Thursday, 23 February 2012

Twisting it

The creative frustration mentioned in the previous post has also meant I've spent some time pondering over bits and pieces in yarn bags, ribbon hampers, bead boxes etc. One thing I often do when wanting to see how two strands of beads, three yarns or four cords and wires look together is to twist them. Loose or hard, but often both, observing the different looks I get. Here are three examples of that.

[If the pics looks a bit strange it's because I'm practising my Pixlr Editor skills and because I didn't use my usual set-up with the construction light but used another lamp with less brightness but with a light that gave some really harsh shadows. And I didn't denoise the pics in Neat Image first as I usually do. Still have a bit to learn about the software, trying to find all the right settings and functions and coping with some of my fave functions not being available in this programme. Could've used Picnik as it's not yet closed, but I must learn sometime, don't I...]

Above is a twist made with one strand of space-dyed viscose gimp and one strand of space-dyed viscose bouclé yarn (same yarn as I used in this necklace chain) twisted and folded in half. At first I wanted just one strand of each in the finished cord, but it was easier to twist the two strands together like this. I like gimp and the look of the rayon bouclé so why not combine the two?

Then I twisted some 7 mm bias cut silk ribbon. I tried twisting to colours together, but it ended up with one cord more of less completely enveloping the other. Here, I used only one ribbon (in a colour that looks much prettier IRL!). And I must say the twist itself also looks much nicer IRL than in this pic. Anyway, this is something I'll think about using in a future design. Though I don't recommend just twisting these ribbons if you don't intent to use the twisted cord as the edges will fray when you do this.

The last twist is actually one I made when doing my cretan stitches. Liking the look of my triple cretan border, I twisted the rest of the three "bamboo silk" threads together.

Doing these twists I also remembered why I don't do that many twisted cords and bead strands in my jewellery: they can be tricky to get firm enough, you drop the thread and the whole thing unwinds before you're finished, the twists easily gets uneven. Etc etc. But the basic technique is so simple you just have to ignore the problems sometimes. And sometimes a round braid (e.g. kumihimo braids) just don't give you the right look

And it reminds me I still haven't tried twisting wire and floss/thread/yarn together. Like twisting wire as it doesn't unravel on its own and you can lose the grip without the whole thing unwinding. So mixing the two materials might be fun, getting the firmness of the wire and the softness of the yarn. (Wire and floss twisted together is used in ganutell, often called "prepared thread".)

PS! Talking about braids: tomorrow's post on my other blog will be about lucet braiding, making cords using a two-prong fork (includes links to an article on making your own lucets). Could be a less common alternative to cord making for anyone who likes kumihimo.

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