A good friend of mine is getting married today! For her hen night, I made her a vintage crochet garter with a ribbon in her favourite colour. It was a down to the wire gift, blocking it the night before and only weaving in the elastic (an improvement learned from making my sister’s crochet garter 9 years ago) and ribbon 30 minutes or so before we were due to leave. I had forgotten how long it takes to work on something so tiny. It is definitely a labour of love.
A friend is fighting cancer right now and I wanted to make her something to bring the outdoors to her on days when she is stuck inside. I met her through guiding so I thought a traditional daisy chain necklace and a new campfire song would express this perfectly. Now, I need to record and send the tune!
One day at work, a group of us ended up getting into a conversation about unicorns. A colleague said something that we all responded to and the conversation amused me as I reflected on it later. I love my workplace.
I decided to make one colleague his own pet unicorn because I thought it would make him laugh and smile. I searched for yarn in my stash that would work. Finding the right colours in the same thickness was the challenge, but I finally hit on it. I used this pattern and brought the happy unicorn in to the office on the following Monday.
Making the unicorn reminded me of how much I love making small surprises for people. With the backlog of crafting I feel I have, I had forgotten that.
For a few weeks we were running around foraging the apples we spotted and were given a few bags from people’s gardens as well. We made some traditional (with sugar) jam with them and ended up with 12 jars of Tangy Apple jam for sharing.
At the end of December, I found out that a friend’s baby had arrived sooner than expected. I knew I needed to send love and energy their way and dug out fabric.
I made a ‘strip and flip’ quilt (though I will vary the height of strips more in the future) and carefully stitched line after line. I sat there for a full day singing songs that I would have sang with his mom at summer camp and, with each stitch, thinking about the amazing things he’ll get to do here on earth.
Once I headed back to work in January, my sewing stalled so they didn’t receive this until late February.
Honey and I crocheted almost all of the gifts this year for Christmas. She made a shawl, a baby toy, and two hats (I’ll link to the photos if she ends up blogging them). There were some (purchased) toiletry products thrown in and other things like saved seeds, etcetera, but below is what I can remember making. Not pictured is a grey basket weave stitch, and a black scarf in hdc stitched between stitches to make it flatter than regular crochet. That was a new technique I had learned, so applied it happily to that scarf.
The most satisfying makes were the knitterly cowls and knitterly hat from Hook, Stitch & Give. I modified the pattern a bit to do less repeats because I was using double arran weight (my general solution when anything chunky or bulky is required) and that is where it fell nicely. I had the modification in my head and made most of them on the train to and from work, so it looks like I don’t have a record of what I did. For the hat, and the matching cowl in the bottom photo, I used a single strand of arran, a 5mm hook and (for the hat) 1o increases. They’re definitely cosy, soft, and quick gifts to whip up for friends and loved ones and I’ll be making more next winter!
My sister in law saw a baby Mickey Mouse outfit online and asked me to crochet one for my niece.
I took measurements, picked the yarn, and set to work. I made up the Mickey ears and shorts, but used The Huts Amore bootie pattern. I didn’t use the named hook/yarn combo and just stopped making them when they looked like shoes rather than boots, doing a single crochet around the edges.
Before I sewed on the hat ears, I tried the hat on my niece. In the 3-4 weeks between finishing the hat and the photo shoot, she grew massively and the hat ended up sitting like a Mouseketeer cap rather than a full beanie as planned. I made the shorts and the shoes intentionally large so that it would look like she was wearing Mickey’s clothes and also so she could grow into them.
Mickey Mouse shorts
Niece was: 41cm waist, 39cm back to front. Shorts made to fit larger.
Dk yarn, 5mm hook. Chain 80
2 rows of alternating FPhdc and BPhdc, worked flat. From row 3, use hdc. Make button holes on one end.
At about 3 inches tall, close and work in the round
Work until the top of the waistband to the bottom measures 9in
Measure off 37 stitches on each half of the shorts- so that the front and back share the stitches. String a contrasting thread from the front to back for each leg so that the leg holes are sectioned off.
Pick up stitches at the front of the shorts, between the legs, 3 stitches wide. Work for 4 rows and then connect to the back of the crotch area with slip stitches.
Begin legs: each leg has 44 stitches around.
Decrease by 2 stitches in the next row.
Work for a few rows until the legs seem in proportion to the shorts. I think mine were about 7 rows.
Finish off with slip stitches all around and sew on the buttons.
Tail: make a knit i-cord in black and attach at the back for the tail
Add white crochet ovals for Mickey’s short buttons.
These shorts fit a diaper and are sized about 4-5 months.
Today is Scottish Thanksgiving. At the very beginning of the month, I had a ‘crafternoon’ making Thanksgiving cards. It has been years since I sent cards to family on Thanksgiving, and I felt the need for that tradition this year. I made them early to send to our American family (and family in France) and held off posting to our Scottish family for a week or so to make the arrival time more appropriate.
I made a stack of cards and filled them with one of the following five quotes:
Gratitude is the sign of noble souls. ~Aesop
I don’t want to just list the stuff I’m grateful for. I want to bathe in it. I want my heart to burst open with the joy of it all. ~Christine Kane
Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. ~Melody Beattie
Happiness is not what makes us grateful. It is gratefulness that makes us happy. ~David Steindal-Rast
The real gift of gratitude is that the more grateful you are, the more present you become. ~Robert Holden
It was hugely satisfying to sit in reflection making the cards and to know that my loved ones would receive a little reminder of love and gratitude.
A friend is due this week with her second baby. Her favourite colour is red and she likes bright and colorful things so I went with a primary triad. There are three times as many yellow stitches as there are red (excluding the edging) and three times as many blue as there are yellow. I liked how this tied together well using the same edging colour as the shortest colour section. Originally, I planned on backing the crochet blanket with the fabric like I’ve seen online but then got cold feet when I feared ruining the blanket by stitching on the fabric.
I thought of making a small teething toy with the fabric but then came across the idea of a bandana bib and picked up some red flannel for the back (to ensure that it is absorbent). I sewed a version of See Kate Sew’s bandana bib, which was the best one I found as it required measuring rather than printing a pattern.
The pattern says to sew on the snaps after it is sewn together but I wanted the knot inside so I left each end open until the snaps were secured then hand stitched the rest closed. It was a bit of pain and I may add a button hole instead of snaps after stitching it all closed the next time I make it. I’ll have to wait to hear the feedback of anyone using it, but the bandana bibs online are adorable!
In the July gift-giving, I made Christmas themed coasters for my three siblings and parents. I used the criss-cross coasters pattern as usual. My parents have used their coasters since I brought them over (I should make them another set that’s seasonally appropriate so they can have something handmade by me around them) but I know my sisters have tucked them away to use with their holiday decorations.