1950 Vintage Bear

Not long ago my neighbor knocked on my door to show me a toy she had cherished since she was a baby. She knows I like to crochet stuffed animals and she thought I would be interested to see what her grandma made for her when she was born, a crocheted stuffed bear from 1950. Since I had never seen one before I was delighted to see it.

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Her grandma was a native american from the Chataw tribe in Oklahoma. She was very skilled in crafts and liked to make things for her family. Crochet was one of her talents and when Candy was born she decided to make her this little bear. There was no such patterns available at the time so she had to improvise all of it. I am very impressed with the result, it is unique and so cute!

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I can’t believe she kept that bear in such good shape for so many years. It doesn’t any tears or scratches, it looks like it was made yesterday! I was very interested in the technique she used so I took some close up pictures to show how it was made.

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She crocheted half circles that she slip stitch together for both the head, ears and body. I have never tried this method before but I really like the result.

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The arms are not crocheted in spirals but slip stitch at the end of each round. They are not stuffed at the shoulders, she kept them flat to sew them to the seam of the body. I couldn’t tell what she used for stuffing but it felt like cotton.

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She used pink yarn she crocheted in spiral and sewed to the arms. I would like to try to crochet arms this way and see how it turns out. Her method is different than the one used for Amigurumi but I really like it.

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You can tell that a love of love was put into her craft and I understand why Candy took good care of it, it’s a very special gift made from the heart. I am very glad she shared it with me, and I want to thank her for allowing me to take pictures and post them on my blog.

I hope you enjoyed this little story as much as I did. I find it very inspiring!

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The stars look very different today

Nobody lives forever, but artists are people we mourn because their artistry are part of our lives, and contribute to the memories we build through time. For me, Bowie was the influence that shaped my taste in music, theatre and fashion, an impact that I can still feel to this day. So, thank you Mr Jones for your contribution to our modern culture, you will remain my favorite music teacher.

 

Back from vacation with a new camera

I am back from a long vacation that started at the beginning of June and just ended two days ago. While I was away, I didn’t take any of my yarn or crochet hooks with me, nor did I post anything on my blog while I was away. This was a nice break that I imposed on myself to recharge my batteries before getting ready for another round of stitches and rows!

I did bring something back with me though, a brand new camera!  Until now I was using a Coolpix which made it difficult to take clear and crisp pictures. I decided it was time to upgrade, so I bought a Canon Rebel T5 which I hope will allow me to take better photos of my cat.. uh I mean, photos of my craft. Here is one of my wedding bride and groom I took this afternoon just for fun.

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So now it’s back to the grind, I cannot wait to start new projects, post patterns and talk about all kind of things related to crochet. I better get busy!

Happy crocheting!

Today feels like Christmas

Two days ago one of my friends surprised me with a large bag of yarn she found at the thrift store. I cannot tell you how delighted I was by this gift, I do not know where all the yarn comes from but whoever gave it away to the thrift store made my lucky day. I couldn’t wait to go home to dig through this treasure box. Let just say that I will not be short of supplies for quite a while.

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I counted 113 ball of yarn in all kind of colors. different tones of blue, pink, purple, beige and white, brown, yellow, black, and green, lots of green.

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I don’t think I have ever seen so much yarn in my life!

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I do not know how much she paid for the bag, but according to my friend it was a good bargain. Needless to say that I am going to make her something really nice to thank her for this gift.

balls of  yarn

I also found some honeysuckle yarn, and as a bonus, some thread, a tape, needles and a pin cushion at the bottom of the bag. It definitely feels like Christmas!

Honeysuckle yarn

I have already tons of projects in mind for all that yarn, I am so exicted, this is a crafter’s dream come true.

My next fan art project

Today I went to hobby lobby to buy something I wanted to purchase for the longest time, a wooden mannequin.  Their purpose are normally for drawing but I realized that it would help me figure out proportions when I crochet dolls, which will come handy for my next project; another Bowie doll.

This mannequin will help me figure out how many rows I need to build parts
This mannequin will help me determine how many rows I need to build parts

I have made Bowie dolls in the past, three of them actually, so you might wonder why make another one? This time, I am taking it to the next level. I am going to reproduce a scene from a photo that was taken during the Ziggy Stardust era. He is sitting on a chair, wearing his famous red boots, and a very glittery outfit.

The scene I am going to reproduce in crochet
The scene I am going to reproduce in crochet

I am going to use wire and doll joints to make the doll posable, this way I will be able to make him sit in the same position as the photo. I will also make the chair, and set it on a red display.

The wire I am going to  use to make the skeleton
The wire I am going to use to make the skeleton

I am also using fabric to make the clothes instead of crocheting them.  I found some really cool glittery material that looks similar to his outfit, it will allow me to put my new sewing machine to good use.

Glittery fabric for the clothes.

This is definitely not a small project, but that’s what I love about crafting. I have no idea how long it will take me to make it, but since time is not of the essence I will just have fun with it. Knowing me, I am going to get so obsessed with it that I am going to turn into an anti-social maniac until it’s finished.

Well, I better get started! I will definitely post more about this project as I go, and if all goes well, I will continue this as a Rock’N’roll series.

World Amigurumi Exhibition opening bash

I recently blogged about the World Amigurumi Exhibition that is currently taking place in New York, and even though I wasn’t able to go, Resobox posted a video of the opening bash on December 12th. The exhibit  will run until February 28th, 4,000 amigurumi gathered made by artists from all over the world, displayed in a room all over the walls and ceiling. Check it out:

World Amigurumi Exhibition – Location and hours.

Projects for 2015

The holidays are officially over, and after a three weeks break I am ready to get back to my yarn and hook. The new year has just started but I already have a long list of crochet projects I want to do in the first quarter of 2015. Here is what I have coming so far:

  • Druid tauren (World of Warcraft), for a friend of mine
  • Two beanies, friends 65th wedding anniversary (yes, 65th!)
  • an iPad cover
  • Yoda, and Leia for my friend’s little girl who is already a Star Wars fan.
  • Another David Bowie doll for myself. This time I am going to make the outfit out of glittery fabric instead of crocheting it (now that I have a sewing machine, I might as well use it!). This is a special project, I am going to do the replica of this photo, with chair and red background included. The doll will be posable and wired, I am very excited about it, my most challenging project to date.

In the meantime, I wish you all a great and beautiful year, full of bliss… and cute crochet creations!

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Craft fair – booth ideas/part 2

I spent the last two months preparing for a fair that took place last Thursday and Friday, two days in a row. It was so much fun, and now I can relax and take some time off crocheting for a while. (knowing me, that is going to last two days).

I had made a post about craft fairs a while ago, and my goal was too spend more time on presentation and improve my booth. I spent a lot of time in thrift stores and dollar stores to look for cheap but cute props. I also went on Pinterest to get some ideas and inspiration.

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I bought the fabric for the table at the garment district of Los Angeles, at 99 cents the yard. You cannot beat that price!

My first purchase was at the dollar store, I bought two holders and two plates which I glued together to make a small cake stands. I used them to display my crochet donuts and cupcakes.

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I can also use the plate display at my house as well when I don’t use it for fairs, it’s so pretty.

I found these wood boxes in my garage and put them to good use to display my dolls and little critters. I was thinking about painting them in white but I ran out of time. I think it turned out fine just the way it is anyway.

Booth fair 2
The garage is the cheapest place to go.

My second purchase was this tree made out of a branch, which I found at the flower district of Los Angeles. The  perfect display for my Christmas ornaments.

Tree display
I can also use that tree to decorate my house when I don’t use it at fairs!

I went to Jo-Anns and bought this jewelry stand half off with my coupon. I used it do display my crocheted keychains.

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Coupons are a life saver.

I used a photo stand I found at a thrift store to display my large ornaments.

Sometimes, you have to think outside the box to find things.
Sometimes, you have to think outside the box to find props.

I also got this shelf from a thrift store. It was my last purchase, but it took me a while to find one the right size. Can you see my little Daryl Dixon on the picture? 🙂

booth display

The tags you see on all these pictures are wood tags I found at Jo-Ann using, again, my coupons. I also bought some chalkboard tape to write the prices on it, this will allow me to re-use the tags again.

All of this didn’t cost me a lot of money, and it did make a difference in the way people looked at my booth. I can use all these props again for other fairs regardless of the season. I had a wonderful time the last two days, i wish I could do this more often, I love interacting with people and talk about my craft.

– The bear, koala and panda were made using a pattern by Stephanie, from All About Ami. The little Christmas trees are patterns by The Lazy Hobbyhopper. You can find  more information on these cuties in a post I made recently, untitled Panda Ornaments and Christmas Trees.

– The little donuts were made using a pattern by Joanita, from Creative Crochet Workshop.