lalylala’s Whimsical Winter Amigurumi Pattern Set

Lalylala 4 Seasons Winter Amigurumi

When I saw this set of 4 Seasons Winter amigurumi patterns on Ravelry, I squeed with joy! lalylala designs very whimsical, unique amigurumi patterns that I adore and these are no exception. My favorite amigurumi of the set is Heinz the stag, but the pine cone and snowman are equally adorable.

As lalylala states in the description, these three winter-inspired toys would make delightful Christmas ornaments! I know there are many (many many many) haters out there who think those of us who start celebrating Christmas before Thanksgiving should be locked in a closet. I am one of those people that has been listening to Christmas music for the past few weeks and I think spending the holiday weekend crocheting up some of these little guys as ornaments would be the perfect after-Thanksgiving dinner treat. (Less calories, too!)

Something that draws my eye to these amigurumis beyond their cute little faces is the shine on cotton yarn. They are crocheted with Catania from Schachenmayr. I’ve never used this yarn but I’m definitely tempted to add it to my ridiculous stash now.

Check out lalylala’s blog for more patterns, whimsical illustrations, and other inspirations!

Slow Fashion


I’m a bit late in the game to start talking about slow fashion, but Karen Templar has been inspiring me with everything that she’s been posting this month.

Slow Fashion is a movement towards knowing where your clothes come from, how they are made, mending them when they rip or get old, and only having what you need. And maybe a little bit (or a lot) about actually loving everything in your wardrobe. <3

This video showing a glimpse into the life of workers who turn discarded Western clothing back into thread/yarn caught my attention. While I do love that a group of people figured out how to recycle these clothes, the amount of waste is astounding.

If that video disturbed you in one way or another, maybe a little slow fashion is in your future. Zady has some ideas for reducing your clothing consumption to get you started:

The next time you’re about to buy something, ask yourself this: Where will this piece of clothing go after I no longer want it? At first, it may seem strange to think about the end point of your relationship with an item before you’ve even committed to buying it. But we have discovered that asking this simple question has totally changed the way we shop. Why? Because it turns out that what you can do with a piece of clothing when you no longer want it is a very good measure of whether it’s worth buying in the first place. – From Good Ridding

I am a definitely a serial donator and I’d love to say it’s solely because I am giving items consciously, hoping others will benefit from them. But if I’m honest with myself, I buy too many things and get bored with them just as quickly. And could I be bothered to fix a button? …Probably not.

My mouth also drops down to the floor when I see shoes that cost more than $60, or a shirt, pants, dress… whatever. But seriously, if an article of clothing is made well and with love, it probably didn’t cost only $60 for someone to make a living. The materials should come from somewhere that is conscious about their effect on the environment and they should pay their workers fair wages — and the same should go all the way up the chain to the final thread.

If you pay more for your clothes, you’ll think a lot harder about what you’re bringing home and how it fits into your wardrobe.

Researchers have found that the insula—the part of the brain that registers pain—plays a role in purchase decisions. Our brain weighs the pleasure of acquiring against the pain of paying. As clothing prices decline, that pain does too, making shopping easy entertainment, disconnecting it from our actual clothing needs.  – From The Case for Expensive Clothes

For Slow Fashion October (and beyond), I pledge to be more conscious of what I bring into my home and mend the clothes that need mending. I hope you’ll join me and all of the others taking part in Slow Fashion October.

Oh yeah, and even if you have an aversion to mending your clothes like I do, look how cute mended clothes can be!

Oh-my-gurumi Pierogi!

tcakes4u's little pierogi

And by “oh my gurumi”, I mean amigurumi. I came across this cute little amigurumi pierogi on the front page of Ravelry and had to stop what I was doing to share it with you all.

Tiffany (tcakes4u) used Deena White’s Little Empanada pattern to make a cute little pierogi!

My mom is from Pittsburgh, where they eat an excessive amount of pierogies and I’ve been eating an excessive amount of them since I was a kid. They’re definitely a comfort food for me and I have a bit of an obsession. Actually, I have an obsession with any dumplings (like these squee polymer clay dumplings). I should probably crochet a few pierogies instead of eating the actual thing!


Cross Stitch Cuteness!


I started cross stitching solely because of The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery. They have THE CUTEST cross-stitch patterns I’ve ever seen, so I wanted to share them with you.

Cute Halloween cross stitch

Get ready for Halloween!

Now, I’ve yet to finish even one teeny project, but I’m really tempted to get one of their Halloween patterns or Autumn patterns.

The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery Autumn Harvest Festival Cross stitch

Fall is (not) here!

I love the way Amanda and Ashleigh (owners of The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery) style their cross stitch works over hand-dyed fabric. It really adds depth to the cross stitch.

Fibery Friends Cross stitch

Oh yeah, and how could you resist swapping your knitting needles for a tapestry needle to stitch this Fibery Friends sampler? I need to make a pillow covered in cross stitched alpacas right now! Bye!

Finished Shirtie! (FO)

Completed Kelso sweater

Wow – I thought I’d never finish knitting this hooded, short-sleeved sweater!

I started knitting the Kelso sweater in May, so it took almost 6 months to complete. Now that I say that out loud, I’m surprised I knit my first sweater in less than a year.

Knitted Kelso sweater

Yeah, I’m using a remote control. What of it?

Knitting this was pretty fun. The lace panel in the middle uses the SAME pattern repeat every row (knit or purl), so it’s very easy to remember.

There is some seaming to do, which I was dreading because everyone talks about how awful seaming is, but I actually found it to be a bit fun to watch the mattress stitch zip up the sides of the sweater. I also learned how to do the kitchener stitch for the top of the hood!

I do wish that I’d knit a smaller size. I chose the 46″ size based on my bust size, adding 4″ for ease and it’s a bit swimmy in here. After reading Knit to Flatter and Knit Wear Love by Amy Herzog (the sweater queen, IMO), I now know that I should knit sweaters based on my upper torso size, adding darts where needed to increase sizing where things are a bit bigger. That would have meant making a 38″ instead of 46″ sweater.

The hoodie helps a lot to make this sweater look cute at a bigger size. Without it, it might just look like a big, frumpy shirt.


Does this sweater make my bookshelves look big?

My only gripe with this pattern is that it called for 8 balls of yarn and I only needed 5.25 of them to finish the sweater at the size I chose. Maybe I knit weird but I swear I met gauge!

On to the yarn. I knit this using Knit Pick’s Palette. I absolutely LOVE the colors available in this yarn base. It’s 100% wool and 100% stinky when wet. Luckily the smell goes away after a bit, otherwise this sweater would be in the trash. I didn’t particularly love or hate knitting with the yarn, but it is a very nice match to this pattern.

Woohoo! Now I can cast on something else! Or perhaps I should finish that shawl… or sock.

Hooded shirt/sweater

Girl, look at that hoodie. I work out!

Making your own change


Nothing is going to change unless each individual person chooses to change and I’m an individual person so I have to choose to change.

After realizing that she, as an individual, could do something about global warming and the overuse of resources on earth, Jen of Make Do and Mend challenged herself and her family to a year of acquiring nothing new with lots of re-using, mending, and ‘making do’.

This quote resonated with me because I recently had a similar epiphany to Jen’s. Until earlier this year, I felt helpless about issues like factory farming and animal rights. Each time that I guiltily ate a hamburger, I would tell myself that not spending $5-20 per week on meat would go unnoticed by a factory farm business, and plus, I donate to the ASPCA, Audubon Society, Humane Society, and the World Wildlife Federation (isn’t that enough??). But for some reason, this year, I realized that I didn’t need to feel guilty, I could just do something about it. I stopped eating meat and started educating myself and my family on what meat and animal products are humanely farmed, how to tell and where to buy them. I feel better about my decisions and although I realize that changing my own habits isn’t going to change the world, I know it’s a start. As Ghandi supposedly said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

I would highly recommend a listen to Kate’s interview with Jen on A Playful Day podcast. It’s inspiring to hear the journey of a self-professed not-so-crafty person making do with what they’ve got to make a change in their lives.

Listen to the interview on A Playful Day podcast.

Cozy Knits & Crochet

Cozy Knits and Crochet Patterns

Here I sit, in my home in central Florida with the A/C blasting. It’s 88°F outside but I’m pretending there is a slight chill to the air. Drinking a pumpkin spice latte and scrolling through my Instagram feed, I see photo after photo celebrating the beginning of a new season—my favorite season—Autumn.

Autumn doesn’t seem to show up here until mid-November most years, so it is with much jealousy I have put together this set of cozy knitting and (one, sorry hookers) crochet patterns. They remind me of fireplaces, warm cups of hot cocoa, and colorful fallen leaves.

To those of you living a bit farther away from the equator than me, enjoy your chunky, cowled, and cabled sweaters! Put on those bulky, scrunchy socks and a matching pair of wrist  warmers, curl up in your coziest chair and get knitting (or hooking)!

A Blanket for Seriously Cold People

A Blanket for Seriously Cold People by Sylvia Bo Bilvia

Not sure you could get any cozier, wrapped in this chunky, ribbed blanket designed by Sylvia Bo Bilvia.

Perfect Autumn Sweaters

Top Left: Lanvad by Justyna Lorkowska Top Middle: Eddy by Amy Herzog Top Right: Cardiff Coat by Jennifer Wood Bottom Left: Coffee tunic by Mira Saarentaus Bottom Middle: Lila by Carrie Bostick Hoge Bottom Right: Frontiersman by Martin Storey

Cozy Accessories

Top Left: Hooded Cowl with Buttons by Melissa Grice (Crochet) Top Left Middle: Woodland Hoodlet by Tiny Owl Knits Top Left Bottom: Cosy gloves by Anna NikipirowiczTop Right: Cup of Cocoa Slouch Socks by Heather Walpole Bottom Left: Cosy Scarf by Marie Wallin Bottom Right: Slouchy Socks by Gwen Bortner

If you want to get even cozier, I have created the Get Cozy! bundle on Ravelry and will continue to add cozy, comfy knits and crochet projects to it.

Favorite the Get Cozy! bundle on Ravelry and maybe new patterns will pop up in your Pattern Highlights (is that how Ravelry works?).