There is nothing quite like imagining a difficult project, then having the actual end result far outdo your expectations. I got into a beading extravaganza earlier this summer. I wanted bling on everything. Pretty much everything I made for a good 2 months incorporated beads. And not just a few…but hundreds. Now there are two ways to add beads to a knitting/crochet project, 1) Pre-string the beads and 2) Place beads as-you-go. I always opt for technique two. Pre-stringing beads is a labour of love. You have to know where your beads are going, what order you are using different colors in, and IMO it stresses out your yarn. I feel it is similar to doing a jigsaw puzzle with all the pieces turned over so all you can see is the back. (Now if this is a 2 sided puzzle, this isn’t a problem, AND you are awesome for actually having one of those) But I feel like you know what you want it to look like, but by the time you can tell you made a mistake you are already too far to take it out. To the left is my beaded version of Nightsongs (Gail), one of my favorite free patterns on Ravelry.
There is a story to this pattern. A testament to my love for this pattern can be said simply. I’ve made 3 of these. I have only repeated patterns for family and for testing out my own designs. But this is the third Nightsong I’ve made. Gave 1 away to a friend who was expecting (figure baby showers are all about baby, let’s give mom a present), 1 away to my Aunt (which was beaded as well, but not as dramatically), and now I have one for me. This project started because I needed something to wear to a wedding over my halter dress, but wasn’t up to shopping. So I remembered this, found the right yarn from my stash, and went to town!
Then came the beading…..
At the end of all this beading, I had 2 colors of beads, around 1600 beads, and was told that it sounds like “chain mail” when it hits something. I absolutely love it! It worked great for the wedding. It was really neat to feel the weight that the beads gave it. That shawl does not move. It stays put and drapes like a dream. Best part? The beads keep the lace pattern pretty open so I may not have to block this all the time!