Friday, November 30, 2012

Easy guess...

December Challenge

There's still some finishing touches to be added... 

But here's a sneak peek at the December Challenge - Due for release tomorrow:

And you can probably guess what I'm making this time...

It's not as obscure as the Patchwork Stuffed Moose Head!

December Challenge

Thursday, November 29, 2012

A Little Peek...

Freeform Hat

Just a little peek at this one...

It's a gift for my niece.

She's turning ONE very soon... And you never know who might be reading this post!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Free Pattern For You.


download free pattern now

These mitts are worked in the round with no shaping. The shell pattern is stretchy and will accommodate the shape of your hand beautifully. All you need to do is remember to add your peek-a-boo hole for the thumb!

Are you up for the challenge?

Can you make a pair of these mitts in less than one hour?

I can complete the short ones (darning ends and everything) in that time, but the long mitts take me about one hour and ten minutes.

Try them for yourself and see…

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Slow Progress

I'm making slow progress on the Zebra Hat, but I thought I'd give you a closer look at my plans...

Zebra Hat

Remember that I keep saying you don't have to be an artist to make a sketch?

Well - this is a prime example of that!

Sketches help you design... even if they don't "look" any good.

It's all about getting your ideas down on paper. Then you can decide how to go about making them.

The sketch at the top of the page shows the hat I wanted to design for this challenge. A quirky earflap hat - which looks like the head of a zebra. It could have so much character!

But I'm kind of stretched for time - and I don't want to rush that one...

So for now the rough sketch is down on paper... and I'll get back to it - ONE DAY.

In the meantime, I'm going with something much more simple:

Zebra Hat

I've made up a rough graph of how the stripes will play out. The background will be knitted in black, and the stripes in white. Kind of the opposite of how it appears on the chart, if that makes sense!

Zebra Hat

And I'm just about to embark on the colourwork.

I just need to find my white yarn. I think I know which bag it's in...

Zebra Hat

Monday, November 26, 2012

Familiar Items In Store...

Are you still looking for Christmas gifts?

I've added a few new items to my store...

Actually - you may recognize them:

Thirteen the Lucky Dragon


Sassy Centaur

Kiki the Kangaroo

Here's the link to the store, if you;d like to take a closer look.

Friday, November 23, 2012

A Zebra Hat.

Of course there are other things I could (and for that matter SHOULD) be working on...

Like the design for my December Crochet Challenge...

But instead I'm making a Zebra Hat:


It's for the Designers Challenge Group over at Ravelry.

This month's criteria:

Object: head accessory
Theme: black and white
Technique: colorwork - using more than one colour in a row

So I'm putting together a Zebra hat.

A square hat, mostly black - with a few white stripes. It will either have tassels hanging from each corner, or maybe a fringed tassel running all the way along the top edge...

If you've got some ideas of your own - you should come and join in the group - and make up your own design!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

What became of the Dreadlocked Yarn?


You might remember that the original jumper looked like this:

Jumper - For Recycling

And when it was unraveled, the yarn looked like this:

 Recycled Yarn

But then I washed it in the machine on the wrong cycle, and it came out all matted:

Recycled Yarn


I managed to separate it...
It was slow and tedious work....
And took longer than unraveling the jumper in the first place!!!

Never mind.

I'm now crocheting some of the "pre-felted yarn" into a beanie, and it's incredibly warm...


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Lotsa Mitts...

So I followed through on my plan to darn in those ends...

Of course, it's pretty tricky to photograph yourself wearing a PAIR of mitts...


I'm loving this pattern.

There's NO SHAPING whatsoever - but the shell stitch pattern stretches to accommodate the shape of the hand...


Then there's just a little peek-a-boo hole for the thumb to pop through...


I tried working them backwards, from the fingers down - so that I could add a little trim at the arm hole like this:


But it actually made the thumbhole feel more restrictive. Weird. But it does.


I made some long crazy mitts...


And some short ones:


Some black ones:


And some grey ones:


Thirteen pair so far!


Monday, November 19, 2012

I can't stop making mitts!

You know the way I tend to get a bit obsessive about things?

Usually at the most inconvenient times?


I did it again.

Something made me want to make fingerless mitts. I've been making some really pretty knitted ones lately, but they take so long for me to finish - especially working in the round...

So I was inspired to design some crochet ones.

Quick ones.

Gorgeous. Stylish. But Speedy to make.

And easy, of course. That goes without saying....

And now I can't stop making them.


As soon as I finish crocheting a pair - I just pick a new yarn - and MAKE MORE!

It's hard to tell from this photo, but there are TWELVE PAIR of mitts in the basket - all made this weekend.

I just need to darn in those pesky ends!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

I'm a hoarder.

I just can't do it...


I tried to throw these old work shirts away.

Mr Goldfish didn't need them any more, and because they were emblazoned with a company logo they couldn't go to the Op Shop.

I'm trying to ease up on my accumulation of recycled materials - I'm starting to drown in them here and it's becoming overwhelming!


But I just couldn't throw these shirts into the bin. I know I can make something with them....

So I've salvaged the buttons and cut the fabric into strips.

The buttons have gone straight into the jar - they're always useful, and no one could accuse them of taking up too much space...

The fabric is a different story.

I already have loads of fabric strips.

More than I  can ever imagine using.

And yet I might.... One Day!


So I'm giving myself a month.

One month to use the fabric or toss it...

Now - what to make?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

More Mitts...



It's ANOTHER pair of fingerless mitts...

The fourth pair I've made from this pattern.


Little Miss Katie has claimed these ones for herself.

I thought they'd be huge on her - but they're not that bad!


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Featured on Madeit.


Madeit is a handmade online market. Similar to Etsy, but it's Australian based. And you can only sell handmade products. No craft supplies, patterns, kits, or vintage items.

It's always a bit of a buzz to be featured on the Madeit front page... It means that out of all the listings on madeit - they wanted to showcase mine!

Today's feature is all about beads - and my Recycled Bead Earrings were chosen to be a part of it.

I love these ones. Dangly earrings are my all-time favourites! The chains allow for that perfect amount of swing, but the weight of these beads means they don't fly around and drive you mad.

And I REALLY love that they're not identical. Each bead has character - so of course none are exactly the same. If you look closely then you'll see that the earrings are slightly different from each other.

And where did they come from?

An old necklace of course.

Even the chain was part of the original necklace. Only the hooks are new.

So if you're looking to buy handmade gifts this Christmas - go and take a peek at what's on offer at Madeit. Click here  to go to the front page, and from there you can search for specific types of items.

Or you could always head straight here to my store. How cheeky is that?

Hey. I'm allowed to be cheeky - it's my blog!

(And I'll let you in on a secret. Very, very soon - you will be seeing some familiar creatures appearing in my store)


Monday, November 12, 2012

That Bag is DONE!!!

My New Project Bag

So it's been years in the making.... but finally that bag is DONE!

Started: Feb 2009

Finished: November 2012

How embarrassment!

My New Project Bag

I wasn't completely sure at first. Somehow it felt a bit bland - like it was just quietly waiting to be embellished...

And then a funny thing happened.

My New Project Bag

I just started using the bag!

You know the deal... Running out the door... Need a bag to throw your latest project into....

All the other project bags are overflowing....

So I grabbed this one in desperation - AND IT IS BRILLIANT!

My New Project Bag

There's room for my sketch pad and pattern notes, as well as the umpteen different balls of coloured yarn that I need to have on hand...

And still some room left over to throw in my purse, keys and phone, if need be.

My New Project Bag

If I'm throwing it into the back of the car, then I can just knot the handles together like this.

And when I come home, it hangs happily on the coat rack like that:

My New Project Bag

I'm loving it EXACTLY the way it is - and it doesn't need a silly embellishment after all.

(That being said, I reserve the right to add said silly embellishment at any time)

PS. If you've been following the progress of this bag over the years, you'll notice that I didn't use the lining or the handles that I planned to... I'm so fickle!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Fixing Suff

Repair Project

Most of my craft time lately has been spent "Fixing Stuff".

There's been some Pattern Writing for Captain Fizzlepop, that wonderfully colourful clown...

And some Sketching and Planning for our December Challenge...

But mostly I've just been Fixing Stuff (or trying to)

Repair Project

This cushion was in fabulous condition - except for those buttons.

Poor thing was starting to look MOST bedragled - that star was definitely losing its shine!

Of course I didn't actually HAVE the ones that had dropped off - so I improvised with some round buttons instead.

As always, it took more work than I expected - about 20 buttons needed to be stitched on.

Repair Project

And I think it works.

In fact it worked better than I anticipated...

You kind of get so caught up in the overall pearlescence (is that even a word?) and shine... that you lose track of the individual shapes of the buttons.


Repair Project

Monday, November 5, 2012

Winner Announced

We had so many entries for the Fishie the Plastic Bag Keeper challenge...

Fishie the Plastic Bag Keeper

Fishie the Plastic Bag Keeper

Just look at them all!

So many shapes and sizes and colours and styles...

But I do have a clear favourite.

This one stole my heart the first time I laid eyes on it:

Fishie the Plastic Bag Keeper

So a huge congratulations to Jorel for her Scrappy Fish - I love how unique and quirky it is!

It has so much character...

Now Jorel will be able to choose what I should design for the next Crochet Challenge, which will be run in December 2012.

And before I go... here's a few of my other favourites up close.

Juanita designed some fabulous fins which she has kindly shared the instructions for . Love the eyes on this one, too:


Shhshh produced this magnificent Koi, and based her fins on Irish Crochet leaves:


Julie used a different style of fin to create a shark:


Grayhare added some serious BLING to jazz up her plastic bag keeper...


Lise went with a magnificent array of bold colours:


And I love the cartoony eyes on this entry from Esther:


Finally a CAT-FISH  from Wendy... love here interpretation of the pattern:


And the fully tested version of the pattern is now available for sale!

Quite a number of the testers have made a second one already - and are planning to make more as Christmas gifts this year...

Click here for more details about purchasing the pattern.

Fishie the Plastic Bag Keeper