Foxy ragdoll!

Naughty people on facebook are always sharing different patterns that they see.  Some I can scroll right past, but many catch my attention and require further investigation.  One of these was the Ragdoll Fox pattern by Spin A Yarn Crochet (https://spinayarncrochet.com/ragdoll-fox-free-crochet-pattern/).  This little fellow looks cute and easy to make, so I decided to give him a go.

He was fairly easy to make up – his parts were all fairly basic.  My only criticism is that my belly patch and eye patches did not turn out at the correct size (they are slightly smaller than they should be), but that may have been due to using a different brand yarn from the rest of the project.

Putting him together was fun!  Most of him was crocheted together, which is what I prefer – it seems to be quicker than sewing.  I also like the “flat” look it gave him on the edges, enhancing the ragdoll effect.  His head, however……oh wow, this was a bit fiddly (and in the designer’s defense, she did say it would be!).  Because I am a bit of a skim reader, I had to unpick a bunch of crocheting and start it again before it was completed, but in the end, it didn’t take too long.  I had visions of having to spend days constructing this critter, and, in reality, it only took a few hours.

And I can already attest to his popularity with kids – my daughters were fighting over who is going to claim him before he was even finished!

Puzzle Balls

Last year, I came across these Puzzle Balls by Dedri Uys from Look At What I Made (http://www.lookatwhatimade.net/crafts/yarn/crochet/free-crochet-patterns/star-ball-crochet-amish-puzzle-ball-pattern/).  I love the idea of a segmented ball that can be pulled apart and put back together as a puzzle and also be played with as a ball.  It would suit a baby and then grow with them as they become more inquisitive about how the world around them works.  I especially love the bright colours of this Star Puzzle ball!  It was joyful to make, but there were so many segments to put together – I wasn’t sure if it would ever end!  The best part about constructing it was that it is all crocheted together – no sewing involved!

I also constructed the Amish Puzzle Ball (http://www.lookatwhatimade.net/crafts/yarn/crochet/free-crochet-patterns/crochet-amish-puzzle-ball/).  This one runs along the same lines as the star ball, but is not made up of quite so many segments!  This one worked up a little quicker than the star ball, and I love the “flower” type effect that you get on the front when it is all put together.

Dedri has also compiled a book of puzzle balls that are animal shapes (https://www.anniescatalog.com/detail.html?code=871428&utm_medium=affiliate&utm_source=cj&source=CJAAFF).  Yes, I have bought the book and yes, I have made one of them.  I gave him as a gift to a friend’s baby and they love him!  Another one has been made but that will remain hush hush as he is to be entered into the Gawler show later this year.  I’ll let you know how I go!

 

Donut forget to read this post :)

There’s nothing more exciting than a last minute present rush!  Not!  We found out that it was our youngest daughter’s teacher’s birthday and I decided to make her a little gift because she has been very good to our girl.

So, with a last minute google search, I came up with the idea of a donut pin cushion (https://forum.crochetville.com/topic/32761-donut-pincushion-pattern/#comment-452246).  I loved it!  It was quick, it was fun and it also gave me a chance to use some of the red heart “gumdrops” yarn that I had purchased on clearance at big W for a rainy day!  I love how the yarn itself gives the effect of “sprinkles” even if there are no pins in it.

And the best part is – she actually uses it!  I see it on her desk at school full of thumb tacks for hanging up the children’s artwork.  I love it when I see my creations used and appreciated!

The bearded man

I am not afraid to admit I am not a fan of beards! I’m thankful that my husband doesn’t have one! My good friends’ husband has been growing a beard. For a few years. It was long and bushy and I’m sure the envy of beard loving men everywhere. However, he decided that he would shave it off as a part of “The worlds greatest shave” – raising money for research into blood cancers and cures for them.  He shaved his head and his beard and right when the nasty cold weather hit us here. So, I offered to make him a warm hat and replacement beard! I love the hat! The colours are great and the pattern was fab and easy to follow (http://ashleemarie.com/crochet-striped-beanie-pattern-multiple-sizes/), once I figured out sizing. I also love the beard – it made up in one night while at their place playing a card game (http://ashleemarie.com/crochet-bobble-beard-pattern-multiple-sizes/). I’m not thrilled with the fit – I used dk yarn which was slightly thinner than recommended so I adjusted it as I went. I think I would have been better off sticking to the pattern but the end result is still pretty awesome. And part of this journey of life is constant learning as we try new things! I hope it keeps him very warm as his hair grows back!

Being flexible!

This blog post was supposed to be about something completely different than what it has turned out to be.  But sometimes, you just have to be flexible and go with what you have.  This week, life has just gotten in the way and I didn’t get my scheduled project finished (so close, but so far).  Instead, I ended up working on a birthday present for my daughter to take to a birthday party.  It’s a pattern that I have had on my “to do” list for awhile and this was the perfect opportunity (and weather) to complete it!  The pattern is the Cuddly Cat Crochet Scoodie by Moogly http://www.mooglyblog.com/cuddly-cat-crochet-scoodie/.  When I showed my daughter, she thought it was perfect for her little friend!  It was a little challenging in that I (as usual) didn’t quite get the gauge exact, so had to adjust a little as I went.  I’m not thrilled with the fit but with the nature of the garment, it doesn’t really matter, it’s just me being a perfectionist.  Other than that, it was quite easy to make up, easily done in a weekend, and the nicest part was….my daughter is learning to follow in my crochet footsteps and she made one of the ear insides herself, which makes it an even more personal present for her friend!  It was also a great weekend for modelling it as the weather has gone from being roasting hot to cold enough to need a jumper, and she was quite happy to wear the scoodie to keep herself warm during the shoot!

20 reasons I love you!

As I’m sure you’re aware, Valentine’s Day is fast approaching.  I personally believe that Valentine’s Day is a good reminder to us to say “I love you” to those we love – not just romantic partners.  We often give our children a card on Valentine’s Day to say we love them – even though we tell them every day!

I was shopping with my sister last week, when I came across a lovely idea –  a jar full of paper hearts to write 20 different reasons I love you on them.  Of course, my crafty, crochet brain immediately thought about how I could make something similar, that would also have a hand made touch and voila!, here it is, 20 reasons I love you.

valentines2

If you’d like to make one yourself, I’ve written down the pattern below.  Please remember, this pattern has not been tested at all, so please let me know if there are errors, but be kind – it’s my first go at designing and writing out a pattern!  If you have any questions, let me know and I’ll happily help you out.

20 reasons I love you

Materials

  • Dk yarn in cream, red and white (or any colours of your choosing)
  • 4mm/G  Crochet hook
  • Jar
  • Coloured paper for hearts
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Yarn needle

Abbreviations

ch – Chain

sl st – Slip Stitch

sc – Single Crochet

hdc – Half double crochet

dc – Double Crochet

tr – Treble

Instructions

Please note – I use US  crochet terms

Firstly, you need to choose a jar.  I have chosen a craft storage jar because it is a bit decorative with it’s metal closure and I’ve had it lying around for awhile, waiting for the perfect project to use it in!

Once you have chosen your jar, you need to make a plain circle piece that will sit nicely on the top.  I used Stylecraft Special dk yarn and my jar has a 9cm wide lid.  The number of rounds you will need to crochet will depend on the size of your lid and tension.  If your lid is smaller than mine, make less rounds.  If your lid is larger, make more!

Lid cover

Using cream, begin with a magic circle.

Round 1: Ch 3 (counts as first dc).  11 dc into ring.  Join to beg ch 3.  Close magic ring. (12dc)

Round 2:  Ch 3 (counts as first dc).  dc into same stitch.  2dc in each stitch around.  Join to beg ch 3. (24 dc)

Round 3:  Ch 3 (counts as first dc).  2dc in next stitch. *dc in next stitch, 2 dc in next stitch* repeat between * * around.  Join to beg ch 3. (36 dc)

Round 4:  Ch 3 (counts as first dc).  1 dc in next stitch *2dc in next stitch, dc in next 2 stitches* repeat between * * around.  Join to beginning ch 3 and fasten off.  Weave in ends.

If you need to make extra rounds to achieve the correct size for your jar, continue following the pattern, increasing the number of dc in between the increases by 1 each round.

Applique Heart

Using red, begin with a magic circle.

Round 1:  Ch 3.  15 dc into circle.  Join to beginning ch 3.  Close magic ring.

Round 2:  Ch 3, tr, tr, tr, dc, hdc, sc, sc, ch 1, tr, ch 1, sc, sc, hdc, dc, tr, tr, tr, ch 3, sl st into the same stitch as the last tr.  Fasten off, leaving a long tail for sewing.

Shape a little with fingers and sew onto the circle already crocheted.

valentines3Small Hearts (make 2)

Using red, begin with a magic circle.

Round 1:  Ch 1.  15sc into ring.  Join to beg ch and close ring.

Round 2:  Ch 2, tr, tr, dc hdc, sc, sc, hdc, ch 1, tr, ch 1, hdc, sc, sc, hdc, dc, tr, tr, ch 2, sl st in the same stitch as the last tr.  Fasten off and weave in ends.

Chain

Using white, join with a sl st into the top of one of the smaller hearts.  Ch to desired length (enough to tie around your jar and allow the hearts to hang a little).  Sl st into the top of the second small heart.  Fasten off and weave in ends.

Finishing off

  • Glue circle with applique heart onto the lid.
  • Tie chain around the top of the jar and fix in place with a little glue if needed.
  • Cut out hearts from paper.
  • Write your 20 reasons on the hearts.
  • Fill the jar with your hearts and gift it to your loved one!

valentines1

I hope you’ve enjoyed my first pattern!  It was fun to make, and I know my husband will love it (despite that fact that he’s already seen it!).  I’d love to see your version as well!  Please share it here in the comments or on my facebook page.

Yarn bowl wrap up

Well, the results are in and they’re mixed!  It took about 3 or 4 weeks (yes, that’s not a typo! Let’s just say you need patience to make this) to dry completely inside and out. However, now that it’s dry, it is a hard, solid bowl and would make a lovely decorative piece holding fruit or whatnot (that’s the success!).  The fail part is the “yarn bowl” part. Unfortunately, the mix was too heavy to maintain the curl shape and I knew the evening I made it that it was not going to be a workable thing. Now that it’s dry, it just doesn’t have the strength to keep its shape. I’m fairly sure I wouldn’t have to work too hard to break that part off 😢.  Also, it’s very rough, so any yarn coming through would catch and just be annoying!  So, it’s back to the drawing board for my hand made yarn bowl…..maybe next time I’ll try straight paper mache…..

Christmas is coming!

dalekcu dalek

I love Christmas!  And I love making special hand made gifts for my friends and family if I come across the perfect thing.  Last year, I was talking to my golf enthusiast brother-in-law and suggested I could make a Doctor Who themed golf club cover for his Christmas present.  Sounded simple enough!  I began my search for a pattern, and just couldn’t find something.  So, I had to do the unthinkable – combine two patterns.  One day, I would like to head towards designing my own patterns, but for the moment, I can follow a pattern, but changing them leads into dangerous territory for me!  I found this gorgeous Dalek pattern http://www.lovecrochet.com/dalek-amigurumi-crochet-pattern-by-lucy-collin and a pattern for a golf club sock and set about combining them!  In the end, I think it worked!!  It took ages as they don’t live close to me, so I couldn’t try it on the golf club to see if it fitted properly or not, but, I decided in the end to just go ahead and finish it (after it had sat around my house for almost 12 months!) and hope for the best.  My brother-in-law loved it (and it fit – phew!), and I hope it brings him much entertainment out on the golf course!