Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Little Needle Felter

In my last blog I had mentioned how much my daughter and I love to read the blog Pip's Poppies http://pipspoppies.blogspot.com/ . My daughter was so inspired by Helen's creations that she wanted to try needle felting herself. At Weir Crafts http://www.weirdolls.com/ we found the book Wool Pets by Laurie Sharp
and a wool pets needle felting starter kit.

 My daughter couldn't wait to get started.  This book has lots of very nice simple designs for beginners and explains technique well with lots of pictures. Here are some more little animals she made. I still need to help her attach eyes to the penguin and goldfinch. 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

She Won!!!!

My family is so excited! My daughter won this very awesome bat.

How could something so wonderful happen? I will tell you. A couple of months ago I found this really great blog Pip's Poppies http://pipspoppies.blogspot.com/2011/09/let-me-introduce-you-to-picktin.html . Helen Priem is the woman behind the blog. I was so impressed by her creations. Her needle felted animals are so realistic and have such personality.
  And the gnomes, Have You Seen the Gnomes!

Just looking at her amazing creations would be enough, but she also writes the most magical stories. My daughter and I got hooked.

Then one day when we were "checking in" to see what was going to happen next, there he was. A gnome, in the buff, hoping along on top of a pumpkin. It turned out that this gnome not only was missing his clothes but also a name.

So Helen said that anyone who could figure out the gnomes name would win this bat.

 My daughter, son, and I all turned in our names. Every few minutes they would want to check the blog and see if a name was picked. As I would go to the computer they would sing and dance " the gnome song" they came up with. And then it happened, a name was chosen, the name was Picktin! The name my daughter submited.

That is how this wonderful bat, now named Skyler came from the Netherlands to live with us.                                                                                                    
Helen also sent my son,( who couldn't figure out why we couldn't drive to pick up the bat)this wonderful map of Europe with the Netherlands marked on it. He loves it! We are going to put it on the wall of our school room.
 Thank you Helen for your generosity and your blog, it brightens our day!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Here She Is..

finally finished.
It has been difficult working on her without my daughter noticing. It was so much easier when she was younger. I've done a little here and there and now she is finally finished. With fall coming up I felt she needed a sweater which I knit out of Patons Classic Wool.  I've knitted scarves and hats in the past and I have crocheted many baby sweaters but this is my first attempt at knitted sweater. I decided to make it up as I went, which means there was plenty of taking out and redoing. I used a stockinette stitch for the whole sweater only reversing the direction at the collar to give the stitch a different look.
I crocheted her shoes out of the same yarn as the sweater. I just love Mary Jane's!
Now Patience will just have to wait patiently until the birthday celebration :)

Sunday, September 18, 2011


I recently saw some pictures of Waldorf dolls and knew I would have to try and make one. My daughter had said she wanted a doll with sunset hair, blue eyes and freckles for her birthday. So I thought here is my opportunity to give it a shot.

I bought the Eco Wool and Organic Cotton Interlock from Weir Doll Supply http://www.weirdolls.com/ . The hair is Malabrigo Rios in Sunset it is a Pure Merino Superwash that I bought at my local yarn shop.

I found directions for making the head online
http://thesilverpenny.homestead.com/freeprojectdollheaddirections.html  and drew a pattern for the body.

Maybe I should have bought a pattern for my first time? I think the body is a little long for the legs, I will adjust it for the next one. I wanted the body soft and huggable but I think I might add more stuffing next time. Also she won't sit up on her own without leaning against something so I may stitch the bottom differently next time.

 For her hair I made a wig cap Beth Webber has great directions at http://www.flickr.com/photos/29184580@N04/sets/72157619529864003/ But instead of hooking the thread I did something like this at starry sheep http://starrysheep.com/crafty/?p=103 wrapped the yarn around a book but before of cutting it I ran a thread across the top forward and back. After cutting it I laid it across the head where I wanted it and stitched the hair on the part line. I think I used 4 layers. It was a whole skein of yarn aprox. 210 yards.

Her dress is a cotton calico and the trim is bleached muslin. The pattern I modified from The Mary Frances Sewing Book by Jane Eayre Fryer.  I found out about this book on By Bido's blog http://bybido.blogspot.com/2011/02/mary-frances-sewing.html  . I was hoping my daughter could use this doll for the clothes in this book. But I made the doll a little to chubby. I think if I just redraw the patterns she can still follow the direction in the book.  It is such a great story and beautiful illustrations, I would own this book even if I didn't have a child at home.
Here is Patience in her dress. I still need to make shoes, a sweater and of course panties. (It will be the first thing she will check for.) Luckily, I still have a month to go.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Peacock Thread

Yea, my thread is here!
This is size 50 and 20 crochet thread that was hand dyed. The colour is Royalty and I purchased it from Lady Shuttle Maker on Etsy http://www.etsy.com/shop/LadyShuttleMaker

Here are 3 of the small feathers made up. This is a great quality thread, very fun to work with.

Mr. Peacock is going to have to wait a bit for the rest of his feathers. My daughters birthday is coming up and I have a new project. I will be posting more about it soon!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Christmas Peacock

It is time to start making Christmas presents! The first one is for my Mom. She loves peacocks, so i thought I would design her a brooch.  I finished the sample today. Here are the parts.

   And here it is finally assembled. I ordered some beautifully hand dyed thread today on Etsy. I will post pictures when I receive it. I used sized 10 and 40 cotton thread for the sample but the final will be made with 20 and 50.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Welcome Elena

This is my newest doll, Elena.  I made her by combining patterns from Beth Webber's blog By Hook,By Hand http://byhookbyhand.blogspot.com/. These patterns are absolutely wonderful, and they are free! If you love dolls you have to check out her blog.

I had wanted to make a doll the size of a Free Spirit (Left), with the body type of the Mini Spirit (Right), but I also wanted her to be jointed like the Teacup Spirit(not pictured).

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She is made with Patons Classic Wool. Her eyes are from Glass Eyes Online. I found them on Ebay but they also have there own web site http://www.glasseyesonline.com/. I bought a 12 pack of their 9mm  iridescent plastic safety eyes with washers.
 The colours are light green, dark green, aqua, blue, purple and rust. I love the way they sparkle.

For her hair I combined 2 different yarns. Sensations Beautiful (Left) and a wool mohair blend (Right). I've miss placed the wrapper. When I find it I will update the brand.

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 I really like the texture I got by mixing the yarns.

I made large curls on top of the wig cap, front
and back. It made the head really heavy and sometimes flops over. I'll try something different next time.

 For Elena's dress I used Beth Webber's pattern Cap Sleeve A-Line Dress under Mini Free Spirit Patterns at her blog http://byhookbyhand.blogspot.com/ I made some minor adjustments to make it large enough for Elena.
In row 1 I made 10 links.
Row 7: (armhole dividing row) Working in BLO, sc in next 10 sc, ch7, skip next 20 sc, sc in the next 20 sc, ch 7, skip nest 20 sc, sc in remaining 10 sc, ch 3, turn. (ch 3 counts as beginning dc of next row)
I repeated rows 13 and 14, 3 times before going on to row 15.

 For the main colour of the dress(pink) and contrasting colour 2(green) I used Aunt Lydias Bamboo crochet thread size 10 pictured in the foreground. It is very soft and silky and hangs nicely. Contrasting colour 1(white) is a size 10 cotton crochet thread is a bit stiffer and holds the bottom of the dress out nicely.

 The Pink is the bamboo thread and the Purple is the cotton.