Sunday, April 21, 2013


I'm not much of a collector (I like to think. But how did all that stuff get in my house?) One collection I have is of beaded hair clips from Guatemala. My very first one was of a hummingbird. I wore it so much it kind of fell apart. This is its replacement.
Now that I know that hair clips don't last forever, I'm always on the lookout for new ones. The amazing thing about Guatemalan crafts is that every piece seems to be different. Other than their beauty, the reason I need hair clips is that it is sometimes so windy in Monteverde it's that or go insane from hair whipping around my face. Or get a buzz cut. So I let my hair grow longer than I normally do and clip it.
   On this flower I love the shading on the leaves and the use of the longer green beads.
This butterfly hid one of its antennae during its photo shoot.
On my last trip to Guatemala I found out that hummingbirds clips are rare now. I saw hundreds, if not thousands of hair clips—all different—but not another hummingbird I liked. I did find a completely new style of clip which has embroidery enhanced with beads. The shop owner told me it was of a woodpecker, but this species is only found in the imagination of the artist.
Now I'm thinking about how beads could be added to temari.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Size matters

   I recently stitched two balls of very different sizes with the same design and it's interesting to see how different they look. The design is Interlocked Puzzle in Temari Techniques by Barbara Suess. The directions call for a 32 cm circumference ball but I happened to have a 45 cm C10 ball sitting around so I used that. (It's the bigger ball in the photo below. ) It looked a little sparse so I used one more row in each shape than Barb called for.
   Then I decided to stitch a smaller ball and used one with a 30 cm circumference/3.75". I think they make a nice pair because I used blues and greens in both. Using a dark thread to mark the ball made a difference; those lines are much more prominent in the smaller ball because of the contrast with the base thread.