Saturday, January 22, 2011

Nadia's new hat :-)

Nadia says "I look like Audry Hepburn!"  

This delightful hat pattern is from an Annie's Attic series entitled "Annie's Miniature Shoe Society."   The primary pattern was for a fancy dress shoe, but included a hat and purse as accessories.   These were published in 2000-2001 and are sadly out of print now.  If you do a Google search on the series, you may find some still available.

I loved the hats and bags for these patterns, but didn't really have a doll that the hat would fit well.  Sweet Pocket Spirits seem perfect; with 18 of these patterns, expect to see Pocket Spirits sporting fancy chapeaus in the future :-)

Enjoy the crochet!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Variations on a theme

My little dolls have pose-able limbs by using pipe cleaners in their arms and legs.  I worry a bit that bending these pipe cleaners too much will cause them to break, so here is another way to make these little dolls pose-able.  
For the pose-able Pocket Spirit above, I've crocheted seperate upper and lower arms, and upper and lower legs; so now she has an elbow joint and a knee joint.

Upper and lower arm, and what they look like stitched together.  Pipe cleaners are still inserted into the upper and lower arms, but the bending is now done at the joint.

And here is the leg, one completed and the other showing how the two are stitched together.

The arms and legs are a bit longer than the original Pocket Spirit, so I made her torso a bit longer too.  She stands just under eight inches tall; still a sweet size :-)  The pattern with these modifications is here:

Meet Nadia!

Nadia and Comfort in sepia :-)
Enjoy the day, and enjoy the crochet!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Pocket Cottage

What can you make from Granny squares?  Afghans, scarves, caps, sweaters, dollhouses....Dollhouses?!  Yes, you can!  No power tools required :-)

The idea to make a dollhouse for the Pocket Spirits has been percolating in my mind for a couple months, and with Christmas now a sweet memory, there was time to see if the idea could become a reality.   I love dollhouses, but hammers and nails are not my strong suit.  Making a dollhouse from simple squares really appealed to me, and here are the results.

Roof and ceiling squares

All of the squares for the Pocket Cottage came from the book "200 Crochet Blocks."  I love this book, and had to resort to buying it instead of borrowing it constantly from the library.  Lots of great blocks, lots of great color combinations.

wall squares

These squares worked up to be nine inches, and it took 12 of these, plus two 9x4 rectangles and two 4x4 squares to make the dollhouse.   I used Red Heart Super Saver yarn and a G hook.   

floor and sleeping loft

Carboard is used to make the structure rigid.  Cut the cardboard after the blocks are crocheted and blocked (yes, blocked!  just dampen your crochet and lay it out on bath towels, squared up nicely so all the blocks are the same size).  I covered my cardboard pieces with fabric so the carboard wouldn't show.  
stitching the pieces with carboard in between

Stitch the walls, floor, roof, and loft by holding two squares wrong side together and single crochet around two side.  Insert the carboard between the squares and finish crocheting the squares together, stretching your squares to fit around the cardboard.

living room; time for tea :-)

When the pieces for the walls, floor, roof, and loft are complete, crochet the walls together with slip stitches; the top of the roof with single crochet and picots; the bottom of the wall to the floor and the top of the wall to the loft with slip stitches; and the roof to the walls also with slip stitches.  Crochet the roof apex pieces to the top front and back of the roof. 

Sleeping loft; bedtime with Bearable :-)

When the structure is complete,  give it a finished look by slip stitching around the front and back opening of the dollhouse.   If you like, crochet a fancy trim in the back loops of the slip stitches to mimic gingerbread trim along the roof line and also along the side edges of the roof.

Side view with gingerbread trim

Pretty simple!  The most difficult part of this is some awkward stitching when stitching the rigid pieces together.   A more comprehensive picture tutorial is available here:

Cute, inexpensive, and made with your own hands :-)

Home Sweet Home for the Pocket Spirits!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Aran Sweater

During the Christmas holidays I made my little Pocket Spirit an Aran sweater, and made both of us some pretty hair accessories.  The Hellbore and Holly patterns are from the book " 100 Flowers to Knit and Crochet."  It has some of the loveliest flower patterns, and I was able to borrow it from our local Library :-)  The large flowers are crocheted in sportweight yarn, and glued to a hair barret.  The small ones are crocheted in size 8 perle and glued to a length of 1/4" ribbon and tied in her hair.

The sweater pattern is available here: Pocket Spirit Aran Sweater

And the pants are available here: Pocket Spirit Pants

Another fun project was this awesome tree, courtesy of Michaels.   My friend Joyce directed me to this link, and has made at least two beautiful trees from this pattern.  The pattern is easy, and can be made as tall or short as you like; it makes up fast, and is the prettiest crochet tree pattern I've seen.

Sadly, the link to the Christmas tree is no longer available from Michaels.

Start the New Year right and get hooking!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

January 5, 1980

Hard to believe, but 31 years ago today Larry and I were married.  Yikes!  It doesn't seem possible that I'm old enough to be married that long :-)

We have been blessed with a companionable and loving marriage.  We enjoy each other's company, enjoy the same activities, and don't need a lot in the way of entertainment.

31 years have flown by; I don't feel a whole lot different than I did in this picture.  Have a great day...we plan to!