimenting with the Japanese craft of kumihimo – an ancient braiding technique that only recently started to spread. Usually students are not allowed to share the patterns they had learned from their masters and written patterns were strictly forbitten. It was learning by watching the masters only. Well, no art form can be kept hidden forever and therefore we are now also able to learn this craft. Essentially it’s not very difficult – you have a disc (historically it would be a wooden marudai but today for easier work it’s a simple foam disc) and several strands of thread. Then you braid in a certain pattern – and voila, out comes a beauty. So the theory. Practice showed that it’s not so simple as that. I started with a simple 8 strand braid with three colours that worked out really well. Then Pru from the Facebook group Kumihimo by Prumihimo and Friends suggested a challenge themed “Valentine”. I’m always up to a challenge – so I aimed for a simple but nice looking pattern: a 16 strand two colours heart pattern. Sounded simple, looked simple on youtube – and was a total desaster. No hearts, just a multicoloured mess. Tried several times, failed several times. Got help from a really nice group member – and failed some more. I already thought myself stupid. Then all of a sudden they appeared – not perfect yet as tension is key and I am not using a weight at the moment but definitely hearts. Well long stories end: I added a heart bead on a square stitched bail to spice it up a little bit. Even though it’s not perfect, I love it because it thought me never to give up. Just like you should do for the love of your life.

Facebook will be my doom one day – especially those groups that show new designs. I really did not wanted to start a new CAL. I already have too much in progress and planned. But this nice little CAL just keep popping up – Jacaranda. It comes – of course – with another Facebook group. But look at this beauty – isn’t it pretty? And it will become still more pretty over the next couple of weeks. Sadly I got really sick after finishing part one of the CAL as my hubby decided to share his flu with me. I can tell you, this year’s flue is one terrible virus. I felt like hell for two days and was not even in an way motivated to do an crafty stuff. Can you believe that? Gladly after only four days I am back to the world of the living, so look forward to some more crafty business next week 🙂