Monday, April 4, 2011

The Little Things

  Grandma always used to say it was the small touches, the "little things" that made something special.  As a child I would watch her fuss over the buttons on a blouse or the lace on a dress and wonder to myself why she spent so much time pouring them.  Now I find myself doing exactly the same thing, I refuse to buy a blouse because the buttons "look cheap" or will completely ignore a skirt that has a "nice, but nothing special" lace trim and will happily point out the "gorgeous detail" in a tiny bit of embroidery embellishing my blazer pocket.

  It's fine to call me a detail snob or obsessive if you like, but I guess that what makes me a good nurse, details matter to me. Like this weekend when I sat down to finish the mini tote I have been working on.  It's being worked in a beautiful buttercup yellow cotton that I found at a garage sale, the bands on the skein tell me it is from France (Oh la la!)

  After much debate with the Chief Design Consultant, it was agreed that the cherry blossoms just would not work on something so vibrant, we needed something with more POP. We settled on a large Irish rose in black thread and a black lace trim (yes I'm crazy to make both by hand) and some Austrian crystal beads in the center of the rose for some sparkle. I made it all the way to the final row on the lace trim and decided it wasn't right, we needed something small to make it special.

  And here's what I came up with:

  I broke the thread and threaded some of the Austrian crystal beads on and then wound up as much as I thought I would need onto a bit of cardboard. I followed the rest of the pattern but instead placed a bead at the apex of each point on the lace.

  So now the lace points each have a bead that matches the beads that will be placed in the center of the rose, kind of tying the whole thing together and adding a special little touch to the handmade lace trim.

  I think Grandma will approve if she ever sees these pictures! I like to do this with handmade lace items that are going to be keepsakes. Try making a lace trim with pearl beads for a handkerchief as a bridal gift, or if you dare a lace garter belt with tiny blue seed beads. I promise you the recipient will never forget who gave it.

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