Nouveau Beaded Capelet/ Pattern

Price: $12.00
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Oh most lovely!

I love the sinuous lines and curves, mirroring botanical forms, that are a hallmark of the Art Nouveau style of art. Art Nouveau was in part a reaction to the industrialization of the world and an attempt to keep beauty in the decorative arts. The artists wanted to elevate craftsmanship and design in everyday objects to the level of fine arts.

Doesn't that sound a bit like what we do as knitters?

When I found Melissa Lemmons' amazing Nouveau Beaded Capelet, I knew I wanted to be able to offer it here at Earth Faire.

It is obviously based at least in part on the lovely forms of the Art Nouveau period. To quote Melissa: "This shawl is inspired by the filmy evening wraps of the Art Nouveau period. I love the effect of the delicate fabric encrusted with flowers and swirls of beads. This is my interpretation of that elegance."And so on this web page we offer a stunning rendition of a flowery style. Requiring about 1200 yards of lace weight yarn and just shy of 6,000 (roughly 150 grams) of size 8/0 beads, this capelet is a thrillingly lovely piece.

A word about the fifth photo shown here (also third from the bottom) -- it is a modified version of the shawl knit with 8 scallops instead of the seven that the pattern describes. It is an easy modification but will require more than the 1200 yards so factor that in accordingly as you plan. Right under that photo is one showing the more usual seven scallops -- beautiful!

Normally I am leery of shawls that have quite so many beads. Melissa writes: "I weighed my finished piece and it weighs 220g or 7.7 oz. It isn’t overly heavy. It has an elegant weight, like a strand of real pearls. The weight is spread across your shoulders and arms and the tassels keep the shawl down over your arms so that the scallops act like arm slits."

And the look is superb.

You will want to pick a yarn and needle combo that gives a pleasing result. It is vital that you choose a yarn that will take and hold an aggressive blocking. We recommend a wool, a wool/silk blend, or the bamboo lace yarn (Xie) which we have found stands up most beautifully to blocking as well as a large number of beads. Go to our Lace Weight Yarn section and pick out a yarn that sings to you. If need be, just email us to help set up the beads -- we have some tucked away just for this purpose, so if you can't find enough in a colorway that works with the yarn, we might have others that you can use.

Except for the tassels, all beads are placed individually using the crochet hook method so you will need a very thin crochet hook, about 0.5mm size.


We are setting up a KAL via our Ravelry forum with the help of Cindersall, our moderator and lace-knitter-extraordinaire, and Melissa herself.


This page offers the pattern itself, in a hard copy format, ten pages printed on heavy weight paper. (If you prefer a PDF file, contact us and we will put you in touch with where Melissa offers that elsewhere.)

If you would like help putting together a kit for this Nouveau Beaded Capelet just email and we'll work with you on selecting beads to go with lace weight yarn that appeals.

And whether you get the yarn and beads and pattern from us, or if you go stash-diving and find everything you want there, we'd love to have you come visit the KAL and the rest of the Earth Faire's Ravelry forum. There is lots to enjoy talking to other knitters and getting help if you need any.

Awesomely lovely; fun to make.