Flower Brooches and the WI

I recently have joined the WI!

This is a statement that is usually met with raised eyebrows and a high pitched ‘really?’However, when I then go on to explain that it is not your stereotypical WI and has an average age several decades below many groups around the country people begin to understand. I like crafting, as you know, and that is what many WI’s do. I am a member of Cam City WI.

Some of you may also know that I have a bit of a record getting involved in the running of such groups. I was really proud of myself and managed not to volunteer for the committee. πŸ™‚ I then had an e-mail asking me if I would be happy to run a craft table based around knitting and crocheting brooches. My immediate reaction was Noooooooo. It sat in my inbox for a fair while and I then managed to get myself into action and plan some bits.


This is the knitted one.

I quite happily came up with two flowers – one knitted and one crocheted before deciding that I really ought to include a wire option too. All fine and all organised (wool found, wire sorted, beads and buttons sourced etc) I turned up and set out my table. It all went well until I realised that there were several blank faces around the table. They didn’t crochet. Ummmm Why hadn’t I thought of this as a possibility? It was a large table with about 5 non-crocheters spread about the table. The room was noisy. Not an ideal situation to teach people how to crochet. Especially when they are wanting to use very, very fine wire to start with!

I am happy to say that most people went home with something that they had made although it was certainly not all down to me! I simply did not have enough time to give everyone the attention that they deserved. 😦 (Oh well you do learn.)


The pattern that I used for the knitted flower was one by Sue Thompson on Ravelry. What I really liked about this pattern was that each petal is knitted and left on the needle. You then knit all along every petal, effectively joining them together. Less sewing up required and I will never complain about that!

Wire Flowers

When I got back from the WI I had one of those brainwaves – why don’t I try to knit some of these flowers in wire? So I did:

This is my first go.

I really like the way you can see all the intricate stitches.

For my next one I used smaller needles.

I thought that some beads would make a great addition to this:

They don’t show up that well unfortunately.

Not sure if this is any better?

(Christmas needs to come quickly so I can get my hands on the photography book I have asked for!!)

My final go with this pattern was an attempt to make a bowl:

It does not work as a bowl but is a great statement brooch. I just need to decide what embellishment to add to the middle – any ideas?

Knit or Crochet?

So there you go, I have been thoroughly side tracked again, although in a good way. I will be writingΒ  more posts based around the other two flowers we worked on soon. I do just want to draw your attention to an observation that I made on the night:Β  out of the whole table only one person chose to knit over crochet. Not sure what that says but thought that it is an interesting observation.

To undo or not?

As always I want to say a huge thank you to all who commented and gave me their advice about what to do with the knitting that went wrong. The general consensus was that if it was not noticeable to leave it but many of you realised that many people cannot live with knowing that there is a mistake. As yet I have managed to be ‘too busy’ to make a decision ;). I have tried to take it back down using only the stitches involved although I am not sure how successful this is. I shall let you all know of my decision once I have made my mind up!!

Finally do grab a cup of tea and follow me over to see what everyone else has been up to this week at Handmade Harbour.

Hope you all have a productive week. πŸ™‚

50 thoughts on “Flower Brooches and the WI

  1. Blue Forest Jewellery

    Well done running the class, especially with the challenge of non-crocheters. I bet they all enjoyed it. I would use beads on the statement brooch, but then I always like to see beads and wire together – a marriage made in heaven πŸ™‚ Have a great week, Alison x

  2. Wendy Melling

    Congratulations on the flowers. The wire ones look very delicate! Maybe I should look into the WI, I remember the film about the calender.
    Good luck with your knitting
    Wendy x

  3. Sarah

    Well done on joining the WI….AND for teaching the non crochet’ers to crochet!! Am loving the intricate wire flowers.
    Hope you have a good week
    S x

  4. Natalie

    it sounds like you’ll have great fun with the WI, and meet lots of like minded crafty types i’m sure πŸ™‚

    well done with your class, it sounds like it was a steep learning curve for everyone! i always think that the main thing with these events is to have fun and also perhaps gather some inspiration… it sounds like those goals were achieved πŸ™‚

    i really love the intricacy and delicate beauty of your wire flowers x

    1. knitnrun4sanity Post author

      I have to be honest – I don’t think that I taught anyone single handedly – I think others all chipped in too but that is part of the wonderful things about a group like that.

  5. fiddlyfingers

    I felt for you with your crafting table! Teaching 5 non crocheters to crochet is a challenge in itself let alone a table full of others all doing something a bit different and some using wire! Well done you! You survived πŸ˜€

  6. Jill Spain (@JillSpain)

    The WI has certainly changed over the years. Knowing how hard I find crochet, teaching it to five non-crochet people must have been soooo hard. Your brooch is lovely, and your wore work is always so beautiful. Hope you have a good week

  7. t1ckledp1nk

    I so want to join a funky WI but can’t find one and am loathe to set one up because of all the extra work involved (but it might come to that)! I think one of Wendy’s lovely ceramic buttons would look lovely in the centre of that statement brooch. x

  8. Caroline

    Nothing wrong with the WI, was a member but our groups went for a nap, keep meaning to try again as that was several years ago and now I am also older may fit in. The flowers are so pretty and well done for doing a craft table

  9. claireabellemakes

    I think you were wise to join the WI and enjoy as a member for now. Setting it up has been stressful and busy!

    You did a marvellous job on your craft table. Everyone who I spoke to who hadn’t crocheted before, was amazed with what they had achieved on the night. It was busy and noisy, so you had a real challenge on your hands. Well done.

    I promise to try the wire flower soon during some quiet time x

  10. Pickle-Lily

    I’m a member of a funky WI as well – they seem to be springing up everywhere! The flowers look fab, I haven’t even thought about knitting with wire! Have a good week, Jo x

    1. knitnrun4sanity Post author

      Sorry – thought about this too late – it is the Woman’s Institute and here in the uk has the reputation of being full of very elderly ladies, although there are many ‘younger’ ones popping up now.

  11. byhook

    I’m so excited for you joining the Women’s Institute! We have a local version here and I’ve visited their site a number of times without actually getting any further. Maybe this is the motivation I need! Well done on the lesson and spreading the joy of crochet πŸ™‚

  12. sue

    I love the wire brooches – I just happen to have some reels of wire in my stash – I must have thought it was a good idea to buy them at some time and have never opened them, but now I know what I want to do with them… thank you .. especially as I’ll be away in hotels a fair bit between now and the new year.. it’ll be easy to transport and do in the evenings! Sue

  13. Pingback: Crochet Flower Brooch « knitnrun4sanity

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