Frida's Flowers are beautiful, but complex.

Stylecraft's CAL this year, designed by Jane Crowfoot, is called Frida's Flowers. It's a lovely, colour-rich, flower-heavy throw based on the clothes and colours of Frida Kahlo, the mexican artist. Have you seen it?
 I was lucky enough to touch and see the original at a crochet workshop at Black Sheep Wools in April. You can read about my day here.


It is gorgeous, and so loaded with colour; saturated is the right word.


And I did buy the yarn pack with the best of intentions, but life (or guinea pigs) got in the way and the yarn lies, alone and bereft, at the foot of my bed. Don't worry, I have plans.


But, having been to one workshop and enjoyed it; like a one-day crochet retreat, almost, the times of silence interspersed with conversation and questions was so relaxing; I wanted to go again and booked as soon as I was home.

Yesterday's workshop was called Frida's Flowers Motif Workshop, with the aim being to start and get guidance on a flower motif that can be used in a small shoulder bag. The workshop was run by Jane Crowfoot, who is fast becoming my favourite designer of crocheted items. I love her use of colour and listening to her talk about the design process and the steps it takes to achieve a finished product leaves me open mouthed in admiration. I'm not a patient person, and I know sometimes I will take less than perfection to get a thing done NOW.

But Jane is so patient, and so keen to get everybody to a stage they can be happy with. The pattern wasn't an actual motif off the Frida's Flowers blanket, since they are hexagonal and this was octagonal, but used the same colours and similar structure in parts.


This is Jane's finished square. You can see the richness of the colours just pops against the deep black. She always apologises for the black, because it is such a pain to use, but sometimes you just need that stark background to show off the colours.


There were 12 of us, gathered around the table. The workshop at Black Sheep Wools is lovely, large and bright without being a sun trap. There's a large table in the centre and everybody has ample space to sit and do what you need to. Like I said, whole minutes pass by in silence, especially with a good design like the flowers, and it is almost like a retreat,a chance to concentrate and be mindful. There's no way you can concentrate on the detritus of every day life outside and get the counting, placing and stitching right.


 There were a few repeat offenders on the workshop; it turned out that, after the Lily pond workshop, about 6 of us had gone straight home and booked on this one. That was great, because there was a good feeling of companionship already in the room, and some of the chit chat had already happened so we didn't need to ask about locality, or family. It reminded me why I should find a knit n natter or hook, stitch and bitch group.
Jane is always keen to stretch the people on the workshop, and wants you to leave having learned a new skill or a new piece of advice. Here she was demonstrating finishing techniques for thread ends, but I loved the beading using double, half treble or treble stitching. I have dreams of a beaded evening bag in black cotton with silver or diamond beads. I need to let that ferment for a while, and to finish some other WIPs I have.
The workshop started at 10 and finished prompt at 4. Lunch, by the Black Sheep Wools cafe, was lovely as always and tea, coffee and cake at 3.30 was most welcome. Yes, I was tempted by some stuff in the shop, of which more later, and the 10% off voucher for attending a course was a welcome inducement.
"Ah!" I hear you cry, "But how far did you get in the 6 hours of hand cramping, neck aching crochet???"  (you were thinking that, weren't you?)


 I got this far and a little further. Not a finished motif by any means, but a couple of rows short of the black and certainly not just at the start. I also got as far as the pink row on my other side, so that's a win. The centre has beads on, and I wanted to make sure I had enough to complete both sides. Giventhat I was out last night and have an emergency to complete today, I think this will have to wait until Monday to be finished, and then put on my To Finish pile, which grows by the week. I am also reminded that I never showed you my finished pieces from the last workshop.... that will have to wait. I'm time poor today, and off to wake the crowd for breakfast. Have a good Sunday, and see you all later in the week x

Comments

  1. The workshop sounds really worthwhile, it's so good to pick up hints and tips, and of course, have help with a new design. It's so pretty and I love the beads in the centre.

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    Replies
    1. I really don't mind sometimes if I don't learn anything new at a workshop, but when you do and when it's really useful then it's a double win!

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  2. That is beautiful!!! What a wonderful workshop to take part in!x

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    Replies
    1. I really want to finish the bag.... just not the way Jane designed it! I'm thinking of making it a little bigger, and using real straps.

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  3. The colours against the black are stunning. Little daughter had an art project to finish over half term and she chose Frida Kahlo because of the colours she used. I know she would love that blanket! The workshops sound great for getting some me-time in. xx

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    Replies
    1. With cake and tea thrown in. I liked it so much, I've already booked the next one!

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  4. What a beautiful collection of colours which grow into a stunning flower, you did good!
    I bet meeting up with a group would be really good fun.
    Lisa x

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    Replies
    1. Thank you. I just wish Southampton was closer x

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  5. You are creating a beautiful piece of art! I rather like workshops and classes, I like spending time with like minded women and have made some good friends recently.

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    Replies
    1. Well, I've swapped emails with one of the others now, with the idea that we may go on other workshops together!

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  6. Ooh, lovely. I like the intricacy of the pattern very much - and agree that you need the black - but yes I bet they take a while to put together. Your workshop sounds absolutely brilliant, i'd love to do something like that.

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    Replies
    1. I'm so lucky to live so near to such a good place! And to have enjoyed both workshops so far.

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  7. What a beautiful piece of work, the colours and design are gorgeous. Sounds like a lovely way to spend a day. Have you booked another one for yourself? xx

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  8. Gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous! I live quite close to Black Sheep too and have completed a course there. Great to meet like-minded people.

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  9. The workshop sounds blissful, the flowers, beautiful xx

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