Added a new photo page on my Blog with various pictures of my Architectural adventures over the years with fibre. I had the honour of designing for various galleries which often included my architectural pieces some shown here. My love for architecture began while taking Interior Design. Since then it has been a passion for me to create designs with knitting and crochet that are inspired by the amazing artists, designers, architects and all the people involved in making such extraordinary buildings of the past. This is a small sample of the many designs I have created with an architectural theme. You can link to the page below that shows more of my architectural designs.
I hope to pattern some of these designs and other crochet patterns with an architectural essence this year. A wonderful customer has recently sent me various photos of beautiful cathedrals etc. in France and I am looking forward to using them for a new architectural inspiration and creating a new crochet pattern from these wonderful photos. Thank you Marie for sending them to me. I really appreciate it! It is great having photos from your travels instead of relying on the internet. Here are a few of the inspiring photos below:
One day I hope to travel to France and other European locations. Fun fact: We do have a small piece of France on the East Coast of Canada! It is a French Territory. You can read more on these links below.
Enjoy the inspiration in your life today. You never know where it will come from. Perhaps someone who lives in another country will help direct you in your newest adventure like my renewed inspiration to design architectural crochet pieces because a customer was so kind to share their travel photos with me. I can’t wait to begin designing with these photos and other architectural features from buildings of the past.
Various crochet patterns by Valerie Baber Designs are available at:
The Floral Crochet Archi Scarf has an Architecture Edge to the design with the colours of stone used in these beautiful buildings as well as the Crockets and circular style of the scarf similar to the rose windows seen in these amazing buildings. A floral touch with a quatrofoil button finishes off the design. Available in other colours and made with hand painted merino wool. Shown with the Classic Edge hand warmers to compliment this design. To purchase or see more of my designs check out http://www.valeriebaberdesigns.etsy.com or http://www.valeriebaberdesign.com Wear this design to the front as shown or to the side as seen in these other pictures below.
The Floral Frieze Scarf in Ivory and Beige with Classic Edge hand warmers is another new design for 2015 with an architectural feel. This combination is done in the stone colours of many buildings of the past with the darker beige being the shadow giving the piece depth in design. A two scarf combination that can be worn in many styles as shown below. Other colours will follow soon. See more at http://www.valeriebaberdesigns.etsy.com and soon at http://www.valeriebaberdesign.com Two great places to purchase many of my designs. This group is made with http://www.sweetgeoriayarns.com on the scarf.
More Architectural Inspiration scarves with a floral stone tracery feel. All of these designs are available for order at http://www.valeriebaberdesigns.etsy.com This group of scarves new this season were inspired once again by the many Gothic Cathedrals of the past especially the Milan Cathedral. This amazing building was designed and built by many architects, artists, craftsmen and so many more. It is one of the most decorated Gothic Cathedrals that took over 200 years to build. The various architects used a lot of floral inspiration in their stone tracery throughout the Milan Cathedral as shown below.
The various floral accents on the Floral Tracery Gothic Cathedral Inspired scarves were inspired by the Milan Cathedral and other Gothic Cathedrals of the past. As mentioned in my previous blogs I will be restarting my Architectural project as you can see why. There is so much inspiration that I felt I needed to go another direction and begin my project with various Architectural buildings to pull my inspiration from. I will be adding these designs to my work soon for Fall and Winter 2015/16.
It amazes me the incredible amount of work that has gone into these beautiful buildings. I am awed at their creativity and design as each Gothic Cathedral stands alone in unique stature expressing the Architect, Artist and Craftsmen ideas and design skills that have stood for many years in their beautiful strength. The Gothic Architecture era had a huge impact on how we design and build today.
Check my website soon for dates I am at the local St. Albert Farmers Market in the fall as well some of my work will be at another booth by the library at the Wiggles and Giggles booth. Website: www.vbaberdesigns.com
A Desperate Fortune Scarf and hand warmers designed for Author Susanna Kearsley and her newest book “A Desperate Fortune”. This one of a kind design was designed from the inspiration that Susanna used for her newest book. Take a trip into the past and present with this extraordinary book with a cryptic journal from the past telling a secret story in the present day of this written book. A fabulous read that includes suspense, deception, allegiance and love that will entice you through each chapter with plenty of visually written moments. Plenty of twists and turns to entertain you throughout the book and as always a surprise ending. I absolutely love this book, it is a must read so add it to your list soon.
I am fortunate that Susanna is a most wonderful friend and I thank her for asking me to work with her on this wonderful adventure. Like the two women in her book working separately, yet together though they lived far apart in time and Susanna and I in distance. It is a true pleasure being a friend of Susanna’s and I am so very proud of all she has done and continues to do. Awesome job my friend on your newest book!!! One of my new favourites by far!
The A Desperate Fortune collar style scarf (small scarf) and hand warmers are available for purchase together or separately at http://www.valeriebaberdesigns.etsy.com takes about 1 to 2 weeks to make. See more information about them at my Etsy store.
The present day character Sara wears various scarves through out the book and originally I thought of designing a scarf that included these various scarves. The Architectural descriptions in Susanna’s latest novel were speaking louder likely since I have been greatly inspired by Architecture of the past in my work this past year. I couldn’t wait to begin this newest member of my Architectural designs just for Susanna. Below are some pictures of the building Susanna was influenced by in her description of the building in the book. Susanna’s description: “The building with the windows is the chapel inside the old chateau of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, in France, which once housed the exiled Stuart kings of Britain and their courtiers. For me, having written for several years now about these people and their lives, actually getting to stand on this spot was a very moving moment, as this chapel would have been at the centre of their daily routines”.
Susanna Kearsley is an award winning Author with many books she has written on her shelf. You can check out more on her website at http://susannakearsley.com/
You can read the first two chapters of this wonderful book here:
I began this journey into the past for the A Desperate Fortune Scarf with a crochet base of a light coloured stone as shown in the pictures above. Adding green at the bottom for the stained glass effect that the stone tracery would be adhering to down the road. You can see more of the progress in the pictures below as I design the stone tracery and add the brick colour to the scarf and hand warmers. There are two brooches that accent this scarf so you can wear it in various ways and use them to fasten the scarf. The are both Stained Glass Rose windows that were designed for these wonderful Architectural buildings of the past.
For the “A Desperate Fortune” scarf I used beautiful yarn from SweetGeorgia Yarns, a Canadian Company, who dyes yarn in wonderful colours that portray their local area and Canada. A fitting yarn to use since both Susanna and I are Canadian. The colours were perfect for this design with the light stone colour being the Birch colour way, the stained glass is the Woodland Colour way of greens and the brick is done in the Terra Firma colour way. All yarns were by SweetGeorgia Yarns in the Superwash Merino wool blend. SweetGeorgia yarns are as noted in the name, SWEET! One of my favourite yarns to work with, luxuriously soft and the colours are truly fantastic. I recently took a visit to Vancouver and popped into the store to see the latest colours and newest yarns for this year. They are even more delectable and wonderful than ever. I can’t wait to use them in my next series of designs.
I am off to work on some new Architectural designs and new designs for Fall. Come back soon to see my latest as well I am restarting my Architectural project as there was so much inspiration in my research that I have decided to go a different direction. I will blog my start on that very soon. Have a most wonderful day today.
Artist of the Month…Art Gallery of St. Albert and the St. Albert Gazette. Thank you both so very much for asking me to be a part of this great series at the Art Gallery of St. Albert and the St. Albert Gazette. I am honoured that you have chosen me to be a part of this amazing community of wonderful Artists. Thank you Scott Hayes of the St. Albert Gazette for such a wonderful article on my designs and my design process. You have a great way of expressing in written words what the Artist is about and more. Thanks so much for all your hard work and fantastic article. You can view this article on page 51 of the St. Albert Gazette E edition here: www.stalbertgazette.com PDF st albert gazette1
You can purchase these designs in the pictures on the article and many others at the http://www.artgalleryofstalbert.ca (Art Gallery of St. Albert) as well as many other creations made by local Artists. Thanks too for the wonderful pictures in the article above.
Thank you also to all my customers who have purchase my designs in the past and in the future. You are the ones who inspire me the most to create new and exciting designs. I am working on more new styles for fall including more architectural pieces as well as more sculptural designs. Check back often to see what I am working on next.
Most of all be inspired by your surroundings everyday and look around you to see what you can view in a different light today. Thanks again to all of you and have the most wonderful day!
Happy New Years to all of you. I just finished, literally, my first new scarf design for 2015. Last year I decided to make the first scarf design of the year for myself to start the year and give myself a bit of a bonus for all the work I did in the previous year. This year since my biggest inspiration and joy in design has been working on my Architectural collection I decided to make this new addition to the collection. I am so excited to continue this venture this year as there are many ideas I must design and continue my journey of Architecture and the inspiration that it beholds.
This is my newest member of the Architectural collection, the Stone Tracery Rose Window scarf, Long version. Made with hand painted merino wool in an ivory stone colour and a darker beige to show a the shadow effect and darker features of the window beneath the stone tracery. Edged in stone tracery with crockets on the edges found on my Gothic Cathedrals and Architecture of the past. Three different sizes of Rose Windows adorn this scarf to add a tapered look and finish to the design.
I am happy with the outcome as if you look back at my other smaller designs you will see my progression towards this scarf. It’s a wonderful moment when you achieve in your finished design what you have been busy designing in your head and at last see the finished product. I have enjoyed every moment of the Architectural venture and can’t wait to begin some bigger projects on my list.
I wanted to thank the Alberta Craft Council Gallery for giving me the opportunity to be the Artist Spotlight this month at such an amazing venue. You can see more about the Artist Spotlight here: http://www.albertacraft.ab.ca/artist-spotlight/ I appreciate this wonderful opportunity to spread my wings and design something new this year. It may not be new here on my blog, but the inspiration for finding something special for the Artist Spotlight this month was the starting point of my Architectural Collection I have been busy working on this fall. I wanted to design a group of designs that were different from my past ones, so I went to the past era’s to find my inspiration.
Gothic Inspired Architectural designs is my newest collection. For years I have been inspired by the amazing Architecture of the past. While taking my Interior Decorating and Interior Design the one group of courses I couldn’t get enough of were Art and Architectural History. The fact that one building can take various decades and more to complete with various architects, designers, painters and the many people it takes to achieve these greatly detailed features of the architectural buildings of the past. I could go on and on about this subject, but it would take a life time to talk about it all.
Above are some of my most recent Architectural designs in the Stone Tracery collection including some One of a Kind pieces. The first Gothic Cathedral Shawl Scarf is made with a “stone wall” effect on the base of the scarf in dark stone colours with crockets and tracery around the edge as seen on Gothic Architecture. Each end is finished with a rose window effect, showing the outside view of these amazing buildings of the past. I have added two brooches to this design to accent and fasten the piece where you want. The first is the Gothic Cathedral brooch in the shape of a cross as Gothic Cathedrals were usually built in that shape during this era. The second brooch is one of my Stained Glass Rose windows which was also a predominate feature on buildings during this time period. This one of a kind piece and some of the other designs are available at the Alberta Craft Council Gallery at http://www.albertacraft.ab.ca or on my Etsy store at http://www.valeriebaberdesigns.etsy.com. The other scarves are various examples of my other work in this section of my Architectural Collection. There are others in this collection too as I continue to evolve this venture into new and exciting designs.
The Gothic Stained Glass Rose Window Scarf is inspired by the architectural features of the Gothic Cathedrals of the past. These sculptural Gothic Stained Glass scarf has an embellished Stained Glass Rose Window which was a prominent feature on Gothic Cathedrals and buildings of that era. As I chatted about in my previous blogs I adore vintage buildings and the amazing and exquisite architecture of the past. Stained Glass windows have always caught my attention in these beautiful buildings of the past and current. Perhaps that is why about 10 years ago I took classes on Stained Glass and made various pieces for my home. The time, skill and artistry that goes into designing and making one small window is an enormous task, but worth every moment when you see the light dancing through the wonderful colours of the pattern.
Gothic Architecture incorporates many stained glass windows as the flying buttresses used in design made it possible to have many more windows than previous architecture design. I believe this is a big reason why I love this Architecture so very much. A stained glass window has two sides with different effects on each of them. I have tried to portray this in some of the Gothic Stained Glass Rose Window Scarves above. I have others I have designed including ear warmers, longer and smaller scarves as well that you can see at the locations listed at the bottom of this blog.
The last picture is designed with the half of the view of the Rose Window from the outside looking in the the elaborate tracery of stone and a hint of the colours of stained glass beneath. The other side of the Stained Glass shows the view of from the inside of the cathedral with the more vibrant colours dancing about and the detailed metal pieces holding the work together. Tracery and elaborate stone features were an exquisite feature of these beautiful works of art. This design is done on a vintage essence base which adds to the overall effect.
The metal buttons on many of the the scarves are reminiscent of the Quartrefoil shape often seen on the Gothic Inspired Cathedrals and buildings or have a stone tracery effect.
Thank you again to the Alberta Craft Council Gallery for asking me to be the Artist Spotlight for December. I am truly thankful for the continued inspiration and guidance you as a group give myself and many other Artists in our careers. We couldn’t do it with out you. The opportunities that you have given me are outstanding and always interesting to do helping me grow and expand my creativity. The amazing contribution you give to the community is outstanding and a true blessing in each of our lives. Thank you for all your hard work in helping us grow and succeed in our ventures and the Art and local community. MANY THANKS!! 🙂
If you are looking for that amazing and unique gift that is something special for those you care about pop into the Alberta Craft Council for a vast array of wonderful locally made gifts. Many items to choose from and while your there take some time to check out the amazing Art pieces in the various gallery sections. It’s a wonderful place to be inspired and enjoy the beautiful Art work of many Artists. I recently went to their “Twas the Night” and found wonderful gifts for some of my favourite people. I have many other design styles there as well to choose from. All kinds of price points too that are perfect for gift giving. Have a wonderful day today!