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Saturday, 16 August 2014

Pretty little flower motif

I've posted a chart for this pretty little flower motif over on  I've made quite a few of them...just not sure what to do with them now!!

chart for crochet flower

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

cute dinosaur or dragon type thing...

t-rex drawing idea

So I drew this...  sketched idea for a super scary dinosaur type thing....

And finished up with this...

wtf??!!  I....can't....control....the....cute.....aaaaarrgghhhh...

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Free Fat Cat Crochet Pattern!!



Ok, it's not totally, totally free it is now totally free!! That's it. Then it's yours, to own, for ever and ever (well, until you dump it on a hard drive somewhere and lose it in the mass of files - ahem).  All you have to do is subscribe for updates go to my new site here, fill in your email address and a message with a link will be emailed to you.  Ta-dah! (You should get a link after about a million verification messages - that's if I've set it up properly...)

free cat crochet pattern

How about that cute little blue fluffy one?

To be honest - he was a bit of an accident but then my daughter saw him and he went straight into her suitcase off on a school trip (actually, that's a bit of a fibby, I stuffed it in her case as a surprise).  We're now in the process of making a passport for him.  He was made using the 'Junior' cat pattern with some fine, hairy sort of yarn and 2mm hook. The pattern was worked as normal up to the ears part, then turned inside out - since texture yarns tend to work up with the texture on the inside. Then the ears are done - the right way - that's why they're not so fluffy.

If you use polypellets for stuffing (held inside a stocking else they'll flood out the holes) - the Mummy sized cat is quite a nice size for a stress ball.  Even just stuffed with the usual bouncy white stuff, it's fairly good for lobbing across the room at each other.  I'm also thinking about using a balloon stuffed with cornflour inside so it's super squishy.  I'll keep you posted.

Anyway, the pattern is produced the same way as all my 'to buy' patterns in that it's full of mistakes it's got lots of nice pictures, big writing and clear instructions.  There could be errors - please let me know and I'll get them sorted if you find any.  I'd be grateful for any feedback but have fun making your fat cats.  What have you got to lose?

Monday, 28 April 2014

Giving Craftsy a lookover

I'm in the process of putting my patterns for sale on Craftsy as well as Ravelry, I guess some people may prefer one over the other.  Craftsy is quite interesting if you fancy trying your hand at something new.

The links I've stuck in this post are affiliate links which means Craftsy will give me a few extra pennies for sending you their way.  I've bought patterns myself from them before and not had any problems so I'm happy to recommend them as an alternative to Ravelry (which is also super great btw).

When I signed up to be a Craftsy affiliate, I get to try out one of their craft courses free.  I must say, I've not really looked at their courses before but if it's free, I'll certainly be giving one of them a go.  I might even deviate from crochet for a while!  If you have a crafty website and fancy joining the Craftsy affiliate program the linky is here.

There's cake decorating which presumably implies some sort of cake making ability so I'll probably give that a miss.

Although..there's cooking type classes too....oooh La la French pastries!!!!  Not sure it's really me though..much easier to pop to the supermarket and much more likely to be edible plus I tend to frighten the kids when I try to get creative in the kitchen.

This looks interesting, even though I rarely wear jewelry, I'm sure my family would appreciate gifts that aren't crocheted...not once have I seen my mum sporting the beard I made her (tho maybe it's because I only had a ginger yarn)...

The courses cost about as much as a book on the subject so I guess pretty good value.  Can't really say till I've tried one though.

Anyway, as I said at the top, I do get compensated for sending surfers to Craftsy but this and anything from pattern sales goes towards buying yarn and making new patterns so any happy clicking is much appreciated!   I'm gonna go back to creating but if I spot any other interesting courses, I'll put them here so I can narrow my selection down a bit.  If anybody has personal recommendations on their courses I'd be very interested.

Friday, 25 April 2014

fugly crochet is moving....

So I've finally given in to my daughter. She is right, Fugly is not a nice word (although it described my early crochet efforts perfectly!) After much wracking of my poor brain, I came up with .....The Crochet Stitch Witch.  According to my advisor (daughter), this name suits me perfectly...hmmmm.

I had a good search round the world of the web and couldn't see that anyone else was using the name and the domain was available so there it is.  Sincere apologies if I have poached someone's user name.

I've got loads of plans for the new site.  It was great fun being able to share a pattern almost as soon as I'd concocted it as with the bobble sheep so I plan to make it a regular feature, just sharing whatever pops into my head.  (Some of it could well be fugly!!)

I'm also in the process of creating an ebook which will be given free to all my email subscribers.  So if you fancy getting your crochet fingers on a copy - just fill in the subscriber box on the new site you'll also be among the first to hear of new patterns and freebies.

The past week has been an extremely steep learning curve for me - finding out about web hosting (I've only ever used free blogs and things till now!) and I've been making things far more complicated (and expensive) than they needed to be.  Getting to grips with wordpress blogging and the infinite possibilities and dusting off the photoshop skills to make banners and logos.  It's all good fun but just makes me realise how little I think I find google+ a challenge!  Even idiot guides to things leave me scratching my head so I'm thinking I might include some 'how not to' do things type guides. Or the idiots guide to the idiots guide....

Anyway, check out my countdown page and fill in your email address (go on, you know you want to!)- pre-launch subscribers get to go on a super special list with an extra special freebie (that I've only just thought of)!  That's another thing I'm learning all about - email subscriber lists with Mail Chimp.  (Can you tell I'm trying to do this as cheaply as possible too!) Oh what fun we're going to have :)

Oh, I'm gonna get really, really brave and do some videos too!!

Friday, 18 April 2014

crochet sheep free pattern!!

Still in the spirit of the sheep, I couldn't resist making a little bobble version. I love bobbles. They are easy but gobble up the yarn so you'll need more than you think. I probably used about half a ball (25g ish) of the bobble colour, this was Drops Nepal in off white I think they call it. It's aran/worsted weight and I used a 3.5mm hook. (Btw, I always use American crochet terminology since I taught myself to crochet using Youtube videos)

free crochet pattern

To make a crochet bobble (bob): yo, insert hook in next sc, yo, pull through sc, yo pull through 2 on hook, *yo, insert hook in same sc, yo, pull through sc, yo, pull through 2 on hook*  repeat from * to* until 6 loops on hook then yo and pull through all 6.

The bobbles are a lot easier to execute if you just accept that they are on the wrong side, this is just fine, turn it inside out when you've done.  A slight complication arises if you switch to normal sc crochet (as with this crochet sheep) because you don't want to continue working the sc with the wrong side out (or maybe you do - go for it!) It honestly doesn't show that much if, when you join the different colour yarn, you also make your rounds go the other way and any little hiccup that does show, is easily hidden under the ear!

Body & Head

Row Instruction count
1 Make 6sc in adjustable loop 6
2 (sc, bob) 3 times might want to skip this row to avoid a 'pointy bottom (tho I quite like the torpedo shape!) 6
3 inc 6 times 12
4 (sc, bob) 6 times 12
5 (sc, inc) 6 times 18
6 (sc, bob) 9 times 18
7 (2sc, inc) 6 times 24
8 (sc, bob) 12 times 24
9 24sc 24
10-11 repeat row 8 & 9 24
12 Switch to face colour, 24sc (going the other way so bobbles are now on the right/out side) 24
13 24sc 24
14 (2sc, dec) 6 times. Stuff firmly. (Stick safety eyes in if using.) 18
15 (sc, dec) 6 times 12
16 dec 6 times 6
cut yarn, pull last loop out (not through the loop) thread end through outer loop of remaining 6sc and pull up to close.

Legs (make 4)

1 Make 6sc in adjustable loop 6
2 inc 6 times 12
3 12sc 12
4 (dec, 2sc) 3 times 9
5 9sc 9
6 (dec, sc) 3 times 6
cut yarn about 9", pull last loop out and use end to sew to underside of body, between bobbles


1 Make 6sc in adjustable loop 6
2 inc 6 times 12
3 (inc, sc) 6 times 18
Pinch one edge of the circle and sew to the edge of the face, about a third of the way down.
Embroider some eyes and a nose.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Giving the blog an overhaul..

I decided it's about time I actually spent a while tidying up the blog.  I guess a bit of housekeeping doesn't go amiss every now and then.  As it happens, I'm thoroughly enjoying messing with all the templates and options available.  Resisting the temptation to over-complicate things as usual is proving a bit of a struggle but I keep my inner 'tone it down' mantra chanting away.

Of course, when I changed the template it totally lost the little do-dah for Pinterest that I'd managed to get on every image but this link here sorted me right out!  There's shed loads of useful posts on the blog.

An extension for chrome called Feedly was also recommended to me and so far it seems much easier to navigate than google+.  I can just dump the URL of a blog from anywhere presumably and follow it.  No faffing around with circles and wotnot.  Actually, I think half the trouble I have is that I seem to have about 6 different google accounts that I have acquired for one reason or another (*cough* getting freebies *cough*) and now I'm getting them all muddled up.  Serves me right for trying to get more than one free Netflix trial I guess.

I'm also going to be changing the name of Fugly Crochet sometime soon...when I can think of a better alternative.  According to my daughter, Fugly is not a nice word...(yes I know the F doesn't stand for Fairly or Ferociously but it seemed quite apt when applied to some of my early c.2010 creations).  So I'm trying to come up with something new and original.  Tricky.

I've also got to come up with a banner or logo type arrangement for the home page.  Goody!  Photoshop play time :)

Monday, 14 April 2014

Social networking nightmare...

It's no secret that I am possibly the most unsociable person I know  (due to the fact that I am unsociable, I know very few people, so that's hardly surprising).  The rare occasions that I am required to indulge in social discourse (that's discourse, not intercourse) I invariably stick my foot in it.  Which goes somewhat towards explaining my affinity to the internet.  If I find myself in an awkward situation, I can just....close the page...ta-dah! 

Anyway, I digress, the only reason I felt like posting anything right now is because I am unable to work out how to follow another blogger.  I'm probably over-complicating things as I am prone to do but the hell do I just follow someone's blog?  Should it really be that challenging?  I can like a post, or rather 'recommend' a post as google puts it..but I figured somewhere, somehow, I should be able to 'follow' a blog, y'know?  Just so's I get to see when the people I choose to follow get updated.  I dunno, maybe I'm asking too much.  Maybe I'm just getting confused with Facebook (don't even let me get started on that one).  Bloody 'social' networking, I can see why companies are springing up all over the place to advise people how best to use it.  Thing is, I don't want to pay someone to do it for me.  I want to be able to work it out!  I'm not stupid (OK not as smart as I was pre-children but hey ho) just easily sidetracked.

So anyways, I can't be the only one with these difficulties which leads me to thinking that maybe I will post the results of my foray into the social networking ideal- mostly so that I can remind myself when I forget and maybe to help some other dozy sole suffering the same dilemma.  End of rant.  Mwah.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Sigmund the Sheep

I never actually intended to make a sheep, it was all the fault of the scrummy curly yarn I'd been unable to resist.
Crochet lamb

So, if you have a hairy/textured/curly whatever yarn that you've been searching for a suitable project ya go!

It does occur to me that by using different sorts of hairy/textured/curly yarn you could create something totally different to a sheep...but with the same pattern...I will be experimenting with this in the future I where did my 80's mohair collection go?

A few notes about textured yarn:

The other thing about using textured yarns for crochet (as I discovered by much trial, error and misunderstanding) is that they work up with the texture on the INSIDE!  So just turn it inside out when you've done of course.  Sadly, this was not obvious to me as I battled to work the stitches in some form that would have the texture on the outside.  So don't bother, just turn it.  This also applies when changing to an ordinary yarn in the same piece, turn it, join your plain yarn and carry on, it'll be a bit muddled since you're now going the other way but any twists, turns and bumps should be hidden under the fluffy bit.

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Joining crochet pieces together

This is a little photo tutorial that I've started including with my patterns.  I daresay this is not the only or the best way to attach your arms and legs and wotnot but it is the way that I've found the most satisfying.

It can really make or break your creations if the bits don't stick together right, some of my early efforts prove that! So I spent quite some time working out how to piece them together better and find I spend almost as much time getting this last bit right as in actually crocheting the pieces in the first place.  I will also add that I nearly always have to have a few goes before I get it right, for that reason, I'll always leave the end where I can find it for a while in case I have to unpick it all and re-attach then poke all the ends into the body when I'm satisfied.

Hope this helps someone :)

How to join crochet pieces

I'm a bit sheepish about my latest project...

Ok, so Brian the Sheep may owe a little in looks to Shaun the Sheep...some things are just so deeply embedded in the psyche there's no getting away from it.  I obviously watch too much (childrens!) TV.  

crochet sheep

Brian has already made his debut on Instagram (my new favourite place) and I'm finishing up putting the pattern together for retail soon.  I've used a gorgeous hairy yarn from Drops which I got when they were doing an Alpaca event.  It's worth watching their website as every now and then they do a promotion with 25% or so off various yarns - good time to stock up...(I'm still wondering what to do with the stripey sock yarn I got last time)

I'm a bit new to textured yarn and discovered that you have to work it inside out since all the texturey bits end up on the wrong side. I'm going to have another go at it using a loop stitch instead of a textured yarn, I think that normally works wrong side out too.  I'll post the results here or Work In Progress on instagram. :)

I actually intended to make him an all white sheep, maybe black ears but discovered I'd actually run out of white yarn.  I've still forgotten (too poor to buy it anyway!) to get any more so, the next prototype may be a teensy bit multi-coloured.  Depends what I can find in my stash..stripey sock yarn here I come..

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

I've discovered Instagram!!

Pffff...I thought....yet another social media app that I won't be able to get to grips with (yes, I struggle with facebook) but lo, and behold...I really rather like instagram.  I can even see the point of #, there'll be no stopping me now hashtagging, following and liking (folliking??) like there's no tomorrow. Huzzah!  Now I just have to work out how to drag my pics from instagram to facebook to this page etc...sigh..


Friday, 7 March 2014

Wilhelmina Bunny Rabbit is here...

and I just realised I never included any write up for her daisy chain head band...bum!  I'll write it up and post it here when I get a chance.

crochet easter bunny

I used drops Nepal yarn which is some sort of Alpaca/wool mix.  Holds it's shape well and is quite frankly a joy to work with.  Also I bought it when Drops was doing a deal on anything alpaca so it was a great price. I'm now a convert to their yarns.   Wilhelmina used up about 2 balls in the off white colour and half a ball in the medium pink.

She's available as usual from my Ravelry store (minus the daisy chain headband which I'll put here...when I can find my notes...)

Thought I'd post these photos from the pattern here too that give you some idea of the difference in character when you change the features...or more specifically the eyes...

toy bunny eyes
Buttons, 6mm black and 15mm brown eyes

I was going to go with the buttons but then found some 12mm round black ones in my box which looked so sweet.  Those big brown eyes look really quite scary....actually I have some amber ones somewhere, should have tried those, would have given zombie monkey a fright.

I actually changed the nose later as well from the basic 'Miffy' number.

I will also confess that I almost never get the arms/ears/legs in the right place the first time.  I'm always having to undo them and try again.  So I have learnt to never actually finish all my ends in too tightly until I'm total happy with the arrangement...many creations have ended up with holes in their bodies where I've cut the wrong thread trying to release an errant limb.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Spring preview part 2...

crochet bunny rabbit

Just finishing up writing the pattern out and doing all the photos.  The ideas and the making is the easy part!

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

More Jutey Juteness

Ah, that heading just made me recall when I was in the supermarket with my daughter and made a similar comment about the vast selection of peas that were we laughed...think about it...

Anyways, I'm still trying to come up with the definitive crochet hamster housey (amongst other projects) and here is the latest effort:

Jute hamster house

I was going for a roundhouse sort of vibe, tho now that I look at it, it looks more like a chiminea.  Roast hamster anyone?  Anyway, I can't see if Vader (the hamster) likes it yet since the daughter has made him a nice fleece bed which I'm not allowed to take out.  He'll have shredded it totally in a few days so I'll wait till then.  It used up just slightly over one 75g ball of jute twine so I might have to make a few adjustments so that I can get it out of one ball since that's really annoying.  Next question...Spring bunny, lamb or piggy?  Or all there's a thought....

Saturday, 15 February 2014

A jute extravaganza...

Last week, I got talked into getting my daughter a hamster.  She's obviously lost interest already but I wouldn't have given in and got it if I didn't quite like the idea of a furry little friend.

Anyway, obviously my first thoughts were....Yay! I'll crochet him a lovely bed.  First attempt was a rather exotic cotton affair that I suspended from the top of the cage...he never even chewed it. Bah.


Then I recalled some jute string that was lurking in the shed and knocked out a little HDC number while my hair dye was doing it's thing.  In my enthusiasm for my new project I forgot to set a timer.  It appears that I can safely leave dye on my hair for 40 mins or so with no ill effects....maybe even better grey coverage perhaps...and the bed is complete. 

He doesn't seem overly impressed.  In fact, he's relocated his nest behind it. Poo.  In hindsight, I think it needs to be bigger, I'd probably better not be dyeing my hair for the next attempt, I may end up bald.

I also made another heart in the string.  I'm sure I should come up with some clever pun here...something about heart strings.  Regardless, I see much jute in my future...

string heart

Sunday, 2 February 2014

A cute little heart pattern

I guess it's that time of year to be getting a little romantic so I thought I'd add my own little heart pattern to the crochet community.

Crochet Heart
This one has the optional 4th Row done in the same colour

Crochet Heart
This one has the optional 4th Row done in a different colour

Crochet Heart
And this one is the smaller heart hung over the larger heart

And here's the pattern.  I've even done a printable version here ( I hope.... I followed some instructions from here which seemed simple enough...)

Larger Crochet Heart Shape

Instructions in () to be done in the same stitch
Row 1
8sc in adjustable loop and to first
Row 2
In sc after (sc, hdc), (dc, dc), (sc, hdc), dc, (hdc, sc), (dc, dc), (hdc, sc)
Row 3
(hdc, dc), (dc, dc) (hdc, sc) (sc, sc), sc, sc, (sc, tr, sc don’t worry that tr gets pushed to the back – that’s the pointy bit), sc, sc, (sc, sc) (sc, hdc), (dc, dc), (dc, hdc), finish here with long end to make into a loop if required or:
Row 4 (Optional) round front post of each stitch except the tr chain at the bottom and finish with in row below at top centre of heart.  This looks nice when done in a different colour. Or you could just thread up a needle and chain stitch round the posts.  Leave a long end to pull through to the back and make into a loop if required. J

Little Crochet Heart Shape

Row 1
8sc in adjustable loop and to first
Row 2
In sc after (sc, hdc, dc), (dc,dc), (sc, sc), (sc, tr, sc), (sc, sc), (dc, dc), (dc, hdc, sc),  Pull long end through to make a loop or just finish off neatly J

Crochet Heart
Happy Valentines day

Sunday, 26 January 2014

New Year, New thing monster?

Crochet cat

Thought I'd try something different for the new year and that is...make shapes with out breaking wind yarn and after much faffing about (it's harder than it looks you know!)  I finally made a cat type thing. Or it could be a creepy monster type thing?

Monster thing

The size will vary greatly depending on the hook and yarn used.  The smallest one I made is just 12cm tall using 3ply yarn and 2mm hook.  The biggest is a pillow wannabe 28cm using chunky yarn and 5mm hook.
Instead of the usual top to bottom or bottom to top approach, this is worked from left side to right side and gives a different look to the ususal Amigurumi type thing.  Think I will be exploring the possibilities further :)