Monday, December 1, 2014

Sparkle-ing up my Wardrobe

collar (1)I’d started noticing something, a pattern sort of.  The clothing that I liked in stores and catalogs, it all had something in common.  It wasn’t really the cut or the fabric, it was that all of it had embellishments.  Beads, lace, ruffles, sequins, sparkliness, something extra that made it fun and feminine.  That realization got the ball rolling.  A tiny little marble sliding around in my head.  A lone marble; all the others are lost.

<-- Alfred.

Munchkinhead had bought me some grey sparkly yarn when I was finishing up Mzzzz Jones’ scarf and my crocheted stockings in case I didn’t have enough purple and needed to put another color in the stocking heels.  I hadn’t needed it then, so I started thinking about what to do with it.  It’s very pretty.  What do you know?  That loose marble rolled up.  I could use the sparkly silver yarn to make something to embellish my dress clothes.  A collar!  I could make a collar.

I went online and found a pattern that I thought looked pretty and not too difficult.  It has a beautiful leaf pattern in it and some lacey accents that I thought would look great with the fairly-thin yarn.  The pattern called for two colors, but as we know, I like to experiment, so I decided to do it in just the silver.  The really awesome part was that the pattern itself called for embellishments, 55 small beads. Munchkinhead let me have some white, shiny coated, plastic beads from here collection.  Then I found some beautiful pearly looking glass beads at Jo-Ann’s that I liked even better.  For some reason, I also threw into my purse, a string of small pearled plastic beads.

I knit the collar on our train ride to California.  The knitting went pretty easy, but when it came time for the beads, oh boy.  This was major group effort.  The glass beads I’d purchased had holes far too small to fit onto the yarn, or my needles.  Luckily, Alfred lent me a needle from her cross-stitch kit.  I tried stringing the prettier glass beads onto some thread from Alfred’s sewing kit and knitting the thread and yarn together.  That was not working well.   So, I decided to try the plastic beads Munchkinhead had given me.  I strung up some beads and began attaching them into the cast off as the pattern instructed.  It looked awful.  The beads dangled off the bottom of the collar, looking more like jingle bells that flattering feminine decorations. 

Then I got an idea.  I don’t quite know where it came from, but it worked wonderfully.  That string of small plastic beads glued in place on some sort of stiff cord or something turned out to look perfect, and it was long enough.  Instead of stringing beads onto the working yarn, I worked the pre-strung chain into the cast-off.  When wrapping the working yarn around my needle for the knit stitch, I would also wrap it around the space between two beads.  As I knit the cast-off stitch, the yarn would pull the bead string against the edge of the collar.  The result is that the collar looks perfectly edged in little white beads.

It’s gorgeous!  Now I just need to find a blouse or dress to adorn with it.

collar (2)Munchkinhead holding the completed collar.

Here are some close-ups of the beading edge on the front and back of the work.

beads from front beads from back

Yarn: Lion Brand Vanna’s Glamour in Platinum, 2 Fine, size 5 needles or size 6 hook recommended

Needles: Wooden size 3 circular

Pattern: Lacy Knit Collar by Lorna Miser, available at

1 comment:

Jeannie said...

Very pretty - and smart thinking to get the 'pearls' on it.