Tag Archives: craft

Toadsies, free crochet toadstool patterns

Hi there crafty folks, is it Autunm yet? I have another colourful treat for you! These are the Toadsies, two lovely free toadstool patterns.

toadstool amigurumi

During one of those heat waves in this crazy hot Summer, I decided to distract myself by making Autumnal items, as a reminder good times are coming. Occasionally my hands got so sweaty even this lovely distraction wasn’t working all that well, but nonetheless I enjoyed my endeavours and they resulted in some very cool toadstools. And what could be more rewarding than to share the lovely toadsies for free with you lot, my biggest supporters? Scroll all the way down to find the marvelous pattern, and if you prefer having an even more fabulous looking PDF of this pattern, make me a small donation and I’ll email you the pattern.

But first a bit more about how I came up with these. As you can see, I made almost-true-size fly agarics. A young one, and a more fully grown version. We often come across these fungus when walking through our local nature, and I always love the moment I can take the first pictures of them with my phone. You know, from below to get that immense statue of a mushroom effect. In these cool pictures, you can get a good view of the spores and so I had to create them in my toadsies. Also very important to me was to create different sizes of little spots, to get a realistic appearance.

Making these was fun, I figured out pretty soon I could create the spores with treble crochet stitches, and the spots look totally “spot on” and even help to keep the toadsies in shape. And maybe the best thing about these I saved for last, you can make these crochet toadstools in one go. So go for it, I say!

Toadsies, crochet toadstool patterns

This pattern is written in standard American crochet terms. It’s useful to read it before you start. If you use the recommended yarn, your toadstools will be 9 cm / 3.5 inch high (wide version) and 7 cm / 2.8 inch high (small round version).

For these toadstools you’ll need worsted weight yarn and an E US/3.5 mm crochet hook. You’ll need three colours of (Lètt Lopi) yarn: red (1409), sheep white (0051) and barley (1419). A small amount of each colour will do. You will also need fibrefill to stuff the toadstools.

Abbreviations: ch = chain, sc = single crochet, st = stitch, sl st = slip stitch, hdc = half double crochet stitch, BLO = work in back (inside) loops only, s2tog = invisible decrease

The toadstools are worked in the round/ spirals. You can use a stitch marker to mark the beginning of a round. Move it up each time you start a new round. About changing colour: always change colour in the last loop of a stitch, so the loop on the hook you end with is the new colour. That means the next stitch is in the new colour, not the one you changed in.

Instructions

These toadstools are made in one piece. You start with the red colour to create the top. The first round of the white inside of the toadstool you will work in the back loops (BLO) only to create a nice folding line. In this round you decrease the number of stitches by half to create a flat inside; the dc’s & trebles will create the spores. After these rounds you will make a new folding line by working in BLO again, and then you work your way down to create the stems.

Round toadstool

Start in red, change colour to white and straw when indicated. 

1. magic ring of 6 = 6

2. 2 sc in each around = 12

3. (sc in next 3, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 15

4. (sc in next 4, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 18

5. (sc in next 5, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 21

6-8. sc in each around = 21

9. (sc in next 6, 2 sc in next) x 2, sc in next 6, sc in next, sl st in white in BLO in same = 24, cut red and continue in white.

You have made that white sl st in the back loop to create the neatest colour change possible. Count the sl st as a st. I experimented and this little trick creates an almost straight red edge with as small a bump as possible.

Stuff the first part of the toadstool. Stuff flexibly, leaving a little hole in the middle. Don’t just put the stuffing in but push it against the sides and mould the outside. The hole that is left in the middle you can use to shape the toadstool.

Special stitch instruction for dc dec, this is worked in BLO: yarn over (yo) and insert your hook into next st, (yo) and draw the yarn through the st, insert the hook into next st, yo and draw the yarn through the st, yo and draw the yarn through 3 loops on the hook, yo and draw the yarn through the remaining 2  loops on hook.

10. in BLO:  ch 2, dc dec x 12 = 12 (the ch 2 you only do in this round)

11. in 3rd ch from hook in BLO: sc in each around = 12

12. in BLO: sc in each around = 12

13-14.  sc in each around = 12

15.   (sc in next 3, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 15

16.   in BLO: (sc in next 3, s2tog) = 12 

Now you can stuff the rest of the toadstool. It is important to stuff it flexibly and to shape the cap correctly by pushing the spores (dc stitches) inwards with both thumbs as you can see in the image below. When you stuff the stem, keep that shape in mind.

17.   s2tog x 6 = 6, sl st and leave a very long yarn end for sewing and embroidering the little white dots.

Sew the hole closed by putting the needle from the inside out through all the outside loops of the 6 st, clockwise. If you do it correctly, you can now pull the end and it will close the gap. Weave in the end so you’ll have a nice flat bottom. Don’t cut the remaining the yarn end but leave it long for now. After you’ve created the straw-coloured skirt around the stem, you will use the white yarn end to shape the toadstool and create the white dots. 

The little skirt in straw

Find the first front loop of round 11 (the front loops closest to the stem) and attach your yarn to it with a sl st; sc in same, ch 1 & dc in next, sc in next, ch 1 & dc in next, dc in next, sc in next, ch 1 & dc in next, sc in next 2, ch 1 & dc in next, dc in next, sc in next, sl st in 1st st and leave a long yarn end to add some straw coloured spots to the cap.

Finishing

To finish this lovely toadstool, use the white yarn end to secure the bottom of the cap that was pushed inwards while at the same time embroidering the spots:  

Step 1. First sew a stitch into the bottom of the cap between the front loop of rounds 10 and 11 and let the yarn enter above it somewhere in the red cap. Pull the yarn as tight as necessary and sew a stitch into the cap. Now make the dot as big as you like. 

Step 2. When the dot is the size you like, sew the yarn back to the white bottom of the cap without tension on the strand and take one stitch to secure the yarn. 

Repeat steps1 & 2 all the way around so the bottom of the caps stays shaped a bit inwards and there are plenty of white dots. If you like you can also add a few straw-coloured dots, that’s up to you.

Wide toadstool

Start in red, change colour to white and straw when indicated. 

1. magic ring of 6 = 6

2. 2 sc in each around = 12

3. (sc in next 3, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 15

4. (sc in next 4, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 18

5.   sc in each around = 18

6. (sc in next 2, 2 sc in next) x 6 = 24

7.   (sc in next 3, 2 sc in next) x 6 = 30

8. (sc in next 4, 2 sc in next) x 6 = 36

9. (sc in next 5, 2 sc in next) x 5, sc in next 5, sc in next, sl st in  white in BLO in same = 42, cut red and continue in white,  like you did for the round toadstool.

Special stitch instruction for treble dec, worked in BLO: yarn over (yo) 2 times and insert your hook into next st, (yo) and draw the yarn through the st, insert the hook into next st, yo and draw the yarn through the st, yo and draw the yarn through 3 loops on the hook, yo and draw the yarn through the remaining 3 loops on the hook.

For the hdc tog: yarn over (yo) and insert your hook into next st, (yo) and draw the yarn through the st, insert hook into next st, yo and draw the yarn through the st, yo and draw the yarn through the 4 loops on hook.

10.   in BLO:  ch 3, treble dec x 21 = 21 (the ch 3 you only do in this round)

11.   in 4th ch from hook: (hdc in next 5, hdc tog) x 3 = 18

 

Stuff the first part of the toadstool like you stuffed the round version.

12.     (sc in next, s2tog) x 6 = 12

13.   in BLO: sc in each around = 12

14-15. sc in each around = 12 

16.   in BLO: sc in each around = 12

17-20. sc in each around = 12

21.   (sc in next 3, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 15

22.   sc in each around = 15

23.   in BLO: (sc in next 3, s2tog) x 3 = 12

Now you can stuff the rest of the toadstool, like you did for the round version. For this toadstool it’s also important to push the spores inwards as much as possible.

24.   s2tog x 6 = 6, sl st and weave in yarn end.

The little skirt in white and straw

Hold your toadstool upside down and attach the yarn as in the round version to the last front loop of round 11. (It’s the last because you are holding the toadstool upside down.) 

1. sc in each front loop around, change colour to straw in last st.

2. sc in next, dc in next, 2 dc in next, sc in next 2, ch 1 & dc in next, dc in next, hdc in next, sc in next 2, hdc in next, sc in next, sl st in 1st and weave in yarn ends.

Finishing

Finish this toadstool like the small round one, but attach a new, long strand of white yarn close to the stem and use that to shape the toadstool and add the dots. In the image below you can see how I arranged my toadstool’s little dots.

You can make as many of these as you like; try making one in orange or browns. Enjoy Autumn!

Copyright © 2018 by Sonja van der Wijk. Please do not reproduce this pattern in any way.

Free crochet pumpkin pattern

My favourite time of the year has started and I wanted to share my joy by giving you something fitting & fun to make. What about a free pattern for these two crochet pumpkin cuties?

realistic crochet pumpkins

Fall has always been my favourite time of the year. The light is getting softer and warmer, the temperatures are dropping and the colours are changing from shiny brights to warm darks. Especially the end of summer is dear to me, as it still is nice and warm to enjoy everything nature gives. My favourite lantern plant’s cheerful little ‘lanterns’ are shining ever so bright and it is time to harvest the pumpkins. Here I have to correct myself, I can’t actually harvest any pumpkins. My precious city garden is too shadowy and small to grow veggies. That is why I decided to ‘grow’ my own pumpkins out of wool instead of seeds 🎃

The abundance of lovely free pumpkin patterns made it quite difficult to come up with something original. But I had my mind set on how the pumpkins should look. They had to be realistic, which meant the shape should have vertical lines instead of horizontal like when you crochet in the round. They also needed to have a smooth surface, so that when you create the characteristic pumpkin bumps, there aren’t any bumps in the way. I came up with these two pumpkins and love them. They have an almost knitted feel and if you use the recommended yarn, they are about the same size as those little pumpkins used for decoration. In the pattern, which you can find below these images, you can find all the info you need.

 

And here it is, the pumpkin duo pattern, enjoy it! If you prefer having a neat PDF file of this pattern, you can donate me a little amount of your own choice and I will email you the pattern.

Crochet pumpkin duo pattern

This pattern is written in standard American crochet terms. If you use the recommended yarn, your wide pumpkin will be 9 cm wide by 6.5 cm high without the stem (2.5 by 3.5 inch) and the high pumpkin 8 cm wide by 9 cm high (3 by 3.5 inch).

For these pumpkins you’ll need worsted weight yarn and an E US/3.5 mm crochet hook. The yarn I’ve used is Istex Lètt lopi, a 100% wool, you need two colours; orange (1704) and a small amount of green (1406). You can easily make 2 pumpkins with one skein of orange Lopi yarn. You will also need strong orange embroidery thread to close and shape the pumpkins and fibrefill to stuff the pumpkins. Pipe cleaners for the stems are optional.

Abbreviations: ch = chain, sc = single crochet, st = stitch, sl st = slip stitch, hdc = half double crochet stitch, BLO = work in back (inside) loops only, s2tog = invisible decrease

The pumpkins are worked flat in rows. After each row you do a chain 1 and then turn. The first stitch of each next row you do in the second chain from the hook. The stems and bottoms are worked in the round/ spirals. You can use a stitch marker to mark the beginning of a round. Move it up each time you start a new round.

 

Instructions

wide crochet pumpkin

Wide pumpkin In orange and worked flat in rows. Leave a long yarn end at the beginning of your chain.

1.   ch 21, in 2nd ch from hook sc, sc in next 4, hdc in next 10, sc in next 5 = 20

2.   ch 1 & turn. In 2nd ch from hook sc, sc in next 4, hdc in next 10, sc in next 5 = 20

3-33.   repeat row 2

34.   repeat row 2 but sl st in last and leave a long yarn end.

 

Bottom patch In green and worked in the round. Make two if you make both pumpkins.

1.   magic ring of 6 = 6

2.   (sc in next, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 9, sl st and leave yarn end for sewing.

 

Stem In green and worked in the round. Make two if you make both pumpkins. 

1.   magic ring of 6 = 6

2.   in BLO, sc in each around = 6

3.   s2tog, sc in next 4 = 5

4-9.   sc in each around = 5

10.   2 sc in next, sc in next 4 = 6

11.   sc in each around = 6

12.   (sc in next, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 9

13.   (sc in next 2, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 12

14.   (sc in next 3, 2 sc in next) x 3 = 15, sl st and leave yarn end for sewing.

Skip the next part and continue with finishing if you are only making the wide pumpkin.

 


High pumpkin 
In orange. Work flat in rows. Leave a long yarn end at the beginning of your chain. 

1.   ch 25, in 2nd ch from hook sc, sc in next 4, hdc in next 14, sc in next 5 = 24

2.   ch 1 & turn. In 2nd ch from hook sc, sc in next 4, hdc in next 14, sc in next 5 = 24

3-31.   repeat row 2

32.   repeat row 2 but sl st and leave a long yarn end.

 

Finishing the pumpkins

Below this section you can find step by step images of the process. Read this whole section before you start sewing, to get a complete idea of how it works.

Slip stitch together the side edges of the pumpkins. Fold the piece in half, wrong side out if you have a favourite side. Insert your hook through the 1st loop on the edge with the starting chain and through both loops of the stitches on the edge you ended with, yarn over and finish the stitch as a sl st (photos 1 and 2). Work your way like this till you reach the end. Turn the piece right side out so that the slip stitched seam is on the inside.

Use a strong embroidery thread to close the bottom; you don’t want it to snap when you pull it tight (I used it doubled to be sure). Leave a long end at the beginning for a knot and sew it clockwise through the highest stitches on the outside of the edge (photo 3). The stitches aren’t all easy to see, but if you sew through 3 out of 4 the little trick will work. When you’ve worked your way around, tie a knot with the beginning of the strand and pull it as tight as you can, leaving the smallest gap possible (photo 4). Secure your knot and work the thread ends to the inside.

Stuff your pumpkin. When you stuff it, push the stuffing outwards to prevent the pumpkin from getting stretched in length, leaving a hole in the middle that you can fill last. If you have stuffed it correctly, your stuffing sits close to the edge but doesn’t bulge out when you knead your pumpkin. Now your pumpkin is ready to be closed. Do it the same way you closed the bottom (photo 5). 

When the pumpkin is closed, it needs a bit of extra shaping. Attach a very long strand of the strong embroidery thread to the edge of the hole at the bottom. Leave a long end to tie knots with and make sure the rest of the strand is long enough so it can encircle the pumpkin a few times. Encircle the pumpkin with the strand once and mark the path (photo 6). Now start at the beginning and sew under and then over the stitches of the path you chose (photo 7). When you are at the bottom again, pull the yarn as tight as you think looks good and make a knot with the beginning. Now repeat this step a few more times to create the right pumpkin shape. When you are satisfied, sew the last end of your strand a few times from the bottom to the top to create a nice dent in the middle (photo 8).

To finish your lovely pumpkins, attach the bottoms and the stems. The bottoms are sewn between the stitches of the edge of the bottoms, so the shape stays the same (photo 8). When you attach the stems, insert a pipe cleaner first if you want the stems to be bendable and insert the end into the pumpkin. When you sew the stem on, sew over the edge and into the pumpkin to create an invisible seam (photo 9).  

 

Enjoy nature’s change of seasons!

 

Copyright © 2018 by Sonja van der Wijk. Please do not reproduce this pattern in any way.

Bubbly, crochet otter pattern

And here he is, my whimsical looking crochet otter amigurumi called Bubbly.

realistic crochet otter pattern

It felt like I have been working on this pattern for ages. That’s probably because of all the free days we are having this time of year. But that doesn’t spoil the fun of publishing something new, on the contrary, I was looking so much forward to writing this post.

What do you think? Did I manage to capture the thing that make otters the popular and much loved animals as they are? I think I did, I’m so happy with this otter. Bubbly looks like an enthusiastic, funny young otter, who’s up to many tricks. Designing crochet animals and creating a doll that resembles the real animal in a basic way is a challenging thing, and for some animals it is harder than for others.

Otters are the kind of animal that need a bit of extra attention to give the doll the spirit real otters have. For example, my previous otter pattern looked like an otter, there’s no question about that and it is a lovely looking doll, but it missed that extra bit of character. This otter contains the sense of humor I like to add to my designs, his quizzical expression is priceless! I love Bubbly and hope you will love this otter amigurumi too.

Here are some more pictures of this funny looking crochet otter and below them you can find info about and links to buy the pattern.

Info about & links to buy the pattern

Bubbly is made with Istex Lett Lopi, a 100% wool with a lot of fuzziness. He is 6.2 inch/ 15,5 cm tall when made with this yarn. The pattern is written in standard American crochet terms and contains a clear and colour coded description of how to crochet and assemble this animal, with extra illustrations and example pictures at the bottom to help you get everything right. In the pattern you can also find what materials you need, the yarn colour numbers, in short, everything you need to know to make your own funny looking crochet otter amigurumi. All the additional information you need to know about this pattern you can find in the shop listings, like the yarn you need etc. You can buy this pattern in my shop at Craftsy and in my shop at Ravelry or order it here.

This pattern has a one dollar release discount till Tuesday the 29th of May!

In my garden

Hi there lovely crafters! I’m writing this from my garden office. The weather is so very lovely finally, how can I sit inside while it is nice and warm outside?

Yes, I am finally working on my new otter pattern. After all the updates, I was really looking forward to a new project but forgot my hard working boyfriend had a week off. Of course I wanted to do fun things together and go out into nature. The otter had to wait a bit. Despite all our outdoor activities, I did finish a lovely head and am now working on the rest of the otter and the pattern.

Most of you know I already made an otter pattern once, but I decided to make a completely new version, a much more mischievious looking one. This otter will have a younger and more whimsical appearance. Basil is a lovey otter, but he misses a bit of the characteristic funny otter looks.

There are two other patterns I almost can’t wait to start on. I already bought yarn for a giraffe pattern and after that I want to make an alpaca pattern, yes! I saw alpacas in a field and they are such silly looking creatures, I love them and all their fuzziness. I think I’m going to use an alpaca yarn to make one, how exciting!

See you soon with new and fun patterns!

I’m in update mode

Some of you know I am currently updating my older patterns. Why is that? It is not because I’m still in that phase. And it is not because the patterns aren’t good enough either.

There are two things that bother me. The first is, some of the older patterns are not text edited by my amazing editor and therefor contain silly mistakes. Just typos and weird sentences she has helped me with over the past few years. The second thing is, I am not satisfied anymore with the pictures some of them contain. When I started designing these crochet animals, I didn’t pay that much attention to the backgrounds of the pictures. Along the way the backgrounds have become cleaner and nowadays they basically just are a sandy warm colour. I have thought of shooting against a white background, but found that a bit too clean.

Because I’ve already designed so many animal patterns, I’m not going to do new photoshoots for all of them. Even though the older pictures aren’t as neat as the new ones, they do their job as instruction photos. The pictures I am replacing are the promotion pictures you see in my pattern page and the shop listings. The reason for that is, I want my shops to have a clean and professional look.

It is a bit overwhelming I have to admit, it’s a lot of work. But also addicting, because when I start something like this, I’m looking so much forward to the end result, I want to go fast. Check out my progress so far, you can clearly see the updated images. And ever so frustrating, despite my hard work some of them still have a slightly different coloured background…

These patterns have received an update lately:

Flam the fox. The doll itself only got a neater body, the pattern received a complete update with new and shiny pictures. This one needed it the most! Click image to view the new post.

 

 

 

Flims the hedgehog. No changes to the doll, only a pattern update. Hopefully no more silly mistakes and better images. My editor commented ‘you cannot call a hedgehog a hog’. Oops, no more hog then! Click the image to view the new post.

 

 

 

Wasby the raccoon, like Flims, no changes to the doll, only a pattern update with more and better pictures. Click the image to view the new post.

 

 

Currently I am working on an update for Jonesy the duckling and Moser the mole. More will follow, oh dear…

I wish you a crafty Christmas!

winter snow forest painting

It was a last minute activity to make a Son’s Popkes artwork Christmas card. I used to make one every year but last year I just did not feel like it. Crocheting gives me so much more pleasure and taking off a whole week from crocheting to paint a Christmas illustration was simply not going to happen. This year I did feel like making a Christmas illustration and I had a lovely idea, but still working on  something for a week…

I postponed and postponed till I had a few days before ‘sending time’. I decided to do a water colour illustration instead of acrylic paint on canvas. I had exactly two days to draw, colour, edit, print and write the cards. It was a bit hectic indeed. But also fun and exciting, one change only, could I do it?

I wish you all a merry Christmas dear crafty folks. And a very happy new year full of new crocheting, knitting and crafting endeavours!

Cheers 🦊🐢🦉 🐑🎉

Realistic crochet badger pattern

realistic amigurumi crochet badger

This is the first animal I have made in a realistic position, well actually the second. Last year I made a guinea pig on all fours but lets be honest, guinea pigs are little potatoes and therefor not the hardest animals to make. This one was much more complicated. In the series of realistic animals I started with a badger because it is my favourite animal, but also because I thought the shape of a badger is easier to design than that of a fox or squirrel for example.

Despite thinking that, I had a hard time designing the body. When I had finished my first prototype, it looked like a potato with a badger head. How on earth would I get a proper badger shape? I got completely stuck there and had to stop and think about how I was going to design the body. After some thinking I had a few ideas and set behind my desk again. The first idea did not work, made the badger look like an armadillo. However, the second solution I had in mind did work. The thing was, I needed to get a shape where the paws seemed to come out of the fur instead of looking attached to it. The simple solution of shoulder and hip pathes did the trick. Even without the fur brushed, the badger looked like a sturdy burrower.

If you would ask me what I like most about this badger, it is the face. I am so happy with it. On my desk I have this framed postcard with a portrait of a realistic badger wearing a jumper. That serious badger is looking at me all the time and I used that face as my example. And the result is so similar I even surprised myself!

The good thing about this pattern is, I did all the hard work. All you crocheters need to do is follow the instructions, easy peasy. This is not a very complicated pattern to make.

In this image you can see how the badger looks before brushing, to get a better idea of the basics before you buy the pattern. My editor complimented me on how extensively I have written the assembling instructions.

I did that to be sure everyone gets all the pieces in the right place, with the correct distances between them etcetera.

Here are some more pictures of the finished badger amigurumi to get you all enthusiastic and below them you can find more info about & and links to buy the pattern.

Info about & links to buy the pattern

This crochet badger is made with Istex Lett Lopi, a 100% wool with a lot of fuzziness that works very well with brushing. He is 7.8 inch/ 20 long from tail to nose when made with this yarn.

The pattern contains a clear and colour coded description of how to crochet and assemble this animal, with extra illustrations and example pictures at the bottom to help you get everything right. In the pattern you can also find what materials you need, the yarn colour numbers, in short, everything you need to know to make your own realistic badger amigurumi. All the additional information you need to know about this pattern you can find in the shop listings. You can buy this pattern in my shop at Craftsy and in my shop at Ravelry or order it here.

This pattern has a one dollar release discount till Friday the 1st of December!

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