Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Christmas Projects

A very quick - and late - post to join in with my friend Jennifer at Thistlebear's Winter Project Link Party, in which we get together and share the things we are working on throughout the winter months. My projects for December are all firmly focused on Christmas gifts. I am in the zone and there is no distracting me. I am a crochet machine.

I recently finished this rabbit. Ok, not technically for Christmas, but a gift I had promised and intended to make for so long that I couldn't really focus on anything else until it was out of the way.

The pattern is from one of my favourite crochet books, Edward's Menagerie by Kerry Lloyd. I can practically crochet these critters in my sleep now, so many have I made, but they delight me every time.

I have two projects on my hook right now - a duck and a cowl, and they are proving to be the perfect counter-projects. The duck, which will be one of Angus's Christmas presents, is from Edward's Menagerie: Birds. It's small, using DK yarn and a 3 hook, and requires a fair amount of concentration which, depending on how tired I am and Ziggy's antics, isn't always there.  

But I just love how he's already starting to take shape and those colours are perfect. He looks like he's wearing a little fair isle knitted jumper. I'm using Drops Karisma for this duck, a DK yarn I often use now for these animals and birds because it's soft, durable, easy to work with, has amazing depth of colour and is really well priced.

The cowl, on the other hand, is the perfect project for when I am tired but still want to work on something. The pattern is a joy, just rows of herringbone half double crochet or hhdc (US terms) stitches, with three colour changes. I found it on Ravelry and the pattern is available here. It's free and very well written and I'd recommend it if you are looking for any last minute crochet gift ideas.

I am making this one for a friend but I'm already sad for when it finishes, so satisfying and speedy is it to make, with the chunky yarn and 10 mm hook. 

I'm using Drops Nepal for this one, and it's so incredibly soft with great stitch definition. When I ordered this yarn I also ordered three balls for myself, in white, grey and pink, and I'm going to be hooking myself up one of these after Christmas. 

Once these projects are complete, I need to make Bella a toy orangutan and crochet some socks for my mum. In time for Christmas, yes. I don't know why I do this to myself. There will inevitably be some last minute crocheting, as there is every year. I do like a challenge, do I not?

Meanwhile, Christmas has arrived at our house with fairy lights inside and out, and a ridiculously big tree. More on that later, but for now I'll leave you with a picture of the tree. If the fairy lights look a little uneven, or you notice more decorations at the top than the bottom, then you will know to blame a certain whippet puppy whose mission is to shred the tree of lights, baubles and pine needles too, at this rate. 


  1. Nicely done on all fronts Gillian. I love the texture of the cowl, I shall go and have a look at the pattern in a minute and see if it is something I might manage. I'm knitting a moss stitch cowl at the moment. Slow going, mostly because I don't have much knitting time. I snatch the odd moment standing up in the kitchen where the puppy can't reach the yarn. Well done on braving a Christmas tree. I have gone minimalist this year; the puppy causes enough mischief without giving him a whole indoor tree to play with. CJ xx

  2. I love the little rabbit you made, very sweet. I hope you are going to show us the duck, too. I'd love to crochet a duck - one day. Drops Karisma is one of my favourite yarns, the colour range is beautiful and it is washable, too. A Christmas tree should be big! I am looking forward to buying our tree next week and decorate it with the children. x

  3. The cowl is one I would love to wear with my padded grey winter coat, too, and I know the one you are going to make for yourself after Christmas will be even lovelier with some soft pink in it.
    Very cute animals, too.
    As for the big tree, it looks great to me, but I understand it is quite a challenge with Ziggy around. When we still had cats at home, our parents always only put up a small tree on a side table, so that none of the decoration would be at ground level. I must say our cats were more interested in the wrapping paper after the gifts were opened than in the tree!

  4. I love seeing your makes, Gillian. The rabbit is so cute. Your tree looks lovely to me, and I totally get life with a puppy, especially at the holidays. Hey, I think I only started using my "good" ornaments once both children were over about age five! That was too risky for a long time. I hope the last few days before your break are good and as stress-free as possible. I'm setting off for a 12-hour endless CHRISTMAS FEST of driving around, ferrying people, watching performances and generally losing my mind. YAY. :)

  5. Love all your crochet bits & do all puppies and kittens enjoy de-decorating trees. Take care & huggles.

  6. The rabbit is so cute - I bought a crotchet book to learn to crotchet but then when I went to look for some wool I really did not know what to choose or where to start - so I haven't started yet - I think perhaps I need a kit to get me going - you make it look so easy.

    1. ooops not sure where all those t's in crochet came from - must be hitting the keyboard in the wrong place - I should be in bed when I stop spelling properly - it is almost midnight!!

  7. Before I even clicked on your link on the feed I knew what it would be! I guessed you would be up to your eyeballs in crochet animals and it made me smile when my hunch was right. We normally have our tree in our kitchen but Bruce the one year old spaniel would have just shredded it so we moved a chair in the lounge upstairs and have it up there - much nicer in the evenings. We don't normally have our tree up until the children break up from school but we were snowed in good and proper last weekend so we put ours up for something to do. Looking very christmassy over your way. Jo x

  8. it always inspires me too see others makes, ideas and inspirations. love your christmas tree ;) merry christmas x


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