Category Archives: Toys

Clove & Spice Knit and Crochet Pumpkin Free Pattern

The rains are here and I know it's time to start thinking about pumpkins, golden leaves and early frosts. My favorite pumpkin patch has started sneaking tempting images of ripe pumpkins into my Facebook feed and my Pinterest is filling up with October crafts (beeswax-dipped leaves, anyone?) so it's definitely time to get my fall crafting started! To celebrate the cooler weather and changing seasons I whipped up a quick little pattern with instructions for both knit and crochet pumpkins.

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Happy Friday!

Memorial Day weekend is a weekend here in the US of remembering men and women of the military. It's also the unofficial start of the summer (though it certainly doesn't feel much like summer here in the Pacific Northwest right now!).  And it's my birthday - a fairly significant one at that!  So with that, I figured I'd share with you 4 awesome free patterns to enjoy! All four patterns are by the immensely talented Sara Elizabeth Kellner - she creates the most adorable (and free) patterns ever, including Henry's Rabbit, shown above.

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Twin Studies

Doppelgangers have enormous appeal for me in all forms: professional celebrity impersonators, Dostoyevsky’s The Double, Nabokov’s Despair, houses with miniature/to-scale versions that serve as mailboxes—the list goes on and on! But my current Top-of-the-Heap favorite is crocheted toy twins. To begin, a question: What makes a good doppelganger? Ideally, it should be both precious and eerie in its sameness—but with most small toys, you’re also painting with a broad brush. Therefore cats (and the like) are a terrific subject, because very simple changes can be made to a pattern to mimic their varying fur and markings. Recently, I found Claudia van K.’s joyful “Mr. Tibbles the Cat” free pattern on Ravelry and I knew exactly who to model it after... Meet Harvey, my boyfriend’s cat. He enjoys dirt, moths, making Snoopy noises and sleeping on his very own military cot: Now, meet Mr. Harvey the Cat. He enjoys eating polyfill and being very quiet:

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For the birds

We love our fine feathered friends here in the Pacific Northwest - thanks to the TV show Porlandia, our unofficial motto is "Put a Bird On It". So I was delighted to knit and crochet a flock of birds for a great cause. Our Full Circle yarn line is one of my favorites we've come out with - it's such a soft yarn, a blend of Merino and Highland wools that would have otherwise gone to waste. It works equally well for crochet as well as knit projects. I've made dozens of projects in each and just enjoy each stitch - the only sad thing is that it's only here for such a short time! And from now until May 1st, we are having a wonderful promotion - for you it's saving 15% on the entire Full Circle yarn line - worsted, bulky and roving. For our birdie friends, we are donating $1 of every skein sold to our friends at International Bird Rescue! (Make sure you check out all the great works they have done!)

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The magic of safety eyes

Way back when I first started knitting toys, I was always disappointed in my embroidery skills, especially when it came to their eyes.  For instance, about 6 years ago, I made a couple of the Mochimochi Knitted Grass guys by Anna Hrachovec. While I like them, they just didn't quite have that cute look I love with knitted and crochet toys.  Their eyes are uneven and no matter how much I tried, I could not get it to come out right. They just look all wonky to me.  Then I discovered safety eyes!  Not only did they save me from my unsuccessful attempts at embroidery, they gave my Grass Guy a little sparkle in the eye that just made him so much more adorable.

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