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Nalbinding

Posted on : 27-06-2010 | By : Dawn | In : Uncategorized

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Nalbinding

Pronounced: “nawl-bihn-ding

There are many variations of spelling for this term.  Nalebinding, Naalbinding, Nailbinding, Needlebinding

Descriptive phrases include: Needle looped fabric, Free/detached buttonhole stitch, knotless netting/knitting, looped needle netting, needle tying, single needle knitting

Nalbinding is a method of creating fabric dating back atleast 2000 years.  Nalbinding pre-dates knitting & crochet.  Ancient samples of nalbinding have been found in Egypt & Peru. Modern use can be found in Iran for socks & in Scandinavia for hats, gloves, & Viking re-enactment garments.  It is most commonly recognized as a Scandinavian technique.

An exceptionally sturdy item can be fashioned.  The garment is often felted/fulled, causing the loose loops to contract tightly into a thick & very warm fabric.  When snagged or cut, the stitches do not unravel.

A blunt needle is used with a relatively short length of yarn, passing around the thumb and looping under, over, & through previous loops as the thumb & forefinger hold the loops.  Short lengths of yarn (1 to 3 yards) are used, because the entire length of thread must be pulled through each stitch.  New lengths of yarn are attached one end to the other as the piece progresses.  Here is a link to a brief introductory video of the (easiest) Oslo stitch:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8PXk5lTIZo

The next picture shows my experimental sample made of wire in Oslo stitch.  I plan to join the ends into a circle & create a jewelry pin by adding more decoration.

The photo at the top of this entry shows various cords & trims in different stitches.  The ends were eventually finished by knotting as tassels, sewing a hook or clasp on woven back ends, making a loop & button/bead closure, or attaching both ends to form a circular slip-on style bracelet/anklet.  

These bracelet/anklets were made with only one row of stitches; therefore, the original length of cord was long enough for the entire item.  Needless to say, most items (clothing) would consist of many rows & so require connection of numerous lengths of yarn.

 

 I will continue to experiment with nalbinding, because I’d like to translate this ancient technique into modern materials & styles.  Your experiences & ideas are most welcome. 

 

**** Please leave a comment and/or contact the artist by clicking on Read Full Article & scrolling down to the comment box.  Dawn will contact you accordingly.

Fireflies… Lightning Bugs…

Posted on : 25-06-2010 | By : Dawn | In : Uncategorized

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The flashing crystals inside this geode bracelet remind me of firefly light.

The band mimics the motion of firefly flight as quality glass beads on fine silver wire are crochet into a 3-dimensional flow of drifting sparkles.

Warm summer night air is filled with floating lights…

Firefly.  Lightning Bug.  Lampyridae.

Inspiration.  Communication.  Illumination.

This bioluminescent beetle creates intermittent flashes of light in varying colors & patterns unique to each subspecies: yellow, green, or pale red drifting sparks.  Some species synchronise their flashes.  Its light is created by oxidation of luciferin in a nearly heatless chemical reaction.

Ancient Aztecs viewed the lights as flashes of truth in a dark universe.

Native American Ojibwa legend tells of rambuncious thunderbird youths playing lacrosse with a ball of lightning, which shook stars from the sky. The stars shattered when they hit the earth. Thus, lightning bugs were created.

Oriental folklore tells of the light of captured fireflies in summer & moonlight reflected off snow in winter, used by hardworking students to study through the night.  Such diligence is celebrated in a traditional song sung to the tune of Aud Lang Syne,  Hotaru no hikariThe Light of the Firefly.  In Japan, this song is often sung at farewells: graduations, New Year’s Eve, & the end of the day.  The opening verse begins:  Many suns and moons spent reading, Years have gone by without notice, Day has dawned; This morning, we part.

A Japanese children’s song Hotaru koi – Firefly, Come follows the insect rhythm, as it tells of fireflies beside water.  Here is a short but thoroughly charming video of preschool children singing this song, as their teacher holds a traditional water dipper and gestures.  Go to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9SqmCWRTFzA&feature=email

This next video of Hotaru no hikari is a remarkable, mesmerizing, sophisticated, a capella version.  By scrolling down, you can read the words & translation.  Notice that the first line of the song is the same as the previous children’s song.  Click on: www.YouTube.com/watch?v=1rxZzm8tzss

When several fireflies flash at the same time in the same space, it looks like a new constellation & plays games with my sense of perspective!

 

**** Please leave a comment and/or contact the artist by clicking on  Read Full Article  & scrolling down to the comment box. Dawn will contact you accordingly.

Geode Bracelet

Posted on : 07-06-2010 | By : Dawn | In : Uncategorized

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This is the first in a new geode design series.  It features a natural geode of creamy white polished stone surrounding the interior cache of sparkling quartz crystals.  The bracelet is hand crochet in fine silver filament & securely clasps with a sterling silver tubular slide.  The wide band’s dimensional freeform pattern holds a wealth of clear smooth glass droplets.

A geode is a spherical hollow rock whose interior contains concentric layers of minerals and sparkling crystals.  The exterior of a geode is rough & unremarkable.  The rock must be opened to reveal its beauty.  In this case, the rough whitish outer surface disguised inner rings of creamy white, bluish grey, & light brown surrounding countless tiny clear quartz crystals.  The innermost crystaline planes glisten & twinkle.  This bracelet’s rock geode has been sliced & polished to reveal the hidden beauty inside.

The term geode is derived from Greek geoides: earth-like, referring to the rock’s outer shape.

May the surprise of the geode remind you of each person’s inner beauty.