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Getting into Amigurumis…

Because I teach workshops locally, students have asked about an Amigurumi workshop.
Well I did crochet a couple amigurumis ages ago, but not that many. Totally needed to refresh my skills in that area.

I started looking around, and collecting ideas and techniques into an Amigurumi Pinterest board.
Here are some of the creatures that emerged from those weeks of brainstorming and crocheting to prepare the workshop:

Lamb
This one has to be my favorite. The original Lamb had a fluffy pink fleece but I used bouclé pure wool that I dyed years ago in shades of green.

My lamb is way bigger (and heavier) than the original, measuring about 30 cm (12 in). I love that it will sit somewhere and not budge… Can already picture it on my stand during wool festivals !

Pattern: Amigurumi Pinky lamb
Yarn & hooks: bulky bouclé pure wool + bulky acrylic blend (french brand) and 6.5 mm (K) hook
Mods: larger hook, and modified the “hat” which came out much too large for my taste. (+ was short on yarn)

Owl
This little owlet was free-styled to use as my main workshop project. Easy enough yet it features the first basic techniques to make amigurumis: start with magic ring, make a flat circle in sc, work straight in a tube, use safety eyes ect, sew limbs onto body…. I just looked at the gazillion Owl crochet patterns online and chose my favorite features: 2 colors, little rounded wings, and fluffly feathers on top of each “ear”…

Pattern: my own, written to use during Amigurumi workshops
Yarn & hooks: 5 mm (H) and various worsted weight acrylic yarns from stash

SnowmanFini
Aaah, and this one is just so cute ! Totally inspired by a pattern, but I wanted to do it my way so I could use it for my workshop if we had enough time (which we totally didn’t !) as it includes more of the basic shapes used to make amigurumis: flat circle, sphere, tube and cone…

Pattern: totally inspired by this snowman pattern (although I used my own instructions)
Yarn & hooks: 5 mm (H) and various dk weight acrylic yarns from stash

As for the workshop ?
It was great, and each student made their own Owlet. Full story and more pictures on my Workshop blog (in french)
Ami4

Inspiring crochet – Visual artist Nick Cave

This week I discovered the inspiring world of Nick Cave (no, not the musician. Quite amazing to see there are 2 out-of-this-world Nick Caves on this earth !!) thanks to the ever-inspiring french Tricotine.
Nick Cave Visual artist
First I was … let’s say surprised. Yet quickly the collage of random crochet hats and bags and various odments to create a human mask/suit/sculpture resonated deeply within.

I love the story of how he came to making those sculptures, collecting oddments from thrift stores and flea markets to turn them into a work of art. And how his work can not easily be classified into a specific category, art, dance, fashion…?

Here are a couple videos to get a better grasp of his work.

first a quick introduction

and a slightly longer one which I really loved watching, esp. as it allows to see those famous Sound Suits in movement

And for those who read french, beautiful photos and inspiring conference by Nick Cave.

I tend to focus only on “usefull crochet” because I don’t have room for decor. And let’s face it, because I need to feed my family.
But it’s enlightening to see crochet from a different angle. Beauty also feeds us, although on a different level.

Did you know about Nick Cave’s work ? Any other amazing crochet artist you’d recommend ?

Sewing for me and her…

Last week-end was all about rain and crappy weather. To try and keep the girls happy, I suggested we do some sewing together… My older daughter kept herself busy making a cardboard doll house for her sister’s Barbies, and sewing barbie clothes on her own (10 year old and she can now nearly handle the sewing machine on her own !).
Fini4
So I had a couple hours to finish off another “Lubin t-shirt” started months ago: I loved my first one so much I’ve always wanted to make more. Then a friend gave us tons of fabrics from his late mum’s stash. Score ! Those fabrics are not true knits (more like the kind of fabric intended to make those shapeless retirement home dresses.. ;-) ) but you can see how the grey and plum ones work perfectly for this. Good news being that I still have tons of yardage both in those same colors AND different neat colors.

Fini3 Fini2 Fini1R
It’s a raglan style t-shirt, and the collar always comes out a little large. I gathered it using a repurposed pink knit cut out from a repurposed turtle-neck t-shirt … Works like a charm !

And the little detail I love: having those stripy orange and fushia sleeves popping out from my warm woolies all winter :-D

Pattern : “Lubin” from french sewing book “Sarouels” by Valerie Roy.
Size made : 38
Alterations : longer sleeves, and cut the bottom slightly curved.

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Then my younger daughter came around and asked if we could get started on her leggings now (her second passion in life after chewing-gums ;-) )

FIni1
That ones loves colors ! I chose this super funky thick jersey knits (the kind of fabric used for sweater-shirts), given by a neat aunt lately. Yes, I’m so lucky to be given fabric :-D
This fabric is quite heavier than what I usually use for leggings, but then we live in a cold place and she’s loving the fact that she can still wear leggings despite the temperature drop !

Fini2 Fini3 Fini4
We got ready for the photo-shoot, but noticed the big stain on her sweater. Off went the sweater… Now to rearrange the matching headband made in 2 seconds with the leftovers…

Fini5 Fini6 Fini7
And here she goes, ready to run and play… perfect clown as usual !!

Pattern: “Riviera leggings” from the book “Sewing clothes kids love” by Nancy Langdon & Sabine Pollehn.
Size: used a template cut previously for older daughter in size 140. Ended up way too long for my 8 year old, but that was easy to fix. And width looks great.
Alterations : not much, only recut the bottom of legs to shorten them. Sewed a large hem, so I can lengthen it later if needed when she keeps growing…

Just wanted to share some pretty amazing colorful and happy hooded crocheted cardigans made following my Ermeline, Armel and Jehanne cardigans patterns, found through my Facebook page and Ravelry:

Ermeline, pattern by Sylvie Damey, made byTrictoYmasFB
First I spotted this stunning Ermeline crochet cardigan, photographed from the back to showcase that super long hood which makes it so attractive to many of us. This one was beautifully made by TricotyMas and I love that color combination of orange and blues she chose!

Armel hooded cardigan, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey, made by CKGF Armel hooded cardigan, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey, made by CKGF
As soon as I saw this happy rainbow version of the Armel hooded cardigan on Ravelry, I asked CKFG if I could share it here, and she graciously agreed. I love it, and can totally picture a cute outgoing boy wearing this every day !

TrishJones2R Jehanne hooded cardigan, pattern by Sylvie Damey, made by TrishJones
Trish Jones graciously shared not one, not two.. but FOUR of her Jehanne hooded cardigans !!! She chose to customize hers with added granny triangles around the cuffs, to accentuate the elfic tone of her jackets.. (have seen that before among the Ravelry projects as well, it’s so cool to see variations on your patterns and how people add their own personal touch !)

TrishJones1R TrishJones3R
Oh, and you gotta love what she says about them too, I bet Trish is a fun person to hang out with ;-)
” I wear my sweaters every day – I teach school and am famous for them. I added a dragon tail to the end of the blue one. The brown is one I made for a friend at work and the orange is my daughter’s. Her teacher had her model and spin for her class You have given us so much pleasure in your designs. Thank you so much for making them available in English!”

Would you like to share pictures of clothes you crocheted using my crochet patterns ? Please send them along, or leave a comment if you have already published them on a blog !

After 2 patterns for babies and kids, here’s one for us :-)

Right after I finished the Roseline cardigan, I thought well maybe I could wear one too.. Then friends started to comment how they’d like one for themselves too.
Ombeline cardigan, http://SylvieDamey.com
It just so happened that I stumbled upon this bag of Knit Picks “wool of the Andes” stashed for years, waiting for the right project. Looked just perfect !

And thus, a month or so later, this piece emerged. With a high Empire waist, lacy skirt, delicate picots edging, and long sleeves with lacy flared cuffs. I’m in love. And the heathered colors of this yarn are so soft, contrasting with the lime single I used for the edgings (Gedifra Fashion trend Fino, apparently now discontinued).
Ombeline cardigan, http://SylvieDamey.com Ombeline cardigan, http://SylvieDamey.com Ombeline cardigan, http://SylvieDamey.com

This pattern is explained in 5 sizes from XS to XL. Pattern is richly illustrated with many step by step photos.

Materials:
– Knit Picks “Wool of the Andes”: 9 (10, 12, 13, 14) skeins in Amethyst Heather and 1 skein of similar weight yarn in a contrasting color
– 5.5 mm (H) hook (or size needed to achieve gauge)
– 5 buttons – approx 1,5 cm / ¾ in diameter

Sizes: XS (S, M, L, XL) – Bust: 71/76 (81/86, 91/96, 101/106, 111/116) cm – 28/30 (32/34, 36/38, 40/42, 44/46) inches

Finished bust dimensions of cardigan: 72 (82, 92, 103, 112) cm – 28 1⁄4 (32 1⁄4, 36 1⁄4, 40 1⁄2, 44) inches. Cardigan is meant to be worn with negative ease.

Gauge: 16 sts and 8 rows = 10 cm/4″ over double crochet in front loop (dcfl)
Note: gauge should be measured over slightly stretched fabric, to mimic worn garment.

Pattern is available on Ravelry, Etsy, or Craftsy.

Or buy it directly here:
Price: $6

Once again, thanks to my team of super testers for their helpful feedback. Care to see what theirs look like ? :-)
disou2 colinetteR nzcarmsR coudreDuCoeurR

Lutin Marguerite, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey http://SylvieDamey.com

“Lutin Marguerite” is another design with a super long hood, this time made with worsted weight to fit little ones with sizes going from 6 months to 2 year old.

As you may know, I’m french. Every now and again I like to use french words to describe my patterns: “lutin” is the french word for “Elf”…

Lutin Marguerite, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey, http://SylvieDamey.com Marguerite floral motif by Sylvie Damey, http://SylvieDamey.com

It features a cute “marguerite” (= daisies in french) floral motif along the edge of the hood and the bottom edge.

Crab stitch edges compliment the unique look, while twisted cords make a safe closure system for babies.

Originally made with recycled cotton and hemp worsted weight yarn (available as a KIT for this design), you could also use colored yarns, just as my amazing testers did.

Pattern is now available through Etsy, Ravelry, Craftsy.

Or buy it now ($6)

Confiture1 Maellingson2 WP_002050 image_2 image

Lutin2 Lutin1

Oh. And one last thing. Like the Lutin Marguerite but you’d like to make it in MORE KIDS SIZES ? No problem. Use bulky yarn and a 6.0 mm (J) hook, to achieve gauge of 13 stitches and 6 rows = 4 inches in dc in the front loop (US crochet terms)

If you’d like to make a Lutin Marguerite in larger KIDS SIZES:
the same 4 sizes given in instructions should give you sizes 4 YEAR OLD to 10 YEAR OLD.

I use the same base for all my kids patterns, thus change the gauge and you’ll get more kids sizes as for the Roselette top or Roseline cardigan.

However, for a hooded cardigan such as this one, you may have to adjust the size of the Hood, as I sized it down to get the proper sizing for babies. :-)

First, sorry for the lack of posts this month – although I had plenty to share – due to server issues.
Special thanks to my husband for fixing those despite his ongoing health issues
.

Roseline cardigan, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey

I showed you a preview last month, here is the whole picture !!!

The Roseline cardigan was based on my popular “Roselette”, the first crochet garment I designed back in November 2007 (that’s 7 years ago !! Wow !!). Ever since that, I wanted to make a cardigan version. But shells in the round cannot be directly turned into shells in rows: they’re much prettier on the right side.

Roseline cardigan and Roselettte top, by Sylvie Damey

Then last year, I made a short sleeve cardigan for my niece and found this stitch, combination of the original shells and added mesh, which makes a fabulous lacy skirt. And looks more complicated than it actually is :-)

Roseline crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey, http://chezplum.com

As for the Roselette, you can either use Bulky yarn and make it in 4 sizes from 4 year old to 10 year old,
OR use finer yarns and smaller hooks to achieve sizes Newborn to 2 year old.
… all in all, that makes it a very versatile pattern with a super large range of potential sizes !

Pattern includes many step-by-step pictures showing each stage of the top down seamless construction.
Available on Ravelry, Etsy, Craftsy, in french or english (except on Craftsy where multiple files are not supported).

Price: $6

Psst. This pattern will also very soon be available in ADULT SIZES too. Hop onto my Facebook page to see the pictures ! :-)

Roseline cardigan, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey Roseline cardigan, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey Roseline cardigan, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey

Thanks to my kind and helpful testers. Love what Kerri C. said about the Roseline cardigan too:

“It’s a lovely pattern, very easy to follow but the final product looks complex enough to impress people ;)”

New crochet pattern, and french interview

First, sorry for the lack of posts this month – although I had plenty to share – due to server issues.
Special thanks to my husband for fixing those despite his ongoing health issues.

Several months ago, Keiko sent me an email saying how she loved the Ermeline hooded cardigan, and would I consider making a design in a similar spirit using her organic hemp & recycled cotton “kaneh Bosem” yarn ?

It just so happened that I was looking for the right yarn for a new hooded design I had in mind… Deal !!

Lutin Marguerite, crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey

During the first 2 weeks, this pattern is exclusively available as a KIT with pattern & yarn here. (yes it’s in french but she’ll ship worldwide)

And on October 26th, you’ll be able to purchase the pattern only in all the usual venues: Ravelry, Etsy and Craftsy..

Sylvie-Damey, photomontage by Keiko Hekate
For those of you able to read french, you may be interested by my interview on Keiko’s blog.

New crochet pattern preview

Roseline crochet pattern by Sylvie Damey, http://chezplum.com

Pretty lace and flared 3/4 sleeves… The new Roseline Cardigan for little girls will be launched very soon.

Stay tuned !

Here is a new outfit for our 13 inches dolls such as Les Chéries by Corolle (but also H4H, Minouches, …)
Marguerite Cheries, crochet pattern for 13 inches dolls by Sylvie Damey
“Marguerites Chéries” features a 3/4 sleeve cardigan with daisy flowers ( = Marguerites en french) around the yoke, and matching handbag.


Cardigan is worked top down with hardly any finishing at all (sewing buttons on !) as my full sized garments.

You’ll need only a small amount of fingering weight / sock yarn for this project, and 3.25 mm (D) hook.

++ More photos & info on my DOLL BLOG

Price: $5

chezplum.com - patterns design - © Sylvie Damey
 

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