Moji-Moji Design

Original Amigurumi Crochet Patterns


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Giles the Giraffe Takes to the Road

With a long road trip and a mixed bag of bad weather to contend with I’ve had plenty of opportunity to get out my hook and start creating again. My latest pattern is for this cheeky lopsided smiled giraffe whom I’ve called Giles.

It’s been a while since I worked on a design that wasn’t for a book or a magazine so it felt really refreshing to do something ‘just for me’ for a change. No deadlines, no working to commission, no liaising. Don’t get me wrong, I thrive on all of that too, but sometimes it’s nice to take it all down a notch and just create on an impulse exactly what I feel like making.

Giles made a super little travelling companion on a very slow and laborious trip Up North to visit relatives. He was so excited to be packed away ready for his first journey out of the house. He does look rather pleased at the prospect of a great adventure!

We headed downstairs to the kitchen and a step closer to beginning our journey…

…then out of the front door, into the car and onto the motorway. Woohoo! Hurrah!

Giles loved this bit the very best of all. Turns out he’s a giraffe with a need for speed. Yes, this little guy’s a bit of a thrill seeker! I was a teensy bit excited myself as this was my first trip in our new car. Our poor old Toyota Estima had given up for good during the heavy snows and icy temperatures of a few weeks ago. Now we have a Nissan Elgrand with six captain chair style seats and all the space I could possibly need for my endless yarny clutter.

Unfortunately the amount of road works that spring up everywhere these days makes driving a bit of a chore and it wasn’t long before the traffic ground to a halt and then proceeded to crawl along at a snails’s pace.

Now you know that feeling when sometimes amigurumi making, – and particularly something like pattern testing – is requesting more concentration of you than you think you can give? Well that’s where I was at for the first hour of the journey. I blame it on the early start but my brain would only cope with this simple ultra-repetitive four line repeat of this scarf. I’d already memorized the pattern before the journey began so it was the perfect busy hands project for when by head was in cruise mode.

Our visit was fun. Lots of gossip was caught up with and fine pub food was consumed. On the way back I decided to try out sitting in the back (or rather the middle) of the car. I made myself a comfy work area, got settled in a squishy leather chair and felt very decadent while I was at it. I think I could get used to this. Giles looks like he was born for this sort of luxury too and has made himself quite at home on the seat next to me! Oh and I did try to put a seat belt on him but he’s a touch on the tiny side and it wouldn’t fit. Having never seen a booster seat for 14 inch tall giraffes I made him promise to sit still, tucked safely behind the yarn, or he would be back in the rucksack until we got home. With that threat hanging over him he was as good as gold and sat quietly, watching intently as a pink and a blue giraffe began to take shape.

Once we arrived back the sun was still out and after more than our fair share of snow and rain and wind recently it seemed too good an opportunity to miss so we headed for the garden. Rolling out a picnic rug and unpacking my bag I carried on with pattern testing. I’m still getting used to the fact that I have a lawn to play on this summer and oh boy am I loving it! So much nicer than the fence to fence patio area that was down before.

The cats love the lawn too. What a wonderful place to sit and watch the birds.

It wasn’t long before Minnie came to stake a claim on the rug and the crochet by firmly plonking herself down on both.

Oh well. I was just about crocheted out for the day at that point anyway. lots of progress on Pinky and Bluey had been made.

Just to be extra sure there were no glaring errors in the pattern I went through it yet again in the studio the next day and not too long after I am now the proud owner of not one, not two…

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…not three…

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…but four sweetly smiling giraffes.

What a bunch of cuties, and perfect for my craft stall!

If you want to have a go at making one the pattern is available from any of my online shops or, if you live in or near Worcester, come visit me at the Worcester Show in Gheluvelt Park on the 12th August and meet Giles the Giraffe in person. I’d love to see you there!

In the meantime I will be busy making lots more amigurumi and a few more scarves to stock up my stall as well as perfecting my new pattern for a pair of Tippy Toed monsters Called Timothy and Tabitha who will be heading over to Belgium to feature in a second volume of Amigurumi Monsters published by Meteoor Books over at AmigurumiPatterns.net.

I’m also testing a super cute Bobby the Dinocorn pattern by Little Aqua Girl for the fantasy creatures themed book due out in August. This dinocorn will be one of Drake the Dragons book fellows and I cant wait to see how she turns out. And neither can Drake who is too excited to keep out of the project basket.

Things are busy around here, that’s for sure, but that’s the way (uh huh, uh huh) I like it!


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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.

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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.

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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.

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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).

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The addition of a little sunshine is always welcome…

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

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I’ll finish it when Mojo moves.

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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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!)

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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.

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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…

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…and  is now looking more like this…

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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.

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


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Hooking Shawls and Knitting Kitties

It’s done! My lovely shawl, started in a sunny field at a festival last weekend was finished in my sunny garden this weekend. I’m really pleased with the way it worked out. It’s a good size for chillier summer evenings and the bargain bucket job lot of Rowan Frost yarn made it to the end with the added bonus of having two balls left over. Maybe some boot cuffs or fingerless mitts would make nice little project for the autumn. I’ll just add them to the ever growing list of things I want to do!

I was so pleased with the end result that I couldn’t stop myself from starting a new one almost seconds after I knotted on the last tassel. This time I have a bargain lot of Rowan Summerspun in delicious reds and purples. This yarn has a mainly cotton feel to it, despite being 50% wool, and a very pretty loose twist that pairs the variegated colours together beautifully.

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The label indicates a 4 mm hook but I’m using a 5 mm instead to give the shawl lots of drape. We are having another run of beautiful weather here so I made the most of things this weekend and spent a big chunk of Saturday afternoon in the garden, gainfully employed cracking on with shawl number 2.

And as the afternoon turns to evening a little bit of sunshine, a little bit of crochet and a little bit of fizzy wine makes everything perfect!

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Earlier on this week I had a bit of a sort out in my studio and unearthed some unfinished projects. Vowing to finish all the loose ends of various makes I decided to start with two cat doorstops that were knitted up and waiting for their finishing touches. It’s such a sweet pattern from a fabulous book called Knitted Cats and Kittens by Sue Stratford. So off I went to pull the book back off the shelf. Now to pack up a project basket with the necessaries and make time to finish them, once and for all.

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I began this kitty twosome way back last year, and I’ve got no idea why I stopped so close to the finishing post! I must have got distracted and just forgot about them.

I often like to dip in and out of projects so in between rows of my new shawl I endeavoured to knit up the missing tails and feet and sew their little faces on. Now don’t they look cute!

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One more tail and two more feet left to go and these two little buddies will be ready to keep my doors properly stopped. As the needles click away, and the rows turn, I’m reminded of how much I like knitting. I really don’t do nearly as much as I used to. Knitting was my first yarn related love affair, starting at age 8, after all, with crochet only arriving in my life a few years ago. So yeah, it’s good to ditch the hook and wield the needles sometimes, and when the crochet hand cramps start up it’s rather therapeutic to exercise them out with a good knit!

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Tigger is trying to be gracious about the new arrivals, but I think his expression gives away how he truly feels!

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*As if there aren’t enough of us cats around here already*

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As I’ve got no room for any more real cats, I might just start hoarding woolly ones instead.

It’s still bright enough for shades at this point…If I can get them back off the cat…

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…but as all good things must come to an end, the sun sets and knitting gets kind of tricky in the twighlight. It’s too warm to want to go indoors yet so we spark up the tea lights and I take a little break to watch the stars get brighter as the dark thickens around us.

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But even all those tea lights aren’t enough to illuminate my little knitted stitches, and I’m not risking dropping any, so the new cats grace the table and watch as the shawl re-emerges to have its turn. Thanks to a combination of big, easy to work chains and my light up crochet hook, it’s a doddle, (even after a glass or two of wine!)

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So the stars shine, the candles flicker and the shawl grows longer by the hour.

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I do hope these balmy summer nights roll on for a bit longer yet so I can enjoy a few more like this before the autumn chill kicks in.

Sunday morning was a cheery sight of blue skies interspersed with smattering of fluffy clouds. Knowing our weather patterns these are just as likely to develop into thick grey beasties drenching us with thunderous downpours as they are likely to burn up and give us another scorcher of a day. In light of the possibility of the first scenario coming true we decide it’s best to get out there as soon as possible and enjoy it while we can.

Out come the bikes for hubby and me, and after a quick shout up the stairs to see if any of the boys want to come too (they didn’t) we headed off for a 10 mile spin around the river. Some gorgeous new patches of flowers have sprung up since I was last down here. Had to get a photo of these beauties. They sure put my pots of chewed up pansies to shame!

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Love that riot of colour, makes your heart sing just to look!

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Back home again so I can finish knitting the tail for the second cat. Two tails and twelve tiny toes later and – Tah-dahhh! Finished at last 🙂Two-Knitted-Cats

These two that were part of the work in progress mega mountain are now fully formed felines to be proud of.

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Now it just needs to be seen whether they’ll be accepted by the natives. Doorstop cat looks like he wants to be friends, but Mojo is one cool customer and refuses to make eye contact or acknowledge the newbie at all. Not looking too good so far!

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Now I’ve got my knitting head firmly screwed on again I’m going to have a go at this little fella.

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I just hope he doesn’t end up on the WIP pile for another year like the last two. Only time will tell!


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Creepy Crawlies, Butterflies and Flowers

It’s been a week of creepy crawlies! With my Katy the Caterpiller pattern so very nearly completed I’ve also been sent a pattern to test for the new ‘Parent and Baby’ amigurumipatterns.net book. I volunteered to proofread a random pattern and quite by chance have ended up with another caterpillar to crochet – this time complete with his butterfly mommy. This beautiful design by Bas den Braver is going to be a fun little project to keep me busy over the next few days.

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Awww – cute!!

Check out all of Bas’s other patterns on his Zabbez website. They’ll be sure to put a smile on your face! They certainly put one on mine with their floral themes and hot zingy colours. Don’t these little characters just make you want to get out in the garden and make it bloom?!

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I’d love to have a go at growing more and varied types of flowers in my tubs and pots (pansies and geraniums have been my best successes so far) but I’ve got a problem with slugs and snails – I can’t bring myself to ‘dispatch’ them in any way – so most of my green fingered efforts end up looking like this… An unholy holy mess for sure!

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Chilli plants are apparently delicious for lunch (if you’re a snail that is, I prefer a bit of iceberg lettuce myself). At least I know exactly who the culprits are this time. Sheldon and Shelby look rather pleased with themselves for finding such a tasty morsel but at least they had the manners to blush when I caught them red handed – or rather, green footed. But as cute as this pair is there’s a whole army of the more brown and slimy kind coming out every night to wreak havoc. Luckily I had the foresight to keep a few chilli plants inside on the kitchen windowsill, so if my outdoor ones don’t survive they’ll be my back up plan. If you have similar gardening disasters to mine you might take comfort in crocheting some of these flower people instead, secure in the knowledge that Bas’s tribute to the garden folks are totally snail proof!

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It’s not just the chilli plants that have suffered in my garden. I planted 20 marigolds and a sunflower seedling out in the border just over two weeks ago. Sad to say they’ve all vanished before they even got a proper root hold! Ah well, I never learn. I’m actually quite happy to resort to shop bought flowers to cheer the place up anyway. Hubby bought me these last weekend because they matched my Katy the Caterpillar project that I was working on at the time. How thoughtful 🙂 And what excellent rationale for choosing the colour scheme of my little gift. He knows the kind of details that make me happy!

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Not a bad match at all!

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And though the petals are starting to drop there’s still a lot of life left in my lovely bunch of summer sun.Sunflower2

Back to testing out the Butterfly Bree and Caterpillar Calin pattern – I thought I would change the colours slightly as I work through it, mainly because I bought some beautiful sparkly yarn recently with some Christmas makes in mind and I’m itching to try it out. I’m making my version of Bree look more like one of these Blue Morpho specimens. I love the depth of colour in these amazing creatures – I could just stare at that dreamy blue all day.

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But I don’t have time for too much staring at it, so even better than that I’ll crochet with it instead.

A quick rummage around the stash baskets and all materials are gathered together. Yarns at the ready…

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…pattern printed, essential kit located… and we’re off!

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Papa Penguin and Baby Pierre are fascinated to meet two of their fellow stars from the new book. Pierre has already made plans to take Calin to the park to play on the swings and Papa is going to introduce Bree to the other parents at Pierre’s pre-school.

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Hopefully I’ll have finished making them in time for my next post so you can see how they turned out. Papa and Pierre can’t wait – parent and toddler group is going to be so much more fun with new friends to take along!


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Very Berry

Another week has shot past and I’m still enamoured with the circular granny motif I was working on last week. Trying out a softer look for them this time with soft and dreamy ice creamy berry colours in romantic pinks and purples. Raspberry ripple or blueberry burst springs to mind and makes me want to head straight for the freezer for a scoop or two!

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A rather pretty match to the Sweet Williams that are currently gracing my window ledge here in the studio.

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I’ve so much work to get through at the moment but I’m refusing to panic and instead just thanking my lucky stars that my job involves such an abundance of crochet. It’s been four years now since I first picked up a hook and  painstakingly followed a couple of Youtube videos. I can remember struggling to hold the yarn correctly – a lifetime of prior knitting experience can confuse your fine motor skills like that when you suddenly try to switch to a brand new technique.  It was a serious case of knotted up fingers and thumbs and terrible tension and it was just a teeny bit frustrating!  So, so glad I didn’t give up though – I’m still showing no signs whatsoever of getting bored of my ‘new’ favorite craft.

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The busier the better is my motto and there’ll be no slacking around here with Mojo keeping a stern eye on me to make sure I’m moving forward at a steady pace, working through my to-do list.

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Many of my deadlines are self imposed but I do get very tenacious about sticking to them once I’ve made my mind up. I decided I’ve got to get some sort of grip on works in progress this week so have been spending some of my spare time completing the crocheted seat pads for my newly decorated kitchen. I love them! They’re comfy and practical and were cheap as chips to make. I found an ingenious way of avoiding having to use a zip too – thereby elevating their thrift status up another notch or two. The only thing I had to buy was the cushion pads to go inside them.

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I really like how they’ve all turned out unique and not quite matching. I’m only using fabric I already have for this project which adds to their upcycled charm!

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These raggy ends are an integral part of the zipless finish . They’re easy to undo if I need to wash the cushion covers and they also form the ties that attach the cushions to the chairs. There’s nothing more annoying than slip sliding about and losing your cushion mid meal… Well, there probably are much more annoying things than that but the fewer minor irritations in life, the better! And I like the little bows when the cushions are in place.

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The little bows are quick and easy to untie if I want to make my wire bench into a somewhat comfier affair. Dappled shade in the shelter of the ever expanding grape vine is a little piece of summer heaven.

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Just the spot for making a few strawberry accessories for a new amigurumi design I’m working on. Hopefully to be revealed in the next week or two.

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I’ve also been working on re-making the caterpillar, testing the pattern and tweaking the overall shape as I go. I think I have it spot on now…

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But I’ll only know for sure when I’ve assembled all the bits. And goodness, what a lot of bits…

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…mainly in the form of legs, which is only to be expected when you’re making a caterpillar I suppose.

Plenty more to get on with and the sun is still shining so I’m heading off out to the garden again to attach those limbs where they rightly belong, then a few more crocheted strawberries, maybe a bit more rag crochet (table mats and coasters this time) and whatever other projects that jumble into my head demanding attention! That’s the rest of my weekend sorted. I hope your’s will be just as much fun!

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Bye Bye for now from myself and the lepidopteran larvae! x


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Zoomigurumi 4

Yes, it’s title number 4 in the Zoomigurumi series already. I’ve been lucky enough to have some of my amigurumi designs included in both Zoomigurumi 2 and 3 in the past which were great experiences. Time has ticked inexorably on at its usual steady pace and I’m excited to tell you that the newest book in the collection is now available to order. You can meet my oh-so-friendly and really-rather-cheeky baby orangutan in this edition. His name is Orwell, and he’s my new favorite fur baby.

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As you can see, he loves hanging about in trees.  He also likes eating fruit and causing mischief – lots of both of those! Because of his debut in Zoomigurumi 4 he’s had to move to Belgium to be with the publisher. Parting was a bit on the sad side, but he was really looking forward to his new life and I’m sure he’ll do a good job of helping to promote the book. He’s a very confident and outgoing little chap.

Before Orwell left for his great journey via parcel mail I made another baby orangutan called Orson to keep me company. Here’s Orwell and Orson larking around just before Orwell emigrated.

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They had lots of fun together before they parted ways and are now dedicated pen-pals. We get to hear all about Orwell’s life in Belgium with his new friends. I heard lately that he was a very well behaved model when it came time to take the portrait shots to go alongside his pattern. No-one said photographing wildlife was easy, just ask David Attenborough, but when you look inside this book, I think you’ll agree it went swingingly well!

Orwell says his new home is very comfortable and he’s loving his new celebrity status. Seeing all his colourful new friends from Zoomigurumi 4 I think you’ll understand the enthusiasm he has for his new life. Just take a look here. You can tell there’s never going to be dull moment with such a diverse range of pals to play with. Don’t they all look fun?

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Orson, however, is glad that he got to stay at home as he’s a lot more reserved and much shyer than his brother. He likes a quiet life, hanging from the light fittings and watching TV – mainly educational nature programmes such as Life on Earth or Blue Planet. He loves to read too. Science and crochet books are among his favorites. They help him try to answer those age old questions that we all ask from time to time, such as ‘Who am I?’ and ‘Where did I come from?’

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While the book was being prepared it was my task to proofread Lisa Jestes super cute Frog pattern. Time to get all the kit together (making sure everything is as color co-ordinated as possible!)

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It’s not long until this cheeky gangle-legged amphibian – only known as ‘Froggy’ at this  stage, but later officially named Kirk for his book appearance – is taking shape very nicely.

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Eventually he’s all done. That’s another job finished and crossed off my list, and a new member added to our ever growing amigurumi family. Turns out Kirk and Orson are getting on splendidly. They particularly loved exploring the garden together. They’re both naturally gifted tree climbers with those languid long limbs of theirs.

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Kirk is pleased to find some other frogs in the garden. Yes, there is a pond there somewhere, under all that duckweed! I agree it looks like it needs a bit of love before Kirk can fully appreciate it as his new swimming pool. Mental note to self to have a tidy-up-the-garden weekend soon.

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And Kirk just loves Orson to give him a ride on his shoulders so he can take in all the sights. Hmm, I need to tidy up this bit of the garden too!

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Finally we’re back inside so Kirk can get to meet the Moji-Moji frog fraternity. As you can see, he settles right in for a group hug and a rousing round of The Frog Chorus ‘We all stand together’, or to put it more accurately ‘sit together’ in this case. Happy days!

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So there we have a few of the jolly japes enjoyed by two of the 15 cute characters from Zoomigurumi 4.

If you want to add this book to your collection, or check out the other Zoomigurumi books be sure to visit amigurumipatterns.net/books.

I wonder what adventures your Zoomigurumi creations will get up to? 😉


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Awesome Autumn

It seems we’re well on our way to a proper Autumn at last. Slow to get going this year because of all the unseasonably warm weather, a big storm a few days ago has blown the leaves down and those left on the trees are turning deeper shades of red and orange every day. Time to cosy up! And now I remember all the things I love about this time of year. And lots of them involve yarn or food! Here are a random selection of ten of them.
1) A cosy combination of, skinny jeans, sturdy boots and fake fur.
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Just right forexploring the autumn countryside on one of my favorite Malvern walks. It’s a long hard slog to get to the top but it’s always worth it for the views.

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Even if it’s about to pour down with rain!
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2) Re-discovering my collection of hand knitted socks. Yes I know I can buy a pair of socks for a fraction of the cost and save time too, but where’s the fun in that!
820socks3) Knitting more socks. A girl can never have too many pairs and the 4 ply stash has to be used up somehow, if only so I can go out and buy more.


I found some great free patterns over at Dyed Jems Yarn Company. I might try these sweet pumpkin coloured Waffle Socks next, or maybe the Rippled Lace or the Lattice pattern.


All my socks have been plain stocking stitch so far. It might be time to ramp things up a notch! Although Minnie seems to have taken a proprietorial stance with the sock yarn now. Perhaps I can persuade her to let go of it if I promise to knit some for her!
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4) Shiny new Horse Chestnuts fresh out of their armour. Whose up for a conker fight?
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5) Freshly collected Sweet Chestnuts, roasted and eaten while they’re hot with a glass of cold milk. Oh so yummy! (Don’t forget to split the skins first or they’ll explode!)
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The milk and the chestnuts do wonders for each other. If you’ve never tried them together before, I highly recommend it.
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6) Colourful fingerless gloves that keep my hands warm while I work. I want to knit another pair of these soon with some of my sock yarn stash… but not until I finish these chunky crocheted boot cuffs. I’ve got way too many part finished projects as it is!
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7) Making red wine with this year’s bumper crop of small, but beautifully formed grapes. It took longer than I expected to squeeze all the grapes by hand, but it was so satisfying and possibly even more fun than popping bubble wrap!


Now to rack it a few times until it’s crystal clear, bottle it up and wait a year. Five gallons ought to be enough to get us through next winter!
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And just look at those gorgeous leaves from the grapevine. It would be enough to grow it for those patterns alone, the grape crop is just an added bonus! Had to get a closeup. Just wow!
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8) Pumpkins, of course. I love having these scattered around the house adding a splash of autumn colour.
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9) Carving pumpkins and eating Pumpkins is all good too! Here’s my Halloween lantern…
820lanternDSCN5715…and the soup from the excavated pulp, complete with roasted, spiced pumpkin seeds for scattering on top.
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10) And my final autumn joy in this list, my nearly completed set of blanket squares, I’ve been making a couple, or sometimes more, every evening, spurred on by the recent drop in temperatures. It’s getting quite chilly around here at last, so I’m going to need it sooner rather than later.
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Hopefully I’ll be showing you the finished daisy blanket in the not too distant future!
So all in all, autumn’s pretty awesome really.
Wishing you all a good share of blessings too!


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Birthday Treats

What joy! More sunshine. It’s been a lovely mix of cosy evenings in, and lovely fresh sunshine outdoors during the day for my birthday week. (Well, a day’s just not enough is it!) I’m loving the warm temperatures too.

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It’s been a pleasure to take some time to get on with edging my poncho, tidying up the garden and picking some produce. The grapes are plentiful and big this year, what with all the sunshine and the rain, so should make a good batch of red wine if I can get around to it in time, but we’ll make do with grape juice if not, or we’ll just eat them as they are. That’s my first ever homegrown apple sitting there too, all plump and juicy. I had a grand total of five of these beauties, with the hope of even more next year. Surprising that anything has fruited so magnificently in my overgrown, untidy plot, but nature’s a persistent force and doesn’t like to take no for an answer – especially the weeds!DSCN4845All those weeds have to be good for the creepy crawlies though, so I’m not feeling too guilty. However I will have to have a bit of a dandelion cull or my paving is going to disappear completely. Lucky for me, one of my birthday presents was a voucher for the garden center so off I trotted and filled a trolley or two with some autumn/winter colour for the borders and containers that I’ve been clearing out. Now if this sight isn’t inspiring enough to make me put down the crochet for long enough to get the garden under some semblance of control, then I don’t know what is!DSCN4868Lots of fab offers at the garden center have resulted in my being spoilt for choice as to where to put all of this horticultural bounty. Being a nosy type, as all cats are, Tigger comes along to find out what’s going on…DSCN4871Not sure if he approves or not of my planting schemes but he always enjoys being outdoors with the humans. Kept company by the presence of various cats I manage to get all of my new plants bedded in and potted up.DSCN5081Here’s a little gallery of all my hard work. It’s got to settle in and fill out a bit yet but I think it’s going to look lovely over the next few weeks, that is, if, and I’m sure this is a massive IF, the snails and slugs can leave the plants alone long enough for them to really get going. Of course I’m not blaming Shelley here, or her babies, Sheldon and Shelby. I had a word with them and, apart from being present at several of the crime scenes, and admitting to a bite out of the odd Pansy petal or two, they’re all for blaming the slugs for most of the holes and nibble marks that are appearing already. I suppose they know I’m a soft touch and won’t be putting any slug pellets down so they’re all getting a bit cocky (and a bit fat) around here!

As well as the lovely plants, birthday treats also came in the form of some fabulous yarn and stationary, to help my amigurumi designing along. Now the garden has had a good dose of tender loving care, I’m eager to get doodling some new designs, and fiddling about with my new yarn. And just look at my M o j o drawer knobs! Can’t wait to put those somewhere in my craft room.
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Though my cat Mojo is pretty self important as it is and I’m sure this will only confirm his belief that he resides as supreme ruler at the center of the universe!

x (Where he rightly belongs of course) xMojoKnobsAll hail Lord Mojo!


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Spencer the Spider

I’m not usually a fan of spiders at all, but I was out cleaning the shed today and bumped into this little fella. I’ve got to admit, he doesn’t look as scary as some spiders that I’ve seen (well, maybe those fangs….)820SpiderHe’s been very busy building some rather carefully constructed webs ready for his house warming party later. The guests have started to arrive already.

First there were two.820Spider3Then there were three.820Spider1 Next thing you know, four of these little monsters are tucked up together getting ready for a big night in. The Bluebottle kebabs and aphid salad are ready to serve and everyone is buzzing with anticipation. (Or is that just the kebabs I can hear?)820Spider4 With eight legs apiece to shake their (rather generously sized) booties with, they really are quite the party animals. Spencer can even play the fiddle and still have six legs left to dance a jig! It’s going to be one helluva party in my shed tonight.

I was invited and I thought I might try to be brave and go along – but then this big Black Widow arrived and suddenly I’m thinking… I’ll take a rain check on that. I know her tricks. BlackSpider She’s got a habit of playing dead and then biting your ankle when you’re not looking! Not my idea of fun!!820DSCN4302I think I’ll just leave them to it. I know the famous saying ‘If you want to live and thrive, let a spider run alive’ but I think it’s going to be me doing all the running every time I bump into this lot together.SpiderParty There’s just way too many eyes and legs gathered together in one space. I’d love to try to get over my arachnaphobia but I think I’ll have to take it one spider at a time.


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The Outdoor Studio

It’s been a scorcher of a week here in Worcester. I’m still a little bit yearning to be back at the seaside though that has been nearly compensated for by having such a lovely spot in the garden in which to work. It’s become my outdoor studio space since Hubby finished making the big new dining table a few weeks ago. DSCN4213There’s certainly plenty of space with which to tackle all my crochet projects and the dappled shade is perfect. (As you can see, Tigger thinks so too). If you look carefully you can see a little teaser of my next crochet pattern!

The table has been thriftily recycled out of the boys old playhouse. They’ve passed that stage in their lives when a small wooden hut on stilts is enough to provide them with hours of imaginative role play and hide-away fun. Now that the wood has been re-purposed it serves to pull all the family together for some laid back al fresco meal times.DSCN4216 We all enjoyed some great new vegetarian barbecue recipes from the BBC Good Food website that were completely lip-smackingly delicious.

 Melting-Middle Aubergine Parcels and Courgette and Haloumi Skewers

In the balmy evenings I’ve been sitting out until after dark, stealthily working on the stack of granny squares I started last weekend.

They’ve now all been edged in a slightly different multi-tone yarn. This is a James C Brett yarn and I’m really pleased with the way it has framed the Noro squares and tied all the random elements of colour together. Those contrasting twists are just gorgeous. Here are the squares before and after I edged them.

I’m planning on making a poncho and a bag out of these. When the weather finally gets cooler I’ll be finding my warm and richly coloured ensemble very useful I’m sure!DSCN4223Lushious colour contrasts make each square totally unique and are going to leave me spoilt for choice as to how to combine them. I’ll keep it all quite random I think…

Now it’s time to get back to my new amigurumi design. I’ve got some final pattern writing to do which means an evening installed in front of the computer and away from my new outdoor studio. I’m looking forward to getting it finished though and adding another creature to the Moji-Moji family.

Here’s a final sneak peak of them as a work in progress.DSCN4210Curious little things that they are, I think they’re enjoying a sneak peak back at you too!