Suzy Sheep

The last project I finished in 2013 was Suzy.
This was a pattern I’d been eyeing for a while before getting my hands on it. I’d already bought the yarn I needed, but decided to put the pattern on my Christmas list. Santa came through and even gave me another set of yarn, so now I can make another one if I want to ^_^ or maybe save the yarn for another project.

wpid-IMAG1087.jpgYou can make her in all kinds of colours, so it’s a great way to bust some of your stash ^_^

wpid-IMAG1088.jpgI love how she’s all cute, soft, and fuzzy, thanks to the use of Phildar Douce. Though it can be hard to work with, I really fell in love with this yarn all over again! I think it’s a bit easier to use than other types of fuzzy yarn (like Brazilia from SMC Schachenmayer), since my hook doesn’t get stuck in the hairs. And as long as you keep track of your rounds and count properly, it’s pretty quick and easy to work up a project. Plus, you don’t really see the stitches, so it looks like it isn’t even crochet at all (which I believe is pretty amazing)

The pattern is from Stip&Haak and can be found here (both links are in Dutch!)

Cheers, Lydia

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Toadstool Paul

In the crochet world, you come across patterns that make you go: WHOA! I really need to make this one!

Toadstool Paul was such a pattern. I saw it on the Amigurumi Patterns.net FaceBook page and couldn’t resist making the purchase. It’s even designed by a namesake of mine ^_^

DSC05291The pattern itself isn’t too difficult, except for the collar that uses a backpost stitch. I’ve had my fair share of trouble with that one, but after some practise I managed to make it look right. Another thing that can make it a bit hard to work on, is that it’s pretty much worked up in one piece. On the other hand, that does limit the amount of sewing you have to do, which is a good thing for me ^_^” In the end, it turned out that I didn’t stuff the neck enough, so now he kind of hangs his head because of the weight from his toadstool hat. But I think that makes him look a little bit shy and a whole lot cuter ❤

He loves hanging around near the lights that are left over from the Christmas decoration

He loves hanging around near the lights that are left over from the Christmas decoration

Or just staring outside, thinking of how lucky he is to be inside with all this cold weather

Or just staring outside, thinking of how lucky he is to be inside with all this cold weather

I love how, in the pattern, he’s made with yarn that looks kind of earthy. So I tried to find the right colours and succeeded with my first try! A stand at the market had just the yarn I needed (Annell Rapido Plus) and I love the way he turned out. This was a heavier kind of yarn than was used for the pattern though. The main colour was said to need about 50 grams, which amounts to one skein most of the time, but I ended up using three skeins of 50grams. For the other colours, one skein per colour turned out to be enough, luckily. Especially since it was quite a hassle to get my hands on the two extra skeins I needed. But I already vented that fruststration ^_~

A detail of his grass-embroidered sweater

A detail of his grass-embroidered sweater

And his toadstool hat of course! (you can take it off ^_^)

And his toadstool hat of course! (you can take it off ^_^)

I always love to know who I’m making an ami for and I had just the person in mind for this one. As I’m writing this, I haven’t given it to him yet, but when I do, I’ll be sure to let you all know if he liked it 🙂

Cheers, Lydia

Edit 1-15-2014: He LOVED it ^___^

Slinky Dog ^_^

It took me a week, but the “Slinky Dog” is finally finished! It was a fun project to do, even though I had to sew a lot of the parts together. But this one is definitely fit to be a baby-gift ^_^

Just look at those sad puppy eyes, she wants you to take her home!

Just look at those sad puppy eyes, she wants you to take her home!

Sideview, the 'slinky' part sags a bit when you put the doggy upright, so it takes a lot of posing to get it to stand

Sideview, the ‘slinky’ part sags a bit when you put the doggy upright, so it takes a lot of posing to get it to stand

Trying to climb the couch, but that can be pretty difficult when the back of your body doesn't want to go there >_<"

Trying to climb the couch, but that can be pretty difficult when the back of your body doesn’t want to go where the front wants to go >_<“

I’m not sure who created the pattern, as all I’ve got is a link to the translated version in Dutch. The person who posted it did say that all honour goes to the person who created it, but did not put up a link to the original. (I’m guessing it’s someone Russian, seeing the watermark in the pictures, but I can’t be sure)

You can make this dog in many different colours, I’ve seen it with a palet of blue and in the pattern it looks a bit like a ‘rainbow’ dog. But I’ve decided to use pink, seeing how it’s going to a little baby girl :3

Right now, I’m trying to work on a small project, creating a pattern for one of the new Pokémon! But I’ll keep you guys in the dark for now as to which one it will be. Feel free to guess though! ^_~

Cheers,
Lydia

Lemmings

For a lot of people the Lemmings games are something they grew up with. I have to admit, I am not one of them, but I did buy the game for PSP a few years ago. It can be pretty addictive, but then again, if you fail a level thirty or more times, it gets really frustrating.

Basically, what you need to do is get a certain amount of your lemmings safely from one side of the level to the other. Sounds simple enough, but there’s a catch: the lemmings will continue walking in a straight line as long as nothing blocks them. This means they will easily walk off a cliff and dive to their deaths if you don’t do something about it. This is why you can assign special abilities to your lemmings. There are eight different abilities: Climber, Blocker, Miner, Digger, Floater, Basher, Builder and Bomber.

A while back I came across a pattern online for so-called Mop Top Mascots by PlanetJune. The first thing that came to mind when I saw her pictures was: “those are Lemmings!” And sure enough, when I’d read a bit more, I found she’d actually made a set of five, including the little accessoiries needed for them to use their skills. There wasn’t really a pattern for the accessoiries, more like notes on how to make them. But the pictures are very clear and makes them easy to reproduce (for the little more advanced crocheter that is, I think).

The full set of five

I have to say, making these little guys is almost as addictive as the game! They’re fun and easy to make, although they did make my hands hurt. The pattern calls for 3.5mm and 5mm hooks and approximately 8mm eyes, but I used a 2.5mm hook with thinner yarn than I usually use and a 4mm hook for the fuzzy stuff, so my lemmings came out a bit smaller than they were supposed to be. Therefore, I had to use 4mm eyes, which were a nightmare to fasten.

I had two  pairs of safety eyes with metal washers, which slided on like nothing, but then I had to use new sets, which came with plastic washers. After battling with them for a full afternoon, I very nearly gave up on making the whole set. First I decided to order some new eyes with metal washers, but then, I need to  wait for them to come in the mail and I wanted them done ASAP. Then I tried to find out if there was a surefire way to get the washers to click into place. It’s pretty hard to find tutorials on fastening eyes, I must say. Only a few tips could be found online. I tried soaking them in hot water to make the plastic more bendable, but only ended up with a bit of a mess and washers that were still as hard as a rock. Then I read that you could push them on using something like a screwdriver that has a hole in it to switch heads. Of course, I have no such thing in the house, but I decided to look for something similar. I ended up taking a pen apart and using the clicky-top, which just happened to have the perfect sized hole to go over the pens of the eyes, but not entirely over the washers. It was still pretty hard to get a grip on it, since the clicky-top is pretty small as well, but it gave just the extra leverage I needed to push on the washers. So succes was mine and I could move on to making all the lemmings the pattern provided for!

And here’s the result:

Your everyday, average Lemming, designed to just walk and walk and walk until it either reaches the goal or plumges to its untimely death...

Your everyday, average Lemming, designed to just walk and walk and walk until it either reaches the goal or plunges to its untimely death…

The Blocker, stopping Lemmings from walking too far. When a Lemming comes across a Blocker, it turns around to walk in the opposite direction.

The Blocker, stopping Lemmings from walking too far. When a Lemming comes across a Blocker, it turns around to walk in the opposite direction.

Busy doing his job ^_^

Busy doing his job ^_^

This is what the Lemmings see when they approach the Blocker, would you pass that?

This is what the Lemmings see when they approach the Blocker, would you pass that?

The Digger, capable of digging a safe, slanted way down, so nobody falls to their death straight down!

The Digger, capable of digging a safe, slanted way down, so nobody falls to their death straight down!

Digger, with his mighty pick-axe

Digger, with his mighty pick-axe

The Builder, building stairs to get to a whole new level

The Builder, building stairs to get to a whole new level

A bit of wire provides the lift crochet can't give it

A bit of wire provides the lift crochet can’t give it

Its little backpack for storing those building blocks

Its little backpack for storing those building blocks

The Floater, floating down to safety using its trusty umbrella.

The Floater, floating down to safety using its trusty umbrella.

From the top, a bit of wire makes a great standard, though the wire I used is a bit too thin, so I have to carefully place the Lemming to avoid it falling over.

From the top. A bit of wire makes a great standard, though the wire I used is a bit too thin, so I have to carefully place the Lemming to keep it from falling over.

The pattern is available for free on PlanetJune’s blog, but you can also make a donation to her and get the pattern in a handy PDF file. It will only cost you what you want to give for it and it helps her keep her creativity available for the world!

The set I made will be going to a game-crazy friend. And my boyfriend already requested a Floater ^_^ Normally, I’m not much for repeating a pattern, but these little guys are so much fun to make that I wouldn’t mind making another set and maybe even figuring out the accessoiries for the other skills…

Cheers, Lydia

Jurassic Park

A while back I read that Steven Spielberg will be making a fourth movie in the Jurassic Park series. The first three movies have sentimental value for me, since I watched them first when I was still a kid. I’ve seen them all quite a few times since then and still love to watch them. Especially when I know a scary part is coming up and I start to brace myself in order not to get scared and thus get more scared when it actually happens 😛

Also, a new second-cousin is coming soon, so it was time for me to start work on a baby-present. It’s going to be a boy and I knew just what to make: a bunch of dinosaurs!
Crochet dinosaurs

The pattern is from Ana Paula Rimoli, who seems to be able to make anything look extremely cute. Here’s a link to her Etsy shop! Give it a visit if you want to make these cute guys yourself.

First, I started on the Triceratops. I love these dinosaurs, with their fierce looking horns and gentle behavior (as far as I know that is…)
I used two shades of green for his body and a nice contrasting white for the horns.

Triceratops from the side Triceratops front

He does tend to make headstands when I try to let him stand on all fours, so I need to press him down a bit. Looks like he’s too heavy for his little back legs, doesn’t it ^_~

Then it was time for a Brontosaurus, which are awesome because of their long necks and tails. The “Veggie-saurus” as it is called in the first movie, gotta love those kids.
I used light greyish browns for this one, because it needs to be able to camouflage itself. It doesn’t have the sharp spikes to defend itself with after all.

Brontosaurus Brontosaurus

She lets her head droop a bit to the side, but then again, doesn’t that make her look even more friendly?

But, no ecosystem is complete without a predator and so, it was time to make the star of the Jurassic Park movies: a T-Rex! This one looks as though he is a vegetarian as well, though, so he was welcomed into the group without hesitation. A bold combination of blue and grey seemed perfect for him.

T-Rex T-Rex

All together they make a lovely little group and I’m pretty sure any little boy would love to have them ^_^

Cheers, Lydia

Totoro family

One of the first online patterns I used was that of a blue Totoro by Lucy Ravenscar.Blue Totoro, pattern by Lucy Ravenscar

I gave it to my sister-in-law, who loves anime just as much (maybe even more) as I do. I’ve always been in love with almost every movie by Studio Ghibli, but “My Neighbour Totoro” holds a special place in my heart.

Sometime last year, I ran out of projects and decided to ask my facebook friends what I should make. One of them requested a Totoro. Usually, I really hate working the same pattern twice, but with this one I couldn’t resist. Lucky for me, Lucy changed her pattern slightly to accomodate for a big grey Totoro and made patterns for the smaller blue and tiny white ones as well. So it was decided, I needed to make an entire family of Totoros! You can find her blog entry and links to the patterns here.

In the meantime, please enjoy some pictures of the ones I made using these patterns!

Grey totoro frontview

Grey Totoro frontview

Grey Totoro sideview

Grey Totoro sideview

 

Grey Totoro from the top, the tiny white one can sit on the leaf!

Grey Totoro from the top, the tiny white one can sit on the leaf!

Tiny white Totoro

Tiny white Totoro

Blue frontview

Blue Totoro frontview

Blue sideview

Blue Totoro sideview

Blue and white together

Blue and white together

Another family picture

The whole family together

The whole family together

Another family portrait

The same friend surprised me with a new challenge: he wants a Catbus! I’m still trying to decide whether I will use a pattern I found online (there are some pretty good ones out there) or if I will try to make a new pattern of my own… Time will tell, since I don’t really have the time for such a big project right now -_-”

Cheers, Lydia

ZOMGOSH Ponies!!!11!1one

I have to admit that in my youth, I had loads of ponies and a stable for them to live in, but then again, didn’t every little girl? Nowadays, I’m not into the whole “MLP: friendship is magic” and all that. So when I first came upon the My Little Pony pattern from Hooked on Anime, I didn’t really feel the need to make myself a pony. But when a friend of mine asked me if I could make her one, I knew just where to turn.

Rainbow Dash

Rainbow Dash

Fluttershy

Fluttershy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The pattern is pretty easy to follow, once I got the hang of using double crochets (or treble crochets if you’re from the UK) instead of single ones. Also, the unfolded wings can be a little hard to do, but thankfully, the pattern also provides for folded wings.

This was a really fun project for me, because I had to learn a few new techniques.
I had never really given an amigurumi hair before. Well, once, with the Christmas set, I gave the angel some blonde hairs, but it didn’t really look right. Luckily for me, the pattern comes with some links to how you can make the hair. And that’s how I learned the loom-technique. It’s pretty easy to do once you get the hang of it. I used a thick piece of cardboard instead of a lace loom though, but it worked out pretty well. I think using a real loom would be a bit easier though, but then again, I’ve never used one in real life, so I can’t say for sure.

Then there were the eyes. They’re pretty detailed, so the usual black safety eyes were useless. I had to find another way. For Fluttershy, I made the eyes using bits of felt, which came out ok for one eye, but the other looks totally evil (luckily, the mane covers that one). It was also quite a hassle to glue together all the tiny pieces.

For Rainbow Dash, I decided I needed another technique. I found some white iron-on cloth, the stuff that’s used to repair tears in clothing and such and figured I would be able to use that. I got the outline of the eyes onto the iron-on cloth by finding a picture online on our Ipad (the thing had to come in handy sometime), putting the cloth onto it and carefully trace the eye with a pen. Then I ironed it on and coloured the eye with acrylic paint. It came out looking pretty good, if I may say so myself.

DSC02558

The same goes for the cutie marks. The one from Fluttershy I made with felt, which made for a bit of a mess and some fiddling to get it right. Rainbow Dash’s was easier with the cloth and paint.

DSC02556 DSC02471

The wings were also fun to figure out. The unfolded version can be a bit difficult at first, but once you get the hang of it, it isn’t too much trouble anymore. For Fluttershy, I made two sets of wings, one folded, one unfolded and attached buttons on them so they are interchangeable. Rainbow Dash just got the unfolded version, cause she doesn’t strike me as the kind of pony who would fold her wings for very long (if I have to believe the internet, which I usually do).

Once again, my work came out a bit smaller than the pattern suggests, but then again, I’m used to pretty small hooks. Rainbow Dash came out bigger than Fluttershy because I used a 3,5mm hook on her and made Fluttershy with a 2,5mm. It’s pretty cool to see just how much influence hooksize can have on your work. They do take up quite a bit of yarn, Rainbow Dash a bit more than her friend. Eventually, I ran out of blue while working on the last leg. That’s how I learned to always get more yarn than you think you’re going to need, because man, was it ever a problem to find the same colour again. I actually had the same problem once while working on a Companion Cube from the game Portal, but this time, I really learned my lesson.

All in all, this was another crazy fun pattern to work with and I hope many more ponies will be made using it. Maybe, one day, when I really run out of projects, I might make the full set… But for now, my friend will have to make do with these two.

DSC02553 DSC02467

Cheers, Lydia

PS: the bunny pattern came from a pattern book: “Amigurumi & More” by Tessa van Riet-Ernst. I believe it’s only available in dutch, but I’m sure a tiny bunny pattern can be found online as well ^_~