Friday, 2 December 2016

Snowman Christmas Wreath

Every year I make my mum a Christmas ornament to go on her tree, though her tree may be a little lopsided with the size of the last couple I've made.

When I asked her if she still wanted one this year, she decided she might quite like a crochet wreath instead. Never one to say no to a challange, I obviously said yes.

Thanks to a Hobbycraft email, we decided to go this super cute snowman Christmas wreath. I bought a big polystyrene wreath base from Hobbycraft, but the yarn my mum went for was double knitting, instead of the worsted weight yarn suggested in the pattern, which meant my stitches are a little tigther than the pictures in the pattern show. It also meant I had to chain 40 in the first place to get my piece to stretch around the wreath base.

Crochet snowman wreath

Crochet snowman wreath


I ended up making 25 snowballs, 4 little, 13 medium and 8 large, as that was what it looked like the pattern had used. Though the pattern suggests you might want to glue the snowballs on instead of taking ages to sew them all on, I went for the sewing option so I could get them all sitting exactly how I wanted. It also meant I could sew ones next to each other together in places to make it look neater.

Crochet snowman wreath


The little snowman is so cute, and while I didn't have a flower button like the pattern shows, I did find these quite Christmassy looking star-shaped buttons in my stash, and went for one of those instead.

Crochet snowman wreath

To make the bunting I used to the same directions in the pattern, but I did it all in one single piece, as it just looked super messy when I made the four flags on their own and then tried to crochet them all together. So I chained 10, then chained 6 for the flag, followed the directions for making a flag, chained 3 for the gap, did another flag, and so on until it was done, and it looks much neater.

Crochet snowman wreath

As my handwriting isn't amazing, I traced this font for the letters for snow, before gluing them on to the bunting.

I decided to single crochet the wreath base together instead of sewing it, as it was much quicker and meant I wasn't messing about with this huge length of yarn all the time. I also embroidered a little "2016" tag to go on the back, as I've marked the dates on all the other ornaments I've made my mum.

Crochet snowman wreath

Crochet snowman wreath

To hang it up I just made a little strip that my mum can loop through the wreath and attach to her door (inside door, don't worry!) with a drawing pin. To make it I just made a big chain, and then did two rows of half treble crochets. I didn't want to sew anything through the wreath to hang it up as I was worried it would stretch the crochet and make it look rubbish.

Crochet snowman wreath

I have to say, I am extremly jealous of this wreath, and sort of wish I was keeping it for myself. I would say I might have to make myself one next year, but we do already have two wreaths on the go already, so perhaps we don't need another one!

Yarn Used:
  • Hayfield Baby Sparkle DK:
    • Little Mermaid.
  • Caron Simply Soft:
    • Autumn Red. 
    • Black.
  • Stylecraft Special Aran:
    • Spice.
  • Robin Bonny Babe Aran:
    • White.
Raverly project page.

Friday, 4 November 2016

Autumn Ripple Blanket

About two years ago I made this lovely rainbow ripple blanket for a guy at my work who was having a baby (which you can get the pattern for on Raverly!).

It was so lush, I always wanted to make one for myself, and it's such an easy and quick pattern to make up as well. While Ivy's Mario blanket was made up in a similar way, it doesn't have as nice a shape as the ripple one, so I was really keen to give this pattern another shot.

I decided I was going to make one in an autumnal colour scheme (as those are pretty much the colours I live in myself), like mustard, teal and orange. After a huge amount of time searching for colours, and more time than I would care to admit looking for the perfect shade of mustard, I finally got a combo I was happy with. I got my wool from Love Knitting, which was a site I had never used before, but they just had such a lovely selection of brands and colours, they were perfect for this project. It can be so hard to find different Aran weight yarn, and other sites don't always have a huge selection (that I can afford anyway), but Love Knitting had so many to choose from, which is probably why it took me ages to find the pefect colours. Too much choice! The mustard yarn actually got posted from American, but only turned up a couple of days later! I would highly recommend them if you're looking for a larger than average selection.

Rainbow ripple blanket

Rainbow ripple blanket

Rainbow ripple blanket

Can we just appreciate this beautiful teal yarn! I love the flecks through it, it's so gorgeous. Also, I think I did manage to pick the perfect mustard, which also has little flecks running through it, but isn't too bright.

Rainbow ripple blanket

Rainbow ripple blanket

Rainbow ripple blanket

As I did with the last blanket, here's my feet for scale, because these blankets are huge!

Rainbow ripple blanket

I tried to be good and use some brown, red and orange that I already had in my stash, but as is the way, I ran out of red about half a round from the end, so had to buy another ball anyway! This cost me even more because I had obviously already placed my big yarn order and it was a ball of Caron Simply Soft, which are about 170g, and therefore more expensive. I just snagged this one of eBay to save me paying even more postage from some of the wool sites.

My original plan when I was made this was to use it for Ivy in her pram, but it was so cozy to snuggle under when I was making it, I think it might end up living on our couch. I am just in love with the colour combos!

Also I didn't need to block this blanket, as it just crochets itself into the best shape, with perfect points, which make it even more of a winner. This is just one of the best blanket patterns I have come across, and I highly recommend everyone make one!

Yarn Used:

  • Caron Simply Soft:
    • Autumn Red.
  • Stylecraft Special Aran:
    • Spice.
    • Emperor.
  • Hayfield Bonus Aran:
    • Barley.
  • Plymouth Yarn Encore Tweed:
    • 100.
  • Red Heart Soft:
    • Kiwi Green.
  • King Cole Fashion Aran:
    • Lewis.
Raverly project page.

Sunday, 30 October 2016

Paper Pumpkin

So this year I could not be bothered carving out a real pumpkin, especially when Ivy is too wee to even care if we have one or not, so I decided to take a shortcut.

I bought a paper pumpkin out of Hobbycraft, one of the ones that you're supposed to decoupage or paint, and decided to just paint it and that way at least we always have a pumpkin when Halloween rolls around.

I just painted him plain orange and added some orange glitter around his features and all over the stalk (and all over the sofa and the rug...whoops!).

Pumpkin

Pumpkin

Pumpkin

These guys take the little LED tealights you can buy so they are nice and fire safe, but you still get the nice spooky glow with them.

Pumpkin

Pumpkin

Even with two coats of orange paint, you can still see the brown shining through in some places, but he does the job and makes the place look a bit spookier. He maybe could have done with a priming coat first to try and cover up the brown.

Though I have no doubt when Ivy is a bit older we'll be back to carving the real pumpkins to get into the Halloween spirit!

Friday, 28 October 2016

Decoupage Bat

Yay, Halloween is almost here! I love Halloween so much, and now we actually have a house and the space to do it, it's nice to be able to actually decorate the house a little bit for Halloween.

This year I picked up a couple of wee bits to add to my Halloween collection, and this is the first one, a wee decoupage bat.

I got this from Hobbycraft, along with some cute Halloween print decoupage papers to cover him in, which are super cute. As well as these ghost print ones, I got another pack of bat print and stripey ones, which I'll have to find something else for.

Decoupage bat

Decoupage bat

Decoupage bat

And here he is hanging in the hall with a couple of other bits and pieces in our hall. Please excuse the poor lighting in my super dark hall! Even daylight doesn't really help with photos out here!

Decoupage bat

Decoupage bat

I actually forgot how quick decoupage is, though you do have to wait for all the glue to dry to see if you've missed any bits, so it sometimes means a second attempt to get it completely covered.

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Crochet Baskets

A little while ago I crocheted Donald a little bowl thing to keep his keys/change/wallet in on a unit in our living room. It was really a way to try and keep all his junk in one place so it wasn't all over the place. It turned out a little smaller than I wanted, but it worked to start with.

However, recently we changed the unit for a smaller set of wicker drawers, with a smaller surface for junk, so I decided to remake the basket so all of Donald's stuff would actually fit inside it and not clutter the top of the drawers.

I also wanted to make one for myself to keep my receipts in, and then put it in one of the drawers to keep them hidden. I used to keep them in my lovely fox basket (which also sits on top of the unit) but they were sort of overspilling and making it hard to get the stuff out the fox that I actually wanted!

I found this lovely basket tutorial on Raverly by Sandra at Cherry Heart, which I really liked because I love her stuff and she made it really easy to make a basket exactly the size you needed, instead of just a standard size. I used a 10mm hook for this, as I used a 12mm hook for my rug, and I wanted this to be a bit tighter.

For the base of both baskets I used to tiny bits of leftover t-shirt yarn I had from my rug, as I thought it would make them quite stiff. I did three rounds for the base and then ran out of both colours of yarn, so swapped to a nice chunky, light brown yarn, which I thought went well with the colour of our set of drawers. I worked this double to try and make the baskets more sturdy.

I made my basket a bit taller so I could stuff all my receipts in it. I also decided to finish off Donald's basket with a row of double crochets, as I didn't have enough yarn to do a full round of half treble crochets, and I thought I might as well just use up as much of the yarn as I could.


Crochet baskets

Crochet baskets

Crochet baskets

Crochet baskets

Crochet baskets

Crochet baskets

So now we have two lovely baskets that are making us a bit more organised, and I finished off three balls of yarn from my stash. Double win!

Yarn Used:
  • Boodles Tshirt Yarn:
    • Green.
    • Grey.
  • Stylecraft Special Chunky:
    • Camel.
Raverly project page.

Friday, 7 October 2016

Link Yoshi Amigurumi

Last year I made a little Yoshi amigurumi pal for my friend Kirk, and Donald was super jealous of it. I'm not super keen on making the same thing over and over again, so I put the idea of making him one out of my head. However, when I was looking for an awesome Yoshi pattern to use, I did find this picture of Yoshi as Link from The Legend of Zelda by Gallynette, which is Donald's favourite game.


Alas, it was just a picture, and not a pattern, so I sort of put it out of my mind.

However, I recently realised that I could probably work out how to make Link Yoshi a reality. I mean, really it's only different colours added in, and I already had a Yoshi pattern which I knew was rad (the original Yoshi pattern I used can be found here). Even the original maker of the Link Yoshi says she just used a Yoshi pattern and adapted it, so if you wanted to make one yourself, just go for it! (She has also done awesome little cow and Mario versions! Check them out!)

So I went for it, as it was Donald's birthday this week, and here's how he turned out!

Crochet Link/Yoshi

Crochet Link/Yoshi

Crochet Link/Yoshi

Crochet Link/Yoshi

Crochet Link/Yoshi

Crochet Link/Yoshi

It was actually really easy! The bit I was worried about was the main section, as the head and body are done in one piece, so it was a bit dicey guessing where to do the colour changes for the belt, and then for the hair higher up (which is a bit hard to see as it's super light yellow!). The rest was pretty easy, as all the bits were basically the same as original Yoshi. In terms of changs, I did have to do a colour change in the spikes and stitch the Triforce symbol on the shell, but I didn't have to make the belly piece which made things a bit speedier.

I did mean to make his nose cream, like it is in the original picture, but flicking between the actual pattern and the reference picture means I did it green by mistake, but I actually think it looks fine, and perhaps gives him a bit more of a Yoshi look.

I was worried Donald would have no idea what was going on, but luckily he opened the present in a way that he saw the Triforce symbol first and knew it was Link, then revealed the Yoshi face!

I'm really happy with how he turned out and this has definitely inspired me to be more confident in my abilities when it comes to adapted crochet patterns, especially when it's just something that really boils down to just colours changes!

Yarn Used:
  • Lion Brand Vanna's Choice:
    • Chocolate.
  • Drops Alaska:
    • Light grey mix.
  • Stylecraft Special Aran:
    • Lemon.
    • Cream.
  • Red Heart Soft:
    • Kiwi green.
  • Robin Bonny Babe Aran:
    • White.
  • Caron Simply Soft:
    • Royal blue.
    • Black.
Raverly project page.

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Crochet Cat Cushion

Last weekend I went to the leaving do of one of my mates Lisa, who is moving away to Newcastle to live with her boyfriend. She is a proper cat lady, so I decided I had to make her a leaving pressie, and it had to be cat based!

I found this awesome cat cushion on Raverly and thought it was the perfect housewarming present, as well as being super cute! Best of all, I have more than enough Aran weight yarn in my stash to just make it without buying any more!

I decided to make it all cute purples, blues and pinks, and use a nice peachy tone as the background colour. I also decided to stripe the back panel with all the colours I used for the cats on the front, as I thought it made it a bit more fun than just a plain square. Also I was worried I wouldn't have enough of any one colour to complete the back panel.

Finally, I did the joining round and the little mouse on the back in the same peach as the background on the front.

Crochet cat cushion

Crochet cat cushion

Crochet cat cushion

Crochet cat cushion

I wasn't sure whether I was going to add the little faces to the cats, as I was worried my detail embroidering can sometimes be a bit rubbish, and I was worried I would ruin it, but they actually turned out super cute!

Crochet cat cushion

I ended up doing the mouse a little different to the way the pattern shows, placing the ears and the facial features slightly differently. I gave him two eyes as well as I felt it looked better that way.

I also accidentally ended up using the DK version of my Stylecraft Fondant for the cat square, but managed to use the Aran for the stripes on the back. I was a bit worried I would have to make that square twice, but it actually ended up roughly the same size, so I decided just to go with it!

The joy of making a cushion like this, and just crocheting the cushion pad inside, meant I didn't have to sew all the ends in

Best of all Lisa loved it, and actually knew it was supposed to be cats, so I was pretty chuffed!

Yarn Used:
  • Stylecraft Special DK:
    • Fondant. (By accident!)
  • Hayfield Bonus DK:
    • Black.
  • Vanna's Choice Lion Brand:
    • Soft Pink.
  • Caron Simply Soft:
    • Orchid.
    • Berry Blue.
    • Royal Blue.
    • Robin's Egg.
    • Blue Mint.
  • Stylecraft Special Aran:
    • Magenta.
    • Fondant.
    • Lavendar.
    • Teal.
Raverly project page.