Moji-Moji Design

Original Amigurumi Crochet Patterns


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Spring Circle Granny Square

Here’s a little guide to making the Spring Circles Granny Squares that I’ve been working on recently. I’ve included some photos and a full written pattern so you can have a go yourselves.

Spring-Circle-colours

I decided on these colours for mine but any combination will do. As the name ‘Spring Circles’ implies, I was inspired by all the colours that are commonly found around Easter time. The yarns are all light worsted weight (double knit/8 ply) acrylics. I used a size 7 (4.5mm hook).

Spring-Circles-equipment

The circles are very simple to make and use a combination of Slip stitch (Slst), single crochet (sc), half double crochet (hdc), double crochet (dc) and chain stitch (ch). These are the US terminologies. (I prefer to use US crochet terms in my patterns. If you are more familiar with UK terms a handy stitch conversion chart can be found at the bottom of my Free Patterns page along with an explanation of the abbreviations used.)

The Pattern:

Tip: To minimize the amount of yarn ends to darn in, lightly twist the new and old yarn ends together and crochet over them for 5 or six stitches on all rounds except round 4.  On round 4, tie the yarn ends together and leave dangling. (Tips for extra secure darning in are at the bottom of the pattern for the circular motif).

Rnd 1: With dark pink yarn make 4 ch, 11 dc into first ch, Slst in top of 4 ch, fasten off. (12 sts)

SS-Rnd-1

Tip: For secure joins, attach all colour changes by making a slip knot in the new colour, insert hook through your work where instructed and place slip knot on hook at back of work. Pull slip knit through to right side of work and continue as instructed in the pattern.

Rnd 2: Join green yarn in between first two dc, ch 2, [sc between next two dc, ch 1] 11 times, Slst to first ch, fasten off. (24 sts)

SS-Rnd-2

Rnd 3: Join light pink yarn in last 1-ch space from previous round and make 3 ch, dc in same 1-chain space as join, 2 dc in each 1-chain space around, Slst in top of 3 ch, fasten off. (24 sts)

SS-Rnd-3

Rnd 4: Join mint green  yarn in between any group of two dc and make 3 ch, [skip 2 dc, sc in next space, 2 ch] to end, Slst in top of 3 ch, fasten off. (36 sts)

ss-Rnd-4

Rnd 5: Join mid pink yarn in last 2-chain space and make 3ch, 2 dc in same 2-chain space as join, 3 dc in each of next 2-chain space to end, Slst in top of 3 ch, fasten off. (36 sts)

ss-Rnd-5

Rnd 6: Join cream yarn in last st and make 3 ch, dc in same st as join, dc in next st, hdc in each of next 5 st, dc in next st, 2 dc in next st, 2 ch, *2 dc in next st, dc in next st, hdc in each of next 5 st, dc in next st, 2 dc in next st, 2 ch, repeat from * 2 more times, join with a Slst in top of 3 ch. (52 sts)

ss-Rnd-66

Rnd 7: 2 ch, hdc in 2-chain space at base of 2 ch, hdc in each of next 11 st, *(2 hdc, 2 ch, 2 hdc) in next 2-chain space, hdc in each of next 11 st, repeat from * to end 2 more times, 2 hdc in last 2-ch space, Slst in top of 2 ch, fasten off.

ss-Rnd-76

If you followed my tip above you will have crocheted over the first part of each set of yarn ends already. To make them extra secure (probably a good idea if you are planning on making something like a blanket which will get lots of handling) thread one of the yarn ends from one of the pairs onto a tapestry needle and sew securely back over both yarn ends until you reach the beginning of that colour change then trim both ends closely.

SS-Darning-3

Happy crocheting!

 


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Spring Circles – All Done!

Yes, it’s true. My blanket and set of three cushions are now officially 100% finished! Started way back in the spring this has been a labour of love that has spanned several months comprising of many, many evenings and several long, stitch filled weekends (the best kind!).

Here are my very last ends to be darned in…

the-last-yarn-ends

…worthy of its own photo any day.

As any of you will know if you have embarked on a big scale project like this the very last yarn ends to darn is a moment of huge triumph. I’m always quite surprised it passes off so uneventfully in the end, expecting a herald of trumpeting angels to provide the soundtrack to such a momentous occasion.

I’ve taken a few pictures of my finished pieces. Maybe there are no angels who can spare the time to share the joy of such an occasion and so I’ll enshrine my handiwork to immortality in this blog post and share it with you guys instead! I’ve been using the blanket as a bedspread for some time, even though it wasn’t quite finished. But I have to say it feels even nicer to know there are no undealt with stray ends lurking on the back anymore. Just like when you tidy out your cupboards and you can feel the peace and harmony emanating from them even when the doors are closed.

mojo-and-the-unicorn

Mojo loves it as much as ever, but so does Pogo – who has managed to throw up a rather hideous hairball in catfood sauce on it already. As a result I can also safely say that this blanket scrubs up like a dream. Straight into the washing machine and by the time it emerged you wouldn’t even know that Pogo and the blanket been involved in a minor indiscretion.

Here’s the culprit. He looks like butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth and I sure have the proof that hairballs don’t either.

pogo's-tongue

Aww,  sweet dreams, Pogo but please don’t barf on it again!

bed-set

I love waking up every morning to the bright, cheery colours and I’m completely enamoured with the bobble edging. So much so that the cushions didn’t escape the same treatment either. It’s such a pretty way to finish things off. I was going to incorporate some of my christmas made pompoms into the edges but this was a much more straightforward, and robust way of finishing them in the end. Especially in light of the need for launderability.  This crocheted pompom edging would look lovely on a Boho style bag. >Makes mental note to have a go at designing a bag at some point in the future<

As soon as I managed to find a time where none of my four cats was comfortably settled on the bed I got the blanket and its cushion pals down to the lounge to show them off in all their glory.

blankets-and-cushions

Big mistake, in a way, as I love the look of the cushions on my new(ish) sofa. So much nicer than the plain ones that came with it. I have a few amigurumi commissions and a book submission to concentrate on this autumn, but maybe I can find my way clear to starting a set of cushions specifically for this room in the not too distant future. They sure do brighten the place up a bit.

sofa-cushions

I’m relieved to see that even though some of the circles ended up slightly ‘cuppy’ in shape have all flattened out very nicely as they were crocheted together and subjected to a bit of stretching. I hate blocking anything so the fact these little discs were ultimately self healing has made me very happy. I think my aversion to blocking is closely related to my aversion to ironing. What can I say? It’s just in my DNA I guess.

sofa-set

The fabric on the background below is earmarked for a set of pillowcases.

nosey-minnie

Loving raspberry pink right now and really want to bring some contrast of scale and texture into the bed ensemble and I think this fabric will do the trick very well.

cushions-in-a-row

I’m not quite finished with the re-style yet but it’s getting closer to becoming the bed of my dreams.

crochet-bed-set

Not quite sure how long it will be until I get the sewing machine out again to actually make the pillowcases. I find it so much easier to pick up a  hook instead, so am very easily distracted into yet another crochet project. It’s almost like an involuntary spasm, reaching for the hook and yarn. And so, with that thought, I’d like to share with you my latest yarny project. I’ve shared a few snippets before, I know, but am quite excited to see my new batch of squares taking shape.

Spring-Dots-blanket

Welcome to my Spring Dots mini blanket. It coordinates with the Spring Circles blanket but is going to be much smaller and meant more for throwing over a lap or a pair of chilly shoulders as the weather here heads towards its autumnal downward trending temperature spiral. It will be an ideal addition for when I’m reading or crocheting in bed through the winter months and feeling too mean to put the central heating on.

spring-dots

I’ve added in a couple of shades of purple this time, just to shake things up a bit, and as you can see I’m making progress rather nicely.

spring-dots-basket

I’m organising the squares into stripes as I go along by skewering them onto knitting needles – a set of greeny-blues followed by a set of pinky-purples – so it’s going to be easy peasy to join the squares together later.

Mojo looks on with disinterested interest, if there is such a thing (?)

mojo-on-the-coffee-table

We’ll be drowning in crochet on that bed of mine very soon but me and Mojo and Oswald the Owl (featuring in a new Zoomigurumi book towards the end of the year!) are not complaining.

mojo-and-the-owl

Bring it on, we say. The more the merrier. I think crocheting in, or on, the bed is now my new favorite thing.

crochet-on-the-bed

I may never get out of my pyjamas again!


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Camelia the Chameleon

Think of a colour, any colour, and you can be sure that Camelia has already thought about it, and probably worn it too. She’s so stylish, she looks good in any colour combo and I had lots of fun making her in a variety of different shades.

minnie-and-chameleons

Keeping the yarn tangle free while working the stripes requires a bit of patient untwisting at the end of every row so it’s always nice to have a cat around to make things ten times more complicated!

minnie-tangle

So far, I’ve made one with Orange accents…

two-orange-chameleons

…turquoise accents…

two-blue-chameleons

…and purple accents, or is that more of a magenta?..

cham-duo

As you can see they love to climb so I thought I would take them for a little trip around the river where they could indulge in a bit of bark shinning and practice their camouflage skills too. Here’s how we got on!

First they had a little skulk around in the shadows.

chameleons-in-the-park

Then we discovered some flower beds.

purple-chameleon

Pretty purple flowers for a purple toed chameleon.

orange-chameleon

A dash of fiery orange for this one.

Now the turquoise version proved to be a bit more of a problematic when it came to finding her dream home, but we eventually stumbled upon a rather good compromise in a bed of cornflowers which were the closest sort of blue we were likely to find around here.

blue-cham

The camoflage is a bit more convincing with the sun behind her.

blue-chameleon

In our ruminations about the possibility of a true turquoise flower we found out that there is actually such a thing on this planet. Its sprouts from the Jade Vine and is a native of the Philippines. Though they do grow in the rainforest biome of the Eden Project too. Either way – Cornwall or the Philippines – it’s a bit too far to travel on what was a weeknight so we ditched the idea of a real live photoshoot and settled for a bit of Photoshop instead.

jade-vine-and-chameleon

Not a bad match huh? Now I know that the whole idea of a chameleon is that it fits itself into the surroundings but with this stubborn woolly species I’m afraid you just have to go that extra mile to make sure the surroundings fit the chameleon.

After finding their perfect, or near perfect, flower matches they had a good scuttle up a tree, basking in the very last of the setting sun.

tree-climbing

Don’t you just love hot summer evenings?! I do hope we’re going to have quite few more of these yet.

3-tree-chameleons

After that it was time to head home. All the attention had gone right to the chameleon’s heads and they insisted I take a few more photos before bedtime.

chameleon-3

The purple one was too tired to walk after the river lap so she jumped into a basket and chilled out for a while.

chameleon-basket

I hung her up in the tree where she could relax in style…

cham-tree

… and wait for the shadows to hide her away…

chameleon-in-the-shade

Now that’s a happy face if ever I saw one!

*Camelia the Chameleon Pattern*


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Summer Fun

Recently I’ve been finding myself craving after hot bright summery colours. Probably due to the almost continual rain and grey skies emanating from above. In a fit of summery over-confidence I recently bought a duvet cover for my outdoor day bed in a multitude of jazzy colours – citrus hues, turquoises and hot pinks , and what a fabulous thing it was to brighten up the yard! I bought a double sized cover to fit a double sized mattress topper but failed to take into account how much larger a duvet is than the mattress it sits upon so I ended up having to cut it down quite a lot and sew up one of the edges. It’s been a while since I dusted off my faithful old Huskystar sewing machine but I soon got the hang of it again.

sewing

Aren’t those colours just so scrummy?

I even had enough off cuts of fabric left to make a few matching cushion covers. As sewing is not my strongest craft, in terms of anything technical, I aimed to make the design as simple as possible and sewed a straightforward envelope back to slip the cushions in and out of come laundry time.

day-bed

The cushions are now a perfect match for the two pillowcases that came with the duvet set, I now have a very comfy lounging area for indulging in my garden crochet time.

granny-squares

Now it was just a matter of settling in a couple of baskets of yarn along with various crochet projects (and at least one cat).

sunny-day-bed

The addition of a little sunshine is always welcome…

jumping-up

…as is a blanket to finish (so nearly, nearly there at last!)

mojo-and-the-blanket

I’ll finish it when Mojo moves.

mojo-in-the-blanket

No matter, he can have his woolly nest,  I should be working on the chameleon anyway.

shy-chameleon

This is my first attempt, but his face and jaw were a bit heavy. In fact, some insensitive person asked him ‘why the long face?’ which just made him feel very self conscious and sent him scuttling for refuge amongst the yarn.

shy-guy

It’s wasn’t long until the duvet colours had inspired a change of striping on my original chameleon design. I started out with blues and greens but really liked the additional yellows, oranges and magentas of my sewing project and thought they would be a perfect addition to add a bit of spark.

bright-start

The hot bright colours were a joy to work with and as the sun squeaked out of a cloudy gap, I felt like we were experiencing a taste of a tropical Rio summer – just right for the start of the 2016 Olympics.

two-cam

True to the camouflaging nature of chameleons, subsequent incarnations were morphing into something much more in harmony with their surroundings. Chameleon number two also had a cuter, shorter face and things felt like they were coming together just perfectly.

long-tail

I ended up making a few more with different coloured spines. I just love the colour tweaking elements of pattern designing. Re-making each one with a slightly different twist sure helps to brighten up the whole process.

3-chams

I have a few more photos to take this afternoon (…please don’t rain!), then I’ll be uploading the pattern into my online shops, and then I’ll be finished with another WIP. I should have lots more fancy chameleon photos to show you in the next post or two. I hope you’ll be more impressed than Mojo appears to be. He loves my blankets but distrusts all my amigurumi. I guess he’s just a jealous guy when it comes to other critters.

mojo-and-the-Chameleon

My Spring Circles blankets and cushions are inching towards completion. I have just a few more feet of the bobble border to finish on the cushions. Then they will match the blanket a treat and my bed will be a crochet haven. I’m planning on taking them down to the river for a photoshoot as my garden is a bit too small with lots of crabby, grubby edges, to do such a large project justice. Sounds like a good excuse for a picnic this weekend anyhow (…please don’t rain!)

old-and-new-crochet

It was quite satisfying to see how my latest crochet cushions complement my very first granny square blanket – started this time four years ago during the 2012 London Olympics – oh my, how time flies.

bobble-edge-cushions

So far the bobble trim is crocheted all around the Spring Circles blanket and onto two of the three cushions. I added some extra stuffing to the cushions as well. There’s nothing worse that a saggy pillow that doesn’t stand firm and show off all that lovely stitching and finishing!

So, lots to do, including the hare’s head trophy, an owl pattern for a new Zoomigurumi book and the princess pattern that keeps on getting sidelined, some proofreading and my brand new polka dots blanket, which started out like this…

polka-dots

…and  is now looking more like this…

blanket-strips

I think this last one could be the perfect project for keeping hands busy while I watch this year’s Olympic Games during my tired out evening slumps. Right, now let’s get some medals, or rather, let’s watch some other people get some medals. Personally I’m too obsessed with my crochet to have a go myself.

I’m quite happy to loll about on the day bed and watch the action from my ipad while hooking up a round or two more of whatever it is that comes to hand.

chameleon-and-flowers

(Oh, and please don’t rain…did I mention that before…)