The Stunning Beauty of the Cactus Flower

For those who have mastered the Bling Flower and would like a little more of a challenge, or the intrepid knitter who likes what she sees and will stop at nothing to knit it, the Sunset Over Chaco Canyon Cactus Flower is stunning.

I designed the cactus flower with the ephemeral beauty of actual cactus flowers in mind. Because cactuses live in such extreme conditions, and because making a flower is such a labor intensive process for a plant, most cactuses only flower once every few years. In days gone by, and perhaps even in some households inhabited by lovers of flowers and succulents, vacation and dinner plans were cancelled if it looked like rare plants might bloom. The blooms of the Night Blooming Cereus are said to be scarcely rivaled and their scents intoxicating. They bloom once a year if you are lucky.

The pictured flowers were worked in a specially “flower-dyed” variegated Silk Pearl by ArtYarns. What this specially dyed yarn allows is for a flower petal that grades through several colors without a repeat. The way to get this glorious effect?: simply start each petal at the same moment in the variegation. The results are spectacular.

I have plans for strappy summer or evening party sandals and these flowers. I just need to try out one of these new-fangled products that stiffens fabric. I already wire the petals with beading wire – this is how they keep the lovely shapes you see in the photograph – but the wired petals are still soft and pliable. For sandal decoration, the flowers need a greater stiffness. I’ll report back with results.

In the meantime, a single flower also makes a lovely ring, hair decoration, brooch (thanks to flower clips – ask your LYS to order them from Noni!) . . . or sew flat to the bodice of a fancy party sweater for a dazzling lace-work of blossoms.

 

14 thoughts on “The Stunning Beauty of the Cactus Flower

  1. Dear Nora, you are an amazing designer, you have the talent to bring the beauty of nature with the fiber in your hands to create the replica of the most stunning beauty of a flower with the colors, personality of the flower, the creation of each one is the creation of what you can see more deep in your talents! I admire each of one of them, and last all your designs complement and add beauty in the unique way!

    • If you or anyone else tries the whole fabric stiffener [Stiffybow (sp?) has been suggested and is reported still to be around] before I do, let me know what the results were and post pictures on my facebook wall (Noni Designs on FB) or send to me to post here (or both!). Can’t wait to see what you do!

  2. The flower design is beautiful. The yarn choice I think enhances the design in such a way I am almost unable to imagine it in anything else. However what brings me back over and over again to your blog is how beautifully you capture and convey your ideas. I enjoy reading what you say as much as I do knitting what you design. Thanks!

  3. Nora, LOVE these flowers. I am especially drawn to the “sparkle”. It reminds me of early morning dew. Your selection of yarn is so appropriate….the shading adds so much dimension and richness. Thanks again for your wonderful works of art!

    • I love the sparkles, too, as the little beads and sequins + the larger sparkles bring a freshness and life just as you suggest. Hey, I’ve got new sparkle rivet colors on order for the new year, so stay tuned for my announcement when they come (can’t wait!).

  4. The flowers are beautiful. They would be pretty on a headband. The headband would perfect as a warm weather destination wedding accessory.

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