Saturday, 31 October 2015

october crafting - update

Gosh what a busy month it's been, all the busier because I aimed to achieve a lot this month, and I am very very pleased with myself, as I've managed to tick everything off the list!
Finish the #spiceoflifecal blanket by 1st November

Every week I've been posting the progress on my #spiceoflifecal, and I've been flying through and keeping right on track! I've finished all the rows and blocked the blanket, and I'm in for an evening of border crochet tonight, meaning I will meet my 1st November deadline tomorrow. I'm planning to do a final update post on Wednesday to show off the finished blanket, before I wrap it up for Christmas so as not to be tempted to keep it for myself.
Organise the geeky knitter Christmas craft swap

Sign up for the Christmas Craft Swap successfully opened on 16th October, and it STILL OPEN until 6th November. All the information you'll need, if you are interested, can be found by clicking on the link above, and by asking me any questions you like. Organising this has been a lot of fun (and there is still some yet to do!) and I'm very happy to say I have a healthy list of swappers already! 
There is still a week to go to get involved and I would love you to join in and spread the word!

Finish at least one WIP

With so much Christmas crafting and order crafting going on now, I thought it would be important to at least finish one more thing for myself, partly for selfish reasons (I love making things for myself), and partly to remind myself I am capable of finishing projects. I've started so many recently that will take month's it's all a little daunting. And so with great delight I finished my Jedi Totoro - he will be perfect to take to the midnight showing of The Force Awakens come December! 
Ravenclaw inspired infinity scarf
Add at least 2 new products to the new Etsy shop

Mine and Ben's Etsy shop is chugging along happily, and quietly, as I imagine most new shops do. We've made 3 sales so far which I'm very pleased with, and I did in fact manage to add 3 new products to the shop! I've added a hand knit Slytherin Inspired Snood, a hand knit Ravenclaw Inspired Snood (pictured above), and Ben's also done another lot of Pokemon paintings that we are selling as a complete set. I'm really enjoying keeping the Etsy shop at the moment, I think putting the extra effort into branding this and making items to sell ahead of time has made a world of difference and will encourage me to carry.
I keep Instagram up to date with all new items on the shop, so be sure to follow me there!

What a successful month I've managed to have, if I may say so myself :) I've decided not to set any crafty plans for November or December, because I will have plenty to get on which I will keep you updated on as I go anyway! I hope to hear from more of you wonderful readers soon before Friday if you are interested in the craft swap, and I can't wait to show off the blanket next week either!

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

spice of life CAL part 6 (yarn along)

Phewee - almost there! I managed to get some much better pictures than last week, owing mainly to having a day off work and luck with the weather. I've been working hard on the blanket all week and I will certainly have it done for Saturday, I'm so excited to tick this off the list!

You can read all of my #spiceoflifeCAL posts here.

Katy is a very accommodating sister, as I've been making her model pretty much everything for me on the blog recently, and also over on the Etsy shop. But she is just so lovely and beautiful I may as well take advantage eh?

As I mentioned last week, I am still working my way through the final pattern of the blanket (a whopping 60 rows!) before working on the border. When we took these pictures yesterday I had finished up to the puff stitches (CURSE THEM) and had only one pattern repeat to go. Last night I worked hard while watching Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and managed to get the granny's finished too! I am now only a blissful 4 rows short of finishing the main blanket and then I can block, and get that border worked up!

I seem to have one significant problem, however, with the blanket. Namely the top is a good 1-2 inches wider than the bottom. That is incredibly annoying. The simplest explanation may be that I've added extra stitches somewhere along the way by mistake - which isn't too hard considering the number of different patterns/stitches we are working with - and I definitely do not have the patience to count all 180+ stitches every few rows to check I am on track!

It also however looks like I might have a tension problem (again) with the stacked shells. I went up a hook size as a lot of ladies recommended on the Facebook group, but perhaps I ought to have gone up two to prevent the tightness of that section.

Me and Katy did lay the blanket out last night and tugged it here and there, which fills me with hope that a good thorough blocking will sort it all out - either way, there is no way I am unravelling ANY of this baby! If there has to be one end larger than the other, I will grit my teeth and live with it...wish me luck!

I'm seriously running out of all the yarn now (which is good and bad) so I'm going to introduce a new colour for the border (just to make sure I have enough!). I'm going for a pale, but not bright blue - the same, in fact, used for the Diplodocus scarf - hopefully it will go with everything and tidy it all up nicely!

Once again, thank you to Black Sheep Wools and Sandra - Cherry Heart - for putting this together and hosting such a wonderful crochet along! I will have this finished at the weekend, but will wait until next week to devote a much deserved blog post to the finished product :)

Currently reading I am still making my way through Dr. Bloodmoney. The problem with this time of year is I am starting to devote all my spare time to knitting and crocheting to make sure I get everything finished I need to for Christmas and orders. I think I won't manage my Reading Challenge, but this was the first year I gave it a go and haven't done too badly really!

Find me on Goodreads

Linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along.

Don't forget - sign up is OPEN for the geeky knitter Christmas Craft Swap - just click here to find out more!

Sunday, 25 October 2015

fo: jedi totoro

Pattern - Sith Totoro
Yarn - Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran (in grey) and Hayfield Bonus Aran Tweed (in brown)
Ravelry project page - here

Without a shadow of a doubt, this Totoro has to be on of the best thing I've made so far! I came across the pattern a few month's ago on Ravelry and just HAD to make him! More people need to get on this fantastic Star Wars/Ghibli crossover! 

AND all the more exciting what with the release of the new epic trailer for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens I CAN'T WAIT!

Although the pattern is for a Sith Totoro, I have opted to make mine a Jedi Totoro - mainly because I didn't have any dark enough brown yarn for the hooded cloak. Instead I decided to use some left over yarn from my aran garter stitch cardigan. This still works just as well I think and instead I get a Jedi out of the equation! Strictly speaking, I should have also deviated from the lightsaber colour too in true Jedi fashion and perhaps gone for a blue, but the red looks pretty great to me- I just hope no Star Wars die-hards bite my head off! 

The pattern is absolutely brilliant. I particularly love how the body for Totoro is worked in one piece; after crocheting his two legs/feet separately, you join them and continue all the way up to the top of the head, making for a squishy, adorable little character. The tail is sized and positioned too so that he can even stand up on his own. I love making amigurumi that can stand up on their own, and it's a pet peeve of mine if they can't even sit on their own *looks sheepish as Deadpool struggles to stand on his own two feet*

If I was to change any one aspect of this pattern, I think I would have a go at re-working the hood design. When not worn up, it falls perfectly as all Jedi's hoods should, but when you pull it over his head it certainly has a distinctive cone shape to it. Perhaps a little on the wizarding/witching side for me. But, having said this, the whole robe is an ingenious design and my anti-cone-ness is but a tiny niggling factor!!


I love him very much, and I have a feeling that he will be the last selfish make for myself between now and Christmas so I guess that makes him all that extra special  (though these may be famous last words, I hope to squeeze in a knitted Santa for myself too, but need to crack on with orders and presents!). 

I hope any Ghibli/Star War fans will consider having a go at this under appreciated amigurumi pattern too :) 

Thursday, 22 October 2015

spice of life CAL part 5 (yarn along)

So, perhaps it's Thursday today, and not Wednesday, the usual Yarn Along day - but I'm sure you will forgive me, it's starting to get busy here on the geeky knitter and orders are coming in for hats and scarves (woohoo!). I've also been updating the stock on the Etsy shop so be sure to check that out!

You can read all my spice of life CAL blog posts here.

The #spiceoflifecal blanket is all very exciting and coming along wonderfully - I would even say I am tentatively on track to finish this in time! I'm going to keep this week's post short and sweet though, because with the size of the blanket now I have NO idea how to photograph it properly (any suggestions?!) - plus I'm running out of daylight in the morning and evenings (curse you winter! but not really because I love you) and I don't plan ahead to have the sections finished for weekend photography - I will get better...promise...

Last week's pattern release was the final pattern instalment before the edging (ohmanIcan'tbelieveI'vemadeitsofar) and it was a BIG one! Some ladies worked out that we had over 60 rows of blanket to work in all, and needless to say I haven't managed that. However the ever patient and cool-headed Sandra (Cherry Heart) reminded us that we actually, technically, have 2 weeks for the final section, because the CAL doesn't finish until the end of this month. So even though the border pattern was released yesterday on Tuesday, I don't need to get to that stage until next week

Honestly though, saying 'need to' is arbitrary because this isn't a competition (nevertheless, I do like to stick to deadlines!).

This week's pattern was simply repeating sections of the blanket we had already learned, alternating the colours somewhat. As ever I am LOVING IT (though possibly because I haven't reached the puff stitches yet...I'm not a fan) and I certainly felt like I covered 30 rows at top speed this week because I was familiar with the stitches. I even got to do another row of gorgeous tulips mmmmm. And the stacked shells went a lot more smoothly by going up a hook size.

Currently reading Dr. Bloodmoney: Or How We Got Along After the Bomb is an old sci-fi book of dads that I swiped from one of the bookshelves so very long ago. After the childish Bedknob and Broomstick that I finished last week I was finally ready to give some serious sci-fi a go, as I usually tend towards historical/fantasy. So far I am both enjoying this and confused by it - Philip Dick jumps around characters and timelines a lot, so I get confused. But I can tell that it's for the best because, so far, I'm finding it all interesting. For example, I feel I can get my teeth stuck into the theory of the value of knowledge and glass after a nuclear bomb - people are willing to kill for knowledge, and how morals are much more blurred. All of these interesting thought processes are subtly intertwined by Dick, meaning you are thinking about them without feeling lectured. 

Find me on Goodreads.

Linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along

Don't forget - sign up is OPEN for the geeky knitter Christmas Craft Swap - just click here to find out more!

I've already had quite a bit of interest in the Craft Swap - and I just want more and more so get in touch if you're interested or have any questions! 

Sunday, 18 October 2015

fo: princess mononoke amigurumi

Pattern - Amigurumi princess Mononoke
Yarn - various double knit from stash
Ravelry project page - here
It was my older brother's birthday last week, and I really fancied making him something as it had been a very long time since I made him anything. And, not that what I make is necessarily comparable to official collectors merchandise, he does collect 'collector's figurines' (think Pop! figures, but bigger and cooler - in a more 'real') and so I thought/hoped he would like something from a film he loves. 
I sneakily asked his girlfriend to find out what his favourite Studio Ghibli film is (because, crocheting Studio Ghibli/Totoro is one of my favourite past times!) and she determined it was Princess Mononoke - this made me very happy as it's one of my favourites too - and so I hit Pinterest
The amigurumi doll from The Sun and the Turtle was easily the best that I could find. I had all the colours I needed in my stash and so I whipped her up. 
The hair tutorial on the pattern was a very useful and simple one to follow, and I find that with a lot of patterns like this hair tutorials aren't always included so this was a helpful addition. The mask has to be my favourite aspect of the whole doll; it is the most defining feature of Princess Mononoke, and the combination of felt with crochet details make it bold, clear, but also at the same time quite intricate. It is clear that thought and detail went into the pattern and finished doll! Bonus feature - the mask isn't sewn to the doll, so as you can see in the above pictures you can have Princess Mononoke wearing the mask on her head or her face. 
My doll came out a little chubbier than the one in the original pattern, but it all looks balanced in the end. If you are a Princess Mononoke fan and are considering making her, I would totally suggest using this pattern, but be ready for fiddly details! Her necklace and earrings are cut from tiny pieces of felt and is very difficult. But it is definitely the detail on the pattern that make this doll as awesome as it is! 
If I had more time in the future I would absolutely make a small wolf to accompany her!

Friday, 16 October 2015

the geeky knitter christmas craft swap - sign up!

if you are taking part, feel free to grab this large button and save it to your blog!
Well, I've been threatening to do this for a long time now, and here it finally is - the geeky knitter Christmas Craft Swap!

I've never hosted a craft swap before, though I have taken part in several of Hannah's. Its been a little while since I did one, and as I go mad when it comes to Christmas, it only seems right that I should get on a craft swap, and just have a bash at organising it myself!

Timeline for the geeky knitter Christmas Craft Swap





Here are my proposed guidelines for the swap;

       Each package must include
  • at least one handmade item (this can be Christmas related, or based on your partner's interests)
  • a Christmas card (handmade or bought; if handmade this does not count as the package's handmade item)
  • at least one Christmas decoration (handmade or bought; if handmade this does not count at the package's handmade item)
  • TREATS! (chocolates, sweets, tea, candles, stationary etc.  think stocking fillers and shops like Home Bargains!)
  • I propose a minimum spend of £8 on this swap, and a maximum spend of £15 (not including postage)

       Other things to note
  • Christmas wrapping is encouraged!
  • The swap is UK based
  • Any crafters are welcome! Although I love knitting and crochet, every crafty person interested should get in touch! Just so long as you are willing to put some thought, time, and effort into the swap.
  • I'm going to pair people up, so the person you send to will also send back to you (if we have an odd number I will make a single group of 3)

I've made the decision that this swap will be U.K based only. I would like to open this up internationally, but as this is my first swap I've decided to keep as many aspects as possible straightforward, and it's only fair that I should impose one posting deadline, and not several depending on where you are in the world - abject apologies to all international readers!

I've decided to partner people together so that you have the option to say hello and get to know your swap-partner if you like! That way if you have a question you need not be scared to ask, however you will be provided with the person's likes etc. which I am coming to next.


If you would like to take part in the swap, be sure to email me no later than the 6 November 
( with the subject line 'The Geeky Knitter Christmas Craft Swap', and include all the information below (the more information you provide the better - I've provided some example just in case). 

Age (optional)
Social media/blog links
Favourite 'treats' (personally, I love Dairy Milk!)
Likes & Loves (this can be anything - for me, I would say Pokemon and Harry Potter)
Any dislikes? (I don't like jewellery or sweets)
What is your favourite book/film/TV series?

If you are going to knit/crochet and want to join the Ravelry group, please head on over!

And if you are going to share this on your blog, please grab a button (either the large one at the top or the small one at the bottom) and I would be most obliged if you would link back to my blog here :) then, leave me a comment below and I will share links for all participants on this, and later, posts!
small blog button 125x125

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

spice of life CAL part 4 (yarn along)

Here were are again with this week's completed section of the #spiceoflifecal. Remember, this is the blanket CAL hosted by Black Sheep Wools and Sandra, and is a challenging and colourful project!

You can read all of my blog posts about the spice of life CAL here.

Wow look at how the blanket has grown already! It is getting trickier to photograph I don't mind telling you. It's actually a few inches wider than it appears on the picture, perhaps you can spot where I tucked the edges under to try and hid all my loose ends (not looking forward to weaving those boys in). I don't know specifically, but I think the blanket pretty much doubled in size from where I was last week, which meant there was a lot of crochet to get done in part 4. I didn't mind though, I treated myself to many hours of crochet in bed on Saturday and Sunday, while (finally) watching the final series of Parks and Rec with Ben. A very good way to spend a weekend if you ask me.

There were 4 new stitch patterns to contest with this week, including 'TULIPS', 'WAVES', 'FILL THE GAP' and my least favourite to do, 'PUFFS'. Man, the puffs were hard - you end up with 7 loops on your hook, where normally 4 is the number I blanch at. The puff rows took the longest and the most concentration, but they were worth it (I will begrudgingly admit) because they make very thick, cuddly rows. I have a feeling more will be coming soon ... at least I have the practice down.

My favourite stitch this week is easily the tulips. Even though I'm using stash yarn, I stuck to the colour instructions as closely as I could for this stitch, because (you guessed it) the finished row looks like a row of tulips! I think they look so sweet, and blend in nicely with the rest of the blanket. When the recipient gets this blanket come December, I hope they will have fun investigating the rows and will smile when they stumble across the tulips.

pretty tulips, all in a row
I've hit a couple of snags though following this week's section. I've run out of the light green I was using. and also the grey. At almost (?) halfway through the blanket, I'm loathed to introduce new colours to the blanket, but I'm going to have to I think. If I don't, the second half of the blanket might become saturated with colours that are the same. I'll do my best to colour match of course, or perhaps I will throw caution to the wind and wing it! I haven't decided yet - nor have I braved a look at part 5 yet, as the mutterings on the Facebook group are that it's a tricky/long one this week. I'll  give myself a few days to buck up first :) 

And although I know it isn't a race, I did set myself the challenge to finish this blanket by the end of the month, so hopefully I won't be falling behind any time soon! 

If you are taking part in the CAL, please do say hello!

Currently Reading Bedknob and Broomstick by Mary Norton. I would think a lot of you reading this will know the Disney live action/animated film, with Angela Lansbury, and I am no different! It was one of my favourite films to watch and re-watch on video growing up (I don't even have this on DVD yet!) and I found this book amongst mum's old things, and I've had it on my shelf to read for a long time. I must say, it is very different to the Disney film. and is actually 2 short stories brought together in one book. I think if you are looking for an easy, nostalgic read, this one is worth a go, but it does not have anywhere near the same level of excitement that the film does, much like when Disney did Mary Poppins

Find me on Goodreads 

Linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along

Sunday, 11 October 2015

hillarys crafternoon - my first blog meet up

Every Friday I receive the Joe Bloggs newsletter, in the hopes that they will be putting on a blog event close to me, or perhaps they have the low down on some crafty item that needs reviewing. So far, no such craft item has been revealed, however there was a call in early September for craft bloggers in the Manchester area to get in touch - bingo!

I emailed the address, and then later it transpired that the blog event would be a crafternoon (I'm a fan of this amalgamation of words), hosted by Hillarys at Ziferblat in the Norther Quarter, lead by The Crafty Hen, on the last Saturday in September. 

I've never been to a blog meet up before, and now that I have a solid year and a half of blogging under my belt, it felt about time to rectify this oversight. Usually I get quite nervous about this sort of thing, but happily this time I was fine (indeed I was excited) and I happened to have visited the same coffee shop, Ziferblat, for the first time only a month or so before, so I had the added bonus of knowing where I was going. 

To put you in the picture, Ziferblat is unusual; you don't pay for food and drinks, these are free, instead you pay for the time you spend there (6p a minute - actually really reasonable). We were in one of the meeting rooms this time, and so didn't need to pay for anything the whole afternoon as it was covered by the organizers - happy bonus. 

Joe Bloggs and Hillarys organised the event, which was to launch the new line of fabrics Hillarys have to offer - Jewel: The Edit. We got to use samples of the new fabric (which is beautiful - large, floral prints on a durable and sturdy fabric, neutral/fashionable colours and tones throughout - I was very happy with the choices) to make a jewellery box, and accessories from 'Suffolk puffs'. 

I must say that the afternoon was a joy, particularly Jana who took us through the projects, while making us laugh pretty steadily throughout the session. The Crafty Hen usually put on Hen parties (although they were doing their fair share of blog events this weekend), which I felt was fairly obvious given the nature of some of the jokes; who doesn't love a mildly dirty craft related joke? 

The fabric swatches we had to choose from were provided by Hilarys, and I adored them. The huge flower prints and neutral, earthy colours were lovely,and made some excellent jewellery boxes and accessories.

Anyone who knows me knows that I do not wear jewellery, at all (except for my engagement ring), and so when it was announced we would make jewellery boxes, I thought I could turn it into a Christmas gift for someone. 

Alas. No. 

I am not one for crafting with double sided tape, which, although making for a fast and fun craft in a couple of hours, made my finished product just not quite gift-worthy. So, always thinking fast on my feet, I decided to swap the jewellery box into a sewing box. All I had to do was change the ring rolls for a small pin cushion, and fill it with the right stuff - voilĂ ! I now use the box for my weekly dressmaking class (which, by the way, is going very well, thanks for asking).

After the boxes were made, and more cake was washed down with tea and coffee, we moved onto Suffolk puffs, which I have decided are the absolute best thing to sew in the whole world! You simply cut a circle of fabric, twice the size you want your puff, do a running stitch round the edge, and then pull it tight! Have a look online to see what I'm talking about.

They are so easy and can be used to adorn, decorate, and accessorize as you see fit. I opted to make 2 hair accessories with mine (which I am ashamed to say I haven't had a chance to wear yet, perhaps I will crack them out this week at work) and all clips, slides and materials were provided. 

So there you have it, my first blog event felt like a resounding success. I felt quite at ease with everyone there and the afternoon absolutely flew by. I even got to sit next to Clemence, who I actually went to college with - small world!

Thanks to Joe Blogs, Hilarys, The Crafty Hen, and Ziferblat for a very enjoyable afternoon! 

Friday, 9 October 2015

fo: eevee hat

Pattern - Jason's Tweed Hat (modified)  
Yarn - Woolcraft Double Knit (shade brown)
Ravelry project page - here
This was a project I really wanted to make as soon as I finished crocheting my baby Eevee way back in June. I had bought extra yarn (just in case, of course) and had an awful lot left over. I just assumed an Eevee hat would look amazing!
Then, two months ago, when Ben and I decided to open our Etsy shop, it was the perfect motivation to finally get my act together and have a go! 
Originally I wanted to come up with a completely new, original pattern for the hat, one I could share on the blog with you guys. It was about the same time though that I was trying to get Deadpool designed and sorted, and, honestly, I couldn't be bothered designing a hat. Instead then I took a pattern I knew to be good already (Jason's Tweed Hat - which I knitted for Ben's dad last Christmas) and modified it. 
I used double knit wool, held double, and 6mm/7mm circular needles to get the correct tension. I changed the 5x5 rib for the more usual 1x1 (I want to say by choice, but really I just misread the pattern) and worked the body of the hat in the same coloured yarn as I used to crochet Eevee. 
The ears were really easy to do as well. I knit them in the round (to minimise sewing seams and revealing wrong sides of knitting) with just a simple shape. I drew the shape out (to the correct size) that I wanted for the ears, and just knit, increasing and decreasing, as I went while also making notes so the second year would be exactly the same. The black detail on the years was knit using the same notes, but with 4mm needles instead of 6mm, knitted flat, and using black double knit yarn (held single).
The ears are unsurprisingly quite heavy so they droop down but, because I used reasonably large needles for the hat, the fit is quite relaxed and they help to give shape to the 'slouchy fit' beanie. So from the front you get a plain brown hat, but from the side/back you get a Pokemon fan's dream (ok, that's a little dramatic, but you get me?).
I'm personally delighted with how the hat turned out, and I'm thinking of trying perhaps a variation on the basic design, perhaps for some of Eevee's evolutions (Vaporeon would be a good one!). For now however I have two one none left in the shop - all sold out already! I best make some more :)
I had two up for sale, but my first order came through last Sunday, and the second not long after, and they happened to be for this hat - dead chuffed! 
Thank you to my ever patient and beautiful sister, Katy, for modelling the hat for me! I think she looks pretty darn cool in the hat, though I am of course biased!

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

spice of life CAL part 3 (yarn along)

I've decided to be rather cheeky this month, and every Wednesday I will combine my usual yarn along post, with the progress I am making on the #spiceoflifeCAL. This way I should be able to meet my end of the month deadline, and get to show off the progress to you lovely readers!You will also find what I'm currently reading towards the end of this post.

You can see all my blog posts about the spice of life CAL by clicking here.

I've completed part 3 of the CAL now (which actually means I've finished pattern 2 - confusing no?) and managed to do so before part 4 was released yesterday! I haven't made a start just yet on part 4 as I need to get my butt in gear and finish a small present for my brother's birthday (it's on Monday and I need to post it up to Durham!).

The pattern is becoming a little more exciting and complex now, and I love it - the colours I've chosen have grown and grown on me no end, as they are starting to come together with the increasing rows and varied stitches. Actually, so far, we've only used double crochets (US single crochet) and treble crochets (US double crochet) but we have such variation of colour and stitch-combinations, I find it such a marvel!

Unfortunately with more complex instructions comes more frequent errors. In fairness, as I've changed the colour scheme of the pattern to suit my stash yarn, it doesn't really matter, but the shells are supposed to be in 3 block colours, and not the brown-yellow-red-yellow-brown sequence I've ended up doing. Oh well, no one needs to know that's not quite right! The tension of the blanket has also gone a little funny on the shell rows, but lots of other people have had a similar problem, and they have either changed the hook size up (no thanks, I don't want to frog anything!) or blocked the blanket to the right size. I have a lot of hope in the blocking of the blanket when I come to finish. 

I am very happy with the progress I've made on the blanket, and I am quite eager to catch up with everyone who is flying ahead with part 4 this week! I should have some more colourful rows to show you come next Wednesday!

If you are taking part in the CAL, do leave a comment and say hello!

If you are interested in taking part, be sure to check out Sandra's Cherry Heart blog, or visit the Black Sheep Wools website. 

Currently reading Shards of a Broken Crown, the final in the Raymond Feist Serpentwar Saga that I have been reading over the past few weeks. This book doesn't have the same momentum as the 3 books prior in the series, nor does it feel like the finale of the book will be overly impressive. I love reading Feist's books, but the more I read the more flaws and criticisms I have. For example, he tries to maintain too many story lines, so that each one is given half the time it deserves, considering how rich in plot they could be. He also can only seem to appreciate female characters, and give them their own lines and lives, as long as they are beautiful in some physical way, and they have to have their figures described no matter what, when the men don't need such scrutiny. Finally he introduces significant characters and aspects seemingly out of the blue, and abandons them when he doesn't need them any more. 

Nevertheless, I am enjoying the book and would recommend the series! But I'm ready for something other than Feist now :) Does anyone else feel the same way about him?

Find me on Goodreads

Linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

amigurumi deadpool - free crochet pattern

Look at that cheeky guy? I introduced you to this poser last month, and promised I would get a pattern up so that you can make your own if you want to! Not one to disappoint (I hope so anyway) here is that pattern to make your own Deadpool amigurumi. Remember though, this guy has a mouth on him!

Finished Deadpool is about 20 cm/7.5 inches tall.

Perfect for the slightly more experience crocheter (rather than the complete beginner), Deadpool is worked in the round with DK yarn. All terms are written using US crochet terms (e.g. a 'sc'/single crochet is a UK 'dc'/double crochet).

Be sure to save this to your Ravelry library as well so you don't lose the pattern!

3.5mm hook
DK weight yarn in red (I used Cygnet DK in 1206 red)
DK weight yarn in black - for belt and shoulders, small amount
DK weight yarn in grey - for swords, small amount
Black felt scrap
Red felt scrap
Black and White Embroidery thread
Sewing needle
Tapestry needle
Toy stuffing

Note this pattern is written in US crochet terms

worked top down
with red yarn
Round 1 - sc6 in magic circle (6)
Round 2 - *2sc in next* round (12)
Round 3 - *2sc in next, sc in following* round (18)
Round 4 - *2sc in next, sc in following 2* round (24)
Round 5 - *2sc in next, sc in following 3* round (30)
Round 6 - *2sc in next, sc in following 4* round (36)
Round 7 - sc round (36)
Round 8 - *2sc in next, sc in following 5* round (42)
Round 9 - sc round (42)
Round 10 - *2sc in next, sc in following 6* round (48)
Round 11 - sc round (48)
Round 12 - *2sc in next, sc in following 7* round (54)
Rounds 13-18 - sc round (54)
Round 19 - *sc2tog, sc in following 7* round (48)
Round 20 - sc round (48)
Round 21 - *sc2tog, sc in following 6* round (42)
Round 22 - sc round (42)
Round 23 - *sc2tog, sc in following 5* round (36)
Round 24 - sc round (36)
Round 25 - *sc2tog, sc in following 4* round (30)
Round 26 - sc round (30)
Round 27 - *sc2tog, sc in following 3* round (24)
Round 28 - sc round (24)
Round 29 - *sc2tog, sc in following 2* round (18)
Stuff firmly, shaping as you go
Round 30 - *sc2tog, sc in following* round (12)
Round 31 - *sc2tog* round (6)
Close opening, fasten off and weave in ends.

worked bottom up
with red yarn
Round 1 - sc6 in magic circle (6)
Round 2 - *2sc in next* round (12)
Round 3 - *2sc in next, sc in following* round (18)
Round 4 - *2sc in next, sc in following 2* round (24)
Round 5 - sc round (24)
Round 6 - *2sc in next, sc in following 3* round (30)
Round 7 - sc round (30)
Round 8 - *2sc in next, sc in following 4* round (36)
Round 9 - sc round (36)
Round 10 - *2sc in next, sc in following 5* round (42)
Rounds 11 - 20 - sc round (42)
Round 21 - *sc2tog, sc in following 5* round (36)
Round 22 - sc round (36)
Round 23 - *sc2tog, sc in following 4* round (30)
Round 24 - sc round (30)
Round 25 - *sc2tog, sc in following 3* round (24)
Round 26 - sc round (24)
Round 27 - *sc2tog, sc in following 2* round (18)
Round 28 - sc round (18)
Round 29 - *sc2tog, sc in following* round (12)
Stuff body firmly, shaping as you go
Round 30 - *sc2tog* round (6)
Fasten off, but don't close as this will be the neck. Leave a tail for sewing.

with black yarn
Row 1 - chain (about) 41, or more/fewer to comfortably go round the larger part of the body. 
Row 2 - turn, skip 1st ch, sc along the row (40)
Row 3 - turn, ch1, sc along the row (40)
Row 4 - turn, ch1, sc along the row (40)
Fasten off and leave a long tail for sewing. 

LEGS (make 2)
worked bottom up
with red yarn
Round 1 - sc6 in magic circle (6)
Round 2 - *2sc in next* round (12)
Round 3 - *2sc in next, sc in following* round (18)
Round 4 - *2sc in next, sc in following 2* round (24)
Rounds 5-10 - sc round (24)
Round 11 - *sc2tog, sc in following 2* round (18)
Rounds 12-17 - sc round (18)
Round 18 - *sc2tog, sc in following* round (12)
Rounds 19-20 - sc round (12)
Stuff leg firmly, shaping as you go
Round 21 - *sc2tog* round (6)
Close opening and fasten off, leaving a tail for sewing. 

ARMS (make 2)
worked bottom up
with red yarn
Round 1 - sc6 in magic circle (6)
Round 2 - *2sc in next* round (12)
Rounds 3-12 - sc round (12)
change to black yarn
Rounds 13-16 - sc round (12)
Stuff arm, shaping as you go
Round 17 - *sc2tog* round (6)
Close opening and fasten off, leaving a tail for sewing. 

SWORDS (make 2)
with grey yarn
Row 1 - chain 21
Row 2 - turn, skip 1st ch, sc along the row (20)
Row 3 - turn, ch1, push the piece together lengthways (long sides touching) and sc along the row through both edges (20) - this should give the swords a thicker, almost (but not quite) triangular 'blade'

Fasten off and weave in ends. Then with black, simply wrap the yarn around one end of the swords, tightly so that no grey is showing through, and to the length of what you think a handle ought to be, the sew in to secure and fasten off/weave in ends. 
If your swords curve a little, like mine do below, don't worry!


 -  With black felt, cut out 2 shapes for Deadpool's mask/eyes, using the pictures as a guide. Sew eyes onto the felt using the white embroidery thread - I opted to have his eyes closed, but you could sew them as little white circles, as if they are open. Deadpool has a lot of facial expressions, it's worth looking at some pictures so you can decide what your favourite is!
 -  Pin the eyes into position onto the head, and sew using black thread. 
    OPTIONAL using black yarn, sew mask details onto his head as above - I used a back stitch. 
 -  Position the belt around the largest part of the body and pin into place. Sew using either black yarn or thread. Cut the belt buckle from red and black felt (alternatively, you could colour in the black details onto the red felt as this part is a little fiddly!), sew together, then position on the front of the belt/body and sew into place. 
 -  Sew the body and head together
 -  Pin the legs into place and sew to the body. Do the same for the arms (the black ends should be the shoulders)
 -  Position and pin the swords into place on Deadpool's back, and sew securely at the point where they cross. 

And that's it - Deadpool is all done! I hope you enjoy making him for the Marvel fan in  your life. If you have any questions don't be afraid to comment and ask, or you can email me - just visit the contact page

This pattern is for personal use only, please do not sell items made from this pattern. Please do not republish this pattern as your own/without permission.