Electric Picnic

Electric Picnic-ing

Hello again! Another weekend, another festival, another scheduled gif of me dancing in the shed in my mostly-finished vest!

It will be autumn soon and I will be able to spend my evenings leaning back into my crocheted wearable art practice. Ecstatic to be here but excited to get more hours of my day back! Handmaking one-of-a-kind clothes to make special creatures happy, makes me happy!

See you soon after Electric Picnic! Xx

Related:

Shaggy shaggy shaggy outfits!

Stashware

Find me on Depop….

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Crochet cases

Crochet bags for tablets, headphones, sunnies…

After working on some bags to hold my parasols, I still have a lot of wool scraps available from larger past projects that I really need to run downBy wool scraps, I mean little lengths of wool. The lengths really vary, from tiny amounts that are under a metre in length to balls that are the size of a cricket ball and smaller.

The shortest amounts (approx 1-5m) I have are usually the last few metres of wool remaining from finishing a much larger project like a blanket or coat. I do something special with these. They automatically get added to a scrap ball as I finish each project. The ball ends up looking like this (please excuse the current project attached):

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As you can see, it is a real mixed bag of different colours, and these will vary all the way down into the ball. I do not ever throw wool out, so this scrap ball is an important part of my practice. It also doubles as a useable artefact of past crochet project memories!

The balls varies in size constantly. In the photo above, it is quite large, but that is because I have not made a scrap project of late. That current project is a sunglass case with a long strap so I can tie it to my backpack when I am travelling at night, or wear it as a shoulder bag. It is a little wobbly up the sides because I haven’t planned the wool weights correctly this time around, but have I have nary a care for this particular project. I need something to hold my glasses, not something that’ll be on display in the Tate!

After doing something more extensive like the project below (an iPad cover), I will usually have ran that ball down into something the size of a chicken or quail’s egg, if I haven’t used it up completely. Either way, the cycle will begin anew; big projects, scrap wool, scrap ball, small projects. Rinse and repeat.

The random lengths and colours of the wool are how I get the unique patterning. I use a bit of colour theory (colour context and colour harmony) when making the scrap ball. This step hopefully ensures that the colours all work well together in whatever finished piece I create, regardless of size (which can vary in length and height from jewellery bag, to A4 notebook). It is obviously a bit hit and miss, but overall, I finish up pleased with the result.

As I mentioned above, there’s also a bit of thought that needs to go into the thickness of the wool. They can’t vary wildly in terms of ply and weight if you would like your project to look totally even. Craft Yarn Council has a handy guide, but that is likely for North America only. I would recommend checking for your countries specifications in case there is a difference going from imperial to metric, and so on.

The main stitch I use for these projects is the amigurumi-style single stitch and a 3mm hook. I find this makes a dense stitch, perfect for this style of project. All of these bags and holders will be very heavily handled throughout their lives, so they need to be robust.

The project above is a bag to hold my headphones. I have also made a little pocket to be sewn to the front to hold my aeroplane plug attachment and charger.

I made the strap out of some of my longer balls of wool because I did not want any stray knots to be rubbing on my neck or pressing uncomfortably into my shoulder as I am walking along.

The tassels are from leftover shag jacket projects, I usually find I will have a fistful of strays at the end of a coat that just cannot be added onto the body! Waste not, want not, yeah?

Thanks for reading! Hopefully this post can give you some ideas with what to do with those last little bits of wool. Xx

Related;

I don’t consider these bags good enough to ask people to pay for, they are just practical little pieces that make my day easier. I do have a shop on Depop that I put all of my heart and over a decade of skill into. Check it out here.

Past scrappy projects! Crocodile-stitch bedsocks (or booties) with leather soles…

A Fair Isle hearts-and-stripes onesie-bumsie expansion piece

Support independent creators if you can! I compulsively fill my immediate vicinity with beautiful, comforting things made from materials I have sourced sustainably, but it can be a time consuming, lonely task… can you stand with me and help fight off the scourge of fast fashion?

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Crocheted parasol holders

A house for a handmade umbrella

I have been parasol making again. A couple of years ago, I found a fairly unattractive brown floral print umbrella. While I did not admire the pattern of the canopy, it was obviously high-quality. The stretchers and ribs were well-oiled and still ran smoothly after a couple of years of use (and abuse), and while the umbrella is on the smaller side, the weight of the object gives you the feeling that it is good quality. It does not feel like a cheap, shitty umbrella. 

It is a keeper, and after the canopy developed a tear I thought it was worth repurposing, spending a bit of time to create something really special.

When I had finished the latest crocheted parasol made from a recycled brolly frame, I needed to make it a case. This was to have somewhere to store it in, with a strap to be able to hang it for when it is not in use. It could get damaged or dirty fairly quickly without one.

This is the second crocheted parasol cover that I have made, and I had neglected to make a case for the first one as well. Although I have made covers for precious treasures in the past, I had been avoiding this task.

It is time I stopped dragging my feet and made some covers!

I still have a bunch of pink wools from some previous projects, little scraps and small lengths. It’s easy enough to use them up on this small granny-square based project. I started by choosing my wools for the project.

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To make the bags, I used treble stitch in a granny square-style. This would also be a good pattern to make bags to hold yoga mats or poster tubes. They have drawstring tops and tassels on the bottom.

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I’ve directly attached the straps to the bags with crochet, no sewing. I crocheted them by chaining from the bottom to the top, turning the work and single stitching down the chain. Repeat until the strap is as wide as you want it. I’ve created a bit of an interesting pattern for some of the strap colours by putting the hook not directly into the previous stitches, but by biting the hook further down into the work and doing a longer style of single stitch…


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…I know this explanation is a bit convoluted. I wasn’t able to work out what this stitch is called to find a how-to to share! Apologies. If anyone reading this knows what I have done to the band, and what the stitch is, please let me know.

After crocheted the first one in pink, it was a fairly simple step to dig up some more wool scraps and make one for my first parasol.

It was great to get these projects ticked off the to-do list. They are a bit of preventative maintenance to ensure that I can get the most amount of life out of the parasols I have put so much work into. Also, it makes the parasols harder to lose at night when you can strap them onto your body, or sling them over your back. It beats the risk of putting them down to do something with both hands and just….walking away from them accidentally.

Related;

Previous granny square (and triangle!) pillowcase projects. Each project leading up to this has been building my expertise in granny squares and pattern making…

Support further pattern making projects here!

You can also support via the Etsy shop here.

 

 

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Boomtown Weekend

And Boomtown goes the dynamite!

Getting busy at Boomtown Festival currently. Locked in onsite and unable to get out to get to a post office, sorry everyone! Making the Radical City look a little bit more radical with my shaggy jackets and parasols in most* colours of the rainbow….

Boomtown is one of the big ones so I’ll be back to my regular festival wear flexes and crochet how-tos over the next few weeks.

So again, here’s a gif of me happy dancing in the mostly-made pastel rainbow vest, one shoulder to go and I can see at this point it is coming together well. Watch me twirl! Wheeeeeeeeeeeee!

Thanks so much for bearing with me, festival season is just so busy! I needed to schedule a few things just to give myself breathing room.

Related;

I handmake everything. The above jacket was a commission job but please check out my Depop shop to see the ones you can buy directly, or email me if you have something even more custom and bespoke in mind….

Heaps of stash mushroom necklaces still available too. Different colours to match you and everyone else in your squad!

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All Together Now weekend

In the All Together Now!

Just kidding. Unfortunately I don’t have any updates for any real posting this week, I am at the All Together Now festival and won’t have a second to sit down and share anything extensive.

So I have planned this dancing diversion for you instead. Hope you like it OK!

I am still mailing orders from the Depop shop, but I might take a bit longer to make my way to the post office (I send everything on a tracked service).

I will be unlocked and able to leave the site next Tuesday to head straight out to get your goodies posted to you. Email me directly if you have any questions about the timeframes, I will get back to you as soon as I can!

Related;

More shaggy crop tops and jackets than you can shake a stick at!

Magical mushrooms that hold and elevate your clipper lighter to something beautiful and functional!

Amigurumi wearable art

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Kendall Calling weekend

Kendall Calling is …calling

Festival season in the UK is in full swing! Just putting up a mini-post this week. By the time this is published, I will be locked into a field at the Kendall Calling festival.

I know I won’t have a spare second to think or even scratch my bum, so instead I have scheduled a gif of me dancing in a vest I was working on earlier this year. Enjoy! (Hopefully.)

Will I see you there? Keep an eye out for a brightly coloured and fluffy figure clutching a crocheted parasol! Xx

Related;

I can make you loads of festival wear! Whether you are planning on going to DownloadIllusive, Woodford Folk Festival or Rainbow Serpent, anytime of year, anywhere you are, I have you covered and can ship to you! Some examples;

Jellyfish stash flasks

Fringed crop tops

Crochet patchwork denim jacket upgrades

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Aquatic shag coat

New day, new creation

I wanted to make something a little bit oceanic, a little bit beached mermaid, something a little bit seaweedy…calming colours for a cosy jacket to wear in the psyforest this summer season!

So I rummaged through my stash for all the blues and greens! Teal, cyan, mint, sky blue, navy, emerald, Kelly green, aquamarine, and cerulean blue….

I used a bit of each of the planned colours to create the checks so I would have a template to follow while I was adding the shag. Shagging the jackets gets very repetitive, and I can develop a kind of highway hypnosis, but for crochet. This sometimes means that when I wake up out of it, I have done a fair bit of work in the wrong direction.

I need to keep an eye on the time spent making. As much as I love it, I do have other demands on my time, like a partner who can be left feeling ignored after the fourth straight day of head-down-hands-busy-no-time-spare-to-feed-myself. They are very patient but they do have a point. Being with an artist is sometimes…not a lot of fun.

The checkerboard pattern that I’ve worked into the base has helped a lot with managing my time.

I sometimes think I should get one of those old-timey punch-in-punch-out machines like factories sometimes have so I can clock how long it actually takes to make things. I don’t know where to get one or replacement cards! That is very low on my to-do list, so if anyone reading this can point me in the right direction I would be grateful.

Anyway, the thing is now made, it took a few days, but I don’t know how long I actually spent on it. Here it is before I finished weaving in the ends and trimming all the strays and extra long bits.

The coat in action:

And now for some gloriously produced professional photos!

Photographer: d.i.n.o_p.h.o.t.o

Model: lxzza.pearson

As of the time of this writing, this coat is available on Depop. I used a lot of discontinued and hard-to-find wools to create this one. This is truly a one-of-a-kind piece of wearable art, I will not be making another one of these in exactly the same colours. My practice makes it difficult, if not impossible, to create repeats so rest assured that you are getting rare and exclusive pieces. (As well as supporting ethically-made sustainable art from an independent creator.)

Related:

Making stashware for festivals, parties, and everyday casual wear.

More shaggy coats, vests and jackets! 

If you like what I do, support my practice if you can. Show some love for the independent, gallery-free arts here…

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