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March 27, 2015

Microme

Microme by Sherri Stokey of Knot Just Macrame.

Microme - remember, folks, you heard it here first.  I'm on a one woman crusade to change the name of what I do from micro macrame to microme.  Let's face it, micro macrame is just a mouthful.  I didn't really care a whole lot about what it was called before I started doing classes because, apparently, typing micro macrame is much easier than saying it.  Once I started having to pronounce it in videos and narration (and had to re-record a few times because I got all tongue tied), I started looking for an alternate term.

I used plain old "macrame" for a while, but that conjures up images like this for some folks:

Macrame owls.

Now I like a macrame owl as much as the next guy, but this isn't really the "feel" I was going for.  Then I tried the phrase "beaded macrame" for a while, and while the alliteration factor is gone, it's still the same number of syllables and it just isn't very catchy.  

Enter my friend.  We all have one - the one who has funny stories for days?  Mine also has a super catchy dance complete with swinging arms and snapping fingers that never fails to bring a smile to my face, but that's a story for another day.  Anyway, the other day when we were visiting about what it is that I do, it came out "microme".

Microme \ˈ-krō-ˌmā\
 
I like it!  It's a little word, which seems more appropriate for itty bitty macrame than "micro macrame".  It's catchy and it's fun to say.  I am, therefore, on a mission to spread this new word throughout the land.  Maybe even get it into a dictionary - at least the urban one :)  Who's with me?



March 24, 2015

SpongeBob to Micro Macrame in 3 Easy Steps

Toys

You might be wondering what this picture has to do with macrame.  How is she going to get from biker SpongeBob (in his pajamas) to this:

Multiple strand macrame necklace by Sherri Stokey of Knot Just Macrame.

Stick with me for a minute and I'll get you there.  So... you might have noticed somewhere along the way (if you've followed my work for five minutes or more) that I have a slight obsession with turquoise and sandy colors paired with beach themes.  This week I mixed up a little bead soup for inspiration, then dug around for some buttons to coordinate.  I found one really pretty button in the softest turquoise color, but the rest were just metal tones - mostly brass.  I added some color with Vinaj patinas so now they go perfectly (in my humble opinion, and since it's my blog... well, you get the picture).

Custom bead mix and matching buttons.

Turns out this is the perfect mix for multiple strand necklaces with everything I love!

Multiple strand macrame necklace by Sherri Stokey.

Multiple strand macrame necklace with nautilus shell button closure.

Then yesterday when I was trying to take some photos for this post, Carter plopped himself down in my lap and announced "me!". 

Adorable toddler.

See the little fingers pointing at his "me"?  

Carter and Grandma selfie.

Since we all know I'm putty in his hand, I put off the "real" photos and instead we took  pictures of SpongeBob and dirt bikes.  And that's how you get from A to B in the ridiculousless that is my life - I wouldn't have it any other way!

Turqouise and tan knotted macrame necklace and color palette.

March 20, 2015

International Day of Happiness

My grandson on his big wheel.
Carter on his new ride. 

Happy International Day of Happiness!!  Years of study by really smart people shows that one thing is fundamental for happiness, and that's our connection with other people.  (As a mother and a grandmother, I could have told them that!)  So this year,  we are all being asked to reach out and make at least one positive connection with someone.  

As luck would have it, I get to spend the afternoon with my grandson, Carter, and that makes me really happy!!  That's an awfully easy one, though, so I would like to take it a little further.  I'd like to connect with some of you.  Yes, you.  Stop looking around for someone else - I mean you.

Carter and great grandparents all wearing Sponge Bob t-shirts.
Carter and his great grandparents in matching Sponge Bob t-shirts. 

I want to hear about what makes you happy.  I love spending time with my family.  I love playing with my grandson and I love getting creative in the kitchen with my daughter (and it's even more fun when her friends join us).  Kittens and puppies make me happy.  Hearing a cardinal sing makes me happy.  Green grass and leafy green trees make me happy - and sunshine, well, don't even get me started on sunshine!  

Lampwork beads from Donna Millard.
Pretty new beads in my mailbox!

Other random things that induce happiness:  playful squirrels chasing one another through our yard (and up the trees and down the trees and around the trees...); visits from our neighbors' dog, Riley; unexpected messages from cousins who live far away (but still close in my heart); memories of my grandparents; getting beads in my mailbox... I could go on, but I think you get the idea.  I don't need big, expensive things to make my heart swell.  For me it's all about the little things.  The simple moments.

Fuzzy cat paws.
Fuzzy kitty feet make me happy.

Now it's your turn.  Tell me what makes you happy?

March 16, 2015

Let's Talk About Macrame - A New Forum for Knotters

Roman forum

Okay, different kind of forum, but I couldn't help myself.  I am positively giddy with excitement!  A friend of mine, Nadja of Imbali Crafts has just started a brand spankin' new forum for macrame enthusiasts.  

As a knotter, I've never quite fit in anywhere (and yes, I realize that comment leaves me open for a lof of  smart-alecky comments).  There are all kinds of groups set up for seed beaders and stringers and and polymer folks, etc., but there's not much out there for people interested in micro macrame.  Until now.

Check this out:  Macrame Forum   Just in case you didn't go look at it, this is what it looks like:

Macrameforum.com

Isn't it adorable!?  It's all shiny and new and so full of promise.  Nadja has set up a place to show off your latest masterpieces or to ask questions about what kind of cord works best.  If you're having trouble locating a source for cord or figuring out a knot that has you stumped, this is the place.  And if you like to dabble in soutache or tatting or something, she's got a special corner just for you, too.  (Hahaha - did you see what I did there?  But really, it's not a bad corner or anything and you don't have to wear a pointed hat, so it's all good.)

 Okay, so go there and get signed up.  I'm already there!


March 8, 2015

Nylon Cord Size Comparison

Nylon bead cord size comparison.

I am often asked about the cord I use for making my micro macrame jewelry, so I thought it might be time for a post on the subject.  I use nylon bead cord, either C-lon or Superlon brand and I use the .5mm size for the majority of my pieces.

Both C-lon and Superlon cords come in four sizes (and lots of colors).  To make the comparison a little more visual, I made a little macrame piece with each of the four cord thicknesses.  


I hope that helped clear up some of the confusion about cord sizes and brands.  If you'd like more information and photos, please check out the post I did here.

Comparing bead cord sizes for micro macrame.



March 2, 2015

So You Want to Learn Micro Macrame?

Micro macrame hydrangeas bracelet tutorial by Knot Just Macrame

Have you wanted to try making micro macrame jewelry yourself, but were afraid you would end up with something that looks like this:

Unsuccessful micro macrame knotting.

Not to worry, I'm here to help (and that's not "help" like "I'm from the government, I'm here to help."  I have  tutorials and classes to teach you how to knot beautiful jewelry pieces.  Really!  The tutorials available for instant download in my Etsy shop include step by step instruction and lots of clear, close up photos like these:

Sample photo from Leaves Micro Macrame Bracelet tutorial by Sherri Stokey.

Sample photo from Hydrangeas Micro Macrame Bracelet tutorial by Sherri Stokey.

The Micro Macrame Braids Bracelet  is probably the easiest tutorial I offer.  I use square knots (you might remember those from summer camp!) for a fun and easy project.  The only part that some people find challenging is the ending - larks head knots around a split ring.  And just in case you should have any problem with that, I did a post here on my blog  with videos - I really want you to succeed!  

Micro macrame Braids bracelet tutorial.

Once you've learned the closure bit, and you're ready for the next challenge, you have several from which to choose:  the Leaves and Hydrangea  bracelets introduce the use of the DHH (double half hitch knot) used extensively in my patterns.  Again, if you're stumped you can refer to this post where I've included videos on making double half hitch knots both from right to left and from left to right!  A little more challenging, my Curves Bracelet tutorial uses only DHH knots again, but this time you have to do a little fancy footwork.  Nothing too difficult, but it will require a little more of your attention.

Leaves and Curves micro macrame bracelet tutorials at www.knotjustmacrame.etsy.com

Then, just because it's macrame and there's nothing that says macrame more than an owl, I have a tutorial for a Micro Macrame Owl Pendant. This one uses an assortment of knots and a little picking up and dropping of cords to make this cute pendant.  You learn a little something and you get a cute owl at the end: win-win!

Micro Macrame Owl Pendant tutorial at www.knotjustmacrame.etsy.com

Are you still on the fence about another DIY project?  Having flashbacks of your attempt at hanging wallpaper or installing tile in the shower (they make it look SO easy on TV)?  Relax!  Here's what folks on Etsy are saying about my tutorials:
"I recently purchased several tutorials and a kit from KnotJustMacrame and I have to say I am delighted! Never have I seen such clear instructions along with incredibly clear close-up photos. Just wonderful! I am excited to have completed a lovely bracelet the first time through! Thank you so much!"
 "Exactly as great as described. I also ordered the tutorial and it's very thorough and easy to follow. Highly recommend!"
"I love this bracelet. Very easy to follow directions. Well written with lots of photos! Very happy with my purchase!"
"This was my first attempt at micro macramé and I was pretty pleased with my efforts - excellent tutorial, thank you."
Micro Macrame with Sherri Stokey at CraftArtEdu

I also have quite a few classes available at CraftArtEdu.com if you prefer the a more classroom style learning environment.  I can't come to your home and teach you, but this really is the next best thing.  CraftArtEdu's platform allows me to integrate narration and video into my classes along with the same great still photographs and step by step instruction.  You won't be disappointed.  These classes go hand in hand with the tutorials I offer on Etsy and the skill levels are marked so you know exactly what to expect from your class. 

Are you still here?  What are you waiting for?  Go!  Learn!!  Have FUN!


February 20, 2015

The Blue Version

Argus micro macrame cuff in blue by Sherri Stokey

The "eyes" in my new Argus cuff design got me thinking about Egyptian themes.  Then again, since I'm a huge fan of all things ancient Egyptian, everything gets me thinking along that track, but I digress...

Argus micro macrame cuff in blue by Sherri Stokey of Knot Just Macrame

I had the thought of playing up that angle, so I used a bright blue cord and gold beads as well as a seed bead mixture called, coincidentally enough, Egyptian Lapis Stripe.  I'm not sure I was able to capture the feel I was after, but I really do like this color!

Blue macrame cuff from Knot Just Macrame


An online class for this micro macrame bracelet is available at CraftArtEdu.com and at a special introductory price for a couple more days - through Sunday.

I can't wait to see what color combinations you come up with!

Micro macrame cuff pattern in two different colorways.