I’ve been quite restrained this year and kept the handmade gifts to a minimum…for me anyway.
There are a couple of crochet gifts hiding under the tree but other than that I’ve shopped elsewhere, mostly from other small businesses where I can though.
I couldnt resist however turning to my trusty hook for the tiiny humans teacher Christmas gifts. She has 2 teachers who cover her class and also 2 teaching assistants that work with her so 4 gifts meant it could get pretty costly if I wasnt careful.
When I need some inspiration I like to scan through Pinterest. Not specifically looking at crochet, I tend to browse all the categories and just wait for inspiration to strike. While scanning through hoping for something to come to me I spotted the fab reindeer cup cosy by Haakmaarraak, Kirsten really does make the best coy patterns and so I settled on a variation of this cosy for the teacher gifts.
The mugs are some plain white porcelain but they were thinner and taller than the ones from Haakmaarraak so I made my own pattern up. Still keeping it simple with just a rectangle worked in rows and a chain loop to secure over the button.
I had a few changes I wanted to make however, firstly I wanted these to be rudolph cup cosy’s and secondly the nose had to be a small fluffy pom-pom (we all know how I love a pom-pom), so a small red pom was made and attached front and centre. Just a little tip if you’re making pom-pom’s – I use these pom-pom makers as the make the job so much easier!
The other change I made is that I decided against crocheting the antlers, partly in the interest of simplicity and partly time; with 4 to make quickly the less crocheting and sewing the better.I therefore picked up some brown pipe cleaners from HobbyCraft and cut them to length.
I’ve threaded one pipe cleaner through the top stitch and twisted one end around the other to secure, leaving a little end to create the 2 prongs on the antlers.
So simple yet so effective. These little guys look so fun an festive! We’ve chosen to stuff them full of goodies including hot chocolate and christmas themed treats and they are all wrapped up with little cards handwritten by the monkey herself.
Christmas prep is in full swing here.
The decorations went up last weekend and in between the last few orders of 2017 I’ve been trying to get the last few presents, W.I.P’s and decorations finished before the big day.
For months I’ve been putting off one project. I planned it in the summer and the yarn has sat on my shelf ready for it but I just kept pushing it back while I was busy with more important or urgent makes.
A new Christmas wreath!
I had this roving yarn left over from last years giant stocking and it just seemed ideal for making a thick, cosy and luxurious wreath.
Part of the reason I held off was that I needed something to adorn the wreath once it was made and I just couldn’t find the right ribbon or seasonal accessory. That was until a random trip to HobbyCraft where I stumbled across this oversized printed hessian bow. It was too perfect.
I also picked up the wire ring I’ve worked around while in HobbyCraft. I’d originally planned to pick up a polystyrene wreath but they only had small sizes in stock and I’m far to impatient to wait for a delivery so I went hunting for alternatives and ended up getting this copper wreath ring. I’m pretty sure it’s designed for floral wreaths but it did the trick.
Believe it or not the wreath itself is knitted! Hand knitted but still, knitted stitches were involved. It’s a long strip of 3 knitted rows and they are overlapped slightly as they were wrapped around the ring.
This is such a quick and simple design. It took about 30 mins from start to finish, which is my ideal project in the middle of the busiest season of the year.
I love the overall effect and it looks perfect on the front door. Now what’s next on that to do list…
I’m always the last to the party when it comes to whats trending and popular. Maybe its the rebellious streak in me or maybe I just have my head in the clouds and it completely passes me by, either way it has meant that I am massively late in jumping on the corner to corner crochet bandwagon.
I gave it a go a while back (I think last Christmas) and I just didn’t really get the hype. Fast forward a year however and oh how I understand. I’m not sure whats caused this complete U-turn but whatever it is I am glad.
I decided I really wanted to make a baby blanket ready for Christmas and I knew I wanted it to feature a reindeer, that left me two options; tapestry crochet or C2C. Strangely enough I opted for C2C. I think the difference this time was I designed my own graph and actually took the time to work up a little swatch with the yarn and hook I planned to use to see how many ‘squares’ my blanket would need to be to reach the right size. I also very much stuck to the bobbin method, this is where little balls of the colours you are using are wound round bobbins (or in my lazy case stitch markers!) as you can see in the photo below. This meant I didn’t have to carry my yarn underneath other colours all the time which is absolutely hate as it always peaks through.
Anyway back to the reindeer. Chart complete and bobbins in play I set about corner to cornering. Loved it! The blanket worked up so quickly and the effect was really impressive… a nice clear reindeer image.
I deliberated for ages over the border but in the end I settled on keeping it simple and letting the main picture do all the talking.
Well and truly bitten by the C2C bug it wasn’t long before I was off making a new design, and this one really is my all time favourite.
I went for a non obvious penguin as I wanted this one to be more wintery and not just a Christmas blanket.
This time I did get all fancy with the border and I have done the candy cane border all the way around in white and blue.
It finishes it off perfectly and I love the sleepy little penguins expression.
Both of these blankets have been added to the Christmas 2017 range and are available to buy in VERY limited quantities. I will only be offering 2 slots for each blanket! You can find the Reindeer here and the Penguin here.
I might already be beavering away on another new design but that one is being kept under wraps for now 😉