Rabbit Rattle

Crochet Rabbit Rattle for my friend's new baby.

Gardening Apron

Gardening Apron for a friend's house warming present.

No Junk for Us!

Handmade "no junk mail please" sign in Finnish.

Meet Cyril!

Cyril is an amigurumi pig, made for my nephew.

Boxy Matryoshka Pouch

Boxy pouch made with very kawaii Japanese fabric.

Saturday, 29 November 2008

Patriotic Baby Booties

These have to be the fastest booties I've made so far. The Hubby announced that his friend had just become an auntie and since he also knows the friend's sister and husband, could I make something for them? The catch? Just two days before the friend came to collect the gift before making the trip to Amsterdam to visit them.

I took a chance and made a start on some booties I've not made before, knowing that this could very well end in boots fit only for the tiniest baby ever (I crochet very tightly). I don't know about you, but even if a pattern works out really well, I always want to try something new when I pick up my hook. I even get bored making the second bootie of a pair. I chose the "victorian aster baby's booties" from 201 Crochet Motifs, Blocks, Patterns and Ideas, but left out the aster flower adornment and the second row of embellishment around the top. These were for a boy, after all!

I used some white yarn form my stash (Red Heart Dallas) and worked my little (OK, freakishly long) fingers off. I didn't quite make the deadline, so Hubby's friend had to play with VV for 20 minutes while I finished them off (I don't think either of them minded). I added a bue ribbon to make them a bit more boyish. It was then that we noticed I had made very patriotic Finnish booties. And when I quickly wrapped them in some orange tissue I had (in yet another stash), we realised that was a very Dutch colour to choose. Almost as if I had carefully planned it all.

The booties looks a little Wellington-boot like to me, but I think the shape is good for fat baby legs and feet, so they might actually stay on. And they are probably too big right now, which is an achievement in itself.

Monday, 24 November 2008

Boxy Matryoshka Pouch

Finally made a start on my Christmas presents, with this practice boxy pouch:

I used three bear's excellent tutorial and fabric from Japanese specialist nuno.plus. I found the ebay version of the nuno.plus shop quite by accident and only noticed that its the same shop mentioned in the tute later on. Yet another spooky coincidence.

I think I'm going to do lined versions for the actual presents, but in a non-properly way, just by using two pieces of fabric together. That will still put the seams on view on the inside, but it will make the pouches a bit stiffer and it will keep the make-up time short.

Right, better get on with them then! Now that my get-up-and-go has come back (it went away for a week or so, I know not where, hence the silence), I'll be in a veritable making frenzy. At least that's the plan...

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Pass the Pigs - crocheted!

Brigitte over at roman sock has made the most amazing crocheted version of Pass the Pigs, which she's named Pass the Piglets. Look at how detailed and cute it is:

Strangely, rather than spurring me on to make fab handmade Christmas gifts myself (as is my plan), it's thrown me into the doldrums. There's no way I could make anything that cute, dammit. And certainly not two things exactly the same - none of my booties have really been true matching pairs so far...

Hopefully Pass the Piglets has the opposite effect on you, so go and check it out for yourself now. I'd certainly love to receive something like this as a present: Brigitte's friends and family are lucky indeed.

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Thread-Catcher Cube

"What's this?" I hear you ask. "A slightly wonky fabric cube, in a cute colourway?" Well, yes, but that's not all...

See that stuff on top? That there be threads, caught neatly by this, the all-new, ingenious Thread-Catcher CubeTM!

I had a "eureka!" moment when I was clearing up after a sewing session the other day and noticed that my trousers had threads stuck to them. It was but one small leap from that to a custom thread-catcher, with fleece as the grippy fabric of choice. The dotty fabric is a tea-towel, the fleece from an old top.

Up until now I've been chucking the threads in origami boxes made from magazines, but now I'll use the cube ("Use the cube, Luke, use the cube...").

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

From Runner to Clutch

This clutch bag started life as a table runner, which I bought back in July with a load of other fabric. As soon as I saw the runner I knew I wanted to make it into a bag, but it's taken me until now to get round to it.

I used a pattern from Making Handbags: Retro, Chic and Luxurious Designs, finally assuaging the craft book guilt I always have when I've bought a book and not made anything from it.

I'm quite pleased with the way it looks, but in reality it's a bit soft and squishy, so I'm not sure it will be all that great in use. And the question is - with or without the tassel?

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Mohair Capelet

I finally got round to doing something with the excess Schachenmayr nomotta idena Mohair Lux I have, although there is still a lot left over (see here for why I have so much. And yes, I abandoned The Tapeworm). Since I couldn't really see myself wearing anything made from mohair, I let my husband choose from three shawl patterns. He chose Cold Shoulders from Stitch 'n Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker.

Using two strands together to get an approximation of the correct weight of yarn, the pattern worked up really quickly. I also got to make my first pom-poms (the first since childhood at least, and that was a looong time ago).

And here's the finished project:

I actually really like it (although I think the pom-poms are a little large), but I'm still stumped on what to wear it with - any suggestions greatly received! I know that all things wooly are currently in vogue, but I'm not sure if I have the guts to wear it with my normal casual clothes.

And still the question remains - what to do with the rest of the mohair?

Monday, 3 November 2008

The crochet crocs are finally on their way

I finally got round to buying the extra buttons and finished off the crochet Crocs. I didn't have a suitable box to wrap them in, so I hacked up a box we already had and wrapped that. I also used some fluffy packing material that came with something we ordered recently (I forget what). So, while I didn't do that great a job with the wrapping, at least it was recycled.

Now if only I could find my other friend's address, I could post the bear booties as well...

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Aalto Origami

Ok, not Alvar Aalto origami as such, but rather a beautiful Iittala Aalto vase filled with box origamis.

My husband received this vase as a present for 10 years' service to his company and we wanted to have it on display. However, a clear glass vase gets rather lost with nothing in it and since it's a long time before anything grows here in Finland, flowers are out of the question.

We both looked at the vase together, chorused "origami!" and so the idea was born. I've just spent a couple of hours maniacally folding the boxes. Note: very few of my attempts reached the vase when I threw them, so I shall not be giving up my day job to start a career in a basketball anytime soon. (My husband points out that the vase's shape means it is harder to slam dunk than a hoop, but he has to be nice, he's my husband...)

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