Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I love this book!

I've recently got my hands on a copy of Knitted Wild Animals by Sarah Keen, and it is just lovely! Not only are the patterns really cute, but the whole book is simply beautiful to look at with good clear photographs of the finished animals and little facts about each one too (for example, did you know a monkey was once tried and convicted for smoking a cigarette in South Bend, Indiana, USA? Well, now you do!).

I'm really struggling to choose a favourite pattern - I love the elephant, and the hippo, and the warthog, and the tiger... Really, there isn't a bad pattern here. My only problem is finding time to knit one of them (think I'll do an elephant first. No, the hippo... Oh, I don't know!).

If you want to grab a copy for yourself (or a Christmas present for a knitter), head to The Book People who are selling it for just £4.99 - bargain!

Saturday, October 9, 2010


My Chubby Cat amigurumi pattern was featured in 2 Folksy Friday collections yesterday :)

Check out more handmade cats at lillysnightgarden.blogspot.com and veryberryhandmade.wordpress.com!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Folksy Friday

I haven't been online much this week as it was our wedding anniversary on Monday and my husband had taken the week off work, so we've been out and about doing stuff. Yesterday we headed out west to Longleat Safari Park, then stopped off at Stonehenge on the way home.

I had a safari themed Folksy Friday not so long ago, so this week I've taken Stonehenge as my inspiration - you can click on the photos to find out more about each item.

Botticelli The Art Boat - 'Winter's Dawn at Stonehenge' Deborah Jones Jewellery - Henge, silver and turquoise earrings
silverhand - Kilmartin Rings inspired by the ancient Pictish Scottish settlement Rowan Tree Design - RUNIC ALPHABET Collage Sheet 0042
ialbert - World Heritage English Site Stonehenge Morph silver & bronze - Fine bronze pendant / charm

Friday, October 1, 2010

I can't draw...

But these people can! Check out these fab illustrations from Folksy sellers -

dadacreations Ink and Stylus
Marian Wood Art & Design Eddie Saul
Wintersgate Fairy Hand Drawn By Laura

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Rainy day

It's grey and wet outside, so I'm staying in today and working on the Lacy Sweater from Zoe Mellor's 'Adorable Knits For Tiny Tots'. I bought the book from The Works last year for 99p - total bargain! Here's the Little Star sweater I made from it earlier this year. This time I'm using Debbie Bliss Cotton DK in Rose (I'd say it's more of a raspberry pink than rose, but what do I know!) which I bought from Cafe Knit.

I'm also crocheting some more fingerless gloves for my Folksy shop and the next Duck Pond Market. Oh, and I'm still knitting my husband's scarf, so once again, I'm incapable of committing to a single project... What can I say, I just like starting new things!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Folksy Safari

My Folksy Friday post is a bit early this week, but I just couldn't wait until tomorrow!

I was looking through my honeymoon photos today and remembering the amazing time we had at the MalaMala game reserve in South Africa. Then I thought why not go on a Folksy safari - I found plenty of wild animals, but no warthogs - sorry Warty!


However, I am pleased to present...


elephant Sally Nencini - Lambswool pink elephant cushion


Circusville - Six Vintage style zebra gift tags zebras


leopard Superfumi - Lazy Leopard Pocket Mirror


Nant Designs - Giraffe Greetings Card giraffe


rhino ialbert - Two Bull Rhinos fighting


StoneArt - 0080 Lion 'King of the Jungle' lion

Why not go on a Folksy safari of your own and see what you can find? Visit www.folksy.com.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

When sales go wrong...

I was checking my email account yesterday afternoon and had received the magical message from Folksy to say I'd sold an item, followed by the even more magical email saying my buyer had paid for it.

The item in question was one of my amigurumi patterns, so, as stated in the listing, I sent an email with the pattern PDF. Then a short time later came a message from the buyer saying they'd thought they were buying the finished object rather than the pattern and they should have read the listing properly.

I responded to their message asking if they would like a refund, and they replied that would be nice but not necessary as it was their mistake. I decided to give a refund, and amended my listing to make it clearer (here is the listing - I added the red text, the rest of the description is the same).

Now maybe I've done myself out of a legitimate sale, but I figure it's better to have someone think "Hey, people on Folksy are nice" and tell their friends about a good experience rather than have them think "Huh, I'm never shopping on Folksy again".

So, did I do the right thing? What would you have done?

Friday, September 17, 2010

It's a Folky Friday!

My items have been featured in two lovely Folksy Friday collections this week - check them out at orangebirdstudio.blogspot.com and blog.folksy.com - thanks to Carol & Hilary!

And now for my Folksy Friday post -

You're driftwood floating under water
Breaking into pieces, pieces, pieces
Just driftwood, hollow and of no use
Waterfalls will find you, bind you, grind you

So sang Travis back in 1999 (ooh, that makes me feel old!), but having seen these items on Folksy I'm going to have to disagree that driftwood is of no use - aren't they all gorgeous!?

Free Range Designs - Driftwood Bed emeraldAisle Creations - Handcrafted Driftwood Mirror from Ireland
Kirsty Elson Designs - Driftwood Heart Coast Lines - Driftwood Coat Hooks
Coastline Crafts - Driftwood table lamp Art Crafts Driftwood Art - Tall Driftwood Wall Cabinet with Mirrored Door

There are plenty more beautiful items throughout Folksy, so do take a look!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

How many mistakes...?

How many mistakes is it possible to make in one row of knitting? Quite a lot as it turns out! My first lace project was going quite well, too well in fact. I've just spent the best part of an hour tinking back 3 rows and muttering obscenities about mohair... It will be worth it! It will! Well, I hope so...!

Now for happier things - I sold one of these keyrings at the market on Sunday, and have added this one to Folksy today.

And I got some Debbie Bliss cotton yarn yesterday from Cafe Knit which I'm going to use to make this sweater for my friends' little girl. Just need to find more hours in the day to get started on it!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Thinking about a giveaway...

Would you like to win an amigurumi giraffe?

Watch this space, I am working out how and when to have my first blog competition...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Yesterday's market

Yesterday was the last Duck Pond Market to be held in Harrow and it was soooo quiet. A lot of stall holders didn't bother coming, and our knitty stall was one of only 6 outside (there was a similar number inside). Between 10am and 2pm we sold a few buttons for a grand total of £1, and then I sold one of my keyrings and an amigurumi pattern. And that was it. My sale covered my share of the stall fees, so that's one positive, and the customer was lovely and seemed to really like my work, so that's another.

The guy on the bread stall from Flour Power City Bakery was giving bread away in the afternoon as it was going to be binned if he didn't sell it - at least we don't have that issue with unsold yarn! I did buy some lovely banana cake from him, and he had some gorgeous looking chocolate brownies too - if he's at Ruislip this coming Sunday, I think I'll be a repeat customer!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Stripes for Sunday

I'm working on a new amigurumi design at the moment that involves stripes (and no, it's not a zebra!). There are several different ways of changing colour when you're crocheting, so I've had a look around the web to find the best way to create my stripes and found a fantastic tutorial on NeedleNoodles.com - Crocheted Jogless Stripes. Even if I don't use this method for this particular amigurumi, I'd say it's well worth learning this technique, so I've bookmarked it for future reference.

Just listed a new keyring on Folksy today, a knitted mini sock. Now that I'm thinking of stripes, maybe a mini stripey sock will be next...

Friday, September 3, 2010

Friday again...

You know what that means - Folksy Friday time!

Tomorrow is my parents' 34th wedding anniversary and my 2nd wedding anniversary is next month, so I thought I'd see what anniversary goodies are available on Folksy. Here are just a few of my favourite finds...

Two for Joy Paper Studio - YOU MAKE ME HAPPY // art print // SMALL Spotty N Stripy - Anniversary Card
CraftyCrocs Card Shop - ANNIVERSARY CARD OR JUST TO SAY I LOVE YOU Gelert Design - Celtic Love Plaque
Giggles Animal Gifts - I love 'ewe' ! Harlequin Papercrafts - Greeting card - Frog Prince

Monday, August 30, 2010

It's a bank holiday Monday...

... and it's not raining!?!? What's going on!?

We're having a nice relaxing day, recovering from the party on Saturday which was lots of fun. My husband's (male) cousin came dressed as Amy Winehouse, and after a few cocktails the other men in the family all wanted to get in on the cross-dressing action before having a swim in their underwear.

As today is brighter than it has been in a while, I've been able to get some new photos taken for my giraffe amigurumi pattern. Some lovely Ravelry members have busy testing it for me, and now it's ready for sale on Ravelry and Folksy.

I've got an interview tomorrow about a voluntary role - more on that if it all goes well, fingers crossed!

Friday, August 27, 2010


It's my father-in-law's 60th birthday bash tomorrow. We've got him a personalised card from the lovely Mary of Quite Contrary Crafts (my third purchase from her shop this year - her cards are awesome!) and a bottle of Cu Dhub black whisky (I bought my husband a bottle when I was last in Glasgow and he loves it, so we hope his dad will too).

My step-mum-in-law has been busy preparing an extensive cocktail menu for the party, so I've decided to go with some drinks-related Folksy Friday picks for this week!

Dottie Cards - Jolly Cocktail Birthday Card TikiTearaway - Set of 3 TikiTearaway Cocktail Umbrella Hairclips
Sweet Talk Cosmetics - 100% Natural & Organic - Pina Colada Lip Balm Jentwinkle - Spots, Stripes & a Martini Make-up Bag
Brights & Delights - Leaves wine glass charm number8glass - Gin bottle chopping board

As usual, click on the photos to view full details of the items on Folksy.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Why I don't sell my amigurumis

I get a lot of people asking why I only sell amigurumi patterns and not the finished items. The simple answer is that I can't afford to.

You see, toy safety laws require that all toys sold in the UK must bear the CE marking. The CE mark is a declaration that the toy satisfies the essential safety requirements and has been manufactured in accordance with the relevant national standards. In order to find out if my amigurumis can be given a CE mark, I would either have to pay to have each design tested or pay for a copy of the BSI toy safety standards in order to self certify - either way I'd have to shell out a few hundred quid and still may not be able to sell anything.

So why don't I just add a disclaimer saying 'This is not a toy'? Well, the definition of a toy is "any product or material designed or clearly intended for use in play by children of less than 14 years of age" and it's worth noting that "any label or statement on, or with, an item indicating that it is not a toy, or is not intended for anyone under 14 years, would not necessarily be regarded as conclusive by enforcement authorities". These are direct quotations from the DTI's guidance notes on the UK Toys (Safety) Regulations 1995.

It is frustrating to be losing out on potential sales, but "supplying toys which are subject to the Regulations but do not meet their requirements would constitute an offence and could result in penalties of a fine of up to £5,000 or a term of imprisonment, or both". Worth the risk? I don't think so.

If you enjoy crochet though, you can make as many amigurumis as you like for whoever you like - the Regulations only apply to toys that are bought and sold, not to ones that are given away. :)

Incidentally, my pattern for the birdies above is available on Ravelry for free - enjoy!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Folksy Friday Time

Russian Caravan, or Earl Grey? I can't decided which I'd prefer just now. I do love a nice cup of tea, and so do the good people of Folksy if this little lot is anything to go by...

Shinta Shop - Love Card (My cup of tea) Teacosy House - Pineapple Tea Cosy
The Blue Starfish - Afternoon Tea Charm Bracelet Quite Contrary Crafts - I heart Tea! Coaster, Blue
Bluebird Crafts - hand painted cup & saucer Lou Peajeux Illustration - Bows And Boughs Teapot