Another flashback post here. One that was earmarked for publishing way back in about April in the midst of deepest darkest lockdown. Things are brighter and lighter and slightly more freer now and lots more has happened in between but I still wanted to share all the photos I took form that time – then maybe I’ll make a couple more posts a bit closer together until I’ve caught up with my crochet shenanigens again!
The house is still full of family memebers working and studying from home so thank goodness I have my own little haven with lots of yarn and a computer all to myself.
Even as people and cats shimmy by on a regular basis past my corner of the upstairs landing on the first floor of the house I can while away many an hour pattern writing and crocheting in relative peace. This full on family living can work very well when everone has a little bit of space just for themselves. I really have been appreciating how fortunate we all are to have that luxury.
As well as keeping busy in a house crammed with my favouroite people and felines, I also had a flock of Puffins waddling their way off the pages of my sketchbook and onto my lap via my hook.
What a challenge getting the beaks right was!
The first incarnation was good, but, well, just didn’t pop for me so I carried on fiddling around with colours and structure and eventually come up with the perfect solution. Lots of stripes and a nice rounded pattern on the base withing a sharp point at the tip and Bingo! I had found a way to create exactly what I was imagining in my head!
The first one I made that I really liked is the top middle puffin head above. I did a little victory dance around the studio when I saw how it all came together. It’s that moment when everything just ‘clicks’ with a pattern that I love the best!
The next stage was to make lots more in slightly different variations until I had got every stitch and colour combo exactly as it should be.
After that I made lots of photos to help explain the process. I always like to do this for my patterns if anything strays away from the routine single crochets or spiral construction. I’m becoming quite a whzz with my new Nikon camera. Evenings are often spent watching photography videos on YouTube and stashing away the tips to use later.
Loki loves having a nose around, or maybe she’s just wondering why anybody would need to crochet quite so many beaks
It’s a good question. I really just wanted to try out some different colourways to see what worked the best. I ended up liking them all pretty much the same.
There were quite a few loose ends created with this rechnique but as a lot of them can just be tied together on the inside of the work and then trimmed away it isn’t nearly as daunting as it may appear.
Not much time consuming darning in to be done at all in the end. Which is always a bonus!
Each puffin picked a beak and and those who felt the cold picked a hat and a scarf, apart from the guy second from right who reckoned he’s tough enough to endure the arctic without one.
To be honest I couldn’t decide which version – clothed or unclothed – I liked best, but then the nature of making your own from a pattern means it’s up to you to decide how you want your puffin to turn out. Which do you prefer? Maybe you will find it easier to make up your mind than I did!
When I’m not photographing my latest designs the end of my desk doubles up as a cat snooze area. It’s always a treat to see my fur babies and hear all their groans and snores from the other end of the desk but it does get a bit difficult to evict them when the lights, camera and action come into play.
Lyra seems rather worried about the size of my new lens. I tried to reassure her it isn’t a big black hole come to swallow her up but she insisted on checking it out thouroughly just in case 🙂
I worked around the cats eventually and took all take the glamour shots I needed after they padded away in search of more mischief.
Here we have a the entire colony putting their best beaks forward.
There were plenty of squawks of ‘make sure you get my good side’ and lots of flapping around and jostling to get the best position. They’re a proud and preening lot that’s to be sure and love to show off those flashy beaks so much. I hope I did them all justice in the end.
Pjeter the Puffin tries to talk Loki into sharing her igloo but Loki’s heart is as cold as Ice and wont share if she doesn’t have to.
After all a bit of peace and quiet and space to stretch your paws is a valued thing in this house. She knows she has the upper hand against a tiny crocheted puffin but…
…she often gets railroaded by her sisters. Poor Loki was obvoiuosly in here first but that hasn’t stopped Luna and Lyra piling in on top. They’re simply not taking ‘no’ for an answer, unlike the soft-touch puffin (but in his defense, there was only one of him).
It’s cute how much these sisters still love a good cuddle!
The girls still just about fit onto the Captain’s Chair in the corner of my bedroom but are definitely getting too big for some of their favorite old baskets.
Maybe I’ll be able to re-purpose them back to their original function of storing crochet again one day soon!
There’s still room for one and a half cats in here but they’re growing all the time!
I do so love how the cats gather around me to watch me work. I’ve got used to all the company of family permanently around during lockdown and wonder if things will seem very much like a ghost town in comparison when all the humans are back in their offices and lecture halls but at least I will still have the cats to keep me from feeling too lonely.
Check out my puffin pattern over on Etsy if you want to know more or if you fancy crocheting one yourself.
Next on my list is a blog post about my new princess pattern and then I have to finish off this little axolotl.
After that I have a sweet rabbit design to finalise for the upcoming Zoomigurumi10 book and a brand new dragon pal for Drake
So keep your eyes peeled for Benjy the Bunny, Alice the Axolotl and Dierdre(?) the Dragon coming to a blog post and/or pattern store near you soon!
I hope that whatever the type of lockdown you have had in your corner of the world you are beginning to enjoy some of the old freedoms as they inch back into our lives.
Keep safe and carry on crocheting!
July 17, 2020 at 4:47 pm
The puffins are bright & cheerful with their rainbow beaks. I can’t wait to get hold of the pattern for Alice. She is so cute. Your cats are cute too. How tantalising for them to be surrounded by all that yarn!
July 18, 2020 at 4:35 pm
The cats really do love the yarn. It can make crocheting a bit of a challenge though! Alice has gone off to the pattern testers so we are very nearly finished. Not long to wait now 🙂
July 18, 2020 at 10:34 pm
Axolotl’s are known for their smile, a gentle cute slightly upturned smile , in your sketch there is that hint of a smile , yet in your beautiful creation no smile :/ such a shame
September 14, 2020 at 8:47 am
The pattern is in my Etsy shop now where you will see that some have bigger smiles than others. 🙂 😀
September 19, 2020 at 1:50 am
These are adorable.
October 3, 2020 at 12:00 pm
Thank you! Glad you like them. The beaks were a bit of a palaver to design but I was really chuffed when I managed to do it!
June 11, 2021 at 5:34 pm
Are you still active on here?
I really enjoy seeing all your post
August 18, 2021 at 7:45 pm
loved every detail, your color combination is fantastic.