Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Enid and her Snail


Joyce has done it again. I think Enid is irresistible, especially with her escargot!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Wonderful Fabric-Covered Boxes


My dear friend Bev commissioned these three dolls for her Granddaughters for Christmas. After she received them, she went to work making each doll a wonderful box in which to keep all her gear, and the doll as well.

With bright fabrics and pockets for flowers or little owls, these fabric covered boxes are an absolute delight. The child in me (never far from the surface) claps her hands with joy :-)

The girls are, from left to right, Rose, Iris, and Lavender. Such lucky dolls, and such lucky Granddaughters!

Monday, August 24, 2009

A Better Bear



I have a crochet pattern I would like to share with you; it is my 'Better Bear' pattern, because it took so many iterations to get it just the way I wanted it. In the picture above, the larger bears are about 3 1/2" tall; the smaller bears are about 1 1/4 " tall. I've had this pattern around for several years. I love to make these little bears as gifts, or as toys for other dolls, as with Lavender to the rigtht here :-)

The tiny bears may make you go blind trying to crochet them; they are made from size 10 crochet cotton and a size 7 hook. I only made three...that was enough for me! The larger bears are from sportweight, and are really quite easy. Of course, you can use any weight yarn with the appropriate hook. Crochet nice and tight so none of the stuffing shows.

Enjoy the bears! The pattern is here:
http://sites.google.com/site/designbybethann/home/links/Better_Bear.pdf?attredirects=0

Friday, August 21, 2009

Annabelle



Here is another wonderful Free Spirit, made by Diane, named Annabelle. Diane designed her dress, and even made little slippers to go with it. I love the yarn she used for hair, and the colors are great!

And check out her wonderful underwear; isn't this just lovely?!

You can see more pictures of Annabelle, and her neat slippers, and other lovely crochet work, at Diane's photostream: http://www.flickr.com/photos/23868323@N06/

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

More Free Spirits!


Aren't they wonderful?! This trio of Free Spirits were made by Joyce, and I just love them. Showing off their bendy legs and sassy attitudes, and their terrific hairstyles :-)

I am so loving seeing this pattern interpreted by other wonderful dollmakers. If you make a doll from the pattern, please let me know and, as you can tell, I will happily post her (or them!) here.

You can see more pictures of the girls, and other great crochet and embroidery, at Joyce's photostream: http://www.flickr.com/photos/41627508@N06/

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Look What You Can Do!

This wonderful interpretation of the Free Spirit was done by Ellen Haytas. She crocheted the doll with size 3 crochet cotton and a size 1 steel hook. Azure by name, turned out to be about 7 inches tall. Her hair is Tibetan lambswool, isn't it simply amazing!

This demonstrates the wonderful versatility of any doll pattern. Free Spirit can be just about any doll you want her to be. A little boy, a fairy, a Raggedy Ann (I've seen one of those!), a crochet Blythe, whatever! With yarn and a hook you can soon have a roomful of inspiration.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Another Free Spirit!


Here is another darling doll made from the free Free Spirit Amigurumi doll pattern. The pattern is available on this site; scroll down or find in it July posts.

This lovely girl was made by Cathy (Marycat at Crochetville). Don't you love the ponytails?! I think she is just precious. Thank-you Cathy, for letting me share her with everyone.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

From Links I Love


A slight break from dollmaking. Aren't these little guys the cutest? They are from a free pattern made available from the Roman Sock blog:

http://littlegreen.typepad.com/romansock/project_amigurami/

She has other really sweet ami patterns; her frogs are calling (or is it croaking?) to me to make them :-)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Five Easy Pieces

Here are five easy mix-and-match wardrobe pieces for the Free Spirit Amigurumi doll. This doll is a free PDF download from this site; scroll down a bit to find her. A fun wardrobe can be made from these patterns, and lots of other clothing ideas can spring from these. You could use either the tunic or T-shirt pattern for a dress bodice; shorten the pants for capri's or shorts; the sky's the limit. Have fun making these cute outfits for your doll :-)


Victorian boots for the Free Spirit Amigurumi doll. Made from size 10 crochet cotton and a size 5 or 6 steel hook

http://sites.google.com/site/designbybethann/home/links/FSVictorianBoots.pdf?attredirects=0





Short sleeve T-shirt for Free Spirit Amigurumi doll. Made from size 10 crochet cotton and a size 5 or 6 steel hook

http://sites.google.com/site/designbybethann/home/links/FSYellowShortSleeveTop.pdf?attredirects=0





Simple skirts for Free Spirit Amigurumi doll. Made from size 10 crochet cotton and size 5 or 6 steel hook.

http://sites.google.com/site/designbybethann/home/links/FSSimpleSkirts.pdf?attredirects=0





Long tunic for Free Spirit Amigurumi doll. Made from size 10 crochet cotton and size 5 or 6 steel hook

http://sites.google.com/site/designbybethann/home/links/FSLongTunic.pdf?attredirects=0





Flare pants for the Free Spirit Amigurumi doll. They are made from size 10 crochet cotton and a size 5 or 6 steel hook.

http://sites.google.com/site/designbybethann/home/links/FSFlarePants.pdf?attredirects=0

Monday, August 10, 2009

New Girl on the Block


Meet Gwyneth! Made by the very talented Kate Erbach from the Free Spirit pattern. She is dressed in cotton fabric with a darling felt jacket. Don't you love her hair?! And check out those shoes.

How wonderful to see what other dollmakers can do with a basic pattern. Kate's doll is just great, and I'm delighted to see the pattern come to life for someone else.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Confessions of a fiber junky

I don't think I'm a yarn snob. My all time favorite yarn for making doll bodies remains Red Heart Super Saver or Classic worsted weight yarn. It is easy to crochet tightly, makes a strong fabric and creates great three dimensional shapes. It wears like iron, and is easy on the pocket book. An eight ounce skein of Super Saver will make four Free Spirit dolls, so at $2.50/skein, that is only 63 cents a doll. What a bargain!

For hair, however, I must confess I love wool. And when I get a little extra pocket change, that is my yarn of choice for any and all doll hair. Recently I found a luscious wool/tencel blend at my local yarn shop. It is made by Berroco and is called Lustra. It is 50% Peruvian wool and 50% Tencel, in a single ply (which I love the look of for hair). It will make lovely shiny hair with that wonderful wool tactile feel. I can hardly wait to use it! Below are four colors that I couldn't resist. At $9.00 for a 3.5 oz skein, it isn't cheap, but will probably make two or three wigs, and since we saved so much money on the body yarn, a little splurge on hair is okay :-)





More yarns that I love for hair are shown here; another Berroco yarn called Peruvia, which is a 100% Peruvian single ply wool. An Alpaca/wool blend; a kid mohair/silk blend lace weight, which is too fine to use by itself but blends wonderfully with anything to add highlights and 'hairy-ness.' Also included here is a mohair yarn, which is the best for yarn hair that closely mimics real hair.

A trip to your local yarn shop, if you are fortunate enough to have one close, will yield a gold mine of possible yarns for hair. There are also many places on the internet to get good yarn hair. A Child's Dream Come True is one of my favorites for mohair and single ply wool (they carry Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride, very similar to the Berroco Peruvia).

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A hat and Bag for Free Spirit


Here is a very simple pattern for a skull cap and bag for Free Spirit. They are made from worsted weight cotton and a size F hook.

http://sites.google.com/site/designbybethann/home/links/FSSkullCap.pdf?attredirects=0

Enjoy!