It is no secret that I love the colour red. My friends will tell you that it is my favourite colour to wear. I have owned a succession of pairs of red shoes or boots (although I don’t have any at the moment, tut, tut!) and I have a stash of lace weight yarn with a definite bias towards red. I saw some of Hilda Grahnat’s work on Flipboard a couple of weeks ago, and her wonderful vintage collections by colour inspired me to do a post on a colour theme. Here’s her red collection: Without her flair or photography equipment, I have put together a ‘red’ collage of some of my crafty bits and pieces. From left to right, top to bottom: 1. A doll I made from Simplicity pattern 1900, with red polka dot dress. It was Miss Maggie rabbit that set me off on the doll sewing track. I enjoyed making her so much that I decided to do a bit more sewing. I don’t know what it is about making dolls that I find so appealing! If you had said to me that I would like making dolls I don’t think I would relate to it at all. I think the word ‘doll’ conjures up images of scary plastic things with clothes knitted in acrylic. It must be partly because the clothes that you make for them are small, and I am hopeless at finishing larger garments. 🙂 2. The Russian Ami Santas I posted about recently. I found out last week that you can now get the pattern for the large Santa from Simply Crochet for free. Download the Simply Knitting app on Apple Newsstand and you can find it under the ‘free content’ link. As it is packaged with some other Christmas patterns, it probably won’t be around for ever, so go and get it now! 3. DMC Petra 3, in shade 5666. I love using this yarn for crochet. I usually use a 3mm hook, although a 2.5mm works well too. There are so many fantastic colours, and 1 ball always seems to go quite a long way. 4. My crochet lampshade from the first issue of Simply Crochet. I give the link to the options for digital editions here because I don’t think the print edition of Issue 1 is still available. I’ve got the lampshade at home again now, but the paper lantern got a bit battered so it needs sorting out. What I want to do is to stiffen the crochet so that it holds it’s shape without the lantern, but I’m not sure how to go about it at the minute. Yet another job on my to-do list. 5. A necklace I made a while ago from coloured felt beads with seed beads. Still one of my favourites. 6. A WIP shawl from the recuerdos de infancia pattern on Ravelry. The main stitch pattern is nice and easy, but I wanted to add a different border. Once I had worked the main body of the shawl, it was a more ‘pointy’ shape than I wanted, so I decided to try adding further staggered rows on either side to make the angle more shallow. This worked ok one one side, but not the other, and I still haven’t worked it out. Another project consigned to the pile!
I’m not given to impulse purchases as a rule, and neither would I usually be drawn to a ‘craft kit’, but I made an exception for Alicia Paulson’s Miss Maggie Rabbit. Those that follow Posie Gets Cozy will be familiar with the exquisite photography and the even more beautiful craft projects. I don’t follow many craft blogs religiously either, but hers is one I have had on Flipboard for a long time. When I saw these rabbits I was smitten, and ordered a kit almost straight away.
I had huge fun making this. I really enjoyed using the kit – much more so than I expected. It was quite a relief not to have to search for all the right bits, and to not be ‘making do’ with something I had stashed away, when really I would have quite liked to use something else. It helps that the materials are lovely. You’ve only got to take one look at Liberty Tana Lawn to be in love, haven’t you? That fabric alone sparked some exciting discoveries, such as Very Berry Fabrics, a Folksy shop selling small pieces of Tana Lawn for crafters. It may be beautiful fabric, but it’s also quite pricey in larger pieces, so it’s great to be able to buy smaller bits of all those patterns. I also found out that our little fabric shop Flo-Jo Boutique on Gloucester Road stocks it, so if ever I feel the need to go and ogle the stuff In Real Life, I can trot down the road for a fix. I also remembered an outfit that I made in my early dressmaking days while still at school. There used to be a Liberty shop in Bath a long time ago, and I got some pink paisley Tana Lawn in the sale there. I was very pleased with it, and made a summer outfit with a vest top and wide Palazzo pants that I wore a lot.
The tiny stitches were very satisfying too. It’s a while since I’ve done much hand sewing or embroidery, and I always have a bit of a crisis of confidence about embroidery beforehand, thinking it will never look very neat or even. I contemplated having a practice first before stitching the actual thing, but I was too impatient for that and dove right in. It was okay once I got going, and there were only a couple of bits that didn’t look quite as neat as I’d hoped. The boots were one of my favourite things about the whole design. They were also one of the most fiddly bits to do, but I think they really add something to the finished rabbit.
So, thank you Alicia, for an altogether delightful purchase! Alicia also has a Pinterest board for photographs of the finished rabbits. The kits are available in different fabrics and colourways, and there are also some very cute knitted sweater patterns available. Looking back at these again has tempted me. Maybe some more rabbit wardrobe items will be in order…