Little Dandelion / Blog

Archive
Blankets and Throws

My new bi-colour woollies have been snapped up by a lovely client living in Fremantle who, after moving from Queensland a few years ago, has not acclimatised to Fremantle’s cold cold winters. My client’s eldest daughter already has a Little Dandelion woollie. I am told that she frequently turns down the air conditioning to make the house so cold that she has good reason to snuggle under her woollie. That makes me one very happy knitter.

These two bi-colours are for my client’s other two girls, one pink loving and the other blue loving.

Love the details.

 

Read More

I love everything I make in the sense that I do not have a preference for certain colours. I like my clients to take the lead with their own colour choices but sometimes they ask me to do the choosing for them. Either way, it’s so much fun pulling together a whole lot of wool and turning it into a functional beautiful object to be enjoyed and loved.

Here is a classic beauty, the combination of colours chosen by a client. Tres chic!

This throw is made with oatmeal coloured Corriedale wool from New Zealand. The trim colour is taupe. The match is near perfect.

I’m a simple girl really of simple taste. I like nothing more than to observe how knitting stitches all link together and working on such a large scale makes it even more enjoyable. The larger the stitch the more observable the links. Random? Yup!

Still obsessing over the detail in this shot.

And here she is:

I want to keep her.

 

 

Read More

The beginnings of a custom order woolen throw – a combination of three natural colours. I shall name this wool the “Crazy Critter”.

This was my first time using this particular combination of colours. As I wasn’t sure what the effect would be, I knitted up a small test piece and sent it off to my client for approval. It’s not unlike an animal print. Some of you have mentioned chocolate. Either way it’s all good. Approved!

I like to take photos of my woollies as I knit them: it may be a particular collection of stitches that appeals to me or, as you know by now, the crimp of the wool that I love to capture.

When the woollies make it to the table it means that they are half way to the finishing line. The hardest part is ahead of them and for me, it’s the most angst ridden. Sometimes things go wrong and my mistakes become very expensive.

Fortunately, this Crazy Critter behaved beautifully. And here she is in all her glory:-

Ta daa! This one is off to Paris. Wow – that’s quite a journey. Fedex for you honey. Good luck and I hope you are received well.

Jac x

Read More

Interior view of Les Interieurs

Have you ever been to Les Interieurs in Newport Beach Sydney? If you haven’t, you must make a beeline to its doors. Les Interieurs is arguably one of the most beautiful homewares stores in Sydney. It is the creation of Pamela Makin who is a renowned interior stylist.

Pamela’s retail concept is refreshingly unique in that she curates a new homewares collection every few months. Each new collection is based on an always stylish colour way. Pamela sources one-off pieces from around the globe that best reflect and capture the essence of the chosen colour way. Her range is a mixture of vintage furniture, original finds, hand-crafted objects and  soft furnishings and irresistable decorative pieces.

Pamela also loves to support local designers, artisans and craftspeople: that’s were Little Dandelion comes in to the picture. It is so refreshing when you find people who understand the importance of supporting local craftspeople. To have someone like Pamela like what you do is also a great compliment. Pamela’s taste is exceptional.

Little Dandelion linen throw

When I first walked into Les Interieurs I was a little overwhelmed because everything is just so darn beautiful. This shop is seriously a case of “what not to buy here”. I have spent years on the periphery of the rag trade so I understand that the ability to visually merchandise product in a way that makes it irresistable is a gift. Anyone can be taught the technical aspects of visual merchandising but to do it successfully is a whole other matter. You need to work intuitively to be really good at VM. You need to be able to visualise your space and your product on a macro level. You need to have a commercial eye to ensure that you place your product in a way that will make people want to buy it. Above all, you need to have exceptional taste. Pamela has all of these abilities in spades.

Little Dandelion woollen chain scarf

OMG – I love those hand knitted twine baskets in the picture above.  I love the colour, I love the concept, I love everything about them. I understand they are made by another local craftsperson so that makes them even better. When I first visited the store, Pamela had a stunning floral arrangement made from twigs and foilage coming out of them. To die for!

Little Dandelion bed runner

I LOVE white linen. It is classic, it is elegant but it is also relaxed. There is something extremely luxurious about the notion of white linen. It makes me think of summer holidays, azure blue water, lounging poolside with a cocktail in hand………

The bed runner in the above picture is made from a heavy grade linen. I cut the strips of linen by hand from a 20 metre roll which was 150cm wide. What was I thinking??? Clearly I wasn’t at the time and the exercise taught me that the practice of cutting the fabric myself is totally unsustainable. Once the strips were cut, I then machine stitched them together to create a seam. I then machine washed the strips, deliberately frayed the strips to the seam and then dryed them on a low setting in the dryer. Just to get the strips in a form ready for knitting took me 5 days. The runner used up the entire roll of fabric and took me about 8 hours to knit. Again, what was I thinking?

I think it’s hard for people to understand what goes into making something by hand. That’s why the “back story” of any hand made item is both extremely interesting and important to tell.

Little Dandelion linen throw in focus

This linen throw is made from an incredibly supple linen which has a self-herringbone stripe running through the fabric.  The linen drapes beautifully and it is so soft against the skin. I have made two custom order blankets now out of this fabric but in a different colour way. Both owner’s have kindly reported how much they love them and how comforting they are to use. Linen is like that though – warm in winter and cool in summer.

One more thing – I have to mention the amazing black ceiling light shades in the picture above. Pamela had these flown in from France especially for this collection. Now that is commitment to a cause as far as I’m concerned. Importing things like this can be such a palava. The shades are hand knitted and look stunning. You need to see them first hand to truly appreciate their scale and beauty: a bit like my knits really.

If you happen to be in Newport anytime soon, you must drop in for a visit. Les Interieurs is Christmas present mecca.

Read More

I always find myself explaining to people that it is really hard to get an idea of the scale of my woollies without seeing them first hand. A photo just doesn’t quite cut it I’m afraid.

Yesterday I posted an image on Instagram (LOVE Instagram) of my smokey grey custom order on the make. One of my new found “Random Virals” and fellow craft lover Margie Rahmann from MyVeryOwnEyeGoggles asked if I could take an image of the blanket alongside an everyday item so that she could get an idea of its scale. Brilliant idea. Why didn’t I think of that?

I promised Margie I would do this for her today so Margie – this blog post is for you.

This is the type of photo I would normally post on Instagram. I like capturing the detail.

For the purpose of the exercise, I chose a regular tea cup, albeit a very pretty one. Here it is.

I then placed it on top of the half completed blanket like this:

Here’s a close up because I can’t help myself when it comes to the detail:

And there you have it. I wonder if it is what you expected?

Margie is someone who knows all about scale: she has a gorgeous Etsy shop here and she is also on Facebook. Margie also keeps a blog. Busy, busy, busy. Check Margie out. I’m sure you will love her work.

 

Read More

I really care about where my blankets and throws end up. I think it is because they come from that very vulnerable part of me: the inner creative part which wants to be accepted and understood. These two lovelies look like they have found the perfect home, don’t you think? I can rest easy.

Read More

A collection of new trim colours used in the making of Little Dandelion blanket and throws

The wool used in the making of a Little Dandelion blanket or throw is the colour it comes off the sheeps back. I am completely in love with this notion. I think sheep are incredible creatures and we owe them a debt of gratitude for the many things with which they provide. People give them a hard time, but we’d be so much the poorer and colder without them.

All hail sheep.

A mixed media artowrk of a sheep by Elodie

I would love to be able to give my customers a picture of the actual sheep from which the wool in their blanket or throw has come. There is actually a lot of variance and our farmers in Australia work extremely hard to ensure that the purity of colours and the quality of the fleece amongst their flocks is maintained. The farmers I deal with love their sheep and are totally devoted to their well being. Love it.

I love to work with a range of colours, my favourites being merino white, silver, sandy beige, nutmeg and vegemite. They are all muted tones, earthy and wonderous. But, I also LOVE colour. Colour makes me happy. At home, we have white painted walls and floor boards which act as a brilliant backdrop to lashings of colour.

It’s the same with Little Dandelion’s blankets and throws: I simply cannot resist adding a POP colour to them. It makes them a little quirky and fun and most, of all, it just makes me happy.

Little Dandelion's latest collection of trims.

This is the latest collection of colours to arrive on my door step from the UK. Happy days for this little vegemite!

Read More