Amigurumi and CE testing…

Amigurumi and CE testing…that is what I am trying to figure out right now and it’s a sizeable pain in the butt!

  Since hooking up my zebra last summer, I have had people ask me to make their children one…but, I have been hesitant; as in the UK and within Europe toys must by law carry the CE mark.

crochet zebraSo, for a long while I was completely put off the idea of making anymore amigurumi…but, my little zebra is just so delightful that every time I look at him I want to hook another, in a different colour of course.  I also want to hook a giraffe and a bear and all manner of other cute stuffies. 

amigurumi unicorn

So, I have done some research and my brain hurts…it really does.  But, I have found that I can  do my own CE testing…yes, that’s a whole lot cheaper than sending toys of to the lab to be CE tested! 

CE testing also involves science experiments! 

So, I am enlisting the help of my Dad as he is a retired primary school teacher, and hence very thorough and I know he will help make sure my testing is rigorous, which is just what I need.  

crochet zebra

The testing requires two prototypes of each toy, one to test prewash, one to test post washing.  I am finding the thought of making two a bit galling to be honest, as it will use my precious stash…but, I am just going to have to get over that!

The testing is even more vexing to me as I have to set fire to it…let me rephrase that…I have to set fire to my zebra!  If that still doesn’t register with you

I HAVE TO SET FIRE TO MY YARN!!!! TWICE!!!

Yes, I thought that might get your attention…I feel anxious about just typing that, let alone striking the match.  If my prototype survives that, I then have to suspend various weights from it amongst some other things, like checking the materials used are all EN71 compliant.  Of course all this has to be documented properly too.

If anyone knows any better than this or has experience of CE testing or can point me in the right direction, especially on what is required by law to sell toys outside of Europe, I would  really love to chat with you; as I have decided to bite the bullet and will commence testing soon.

But, first I am going to have to make some more amigurumi for the slaughter, as I just can’t bring myself to burn my zebra!

xxxxx

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Spring Sale…

baby accessories

Just popping by to let you know that this sale ends tomorrow, so be quick if you fancy a truly special baby blanket.  You can visit my shop by clicking on the photo!

I will pop by again soon to let you know about the other craftiness I have been getting up to that is non shop related…promise.

xxxxx

Last minute Easter pattern…

I thought I’d drop by to let you know all about a really cute pattern I have found.  It’s a quick make and the pattern is free (always a bonus!) and it would make a super cute Easter gift or spring gift.

newborn hat

It’s a very sweet little lambs hat, what could be more spring like…apart from a little fluffy yellow chick perhaps!

The pattern is available in all sizes from 0 -3 months right through to big peoples sizes and it is brilliantly written.  If your thinking I’m not sure about making those bobbles there is a useful youtube link to help you with that.   All in all this pattern would take you a couple of hours to make…that’s plenty of time to hook yourself a little flock.

newborn hat

I just adore how those lamb ears are low set and droop down.

baby hat

Of course I made a pink one too…

baby hat

So here are the pattern details…

Pattern by: Sarah Zimmerman

Pattern Name: Lamb’s Hat

Have you found any good patterns worth a shout out recently?

xxxxx

 

Heart baby blanket…

Here it is, my beautiful grey and white heart baby blanket…

grey and white baby blanket
pattern by @emmacartercrochet

I love this pattern, thanks to the very talented @emmacartercrochet for sharing this fabulous pattern which is called ‘The Ombre Heart C2C Blanket’ and which is also free!!!  How generous to share such a brilliant pattern.

It is a corner to corner construction and therefore works up quite quickly.  The version in Emma’s pattern has 5 colours which fade into each other, but I opted for a solid grey heart this time.  I say this time, because this pattern is addictive and I already want to make more.

grey and white baby blanket

I opted to add a simple double crochet (single crochet) border in grey, and added one of my natural sustainably sourced cork labels as the finishing touch.

grey and white baby blanket

I just love the soft texture of this baby blanket…

grey and white baby blanket

I think the heart would look amazing in a  swirl or gradient yarn, but I have chosen to make a rainbow blanket next, so the swirl may have to wait!  After working on these calming grey and whites this is what I’m going to be using next…

rainbow baby blanket

My favourite colour…..Rainbow!

 

xxxxx

Grey and white…

I said I’d pop by to show you what is on my hook this week, so here I am. 

But first of all, thanks for letting me know what you were making…I really enjoyed finding out what you were up to! 

This week has been all about grey and white makes for me…and I can’t get enough of this calming colourway. 

I have a corner to corner on the go right now

baby blanket greyand white

The pattern is The Ombre Heart C2C Blanket by Emma Carter Crochet.

I am really enjoying hooking this blanket.  The pattern does not give a finished size and I was a bit worried it would either be too big or too small for what I wanted, but it is turning out to be just right for what I had in mind.  It will make a decent sized baby blanket.

crochet corner tocorner baby blanket

I have also made some grey and white burp cloths…well I just couldn’t resist!

grey and white burp cloths

grey and white burp cloths

grey and white burp cloths

Having said all that…my creative heart is now yearning for rainbow colours…so as soon as this is off my hook,  I’m getting my rainbow on!

What colours are you working with right now?

All done…Vintage Vibe baby blanket.

Thank you so much for all the messages of support for my new Etsy Shop, whether it was over on Insta or in the comments thread here, I have been so encouraged by your wishes. 

I have stopped by today though to show you a finished project…yes I know it’s been a while!  Do you remember this…

crochet blanketThe post is just here, if you want to read in more detail…but in a nut shell, I named this project my ‘Make do’ blanket, because I used the yarn from my stash and just made do with what I had.  I honestly thought it would look rubbish…but, I actually really LOVE it.

grannystripe baby blanket on etsyThe random colours coupled with the granny stitch give it a real vintage vibe.

granny stripe baby blanket on etsy

I finished it off with this beautiful sustainably sourced cork label which I have recently had custom made.  Check this shop out if you’d like labels like this (no affiliate link…I just love this shop!).

baby blanket on etsy

I bordered it in red, as this yarn was what I had the most of, I only just had enough to add one round of granny stitches…I really would have liked to have added several more rows to make a wider band around the blanket, but this is my ‘make do’ blanket, so one round it was.

baby blanket on Etsy

All in all, I am thrilled with this make, it’s busted some stash, become something beautiful and was quite quick to make.  I now have a corner to corner on my hook, if you follow me on insta then you may have seen some sneak peeks, but if not, I will put a post up all about that really soon…It’s an awesome pattern. 

What have you got on the go at the moment?  I would love to know.

Etsy shop now open…

For those of you who have asked…It’s now open. I have started with a little stock, but will be adding some more cute baby stuff very soon.

I would love your feedback, please pop over and tell me what you think…the link is just here or you can click the Etsy tab at the top of this site.

Off to do some more hooking now!

Have a great week.

 

Something new…

 


Hi lovelies…I have some really exciting news; which may explain my absence here at the nest over the last couple of months. 

 It is quite late here now and I have been trying to write this post since Friday, so I will keep this post short. 

I have come to the point in my crochet journey, where I can no longer just crochet for crochet sake…I have more blankets than I can shake a stick at and I think my long suffering family and dear friends are done with my handmade makes! 

So, after 12 months of deliberation and self doubt I have found my big girl pants and will be opening a little Etsy shop, very soon!!!

I have been busy making behind the scenes

newborn hats Cute little baby hats

baby burp clothsBaby burp cloths

baby blanketand of course, baby blankets

crochet cupcakes
Cupcake Trio

and cakes too! 

You can spot the theme…beautiful handmade baby essentials and toddler toys. 

I will of course still blog…and don’t worry it won’t all be Etsy related, I promise. 

You may see some housekeeping changes over the coming weeks, as I embark on freshening up the look of this site…I do hope you will bear with me and I hope you will continue to journey with me,

because I really enjoy having you along for the ride!

Little Hearts…Lots of Joy!

These are some of my first makes of 2019…

crochet hearts

Colourful 3d crochet hearts. The pattern is called ‘Hearts and Bees’ by MojiMojiDesigns.

I spent a lazy New Years afternoon looking at lots of different heart patterns over on pinterest, but this pattern was written well and was my favourite by far. 

crochet hearts

I really like the neat little invisible decrease stitch which is recommended in the pattern too.  I had read ‘invisible decrease’ in a few patterns, and had no idea how to make my decrease invisible, but this pattern clearly explains how to execute said stitch…and it is super nifty and is indeed invisible. 

crochet Hearts

These hearts are made from Stylecraft Special Chunky and measure approx. 10cms x 9cms.    

I ended up hooking several and found it a very pleasant way to spend an afternoon thawing out after an extremely cold and particular lengthy walk with the dogs. 

crochet hearts

I think these hearts would be adorable as little newborn photo props or for gender reveals or perhaps even for Valentine’s which is just around the corner! 

What do you think?

xxxxx

Thank you 2018…

As 2018 draws to a close and 2019 peeps over the horizon, it is that time of year when bloggers from all around the world post their obligatory review of the year. 

Yes, this is that type of post…however, I have kept it simple and I have decided to choose just one photo from each month…yarn related of course. 

Suffice just to say, 2018 has had it’s ups and downs, as I am sure it has for you; but crochet has, as always been my constant therapy!  2018 was all about busting my stash, finishing Projects Half Done (PHD’s) and learning to knit…I have also released the following FREE patterns this year which I hope you have enjoyed.

Sunshine Jelly Baby Blanket

Grandma Florence Tea Cosy

Grandma Kathy Tea Cosy

Being part of an amazing crafty community means so much to me and I just want to say a MASSIVE thank you to you, whether you are a first time reader or if you are a regular  here at the nest.  Your support and encouragement is treasured. 

Here  are my favourite 12 yarny photo’s of 2018…

January 2018

crochet tea cosy free pattern and tutorialThe Grandma Florence Tea Cosy…bright, quirky and a whole lot of fun to make.

February 2018

broken foot and crochet
guilt free resting!

February, revolved around guilt free crochet as I ended up on crutches and had to take a month out of work. Luckily, for me I found the beautiful Seaside Stashbusting Blanket CAL hosted by the very talented Coastal Crochet It was the perfect project to bust some of my stash…every cloud eh!

March 2018

crochet blanket
crochet and coffee

This is my favourite photo from March.  My Seaside Stash Busting Blanket was starting to look more blanket like and by now I was enjoying the random colour selection from my stash.

April 2018

crochet baby blanketOn a personal level April was profoundly traumatic and sad here  at the nest, but on a yarny level I released the pattern for this beauty.  I just love this blanket so, so much and it proved to be a welcome shower of cheer which burst forth amongst the grief.  This also fulfilled the remit of completing a PHD!

The free pattern is available just here. 

May 2018

learning to knit
learning to knit

2018 saw the beginning of my learning to knit adventure…this is as far as I got.  I started really well and perhaps got a little ambitious…which became my downfall.  Here are my posts to prove it here,  just here and here

I haven’t returned to this project yet as I can’t work out where I am in the pattern!  I do really want to finish this off…a New Year Challenge perhaps? 

June 2018

crochet blanket cal

  We had an unusually hot summer here in the UK, so hooking al fresco was great now that my Seaside Stash Busting Blanket had grown in size.  We had a beautiful sunny weekend glamping and those soft pink and grey shells will forever remind me of that recharging break away with Mr R and the Robins.  You can read about those glamping adventures just here.

July 2018

crochet zebra

The stash busting continued throughout July and inspired me to hook this cheeky dude.  I had some black, white and grey Paintbox cottons just sitting in my stash and the most apparent thing to make was a zebra of course. 

Having never made amigurumi before I am now completely smitten with all things amigurumi, which came as a total surprise to me!  I made so many mistakes with this pattern, but learnt lots about the process of amigurumi along the way…if you want the full details of the mistakes I made take a look here.

August 2018

Vintage Market Tote

This was a joy to hook and also busted some more stash.  I made this Vintage Market Tote for my Mama…and she loved it

September 2018

mixed stitch blanket

The end was in sight for the now glorious Seaside Stash Busting Blanket…and just in time for the change of seasons as Autumn crept in.

October 2018

amigurumi unicorn

A real …tadaaa… moment.  This beautiful unicorn was made with a lot of love in my heart and no mistakes…well none that I know of!  A real gem of a pattern that was easy to follow and so well written.  It was an absolute joy to send her to her forever home and I am looking forward to hearing what she has been named.  The pattern details are just here.

November 2018

crochet baby blanket

My two favourite things to do when I’m on my own are to crochet and drink coffee and if I can do both whilst watching the world go by then that is near perfect for me. 

This  is another stash busting win for me also…a super soft and pretty baby blanket using up left over yarn from my Sunday Shawl.

December 2018

crochet bag

This is the sad state of my Charming Harbour Blanket…still in its bag  (hangs head in shame!). 

This photo is from January…a PHD fail.  I have added some more rows over the course of the year…honest I have.  I don’t know why I haven’t finished it.  The pattern is simple and it is very handsome… and it is not really that far from being finished; but the pretty things call me more loudly.  

All in all 2018 has been quite yarny, maybe not as yarny as some, but yarny nonetheless.  I have met some amazing crafty friends along the way, busted through a lot of my stash and finished a PHD or two. 

Now bring on 2019!

xxxxx