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!
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!
I do a lot of browsing through crochet blogs (which is probably why my to do list is longer than my lifespan!!), and earlier this year, I came across this sweet little play mat made up of individual squares. I loved the idea immediately, however, having two girls who aren’t really into playing with cars, I was stumped for a while as to who I could make it for. Then it hit me…..my little nephew LOVES cars and trains and he had a birthday coming up. So the work began. It was a lovely, easy pattern to follow, and for the new stitches I hadn’t tried, the lovely host at Happy Berry had fantastic video tutorials that could be easily followed (and probably even easier if I crocheted right handed instead of left!). I love being challenged by trying new stitches and techniques, and this one had those in spades! The long grass was done doing the loop stitch, which I mastered after a few tries, and it was even tricky enough that I just couldn’t master the little pockets for the vegetable patches (hence no veggie patches on my mat!! Mostly a left handed problem I think!). The pattern and tutorials can be found here http://www.happyberry.co.uk/index.php?route=information/cal#.VoIYJ17AN0w