Since overhauling our toy
disaster collection a year ago, I’ve opted for quality, open ended toys that stimulate imaginative play. Our play room is full of wooden food, musical instruments, baby dolls and clothes and a gorgeous doll house full of little wire dolls and hand me down furniture from at least three generations. The little girl who plays in there is much calmer and occupied for much longer in her imaginary worlds.
The next addition I have been hunting for were some sweet felt or wooden Steiner/Waldorf gnomes and small world toys. Unfortunately, we are nowhere near a brick and mortar store that stocks anything Montessori, Steiner, felted, etc. I have a whole list of bookmarked online toy retailers but being in Australia, the shipping would cost more than my cart! The closest store with a beautiful range of fairy houses, felted faires and food, and wooden nins (I love these little nins by Grapat) and gnomes is the beautiful Goldfish Toys in Berry, NSW …a three hour drive away. I didn’t want to wait until our next countryside escape to pick up some $8 gnomes I had my eye on so I took to Pinterest and Youtube in a quest to make my own.
These little guys are the results and I couldn’t be happier. It took about 30 – 45 minutes to make each one and I already had the yarn and 3mm crochet hook. They are super cute, are very similar to Grapat Nins and definitely cost less to make than petrol for 6 hours driving then $8 each if I was to buy them in Berry.
I followed HappyBerry Crochet’s “Wizard Gnome” tutorial only I used a 3mm hook, 8ply arcrylic yarn and I chose to stuff my little gnomes with poly fill while Laura keeps hers open like a finger puppet.
To seal the bottom, finish the final round as the video instructs and instead of tying off, CH 1 and in back loops only, SC in next stitch, SC2TOG in the next. Repeat SC, SC2TOG until end. Your stitch count will reduce to 12. Stuff your gnome at this point then SC2TOG x 6. Tie off and sew the hole closed. I poke the needle back through the hole and pull to flatten out the bottom before hiding the tail end.
I hope this idea helps another mama looking to make her own set of little gnome friends. I have this vision of an entire toy box of toys I’ve made my children. What are some other handmade toy ideas? Amish puzzle balls, stacking bowls, rattles and loveys spring to mind. Now to actually make them!
I came across this beautiful CAL for little Grace through my favourite crochet artist Laura from Happy Berry Crochet.
‘Little Hearts for Grace’ is run by Lindsey Newns of Lottie & Albert and Jen of Just Litte Jen to raise funds for the charities that have helped Jen’s daughter, Grace, and their family. This CAL open to anyone in the world to crochet one of 9 granny squares designed by 9 amazing crochet artists and send it in to create a beautiful blanket to be auctioned off next year. The proceeds will go towards Little Hearts Matter and Bristol Children’s Hospital in the UK and contributions can be sent in from 2 December 2017 to 31 January 2018.
I could not be more excited to make a contribution to this amazing cause. My first square was made using Kaidalys‘ beautiful bobble heart pattern – find it here. I can’t wait to make more of these beautiful granny squares.
More about the project, details on where to post your hearts to and how to donate can be found on the Little Hearts for Grace CAL page at Lottie & Albert -> http://lottieandalbert.blogspot.com.au/
Love Liz xx
I wanted something special and not made out of chocolate for Lottie’s Easter present.
Thanks to the wonderful Laura at HappyBerry Crochet I was able to make this sweet little bunny.
Lottie loved her bunny and I loved the sweet amigurumi pattern that worked up in a few nights.
Here is the link to the video tutorial and also HappyBerry Crochet‘s wonderful website if you are looking for polished, easy to follow patterns.
I’ve been crocheting all my life on and off however the last 2 years of actively working on my skills has been helped so much by this website and Laura’s videos. I’ve made beanies, toys, play food and all sorts of things and I always know they will turn out perfect if she wrote the pattern.
Next I want to try another crochet doll. I wasn’t all that happy with my first attempt and I think I need something easier, a bit more piece by piece instead of working the whole body, head and legs in one. Any suggestions?
It’s spring in Sydney and that means fresh strawberries, flowers and ice cold lemonade feature heavily in our weekends. Lottie is almost 3 and really into tea parties and role playing with food. I have to check the grill for plastic donuts before putting on dinner!
I used HappyBerry Crochet’s wonderful pattern to create this strawberry –
– which was such a hit I’m going to make a few more for the play kitchen.
Today’s project though is this bumble bee courtesy of Mohu Blog and it turned out great!
I’ll be knocking out a few more for a friend’s little girls as soon as I’ve got more wool and a rattle ball to pop in the middle. I made the wings bigger and just did simpler eyes than in the pattern.
Both the strawberries and the bees take less an an hour to complete and make great gifts or additions to a home made mobile.
Happy Saturday everyone!
I’ve been crocheting since I was 7 but have only recently moved onto more complicated projects like cupcakes and dolls. The best place to start for tutorials in beanies, blankets, little toys and baby booties is HappyBerry Crochet UK.
Her name is Laura and she runs my favourite YouTube channel packed full of easy to follow crochet tutorials. Seriously I’ve never made a beanie perfectly until I stumbled across her brilliant video series that covers every size from newborn to large men’s beanies.
Right now I have 9 days until Mother’s Day here in Australia, a mother, a mother-in-law and a grandmother-in-law to think up gifts for and I’m hanging out for her tutorial on how to make the crochet roses she posted on her Instagram last week!
Fingers crossed she makes a video for crochet roses soon!