Peggy Piggy Re-design

The re-design of my Peggy Piggy pattern is complete!

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Peggy Piggy loves to dance.
See her twirl and leap and sway.
Catch her show if you get the chance.
She stars in the piggy ballet.

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This pattern is knit almost entirely in the round on double pointed needles, so there is very little seaming involved. It includes easy to follow step by step instructions. It is 8 pages long and contains a lot of pictures to help you along the way.
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Finished Dimensions:
Approximately 17″ tall

Materials:

115yd worsted weight yarn in MC (Sample was knit using Lionbrand Wool-Ease)
92yd worsted weight yarn in CC
33yd worsted weight yarn in cream
Scrap of dark brown or black yarn
Set of 5 4mm US size 6 DPNs
4mm US size 6 circular needle (optional)
Black & white felt
Black & white thread
Sewing needle
2 small black buttons for nostrils (optional)
2 small buttons for clothes
Stuffing
Scissors
Tapestry needle
Stitch marker
Stitch holder
Size F crochet hook

Skill Level: Intermediate

Required Skills:

Knitting in the round on double pointed needles.
Various increases and decreases.
Mattress stitch and joining knitted pieces together.
Kitchener stitch
I-cord
Backward loop CO
Crochet chain
Duplicate stitch

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You can purchase this pattern here.

Thanks for looking!

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Lanai yarn

A couple of weeks ago I got the strong urge to get my spinning wheel out of the closet and start spinning again. Something that I haven’t done in years. I was a novice then, so now it’s pretty much like starting over.

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As you can see, I was in the process of spinning something when I packed it away, so I decided to finish that up first. It was 4 ounces of merino in the lanai colorway from the freckle face fibers etsy store. I would link to her shop, but as far as I can tell she’s not in business anymore. That’s how long it’s been!

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I spun up a second bobbin of singles to go with the first and made a 2 ply yarn.

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It turned out a bit of a mess and pretty unusable, but I did get to try out my new niddy noddy. After making this yarn I remembered that I usually have more luck with 3 plies, so I’m going to do that next time.

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After how this yarn turned out I decided that I need to do a few practice projects before I dig back into my pretty fiber braids, so I don’t ruin any more of them. First up is some yellow and teal wool I got at a fiber festival a few years ago. It’s  a little more raw than I’m used to. It’s rough and fuzzy with lots of debris, but it’s okay for practice. To make things harder I’m having tendon issues and am stuck wearing a thumb brace on my left hand for awhile. I’m trying to spin with it for at least 10 minutes a day because the other option is unacceptable. As you can probably guess this also severly disrupts my knitting ability. I hope it’s healed soon, because life is too short to not be able to do what you love for any amount of time!

Tulip Sweater for Brenda Bunny

When I was working on the pattern for Brenda Bunny one of my samples somehow ended up too short for me to be able to use for the final pattern.  My mom claimed her, and I promised that I would make her a sweater to wear when I got the pattern finished since the dress doesn’t fit her quite right because of her size (something all of us short people have to deal with sometimes).  Yesterday I made good on my promise and made her a tulip sweater.  I’m going to share the pattern here for everyone else in case you would like to make one for your own Brenda Bunny. It is constructed top down in the round and involves absolutely no seaming, which is always a plus in my book.

Tulip Sweater

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Materials: 

  • 50 yards worsted weight yarn in cream (preferably the same yarn you used to make your bunny)
  • Scraps of worsted weight yarn in green and pink.
  • Set of 5 US 6 4 mm DPN’s
  • 4 stitch markers
  • Row counter
  • 2 stitch holders
  • Tapestry needle
  • 1 small button
  • Sewing needle and thread

Gauge:

22 sts and 28 rows = 4″ in Stockinette Stitch

Terms & Abbreviations:

PM = Place marker

SM = Slip marker

KFB = Increase 1 sts by knitting into the front and back of the same stitch

sts = Stitch

K = Knit

P = Purl

YO = Yarn over

K2tog = Decrease 1 sts by knitting the next two sts together

Pattern:

I cord CO 34 sts onto 1 4mm DPN.  Work back and forth in rows with 2 DPNs.

Row 1: P7, PM, P2, PM, P15, PM, P2, PM, P8 (34 sts).

Row 2: K7, KFB, SM, [KFB] X 2, SM, KFB, K13, KFB, SM, [KFB] X 2, SM, KFB, K4, YO, K2tog (42 sts).

Row 3: Purl, slipping markers as you come to them.

Row 4: K to the sts before the first marker, KFB, SM, KFB, K to the sts before the next marker, KFB, SM, KFB, K to the sts before the next marker, KFB, SM, KFB, K to the sts before the next marker, KFB, SM, KFB, K to end (50 sts).

Row 5: Purl, slipping markers as you come to them.

Rows 6 & 7: Repeat rows 4 & 5 (58 sts).

Row 8: Repeat row 4 (66 sts).

Distribute the sts onto 3 DPNs and start working in the round.

Rnd 9: Repeat row 4 (74 sts).

Rnd 10: K to the first marker, SM, KFB, K to sts before the next marker, KFB, SM, K to the next marker, SM, KFB, K to sts before the next marker, KFB, SM, K to end (78 sts).

Rnd 11: K to first marker, Place the sts between the 1rst and 2nd markers onto a holder, K to next marker, Place the sts between the 3rd and 4th markers onto a holder, K to end.

Rnds 12-31: K 20 rnds (As I said, the bunny I made this sweater for was a little shorter than normal, so you can add a few extra rows here if you would like a longer sweater).

Rnd 32: Purl

Rnd 33: Knit

Rnd 34: Purl

Rnd 35: Knit

BO

Arms:

Distribute one set of held sts onto 3 4mm DPNs.  Join yarn and knit across these sts, picking up two sts in the underarm (16 sts).

K 4 more rnds.

P 1 rnd.

BO knitwise.

Repeat for the second arm.

Flower:

Using scraps of green and pink yarn, add a duplicate stitch flower to the front of the sweater using the chart below.  I started the bottom of the flower on the 3rd row up from the garter stitch border but feel free to place it wherever you would like.

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Turn the sweater inside out and weave in all yarn ends.  Sew a button onto the back of the sweater opposite the buttonhole.

Tulip Sweater Created by Whitney Webster © Whitney Webster May 2015 All Rights Reserved.

Copyright information:

This pattern is for your own personal use. This pattern may not be sold, reprinted or distributed without prior authorization. You may however sell finished objects made from this pattern on a small scale. All I ask is that you give me credit as the designer and link back to my site. You must use your own photos of items.

I hope you enjoy this pattern!  This sweater will also fit other members of the Curious Critter Collection once I get more designed.  Happy Knitting!

Brenda Bunny

I’m so excited to be able to finally share my newest pattern with all of you!  I want to start by thanking you all for your patience in waiting for me to get it ready.  I always have the best intentions to get things done in a timely matter, but with two toddlers and unexpected health & technical issues that pop up that isn’t always possible.  I was originally going to release this pattern on March 25th, because it’s my mom’s birthday and this bunny is named after her, but since I couldn’t get it done by then I figured Mother’s Day would be the next best thing.

So without further ado, I would like to introduce Brenda Bunny!

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Brenda Bunny is an intermediate pattern.  The required skills include knitting in the round on double pointed needles, various increases and decreases, mattress stitch and joining knitted pieces together, duplicate stitch, backward loop CO, Figure 8 CO, and Jeny’s surprisingly stretchy BO.  I’ve added tutorial links to the skills that I thought some people may be unfamiliar with.  The pattern is 10 pages long and contains lots of pictures to help out along the way.

Required Materials:

  • 147 yards of worsted weight yarn in body color (sample was knit using Patons Classic Wool)

  • 68 yards of worsted weight yarn in Cream

  • 72 yards of worsted weight yarn in Pink

  • Scraps of dark brown and pink yarn for facial features

  • Set of 5 4mm (US 6) 7″ double pointed needles

  • Stuffing

  • Black & white thread

  • Black & white felt

  • 20 gauge stem wire

  • Scissors

  • Sewing needle

  • Tape measure

  • Yarn needle

  • Stitch marker

  • Stitch holder

  • medium pom pom maker

  • Crochet hook

One material that I used that is different from the norm is stem wire.  It allowed me to make oversized ears that will stand up which is something you don’t see often, and it makes the ears posable which is a lot of fun to play around with.

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This pattern is now available for $4 from Etsy and Ravelry.

Brenda Bunny is part of a collection of toys that I refer to as the Curious Critter Collection.  It is a collection of similarly shaped toys that I started awhile back.  Another member of this collection is Peggy Piggy.  You may be thinking that her and Brenda Bunny don’t look very similar and that is because I decided while designing this pattern that I wanted the toys in the collection to be bigger and dressed.  That being said, Peggy Piggy is going to be getting an upgrade very soon.  I already have lots of ideas for the pattern.  I will leave you with this short poem to give you some clues as to what I have in mind:

Peggy Piggy love to dance.

See her twirl and leap and sway.

Catch her show if you get the chance.

She stars in the piggy ballet.

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Little Bunny Cushion

I promised you a free pattern and here it is!  It’s not exactly what I thought it would be when I started out, but sometimes designs have a mind of their own.  I hope you like what my original sketch transformed into.  Enjoy!

Little Bunny Cushion

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Materials:

63y bulky yarn in MC (samples were knit using Lion Brand Jiffy)

10y bulky yarn in CC

12y bulky yarn in white

5y fingering weight yarn (optional)

Scraps of pink worsted weight yarn

Set of 5 5mm US 8 double pointed needles

10 mm safety eyes and nose

Stuffing

White felt

Yarn needle

Stitch marker

Stitch holder

Tape measure

Scissors

Pom pom maker

(Tip-If you don’t have bulky yarn, try using two strands of worsted weight yarn held together. This project is a great stash buster.)

Gauge:

16 sts & 22 rows = 4″ in Stockinette Stitch

Measurements:

Approximately 12 1/2” tall and 4 1/2” wide.

Terms and Abbreviations:

K = knit

sts = stitch(es)

rnd(s) = round(s)

CO = cast on

[ ]= repeat instructions between [ ]’s as many times as noted after

M1L = Make a left-leaning sts by bringing the tip of the left-hand needle under the strand between stitches, from front to back. Knit through the back of the loop

M1R = Make a right-leaning sts by bringing the tip of the left-hand needle under the strand between stitches, from back to front. Knit this loop

k2tog = knit two sts together

ssk = slip, slip, k these 2 sts together

DPN’s = double pointed needles

MC= main color

CC = contrasting color

Pattern:

With MC and 5mm DPN’s CO 40 sts, leaving a long tail. Distribute the sts onto 3 needles so that there are 20 sts on needle 1 and 10 sts on needles 2 & 3. Join, being careful not to twist the sts.

Knit until the piece measures 6”.

Next Rnd: [K2tog] to end. (20 sts)

Next Rnd: Knit.

Rnd 1:

Needle 1: K1, M1R, K to last sts, M1L, K1.

Needle 2: K1, M1R, K to end.

Needle 3: K to last sts, M1L, K1.

Rnd 2: Knit.

Repeat Rnds 1 & 2 until there are 32 sts on the needles, ending with rnd 2.

Knit 10 rounds.

Rnd 1:

Needle 1: K1, SSK, K to last 3 sts, K2tog, K1.

Needle 2: K1, SSK, K to end.

Needle 3: K to last 3 sts, K2tog, K1.

Rnd 2: Knit.

Repeat Rnds 1 & 2 until there are 24 sts on the needles, ending with rnd 2.

You are now going to work in the round on the first 6 sts on needle 1 and the 6 sts on needle 3. Place the remaining sts on a holder.

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Knit for 3”.

[K2tog] to end. (6 sts)

Cut yarn and thread through the remaining stitches. Poke the yarn tail inside the ear and weave it in.

Distribute the remaining sts onto 3 DPN’s. Join the yarn at the gap between the ears leaving a long tail.

Knit for 2”.

Break off MC and Join CC.

Knit for 1”.

[K2tog] to end. (6 sts)

Cut yarn and thread through the remaining sts. Bend the tip of the ear down at the color change and use the yarn tail to secure it in place. Weave in the remainder of the yarn tail on the inside of the ear.

Use the tail you left when joining the yarn for the second ear to made a few stitches to close the gap between the ears.

Cut two circles out of white felt a little larger than the safety eyes that you are using. Poke the eyes through the middle of the felt circles and attach them to the head. Attach the safety nose and embroider on whiskers and a mouth using scraps of pink yarn. Using white yarn, make a large pom pom and secure it to the back of the bunny. With CC make some random duplicate stitch spots all over the bunny’s body. Add as many or as few as you would like.

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When everything is secured, attached, and woven in, stuff the bunny’s head and body (I left the ears unstuffed) and seam the bottom of the cushion closed using mattress stitch and the tail from the CO.

To make the bow around the neck I used some scraps of fingering weight yarn and my Embellish Knit machine to make an i-cord approximately 26” long. I wrapped it around the neck twice and tied it into a bow. Feel free to explore other options here. You could use ribbon, knit a 4 sts i-cord if you don’t have the machine, or knit a small scarf. The options are endless.

And you are finished!

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Little Bunny Cushion Created by Whitney Webster © Whitney Webster March 2015 All Rights Reserved.

Copyright information:

This pattern is for your own personal use. This pattern may not be sold, reprinted or distributed without prior authorization. You may however sell finished objects made from this pattern on a small scale. All I ask is that you give me credit as the designer and link back to my site. You must use your own photos of items.

Little Red Riding Slippers

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This is the third pair of these slippers that I’ve made.  Unfortunately, none of them were for myself, but I’m hoping that I can rectify that someday, because they are so cute and warm, which is definitely an appealing quality in the middle of Winter.  One of the previous pairs was made as a white elephant gift exchange gift for a family Christmas.  My cousin got them, and she loved them, but they were ruthlessly stolen by my grandma, so I offered to make her a replacement pair.  That’s where these slippers come in.  I hope she likes a little sparkle.  The original pair was a solid burgundy color.

I used the Little Red Riding Slippers pattern by Drops Design.  While I love the pattern, the instructions are pretty vague in parts.  I never would have completed my first pair without watching the accompanying video.  The video was definitely helpful, but there is no sound, because they are an international site, so it still required some continuous rewinding and replaying in some sections and left me scratching my head in others.  After I had already struggled through my first pair I came across this post on the iKnits blog.  She made her own video tutorial and re-wrote the pattern trying to clarify some things.  She also gave written instructions for the diagram included in the pattern, which I found really helpful.  While I can read charts, I’d much rather follow written instructions.  I’d heard before that Drops Design patterns were difficult to follow.  I found that to be more true with this pattern than with others of theirs that I’ve tried.  Don’t let me scare you, though.  It is definitely doable, especially with the resources mentioned above, and once you get that initial pair under your belt, subsequent pairs will practically fly off of your needles.

The pattern includes instructions for how to make three sizes: Small-5/6 1/2, Medium-7 1/2/8 1/2, and Large-9/10.  I don’t know why they excluded size 7, which is especially relevant, because that just happens to be what size I wear.  I have made both the small and medium sizes and have found that while I can wear both, I prefer the smaller size.  It’s also worth mentioning that my cousin wears a size 9, but she was very comfortable in the medium size and requested that her replacement pair be that size instead of going up to the large, so there is some leeway with the sizing.

This pair was made using Lion Brand Wool Ease Thick & Quick yarn in the color mystical (I love the name) and size US 10 needles.  I stood in the button aisle at Joann Fabrics for what seemed like hours before making my final decision.  Initially, I was thinking of using white or silver buttons, but everything I liked was either too expensive or there weren’t enough of them.  It wasn’t until I brought a ball of yarn into the aisle with me that I saw how perfect the brown ones were (Yes they are brown, even though they appear black.  It was too cold to go outside for a proper picture).

I have most of the materials (I’m just a couple of yards short on yarn) to make another pair exactly like this one either for my Etsy store (or myself), but next on my agenda is my first ever free pattern.  I’m hoping to have it ready to release on March 1rst, which will give you plenty of time to knit up one (or many) before Easter.

Lions and Tigers and Bears…Oh My!

I guess I should admit right off the bat that there are no tigers.  Sorry for the deception, but since I posted about lions earlier, I thought that the title was fitting.  This is just a short update to showcase another new item that I’m making for my Etsy store.  Introducing bear hooded cowls!

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Bear hoods can be requested in sizes ranging from 3-6 months-Adult.  They can either be made in all one color or with a contrasting color around the front of the hood and tip of the ears.   I can also add a small knitted flower by one of the ears with either a button or yarn center.  All bear hoods come with a wood button.  The teen and adult sizes are not made to fit over the shoulders, but the smaller sizes are. The adult size hood pictured below is currently available, and I’m hoping to have a toddler hood like the one pictured above available next week.

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This is another cute pattern by The Velvet Acorn.  Stop by and give her shop some love.

I can’t recommend her patterns enough. They are easy to follow and the finished results are always adorable. They incorporate knitting with touches of optional crochet which are simple enough that even a novice at crochet, such as myself, is able to do them. I was pretty proud of myself when I mastered my first bear ear. She also includes a knit version, though, if you’d rather stick with what you are comfortable with.

Lion Mitt Makeover

I’m going to start this post with a bit of a cautionary tale.  I implore all of my fellow craft companions to think twice, and then think a third, fourth and fifth time, before you decide to throw any of your project notes away.  A couple of years ago I used to make animal fingerless mitts.  After my son was born, I decided that I was going to concentrate entirely on designing my own patterns and stop selling finished items.

Fast forward to when I was pregnant with my second son and trying to fit a whole craft room of items into my room so that my son wouldn’t have to sleep in a basket of yarn.  I had to downsize a lot, and as I was going through stuff I came across my notes detailing how I made my animal fingerless mitts.  I wasn’t currently selling physical items and hadn’t made any since I had made that initial decision almost two years before.  I didn’t think that I’d ever want to or have the need to make them again, so I THREW MY NOTES AWAY.  Well, guess what?  I decided that I want to start making them to sell again.  While It’s not catastrophic since I’ve grown as a designer and can take the opportunity to improve on and slightly change the designs, there are some things that I wish I knew from my old notes.  So heed my warning and keep your notes!

Now on to the main topic of this post.  Before I stopped selling them, the last design I came up with were my lion fingerless mitts.

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I was never completely satisfied with them, because they didn’t have the realistic quality of the other animals that I made.  When deciding how I wanted my owl and bear mitts to look, I performed several image searches trying to make them as true to life as I could.  I paid special attention to the details of their eyes.  I didn’t do that with my lion mitts and I’m not sure why.  Maybe I had made so many pairs in preparation for a craft show that I got lazy, or maybe I just never really thought about how underwhelming they seemed when compared with my other animal mitts.  When I decided I was going to start selling them again, the first thing on my agenda became a total redo of my lion design.

I started pouring over images of real lions, and this is what I came up with:

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I hope you like them as much as I do.  There is a pair currently available in my Etsy store and they are always available by request.

My owl, bear, and sock monkey fingerless mitts will probably receive some minor upgrades as well, but nothing so drastic.  Some other animals that I hope to create eventually include koalas, dogs, cats, and pigs.  I also have some ideas for some seasonal designs around the holidays.  I’m sure I’ll come up with more once I get those finished, but if there is something you’d really like to see, let me know, and I’ll add it to my list.

A note to my fellow knitters: I don’t currently offer a pattern for how to make my animal mitts. I’m somewhat selfishly keeping the details to myself so that I have something moderately original to sell, but my advice to you is this. If you would like to make some, find a simple fingerless mitt pattern that you like and use it as a blank canvas. Let your imagination run wild and you never know where it might take you!

Two Color Brioche Knitting In The Round

Have you ever tried it?  If not, I highly recommend the technique. I’ll admit that I was slightly confused when starting out, but once I got the hang of it it was so simple and it creates such a fun and lofty fabric.  I thought I’d share some of the resources that I found helpful in case anyone else out there wants to give it a try for the first time.

I’ve been in love with the look of brioche stitch since I first discovered it, especially with varigated yarns.  This isn’t the first time I’ve knit brioche stitch, but it is the first time that I’ve done it with two colors in the round.  My previous brioche projects were all scarves.  I have been wanting to design a cowl to make to sell in my etsy store, but I wasn’t sure on the stitch I wanted to use or how I wanted it to look.  Then Lion Brand Yarn came out with a new yarn called Zaps (I should mention here that I have not used this yarn yet, because it isn’t available in any of my local stores, but the point is that I fell in love with the fun vibrant colors that it comes in.  I’ve had an obsession with neon yarn lately).  When I saw the colors available I found myself thinking how great they would pop with brioche stitch and decided that that was the kind of cowl I wanted to make.  I did some searches for brioche stitch cowls to see what was out there and discovered that most of them were knit flat and seamed.  I like to avoid seams whenever possible, so next I searched for brioche stitch in the round and discovered a wonderful tutorial by The Purl Bee.

That’s where I saw two colored brioche and my jaw hit the floor.  Not really, but I was instantly imagining the infinite possibilities of awesome color combinations. I knew that that was what I wanted to do. I decided how many stitches I wanted to cast on and how tall I wanted my cowl to be and pretty much followed the tutorial. I experimented with doing an i-cord cast on before deciding on a seed stitch border. I also found a great video that helped get me started and answered any questions that I had.

Here is the finished result (I told you I was obsessed with neon yarn lately):

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I used a combination of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick and Hometown USA.  I’ve never used Hometown USA before and read that while soft it was a little fuzzy, but it was the only yarn I could find in the shocking pink color that I was looking for, so I decided to give it a try.  Did I find it a little fuzzy?  Yes, but sandwiching it with the Thick & Quick eliminated the problem.  I added a lime green button with orange and pink flowers as a little embellishment and to hide the small gap created between the first and last bound off stitch.  This cowl is now availble in my Etsy Store for any non knitters reading this.  You may also request one made in different colors if your tastes aren’t quite as electrifying as my own.

Another great thing about brioche stitch is that it creates a reversible fabric.  Here’s a picture of the cowl turned down giving you a glimpse of the inside.

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I hope I’ve convinced you to give this stitch a try!  I’d love to see what you decide to make.

New Beginnings

It’s a new year and it’s time my crafting business got a fresh start.  After having two kids in two years, most things yarn related fell by the wayside in favor of more important matters, such as sleep.  I feel like I finally have things somewhat under control and am ready to dive back into business full force…with a few changes.

First, I am starting to make some ready made items again and take a few custom orders.  You may think that this will actually require more work for me than sitting back and reaping the rewards of pattern sales without doing anything, but lets face it, I’m tired.  Sometimes I just want to knit and not have to think about shaping and how to achieve the look I’m after.  That’s not to say that I don’t have a few new designs in the works.  I just need another way to keep my business afloat when designing seems daunting.  Expect to see some new things as well as some old that are made using my own patterns as well as others. Whereas I’ve concentrated on knitted toys in the past, I now plan to concentrate mostly on animal themed wearables with some other things thrown in.  Speaking of knitted toys, though, I need to clear out some stock, so the prices of all the older toys in my Etsy Store have been drastically reduced to clear.  Also, add the coupon code NEWYEAR at checkout to receive free shipping (domestic only) on orders of $25 or more through 2/15.

The first new thing available is a fox hood.  The one that is currently for sale is size toddler 2t-4t, but it can be made in sizes ranging from 12-18 months-adult.  Contact me to make a custom request.  I wish I could take credit for this adorable design, but it is a pattern from The Velvet Acorn.  Be sure to check out her store of beautiful knit and crochet patterns.

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For the time being, I am no longer selling patterns on Etsy.  This is because a new law went into effect at the beginning of the year regarding taxes and the sale of electronic items to customers from countries belonging to the EU.  Etsy doesn’t have anything in place to deal with these changes, so I removed my patterns from there and Craftsy as well.  All of my patterns are still available from Ravelry and six of my most popular patterns have been added to LoveKnitting to make them available to EU customers.

I know that’s a lot of info packed into one post, but I needed to get everyone up to date with the changes before I can delve into the fun stuff that is to come.  Stay tuned!