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techniques
free form cavandoli knotting free form cavandoli knotting kumihimo braiding free form cavandoli knotting and needle lace Knotted gemstones free form cavandoli knotting free form cavandoli knotting free form cavandoli knotting

It all started in the back of a truck in the middle of the Southwest desert while Nicolai, my future husband painted 'plein air' style on location for hours at a time. After I had explored, searched for geodes and read our few books, I needed an activity. I was embroidering my jeans jacket and had a small book on macrame. Nicolai had some waxed linen thread, and the desert provided the pinion nuts that could be turned into beads, and my first macrame jewelry was born on the road. Here are some of the fiber and metal techniques I use in my work. ` Marion

micro macrame - Mostly a combination of square knots and double half hitches with the addition of a few other knots. Macrame comes from Arabic and means fringes. It was brought first to Spain by the Moors, then to France, Italy and England and enjoyed a period of popularity in the royal courts until it was supplanted by lace, and later on by machines. Macrame got popularized in the 70's with pot hangers and is currently having a revival on a smaller and finer scale for jewelry, as micro or mini macrame.
I got started in the late 70's with macrame then graduated right away to original non-traditional patterns.

cavandoli knotting - Or cavandoli tapestry knotting - geometric and/or free-form patterns done with double half hitches only. The result has the look of woven textile. Also called half hitching.
Many of my one of a kind pieces are done with this technique, geometrical pieces as well as a free form cavandoli style work, or free form half hitching - most with up to 500 knots per square inch. It is a time consuming technique as there is no space nor loose thread between each knot.

nautical knotting - Nautical knotting flourished in the late 19th century and beginning of the 20th century. The whalers especially took to knotting to alleviate boredom and also to earn extra money with items to sell at their port of call.
One of my bible is an encyclopedia of knots and fancy rope work first published in 1939 coming out of this tradition. Although hard to follow I spent many hours looking for good techniques for jewelry making.

kumihimo braiding - Traditional Japanese technique - kumi = group, himo = cord - for braiding with a maru dai or takadai. Many braids can also be done with a marudai disk or plate. Some braids can be done by hand without the use of a tool. I usually prefer braiding by hand just like the Peruvian braiders and keeping the structures of the braids fairly simple to compliment the overall design of the pieces. See blog entry on Rodrick Owen (October 20, 2008)

cordmaking - Also called cord spinning, or plying. Usually 2 or 3 ply.
After spending fruitless hours looking for commercial cords to match my work for pendant, I taught myself how to make cords, so they could match exactly the rest of the work.

chinese knotting - Ornamental knotting employed traditionally in China and Japan for ceremonial purposes. Many knots are actual braids and interlocked knots in symmetrical patterns.
I studied a number of the Chinese knots especially when getting special orders with carved Chinese jade, but now I use the Chinese Button Knot almost exclusively.

tatting - A technique done with half hitches and loops. I use a lot of half hitches but not so many loops!

needle lace - The buttonhole stitch is also a half hitch though mostly stitched onto a fabric.
Some of the knotting techniques I use can be compared to needle lace techniques. 'Needle Lace Techniques & Inspiration', a beautiful book written by Jill Nordfors Clark published in 1999 features one of my piece as an example of needle lace.

sterling silver - Mostly fabrication, although occasionally other techniques are used.
I apprenticed in metalsmithing but returned to my first interest in fiber techniques and applied many of the design approach learned with metal to my fiber pieces.

P. O. Box 6776 . Chico CA 95927 . USA . All content on this site © Copyright 2014 by Marion Hunziker-Larsen . Updated 06/16/13
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