Sunday, 18 August 2019

Knitted Cat Pattern Review


Pookie_Doodle

I saw this pattern for a knitted cat on Ravelry and as I just adore cats I couldn't resist having a go.

I thought I would share my journey and experience in case you want to knit a cat yourself.

The pattern is by Claire Garland and can be found on Ravelry: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/cat-48

So to begin..... I looked at the recommended yarn and realised I could neither afford or justify spending nearly £30 on yarn to make a toy cat :( 

So I popped up to my local yarn shop and there found a lovely variegated yarn by Cygnet yarns, called Prism. The colours looked lovely in a variety of browns, creams and blacks. Perfect to look a little bit like my own cat.

The pattern uses several strands of 4ply and lace yarns worked together so I hoped a double knit would suffice, if not it will just come out a different size to the pattern. I bought one ball (100g) and so far I think it will be enough. I also bought 100g of a plain beige DK "Baby Pato" for the muzzle and paws but now having started the pattern I realise maybe a smaller ball would be enough or scraps from my stash, but never mind the rest will come in for something else. In total I spent just under £5.00. I still have to buy eyes but have found some on Etsy for around £2.50 for a pair of cats eyes.

I'm using 4mm knitting needles.


The pattern is really well written and I am now at the back legs and have had no problems at all understanding what to do. There are very, very detailed instructions and lots of photos, plus video help but I've not come to that part yet.


My advice would be to read through the first few pages and the special stitch instructions before you get started.


I think if you can get through the first part you won't have any problems at all.


I think the muzzle is the trickiest part, not that it is difficult or hard to understand, it just needs some patience and dexterous hands to twist and turn the work. This is my muzzle completed.





Another tip if you decide to use a different yarn to that suggested in the pattern and it is a variegated one, make sure when rejoining the yarn that you find the same colour within the ball, even if it means winding off some of the other colours. As you can see above I have a definite line between the dark brown and the beige colours - I should have found the same brown and rejoined that, not the beige. Never mind I'm sure it will look fine when done, I might even sew a few long and short stitches to blend it in and break up the line when finished.

Here you can see the head (minus its ears) and the shoulders. The colours spread softly so I'm happy with how it is working out.


Here the body with start of back legs is beginning to take shape, you can see how this time I rejoined the yarn for the legs by finding the colour match and you cannot see the join.


I am pressing on with this cat. Knitting isn't my favourite pastime these days, I much prefer crochet,  but I wanted it so much that I'm prepared to do it.

I will update soon with further growth of my kitty.

Until then Happy knitting!



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Thursday, 25 July 2019

Yarn the Sheep free pattern from Yarnspirations. Pattern review


Pookie_Doodle


The pattern is free which is brilliant. It makes a lovely cuddly baby cocoon which fastens up the front and has a textured stitch which looks like the wool of a sheep.

Two ears on the hood and a pair of feet finish off the lovely little Lamb baby nest.

I did have a few problems with the pattern. I'm sure I have read it correctly but it just would not come right.

First there was a mistake for the buttonhole edging on the front it says to use MC (main colour, which is white) but it should be the grey contrast (A) 

Then when making up the pattern says "sew buttons to back and raglan button edgings" but there are no instructions to add a button edging to the back, the only instructions are for the 30 stitches down the front raglan on the sleeve and the button hole bands on the front.

This is how it looked once complete, nowhere to sew the buttons except on the actual back piece:



So I added my own button band to the back in grey by crocheting the 30 stitches down the front raglan as per the pattern but I didn't turn,  I continued down the back edge (around 35 stitches) then turned and worked the 5 rows.

This was a bit of a nightmare because I had already sewn it all together so had to undo the sleeves and in doing so accidentally cut one of the stitches so had to make the whole sleeve again:(

Never mind, it all came good in the end and I am really pleased with it. This is the back band looked, much nicer to sew the buttons on there:


Perfect gift for any new baby and a fun item too, baby is bound to turn a few heads. 


The bobbly fleece looks is super:





The pattern can be found free on Ravelry: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/yawn-the-sheep

Happy crocheting!



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Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Selling my handmade crafts, knitted and crochet on Etsy

Wow! Has it really been 6 months since my last post? Where on earth does the time go? I must get more of the things I've made listed.

Well I've been so busy just lately, I looked in my craft cupboard and found there were so many things that I had made that were just sitting there I decided to try to sell them and raise money for a support group I am involved with.

I had a look at Etsy with a view to selling and decided to set up a shop.
You can find it here:

https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/PookieDoodleCrafts

I'm selling mainly shawls and scarves at the moment but there are also a few other things like baby clothes and teddies.

If you fancy having a go at selling on Etsy yourself and would like 40 free listings to get you started - YES 40 FREE then use this link:

If you do buy anything - thank you so much for helping our support group.






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Thursday, 20 December 2018

Carol Singing Amigurumi Mice

Fell in love with these mice the first time I saw them and decided to make three, not for blind mice! but for a carol singing trio.



The pattern is free from Sharon at Amigurumi to Go. Thanks Sharon x


An easy pattern to follow but I must admit after making three bodies, three heads, six arms, six ears and three tails I couldn't be bothered making six legs! So I hit on this idea:

I cut three circles of card crosswise from a loo roll, about half an inch high and glued them to a piece of card. These were going to hold the bottom ends of the mice so they stood up without falling over.


I then covered these and the card with acrylic toy stuffing to hide them, you could use cotton wool.

I made a lantern free hand by just crocheting a tube, stuffing it and surface crocheting a few lines to suggest glass panels. The lantern holder was a flexible drinking straw crocheted over. This I glued to the base of one of the mice.



The music stand was again made free hand, a rectangle of crochet for the music and a shorter straw for the stand.


I'm so pleased with it, everyone loves it and it is a lovely Christmas decoration.

Happy crocheting!



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Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Nativity Crochet Figures Set Amigurumi

I wanted to make a Nativity Set and came across this pattern from 5 Little Monsters: https://www.5littlemonsters.com/2015/11/crocheted-nativity-set.html

It is a FREE pattern - thank you for that Erica! - I found it a really easy pattern to follow, it was very detailed in it's instructions.


I didn't make the animals but did make Three Kings, these were made using the Joseph pattern and using a variety of bright yarns - I made up a few hat designs and a beard for one of them. Each is holding a gift, again I just made up a few shapes and added some gold thread.

For the weighted bases I cut out discs of plastic from the backs of those small notebooks you can buy as it was more rigid than any card that I had. I also sewed a small stitch through the centre of the disc to the base of the figure, to stop it moving about.

For the actual weights I filled those small plastic money bags that you get from the bank with gravel, folded over the top flap and then wrapped sellotape around to secure it and make sure the gravel could not come out. I then packed stuffing around the weight.


The figures stand approximately 8" high for the tallest.





The pattern does not give instructions for any features and this looks fine but I did decide to add just eyes - I did a half moon line in thin thread, which gives a closed eye, almost reverent look I thought.

I used lots of oddments of yarn from my stash, mainly DK or 4 ply and a 3.5mm crochet hook. 

It took me a whole year to make, not because it was hard or complicated but simply because I started in January 2018 and then kept stopping to do other things during the Spring and Summer, finally finishing it just in time for Christmas 2018! 

I sold it at a charity event raising money for a charity I work for :) I'm really happy that it was bought by a good friend of mine and now adorns her Christmas decorations.

Hope you have a go, it was great fun to make.

Happy crocheting!



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Thursday, 15 November 2018

Winter Bunny Amigurumi with Carrot Sledge

When I first saw this pattern I fell in love with it, how cute is this little bunny pulling his/her little carrot sledge. 



The pattern is free (link below) from Amigurumitogo. Sharon creates beautiful amigurumi and her patterns are always free, no matter how complicated. How kind is that?

I did make a few slight changes to the pattern:

1: I didn't have enough yarn to make two sides to the sledge and sandwich plastic between to strengthen it.

So instead I used some fine wire and crocheted it to the edge to attach it to the carrot shaped piece, you can just see the wire on the wrong side, between the stitches. I was then able to pull and shape it to get the carrot look just right.



2. In the pattern Sharon says that the bunny will not stand up alone, she used pins to make it stand up for photos. I wanted to be able to make it stand as a Christmas decoration without pins as young grandchildren would probably be picking it up, so after a bit of pondering I decided to make the tail quite large and position it so that it acted like a third leg and supported the back, allowing it to stand.




I made it in two evenings, the pattern is very easy to follow with lots of photo help and instructions.




I used Drops Safran 100% cotton yarn and a 3.00 mm crochet hook. The finished size is approx. 6" long on the sledge (including the curve) and the bunny is 6" tall from foot to tip of ear.

Find the pattern here: https://www.amigurumitogo.com/2015/12/winter-bunny-free-amigurumi-pattern.html or on Ravelry: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/winter-bunny

There is also a separate pattern for the hat and scarf which is linked from the bunny pattern.


Happy crocheting!



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Friday, 17 August 2018

Wild Wheat Shawl Pattern Review

I recently found this FREE pattern for a lovely little neck shawl.

It is by Johanna Lindahl at Mijocrochet the pattern can be found here:

https://mijocrochet.se/2016/12/29/wild-wheat-shawl-sjal/

It is available in English, Swedish, Dutch and Danish. Thank you Johanna for sharing your beautiful work for free!






I made mine in Boyes 100% mercerised cotton yarn, it took just under one ball. I used a 2.5 mm crochet hook.

If you print out the pattern I would definitely recommend printing in colour if you can because the pattern shows the stitches on the chart in different colours and makes it easier to see what stitches you are going to be doing. 

I would definitely recommend this pattern, very easy to follow the instructions and it grew very quickly.

I've also done a video review showing the shawl and explaining a little about my experience of using the pattern, just click below:

 




Happy crocheting!




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