How to make a Harris Tweed brooch

My friend Maggie went on holiday to the Hebrides and had a wonderful time. She is a lover of fabrics, like me, and so made several visits to the Harris Tweed shop on the Isle of Harris. She purchased lengths of the most beautiful Harris Tweed in glorious glowing colours, and showed us the special ‘Harris Tweed’ fabric label, which can only be used on bags and garments made from cloth woven in individual makers’ homes on the island.  She offered round a bag of so-called ‘scraps’, which were precious little pieces of  woven Tweed about four or five inches square. I was invited to select two pieces and picked one of cyclamen pink  (one of my favourite colours) and another composed of a lovely heathery mix of colours, which included pink in the mix.

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I had been prepared to some extent for the beauty of the fabric by an article in the periodical “Selvedge”. ( www.selvedge.org.uk – a must for all lovers of textiles and colour). Issue 60 ran a feature on Harris Tweed, and in particular on the hues of the landscape being intimately connected to the colours of the fabrics, as featured in the work of the photographer Ian Lawson. This is a brief glimpse at the pages from the magazine.

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The book from which the pictures were extracted, is called “From the Land comes the Cloth”, published by Classic Edition, ISBN-10 0956872409 and it can be obtained via this website www.fromtheland.co.uk. It is an unforgettable publication, which my friend Maggie allowed us to look at (with clean hands!), so we could drink in the beauty of the tweeds and the landscapes.

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So home I went with my beautiful jewel-like pieces and laid them on the desk. The next day, inspiration struck and I went in search of a kilt-pin, that I knew I still possessed from kilt-wearing days, many moons ago, which could be pressed into service to make a brooch.  Below you can see the finished brooch, which enhances the lapel of my winter coat.

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There is a pattern for the brooch in my Etsy shop here

This is my ‘Creeping Cinquefoil’ fabric design. You can find it here.’

Creeping cinquefoil

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