Tag Archive | Cartoon

Marty The Zebra

DSCN3937It was his cute cartoonish style that made me pick this zebra pattern as my next amigurumi project. I liked his big head and his fat stubby hind legs that lets him sit. What I didn’t like was that the pattern only called for the zebra stripes on his body, not on his head or legs but that was ok. I could fix that!

DSCN3940Anxious to get crocheting, I grabbed the black and white Red Heart Love yarn I had purchased at Walmart’s Black Friday sale last year and I got started! I noticed right away that the Love yarn was much softer and the fibers liked to separate more while crocheting than the Red Heart Super Saver yarn, so I had to be careful where I inserted my hook and I needed to watch my tensions more closely as I crocheted.

I crocheted the body first. The body was not crocheted in continuous rounds. A slip stitch and chain were done at the end and start of each round to help keep the stripes even. Each stripe consisted of two rounds, so rather than than cutting and tying the yarn every other round, I carried the yarn. The tension of the carried yarn was not a problem because it was being carried over a very small space. It was cumbersome to have two skeins of yarn, twisting, as I crocheted though.

DSCN3936I crocheted the front and hind legs next. As mentioned, the pattern called for no stripes on these pieces. I wanted stripes so I started with solid black for the hooves and then made stripes, two rounds thick and then I alternated the colors. I crocheted in continuous rounds rather than slip stitching and chaining since it was only a couple of stripes and the color changes would be hidden under the legs. I also carried the yarn as I did with the body.

DSCN3942The head was the next piece to be crocheted and once again the pattern called for it to be unstriped, but I was going to stripe it. I crocheted the mouth in black then started the stripes. I crocheted the stripes exactly like the legs, in continuous rounds, two rounds thick, carrying the yarn as I crocheted. Like the legs, I could hide the color changes of the stripes on the bottom of the head.

The tail was the only piece that I did not stripe. I crocheted it white and then attached a few black pieces of yarn to the end.

DSCN3917The challenge for this amigurumi came when I stitched the head and body together. When I attached the head to the body, the zebra was staring at the ceiling, so I needed to move the head down. After a lot of pinning, stitching and unstitching, I got the head attached to the body without the zebra looking up. The legs and tail were much easier to stitch on.

DSCN3926The mane for this zebra was fun to attach. I did not quite follow the patterns instructions of making the mane. I knew how I wanted it to look, so I started by cutting 5 inch pieces of black and white yarn. Starting at the center of the head, I attached 2 rows of 3 white yarns. I then attached 2 rows of 3 black yarns and alternated this pattern down the back of the head. When I was done, the husband helped me trim the mane by hand and it was done. I was concerned about making the mane from the Love yarn because of how much it likes to separate. It will not take much play before the mane’s yarns will be untwisted and fuzzing, but that might be a fun look for the mane.

DSCN3921I picked some fun cartoon eyes for this zebra that I attached while crocheting the head. I wanted this zebra to have a big smile but I was having trouble getting the curves that I wanted for the smile while stitching on the mouth. To get the smile I wanted, I decided to glue on the mouth instead. I placed the yarn where I wanted it to be, then rolled the yarn down, applied a line of glue and then rolled the yarn back into place on top of the glue. This worked well and gave me the smile I wanted.

After some brainstorming with the husband, we picked the name Marty for this zebra. Marty is very cute. He makes me smile when I look at him. I like his extra stripes. Soon, Marty will have a new home and I hope he will be loved and played with often.

Until then, crochet forth and stripe on!

You’ve been a good friend Charlie Brown!

Peanuts Gang Movie SmallThe new Peanuts movie is due to hit theaters in the next few weeks on November 6th, 2015.

Peanuts Movie

And for most of you out there in TV Land you might have heard about it, you may have even seen a movie preview or two, or even seen one of the fun products that have had some of the Peanuts Gang promoting the product with a movie tie-in to cross promote their products.

Peanuts Movie Strips 1-1

Thanks to the dedication of Charles M. Schulz and his estate since his passing, some of you may have even known who Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Woodstock, Lucy Van Pelt, Linus Van Pelt,  Sally Brown, Peppermint Patty, Marcie, Schroeder, Franklin, Pig Pen, Re-Run Van Pelt and all of the other wonderful characters from the Peanuts universe that have, since 1950, brightened so many different peoples lives around the world before you even knew there was a new Peanuts movie coming out.

For those of you, I dedicate this blog post. It is because of fans like you and I that the Peanuts Universe has continued to thrive and grow over the last 65 years since it’s initial creation by Charles M. Schulz.

Peanuts Movie Strips 2-1

Being a huge Peanuts and Snoopy fan myself, I have over the years created many fun sewing and crafting items because of my love for them since what seems like my birth.

For those other fans out there like myself, shown below is an easy to navigate guide of my Peanuts and Snoopy posts over the years.

Enjoy!

Snoopy Flying Ace

And don’t forget to go and see the new Peanuts Movie on November 6th!

These Posts are Shown with their original Title first, Category second, Sub-Category third, and are all in date order from the oldest to newest:

Sewing with Mom – 11/18/2007 – Embroidery Woman’s Shirt

The Corn Shirt – 11/18/2007 – Embroidery Woman’s Shirt

Dad’s Doings – 12/06/2007 – Latch Hook

The Dog in the Mouse’s House – 01/26/2008 – Fabric

The Snoopy Sheet – 05/02/2008 – Fabric

More Blanks to Embroider on! – 08/09/2008– Embroidery Children’s Clothes

New Jammie for Me! – 08/13/2008 – Embroidery Woman’s Shirt

Snoopy Designs – 10/11/2008 – Embroidery

New Jackets for Christmas – 12/23/2008 – Embroidery Jackets

Souvenirs from Florida – 02/08/2009 – Fabric

A Stack of Letters – 03/23/2009 – Embroidery Children’s Clothes

Why Fight It? – 05/13/2009 – Embroidery Woman’s Shirt

My Sewing Machines – Part 2 05/29/2009 – Embroidery

Follow Up #1 – Pattern Making 08/01/2009 – Embroidery Baby Sleepers

I Could See It – 08/27/2009 – Embroidery Woman’s Shirt

No I didn’t forget about you… – 09/24/2009 – Embroidery Baby Sleeper

Improvising Tip Towels to Make Baby Bibs – 11/13/2009 – Embroidery Baby Bibs

Inexpensive Panel – 12/18/2009 – Crocheted Blanket

Amigurumi Snoopy – 04/20/2010 – Amigurumi Crochet

Almost Again – 07/16/2010 – Embroidery Baby Sleepers

Embellishing Baby Towel Bibs – Part 1 – 08/22/2011 – Appliqué Baby Bibs

Embellishing Baby Towel Bibs – Part 2 – 08/29/2011 – Appliqué Baby Bibs

From Box Number Two… – 10/14/2011 – Embroidery Man’s Shirt

And Last In Box Number Three – 10/22/2011 – Embroidery Children’s Clothes

Hey, Little Birdie, You Cool Cat! – 04/13/2012 – Amigurumi Crochet

Bosom Buddies – 04/26/2012 – Amigurumi Crochet

May Day Giveaway – 05/01/2012 – Amigurumi Crochet

I Can’t See To Take My Own Advice – 07/20/2012 – Crochet Blanket

The foam, it was puffy… – 08/03/2012  – Embroidery Children’s Clothes

Purple Snoopy (But Not Grape Flavored) – 08/13/2012 – Embroidery Children’s Clothes

Extras – 09/28/2012 – Embroidery Baby Sleepers and Baby Bibs

But It’s Too Hot – 04/08/2013 – Embroidery Bathrobes

The Long and Winding Road – 07/08/2013 – Embroidery Woman’s Shirt

But What About Me? – 08/19/2013 – Embroidery Man’s Shirt

Just Three Inches More… – 05/23/2014 – Embroidery Woman’s Shirt

Several Snoopy’s But Just One Woodstock – Part 1 – 10/03/2014 – Amigurumi Crochet

Several Snoopy’s But Just One Woodstock – Part 2 – 10/08/2014 – Amigurumi Crochet

Several Snoopy’s But Just One Woodstock – Part 3 – 10/15/2014 – Amigurumi Crochet

What About The Scraps? – Part One – 06/20/2015 – Embroidery Children’s Clothes

What About The Scraps? – Part Two – 06/26/2015 – Embroidery Children’s Clothes

WOW!

40 Posts about Peanuts and Snoopy so far and I have a few more scheduled very soon!

I must really like them!

I hope you do too!

Until next time Charlie Brown forth, and Snoopy on!

Watch It, Football Head!

DSCN1664I have finally completed the large amigurumi that I started months ago.

There have been moments of both joy and tears with this amigurumi and it has lived part of it’s life in the closet, hidden, so I did not have to look at it on a daily basis letting me know of my failures and that it was still uncompleted. It also spent a lot of it’s life sitting next to my cutting table, reminding me daily that it was still somehow not yet completed. DSCN1656

But all of a sudden, a couple of weeks ago, as I contemplated starting yet another amigurumi rather than finishing this one, the decision was made to finish this amigurumi instead.

Let me tell you the whole story.

Instead of making yet another New Year’s resolution this year. One that would be doomed to be broken along with all the rest, I decided to make this the year of “Just Do DSCN1659It” for my amigurumi projects.

I have so many wonderful amigurumi patterns that I just can’t wait to crochet but I just never seem to start any of them. So in January, I said to myself that I would no longer say someday and instead I would just start to make these wonderful patterns one by one until I had them all stitched up.

Closing my eyes, I randomly picked out this turtle pattern to start this journey. I fell in love with this pattern at first sight. I love the turtles droopy eyes and his detailed tennis shoes. I was very excited to get started on it. DSCN1665

As I started by reading the pattern though a red flag went up right away as I read the large stitch count of his body. At this point I knew he was going to be big, so I chose to use my F hook instead of my favorite G hook. Even when using the F hook, as I crocheted the pieces, they were finishing much larger than expected.

As I continued to crochet, I became concerned about running out of yarn. Luckily, I was using stocks colors of Red Heart yarn and so I was able to make a trip to the store to pick up another skein easily if needed. I stuffed the turtle as I crocheted, but soon I had used up all the stuffing that I had on hand and once again I had to make a trip to the store for more stuffing.

DSCN1662I grew tired quickly of crocheting the large parts of this turtle and I had to set them aside often during the crocheting process.

Then the guilt of having a UFO (Un-Finished Object) would set in, and I would pull the pieces back out and crochet on it some more. Finally, the day came that I had all of the pieces crocheted and stuffed and ready to stitch together. I was so relieved to finally have this part done, that I just could not muster up the energy or excitement to stitch this turtles pieces together, so they where once again pushed to the side to work on something else. DSCN0900 (1)

Then a fateful day finally came when I said, “It is time to finish this turtle.” and the stitching together process started. I knew the stitching process was going to be long and tedious, so I turned on the Hey, Arnold cartoons the husband had just gotten for me and over the course of several more weeks and with Arnold’s help in the background, I completed the stitching together process. DSCN1191

With the turtle pieces all stitched together, it still needed a name.

This part came easily though and I named him Arnold even though he does not have a football head like the Arnold in the cartoon does. Somehow it just seemed fitting.

Much more time was consumed in creating the turtles details work. It took a lot of thought and time to stitch the lines and details of the shell and the shoes. The pattern called for the arms to be stitched to the body and the legs to be button jointed. I debated about making the arms button jointed too, but then I decided to follow the pattern due to the shell being in the way of his arms moving much. DSCN1193When it came time to pick out eyes, I did not have large enough round black ones to make his droopy eyes with.

As I was about to make another trip to the store, I found these speciality eyes hiding in my crafting supplies. They looked great and I was excited to use these eyes on him. Since these eyes already had an eyebrow look to them I did not add the crocheted eyebrows above the eyes that the pattern called for.

With Arnold, the turtle, completed, I am both happy and sad. DSCN1667I am happy because Arnold is very cute and I am pleased with the end results. His feet are so BIG and yet I still love his tennis shoes.

He is not perfect, but I think he will make someone a great friend, just like Hey, Arnold. I am sad though because I no longer want to continue with the “Just Do It” plan and I am having a hard time picking out my next amigurumi project.

I am trying to talk myself into continuing the plan of crocheting one of those “always wanted to” projects, but to just be a little more picky about which one I choose, i.e. a smaller one.

Only time will tell!

Until then, crochet forth and turtle on!

Several Snoopy’s But Just One Woodstock – Part 3, Pattern #3

DSCN0215DSCN0153Because I had made this Snoopy pattern before, I decided to try and change it up a little this time and use a heavier yarn, and my 4.5 mm hook. I would get a little larger Snoopy than the first one I made using this method. Snoopy’s pieces crocheted up great and he was easy to stitch together. Since his legs are not stuffed, I stitched his legs to the front of his body so he would have no problem sitting. This pattern did not call for a spot on Snoopy’s back either. I don’t remember if I added a spot to the first Snoopy that I made from this pattern or not. I would have to ask my sister who has him. I doubt that I did though, because at that point in time I would not have dreamed of deviating from the pattern’s original design. This time though I thought that Snoopy needed a back spot. I used the spot pattern that I had used on Paulie the penguin for guidance to make it.

DSCN0272DSCN0269The next thing I changed from the pattern was Snoopy’s eyes. The pattern called for felt eyes and this is what I used for the first Snoopy. But, after just using some yarn for the eyes on the previous standing Snoopy pattern that I had just completed, I decided to use yarn for this Snoopy’s eyes as well. The last change was a smile. Neither the first Snoopy from this pattern or the standing Snoopy have a mouth. This Snoopy does and I like it so much, I may go back and give the standing Snoopy a smile too.

The next step to complete this Snoopy was to make his helmet, googles and scarf. I started with the helmet. Because I am a little more experienced at reading crocheting patterns now than I was the first time I made a Snoopy, I had no problem following the pattern and crocheting the helmet. When I first tried it on this Snoopy, I did not like it at all. Snoopy looked DSCN0213terrible in his helmet! I tried to think of different ways to crochet the helmet to get better results, but with no luck. I just did not like the helmet on Snoopy. I thought maybe if I made the googles that would help by covering up some of the helmet, so I started to crochet the googles, but stopped. I did not like the helmet and I would never put it on my Snoopy, so why waste more yarn and time. I thought about making his scarf still but then I decided on making a collar instead. Just like the spot on his back, Snoopy needs a collar. My standing Snoopy has a collar. So, I quickly crocheted this Snoopy a double crocheted collar with red yarn. And with that my Snoopy was complete! And he is as cute as can be!

My two Snoopy’s and the one Woodstock that I made are great! I would love to make any of these three patterns again and again.

Until next time, crochet forth and Snoopy on!

Several Snoopy’s But Just One Woodstock – Part 2, Pattern #2

DSCN0621The next Snoopy pattern that I purchased showed a picture of Snoopy sitting down. I was excited to get started with it, but I am glad I followed my rule of making the extremities first before the head and body. I crocheted Snoopy’s feet first. I followed the pattern but I was getting a round ball. Looking at Snoopy’s feet in the picture of the pattern, they were not round balls. They were the typical oval shape of Snoopy’s feet. I read the pattern again and counted my stitches and rounds. I had followed exactly what the pattern called for, but I was not getting the same results that the picture showed I should have.

DSCN0622I then read the rest of the pattern and much to my dismay, I would not be getting a Snoopy that looked at all like the picture. I was very unhappy. I returned to ravelry and look at other crocheter’s Snoopy’s made from this pattern, and sure enough, they did not look at all like the picture. I looked at the round ball foot sitting on my cutting table and immediately decided that I would not be completing this Snoopy and that I had wasted my money and time on this pattern. I am going to write a bad review of this pattern and the lady selling it. She really should have used a picture of what her pattern makes, not a picture of what she would like it to look like.

img_3142Disappointed with this pattern, my thoughts turned to the first Snoopy pattern I had ever crocheted long ago and I remembered just how cute he had turned out. I always meant to go back and make another Snoopy from that pattern. So, I decided that now was as good time as any to make this pattern again to sooth my heart and soul from the disappointment of the last bad Snoopy pattern. This Snoopy pattern came with a pattern for the cap, googles and scarf that Snoopy wears while fighting the Red Barren. When I made this pattern previously, I was new to the art of amigurumi and I was afraid to try and make these accessories for that Snoopy back then. Now I felt ready to take on these accessory patterns as well as the Snoopy himself.

So, next up, another Snoopy but this time with a cap, scarf, and googles.

Until next time, crochet forth and Snoopy on!

Several Snoopy’s But Just One Woodstock – Part 1, Pattern #1

P1040369P1040362Yes I do know that this is backwards. In the Peanuts comics there is only one Snoopy and he has several bird friends that are all called Woodstock. So, I should have made only one Snoopy amigurumi and several Woodstock’s to go along with him, but that is not what the patterns called to me to do. After playing around on Ravelry awhile back, I now own a couple of new Snoopy patterns but only one new Woodstock pattern.

 

P1030854P1030900The first Snoopy pattern I got is for a large standing Snoopy with fingers on his paws and a large head. The pattern is great! It was easy to follow and done with joining rows. The joining rows caught me off guard at first, adding a slip stitch and chain with each round, but soon enough I had the swing of it and it wasn’t long before I had the all of Snoopy’s pieces crocheted up. The stuffing and stitching went smoothly too. I tried to keep Snoopy’s feet flat while stuffing so that he would stand upright. It kind of worked out that way when he was finished. Sometimes I can get him to stand and other times not. His big nose does not help the standing process since he is a little top heavy. All in all I thought that he turned out very cute.

 

P1040374P1040363Woodstock’s pattern was from the same designer as the Snoopy. The Woodstock pattern was also well written and his pieces were fun to crochet. I forgot on his hair pieces that I was supposed to do a joined round and crocheted them in a continuous round instead. I think they came out just fine crocheted this way. Woodstock took longer to make than Snoopy did because smaller does not always mean faster. Woodstock has a lot of details that took time to make and stitch together. But, the extra time was worth it. Woodstock is so cute and I love his details. I would not hesitate to make more Woodstock’s in the future.

Stay tuned for Snoopy pattern #2

Until next time, crochet forth and Snoopy on!

Dargo The Dragon

P1040359I have been wanting to crochet a dragon for a long time now. And I have seen many patterns for dragons while surfing the internet, both free and for sale in many different languages. But I just did not seem to be able to pick which pattern that I wanted to make. Did I want to make a realistic dragon with large wings? Or did I want to make a baby dragon that was cute and adorable? Or did I want to make a cartoon dragon with big eyes and a funny grin? How many heads did I want my dragon to have, one, two or three? Did I want him to stand on his hind legs or on all four legs? There was just too many design choices and so many patterns that I could never pick one out until I saw Dargo’s pattern. I don’t know exactly what it was about this pattern that made me pick it as my first amigurumi dragon to make but there was something about it that was irresistible to me and I could not wait to get started on it.

P1040357Dargo’s pattern was well written. His pieces crocheted up easily. The only difficult part was the fact that he has so many pieces to crochet, a head, a body, arms, legs, feet, a tail, wings, eyes, nostrils, ears and then 11 pieces in various sizes to make his comb for his back. Needless to say, this was not a fast crochet. All these pieces took time to make. As I was crocheting these pieces, I decided to not think about how many pieces there were to crochet but to just enjoy the crocheting time involved. And this made the crocheting much more fun.

 

P1040354With all of those pieces crocheted, it was time to stitch them together. This is where I really have to tell myself to not think about all the pieces that have to be stitched together, but instead to tell myself to just take my time and enjoy the stitching. So, I did. I took my time stitching Dargo together and worked on other projects in between stitching his pieces together so that I would not grow bored or wry of this amigurumi. Luckily, I am getting better at stitching amigurumi’s together as I make more and learn better techniques. As I stitched Dargo together, the husband kept asking when I was going to finish the dinosaur. I kept telling him it was not a dinosaur but a dragon. Even after I had stitched the 11 pieces of the comb on Dargo’s back, the husband still kept insisting that Dargo was a dinosaur. It was not until I attached his wings, the very last two pieces, that the husband finally consented that Dargo was indeed a dragon and not just a silly looking bright green dinosaur.

 

P1040258I only made two changes to Dargo’s pattern along the way, both involving his comb. Although I followed the pattern and stitched the first piece of his comb at his neck and then worked my way up and over his head, I ended his comb with a piece in between his eyes. It did not look bad but it was not my favorite look. The last piece of his comb on the top of his head was a medium sized piece. I decided to remove this medium sized piece and crocheted a small sized piece and used it instead. The small sized piece was still between his eyes but it was shorter, and P1040261smaller and just looked better. The other change was the second to the last comb piece on his tail. It too was suppose to be a medium sized piece, followed by a small sized piece. Once again, because Dargo’s comb extended down his tail further than the pictures in the pattern showed the comb extending, I opted to use two small sized pieces at the end of the tail instead of a medium sized piece and then a small sized piece. I think Dargo’s comb worked out great this way and I am pleased with how easily I was able to stitch it on to the body. His wings were a little more complicated and tricky to attach. I believe that Dargo will be played with, so I wanted to make sure they were attached securely. To do this, I stitched up the side of the wing a few stitches and across the bottom of the wing a few stitches to make sure the wings were good and tight and would not be able to be ripped off of the body.

P1040355As you can already see, there was no problem in naming this dragon. I had not crocheted many of his pieces before he was named Dargo. Of course, naming this dragon was helped by the fact that the husband had just purchased the entire series of Farscape on Blu-Ray for us to watch many years after the Sci-Fi channel television series had ended.

I am very pleased with how nicely Dargo turned out. I think he is both fun and adorable. And I am now excited to make more dragons. What I learned from making Dargo though is to enjoy the journey and not worry about the destination. I hope to remember this lesson as I continue to sew and crochet in the future.

Until next time, crochet forth and crochet on!

Hidden Button Joints on a Cool Cat

P1040187Since I have recently taken a fancy with button joints, I found this amigurumi cat pattern that called for the use of button joints but with a variation. Instead of showcasing the button and using large fancy expensive buttons to accent the amigurumi, these buttons are hidden inside the amigurumi, so you only need small flat inexpensive buttons to complete this amigurumi’s joints.

P1030778The construction of this cat started out with the crocheting of its parts. The crocheting was simple and fun. This cat pattern is similar to the monkey pattern I had previously made so I was familiar with how it was made. I stuffed the arms and legs as I crocheted them. The pattern called for the eyes and nose to be crocheted pieces and then the mouth would be embroidered to the head. Because the eyes and nose are crocheted pieces, I prefer to stitch them to the head after stuffing the head. Of course, if I was using safety eyes, I would have inserted them before stuffing the head. So, after stuffing the head, I placed the eyes and nose on the head to stitch them on P1030766and screamed in terror. This was the most scary face I have ever seen on an amigurumi before! I read the pattern again to make sure that I had made the eyes and nose correctly. And I studied the pictures that the pattern came with, but I could in no way get my cat’s face to be the adorable face on the cat in the pictures of the pattern. Not wanting to use this terrifying face, I turned to other amigurumi patterns for ideas. Remembering back to when I had first started making amigurumi’s and some of the techniques I had learned, I decided to embroidery the nose and mouth on to a piece of felt. I had purchased some P1030769safety cat eyes many years ago, knowing that some day I would make a cat and this was that day. So, I first unstuffed the head so that I could attach the safety eyes backs and then stitch the felt piece to the head. I dislike stuffing in the first place but to have to un-stuff only to have to re-stuff the head again was agonizing for me, but I could not finish this cat with it’s original horrifying face. I unstuffed the head, attached the eyes, stitched on the felt embroidered nose and mouth and then I re-stuffed the head. Now, with the head and cute face completed, I could continue on to the next part of this amigurumi, the hidden button joints.

P1030770The arms and legs were crocheted with two small patches at the top of each piece. When sewing the arms and legs on, one button was placed in between the patches and one button was placed inside the body. The buttons were lined up and stitched together through the one patch and the body. Then the two patches were stitched together to hide the button. The arms and legs can now rotate around the button joints. How fun is that?

P1040189And with a little more stuffing and stitching, this cat was finished. I think he turned out to be very cute and I really like the hidden button joints and the way they work. I was a little surprised by how expensive small buttons cost, and then the fact that you needed to use 8 buttons to complete this project really made the cost add up. I spent about the same amount on fancy buttons for the previous jointed teddy bears that I made previously as I did on the small buttons for this cat.

P1040194This was a fun variation to the button jointed amigurumi’s that I have made in the past and I really like the results. Stay tuned because in the next post, I’m going to show yet another way of making a jointed amigurumi. It should be fun!

Happy Easter

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With Easter being so early this year, I had decided early on to not make any amigurumi’s for the holiday this year. But when I came across the pattern for these googly eyed easter eggs and bunny, I changed my mind. This project became a must do for some reason! I just fell in love with the pictures on the pattern and I could not wait to make my own eggs and bunny.

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The pattern said to use a size 3 hook, but you know me, I used my favorite size 4 or G hook instead. But who cares if they are a little bit bigger than the pattern called for? Not me! In fact, “who cares” became the theme of this project. Who cares if the bunny is a little lope sided? Who cares if the eyes are a little bit crooked? Who cares if the smiles are off slightly from the eyes? These little guys were supposed to be lop sided, and crooked and off center. That’s what makes them so much fun! And, that is what made them so much fun for me to crochet and stitch up.

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These guys did end up being a little time consuming in the end though. Crocheting the pieces and stuffing them were no big deal but the small details on them did take some time to finish. They have a lot of small felt pieces that need to be cut out and glued on. After I had cut out all the felt eyes, eyebrows, nose and teeth, I invited the husband to a glue party and he helped me to glue all the felt pieces onto these guys in one go. I could have used safety eyes instead of felt but since it is a meant for a decoration, and not a toy for a child, I decided on the felt. Plus with felt eyes I could make the eyes different sizes and shapes and make everything look just the way I wanted.

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So what do you think? Have you fallen in love with these crazy googly eyed easter decorations like I did?

Goodnight Blues Clues! (Part 2)

Let’s see. Where did I leave off? Oh, yeah… Simplicity 2771, Blues Clues pajamas with piping.

IMG_0002Another reason I say this pattern is not good for a beginner is that it is also tricky to stitch the back facing on with the curves. According to the pattern guide, you sew the back facing to the front facing, flip it over to the back, then fold over the raw edge, and finally you stitch in the ditch along the piping while making sure to catch the facing in the back too. Sure it sounds easy enough, but not without a lot of pins holding things together and folding and ironing, and sweat and tears. On the straight parts of the facing, it was easy to stitch in the ditch on the front and catch the facing in the back right through the folded raw edge, but on the curves it was too easy to stitch too far into the facing and not along the edge, missing the folded raw edge so that when you were done sewing, the raw edge just folded back out. Because of this when you come to the curve, you must fold more in to make sure and catch the raw P1030206edge, but then you end up missing the facing altogether. So then you try to fold it back out a little more and then you miss catching the raw edge again, or, like I finally ended up with, and you barely caught the raw edge here and barely caught the facing there. ARGH! I don’t know if it is just a matter of practice to stitch the facings on more easily, or if I need to come up with a better way of stitching them on. I stitched and unpicked and restitched and unpicked and restitched until I was tired of the process so I called the wavy mess I had on the inside of the shirt good enough for this try and moved on. (I hate to see a beginner try a project like this, get discouraged and quit sewing altogether due to the frustration of it. I certainly don’t claim to be the world’s best seamstress as shown by the wavy seam on that facing, but I have had successes in the past and so I have built up some patience with my sewing as time has went on. )

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P1030158Here is where I ran into a little snag because I did not follow the pattern guide when I started this project. In the guide, hemming the shirt is the step you are supposed to do before starting the piping, so the facings are shorter than the front of the shirt because IMG_0001you had already shortened the front of the shirt with the hem before you added the facings. But because I had sewed the piping and facings first, I had to unpick the ends so I could do the hem and get the facings length to match. Luckily this was less of a problem than it could have been because it was on the straight part of the facings and not the curved parts. It was just a minor annoyance, and I had to take a much larger hem than I would have liked to since I like longer shirts. If I make this pattern again, and I probably will, I am going to cut the facings longer at the start so I can finish them differently. Because I had sewed this the way the pattern had called for on the hem and the finishing of the facings, it will be difficult to shorten or lengthen the shirt if I need to later. Plus the finishing of my flannel piping was a little bulky as I sewed through the 6 layers of fabric. If I had purchase some cotton piping, it would have been much less bulky to sew, but I still think it turned out ok and I learned a LOT.

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P1030159I had similar issues with the way that the pattern guide said to finish the piping and hem of the sleeves so I did it my way instead. I sewed the facing to the sleeve before I P1030162sewed the sleeve up. Then after sewing the sleeve, I folded the facing up and stitched in the ditch of the piping. Even though I was stitching in the ditch again around the sleeves, it is a straight line, so it was not that difficult to do. And by sewing it this way, if I need to shorten or lengthen the sleeve later, it will require less unpicking. It was a little tight stitching around the cuff, but I did it without any problems and I will say that practice make perfect. The second sleeve was much easier to stitch than the first one was.

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P1030192My third reason for saying that this pattern may not be the best choice for a beginner is the buttons. It took time and patience to get them placed down the center and looking in the right spot between P1030185the piping. There was no forgiveness on placement. They had to be centered or they looked funny. I won’t say I did a perfect job on the buttons but I tried.

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With the shirt finished, the pants were an easy sew to complete the pajamas. The pants have no pockets and no piping. I thought about putting some piping on the pants at the hem or down the side seams but decided not to. Four seams, some elastic at the waist and 2 hems and the pants were done!

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Like I said, I will probably make this pattern again and hopefully soon so that I don’t forget all I have learned, but for now on to more projects!

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