I love a challenge, especially when it's presented to me by someone looking for something ultra special. That's why I was so excited when I was contacted last month with a request to create a set of three bead crochet ropes to coordinate with this lovely dress that had been purchased from Anthropologie.
The dress has a simple, classic style, with a bold plaid design in navy, olive, and cream. I was given lots of leeway in the design of the necklaces, as the only criteria was the length (37") and the number of ropes (3).
I immediately envisioned a set of ropes made from beads in these same colors, and I set about to design a bead crochet pattern that would mimic the bold plaid in the dress. My plan? One rope in olive and cream, one rope in navy and cream, and a third rope using all three colors. That would allow the person wearing the dress to wear the two 2-color ropes as necklaces and wrap the third rope around her wrist for a perfectly coordinated bracelet. I love versatility!
So off I went to work on the pattern, as I anxiously awaited the arrival of the beads I would need. I planned to use Czech glass picasso finish size 11/0 beads for the olive portion, but I needed to order some opaque pale cream and some matte metallic dark navy. Although I have some picasso finish beads in navy blue, I didn't think they were quite dark enough to go with the dress, and I thought it would be nice to have some matte beads in the ropes for extra contrast and texture.
Finally the beads arrived, and I strung and crocheted as fast as I could in order to finish the ropes by the deadline -- the dress and ropes were to be worn to a Baptism, and I didn't want to disappoint!
And here are the ropes, just as I planned (luckily, I didn't make any mistakes in stringing the 200+ bead repeat in the pattern, so I didn't have to do any unraveling!). I'm so happy with them (and I've since received word that the recipient loves them). :-)
I was also asked to make earrings to coordinate with the dress and the ropes, so I made a couple of prototypes so the requester would have a choice. Ultimately I used tubular herringbone to make these loops from the same beads in the ropes, again mimicking the plaid pattern in the dress.
It was great fun creating something so special! And now I must get back to crocheting those size 15/0 24k brushed gold charlottes I mentioned in earlier posts.