lead us not into temptation (yeah, right!)

The other day I showed you a photo of my growing collection of crochet books.  More specifically, my growing collection of amigurumi pattern books. With promises of a peek inside and eventual drooling.

I’ve already shown you several of the patterns from book number one.

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Book which I bought before I could even crochet, and which I have already followed several times, making up

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“Roary the tiger” in May.

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“Wasabi the rabbit”.  And book which I am currently using for 2 more projects (no progress made recently) of “Johnny the monkey” and “Leila the pony”.

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Once I finish them, there’s still another pattern in this book which sorely tempts me.  And that’s “Sartù the lemur”, but I’m a bit apprehensive about crocheting his hands and feet.  He has fingers and toes!!!!

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In book 2

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The patterns I am most likely to want to make are “Otto the turtle”, from the cover and “Vladimir the fox”.  Don’t you just love those feet?

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In book 3, the patterns which call to me the loudest are

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“Rusty the red panda”

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and “Nanook the husky”.

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And, finally,  in book 6.  Another red panda “Rudy the red panda”.

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“Oswald the owl”.

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“Bo the panda”.

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And last, but by no means least, “Kimi the kitten”.

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cat ‘n mouse

Abby mouse

Can you see the mouse?  Nope, neither can I and neither can Abby.  She did have one in her mouth, when she came into the veranda from the garden.  A live one.  Which she then dropped, and has since been searching inside shoes.  I’ve lost count of the number of live mice Abby and Ducky bring home.  I do wish they’d just stay outside with them!

Meanwhile, indoors . . . my current small cross stitch project has evolved, very slowly from this

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to this

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I could have worked on it a bit more, but I chose to keep busy last month with patchworking, mainly.

Postie brought me some surprise mail from Lilubelle

bookmarks from Lilu

a lovely selection of bookmarks with a nature theme.

And postie also delivered another fabric order.  I know, I know, I have drawers full of the stuff, I don’t need more but . . .

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It was so pretty, I couldn’t resist, especially the second one.  My first thoughts, when I ordered, were that it would be lovely as backing fabric for a quilt (it’s 160cm wide off the bolt) but now it’s here, I’m wondering whether I’d dare wear a summer tunic in one or the other.  What do you think?  Would it be a too much?  A bit too “Dances with Wolves”?

And back to cats . . . slightly worried here, because Ducky has been missing since Sunday.  We’ve been calling him, and I’ve already put an “alert” on a dedicated site for lost & found pets.  Fingers crossed that he comes sauntering home soon.

SAL “Cirque des Triangles” #9

Time to show off progress on my SAL project, which, as you know, is “Cirque des Triangles” by Ink Circles.

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Last time, Avis and I had finished with all the outer triangles.  So we’re now starting to fill in the centre part.

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A zoom first, because I just love the “Wild Poppies” Threadworx thread I’m using.  And a view of the entire piece.

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Shapes aren’t strictly triangles time and look more like teeth . . . but they definitely add a bit of interest.

Don’t forget to stop by and admire progress of other SAL members.  Avis, is working on the same CdesT design, but in totally different colours.  Other members are all working on a wonderful variety of projects:  Gun, Carole, LucyAnn, Kate, Jess, Sue, Constanze, Debbierose, ChristinaKathy, Margaret, Cindy, Helen, Steph, Linda, Catherine, Mary MargaretTimothy and two new members Heidi and Connie.

And come back to check out more progress in 3 weeks time, on 27th August.

my little helper

Just wanted to let you know that I’ll be having a happy dance in the next few days, depending on how much help I get from my little helper.

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Yep, that’s my F2F2 quilt you can see on my lap.  All quilted, assembled and with binding machine sewn on.  More than 300 inches of binding.  And I’m now on the last stage of hand-sewing the binding to the back.

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Don’t I look enthralled?  lol.  It’s not so much the (more than) 300 inches of hand sewing that’s the problem.  It’s my little helper.  Le Bleu seems to think this quilt is fine and finished, just as it is.  And not helping at all.  My husband’s reaction is “Just push him off!” but awwwww  he looks so peaceful.

Meanwhile . . . photo of another of our cats.

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Yup, Ducky, who still looks as if he lost a fight with a mini lawn mower.  Fur seems to be taking ages to grow back!  It’s been 3 weeks since the operation.

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Now that the scar has healed, it’s almost invisible, but you can still distinctly see the two darker marks of the nasty cat teeth that bit him.  All that will be a thing of the past, once fur grows.

“a little bird told me” – ready for quilting

I had said I wouldn’t be showing you photos of the new baby quilt in progress until it was finished . . . but I’m going back on my word ecause these fabrics are just too much fun not to show off.

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The quilt top is done.  I had a rethink along the way, and have toned things down a little towards the end.  Originally I was going to add purple bands all around, but I’ve added ivory sashing instead.   Ivory  rather than bright white, because it turns out the bird background isn’t a bright white.  Purple will be used again though, for the binding.  Here, just laid on top to get an idea of what it will look like.

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And will, methinks, be just perfect.

I found inspiration for this fun quilt in the book

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“Quick and easy quilts for kids” by Connie Ewbank.  It’s packed full of 12 very easy designs, mostly with novelty prints and bright colours.  They’re all very simple, but it was a useful source to give me the ideas I needed and not have to work out fabric requirements by myself.

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This is the pattern I followed from the book.  As I said above, I was going to have purple borders and ivory binding . . . but when push came to shove, opted for ivory borders and purple binding.

This top is now going to be folded away and the job of quilting and binding will wait a few weeks.  Baby isn’t due yet, so no immediate rush to get this finished.    I need to give Juki a good clean, before the next sewing session, and I’ll be threading her up with orange thread so I can have a F2F2 happy dance by the end of July!  

“a little bird told me”– baby quilt in progress

Only the other day, I showed you some fabrics I had ordered, with a baby quilt in mind.  For a baby girl, soon to be born.   The seller was incredibly efficient and sent my parcel off the same day, so I didn’t have to wait long to receive all my yummy new fabrics. 

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The main fabric for this baby quilt is a bird print.  Other fabrics were ordered accordingly.  Anyway . . . as soon as my parcel arrived, I nipped into my sewing room and delved into my stash drawers (including scrap bags and 5” charm square box).  Being true to myself, I always have trouble cutting into gorgeous new fabric, and some of the long quarters I ordered just seemed too pretty to cut into lol.

I did cut into them though . . . but also found about 20 charm squares and a few scraps that mixed well with the colour palette of birds . . . so they are being incorporated into the quilt too. 

For once, I’m actually following a pattern.  As in, a real pattern, from a book!  I’ll tell you all about that when the quilt is finished (credit where credit is due and all that).  At the moment, I do have something to show you though.

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The beginnings!  Here, you can see the piecing so far.  I’ve cut 4 bands in the bird print, 6.5” wide by 54.5”.  And so far, have assembled one band of 2.5” squares (so 54 little squares in assorted fabrics). 

It’s going to be very quick to make, this one.  And such fun, to be playing with all these bright colours.  The only colour I haven’t tried to include in my squares is that of the little the orange/red bird because I wanted to add bright pinks. 

If I had any self-discipline, I would have spent the afternoon working on my F2F2 quilt, which is almost completely joined together, but not quite . . . but new fabrics were just too tempting not to dive in straight away! 

Ducky update, crochet WIPs and an upcoming patchwork

I am ever so pleased to say that Ducky’s ordeal is now over.  After going to the vets for an op, following a cat bite, and having to wear his bandage suit.  After being shut up in the guest room for endless days and nights . . . stitches are now out and Ducky is free to come and go as he pleases.

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Okay, he looks a bit strange still, with a huge, rectangular bald patch.  But fur will grow back eventually and this incident will soon be a thing of the past.

My only worry now is that our other 3 cats are all being very hissy towards him.  They don’t seem to recognise him anymore.  We were expecting Le Bleu to get antsy, because he always does.  However, even the usually docile Merlin and Abby have been hissing and trying to whack Ducky, whenever he gets too close.  In order to try and keep the majority happy, Ducky is therefore still having to sleep on his own in the guest room at night, just until the other cats get over their amnesia.

Apart from spending lots of time giving Ducky extra cuddles in the spare room . . . I have done a little bit of crafting recently.  Not as much as I would have liked, but even so, a few photos to share with you.

WIP monkey

I’ve made a start on “Johny the monkey” – a pattern in the first Zoomigurumi book.  This one is labelled as being for “experienced” crocheters, probably because of the shaping on the face part.  It wasn’t difficult though.  I just followed the excellent stitch by stitch instructions and it hooked up with no problem.  So far I’ve made the head, body, face bit and 2 ears.  Next to tackle the other parts.

I also started a second pattern, from the same book, because working in dark brown isn’t always easy.

WIP pony

This one, “Leila the pony”.  My pony is going to be mainly baby pink, and I’m thinking of using a dark grey for the hooves.  With (possibly) a purple mane and tail, but I haven’t decided yet.  So far, one body, waiting to be stuffed.

And more pics of some new fabrics I am eagerly awaiting . . .

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One of our neighbours is expecting a baby girl later this year . . . any excuse eh?  I’ll be making a baby sized quilt, with the bird print as my main fabric, and other pretty colours too.  Can’t wait for fabrics to arrive and to make a start!