Saturday, December 7, 2019

Aztec Wishes 2019 Donations Have Been Delivered!

I just want to send out a THANK YOU to all my friends at Crochetville for their amazing generosity that makes this such a great donation drive every year. It is always so much fun to be the person that gets to deliver the stuff but honestly all of you do so much to make it happen.

I do love donating to this program because the high school kids do learn valuable skills helping to organize the drive and yes the children get to play with the toys that are donated. It just expands the number of people who benefit from the hard work you do. Thanks to all of you.

One of those bags was filled with doll blankets donated by people from Crochetville and that doesn't include the 4 blankets I used for the dolls I donated. It is such a blessing and an honor to see all the beautiful work that is done.

Friday, December 6, 2019

American Girl Rain Coat

This is another pattern from the free pattern set Weatherby found here. This outfit works up quickly and I like adding it because I don't often make outdoor wear for the dolls. I like to vary the types of outfits I include in the donation and having an easy to make coat makes it an ideal choice.

At some point I need to find a boot pattern to go with this pattern.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Koala Christmas Ornaments

I love making unbreakable ornaments for people with kids or those who have kids that visit because its nice to have ornaments little ones can help hang or you don't worry too much about them touching.

I inherited my Mom's Christmas ornaments when she moved and I have a box labeled unbreakable ornaments from our childhood that were boxed separate for this purpose. When we were little these were the ornaments we were allowed to hang at the bottom of the tree. Safe for us to put on and safe for us to touch during the excitement of the holiday. Some were hand made, others purchased.

As we got older and grandchildren appeared the unbreakable still was an important feature of holiday celebrations. I can say in my own home I've been grateful that these distractions have kept other ornaments safe from little hands.

That being said as I've learned over the years unbreakable doesn't always mean unbreakable. My plastic childhood ornaments that seem to have been made of steel have been broken as I've dropped them in my adult years. However, they have been less likely to shatter than the beautiful glass ornaments from my grandmother's time that I've inherited.

So how does this all relate to the Koalas you may ask? I've tried to pass on this tradition to other family and friends with little ones who want/need their own "unbreakable" ornaments for little hands by making crocheted ornaments for their trees.

This year I opened my holiday binder to the Christmas section in search of an ornament I wouldn't mind making 2 of to send out in my Christmas package. I struggle when I need to make duplicates in short periods of time. I can duplicate doll outfits yearly, but not one after the other. So I needed a pattern that was quick, simple, and interested me enough to make 2 in a close time frame.

I've learned over the years that while it may seem a good idea to make different items for different ones sometimes it can create problems if one item is deemed to be the "better" item. So I decided why not try to make the same item slightly different for the ornaments. Thus I bring you this years Koala ornaments.

This is a free pattern found here. Now the original pattern uses sport weight yarn and I primarily work in worsted weight yarn. The patterns author kindly provided a link to someone who built on the pattern to make it the same size but using heavier weight by adjusting the rows. You can find that here. You will need both patterns if you decide to use the second pattern for the worsted weight option as the second pattern refers to directions only found in the first pattern. The pattern sets include directions for a panda bear and a brown bear too.

This is a fun project and a great way to add a little holiday cheer.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Santa Baby

I made a two holiday outfits that I mailed out with the Big Sister project and I mentioned I was working on a Christmas outfit. This was another project on my to do list after DH purchased this pattern for me a while back. The Big Sister project motivated me to start thinking about holiday outfits and as I was digging through my patterns I came across the Santa Baby pattern. You can purchase the pattern here.

I loved this pattern because despite the fact it is a 15" doll pattern it required very little adjustment to get it to fit the 16" doll. I played a little bit with the back on joining and that made the color change a bit cleaner on the back. I also used a crochet pom pom that I've used for years from an 18" doll hat pattern that has been out of print for a while. I also added white trim to the bottom of the pants. I just couldn't resist.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Snow Girl

As part of the package I'm sending for Christmas this year I'm working on a snow family. I finished her before Veteran's Day. I'm working from an old Annie Potter presents leaflet The Snowbuddies from Snowville. I've not seen this pattern reissued as an e-pattern but I will post a link should I see it become available. I finished Mom and will post her and baby when they are done. The Dad is next up on agenda to finish. I'm hoping to get a family portrait before they need to ship out.

I changed the colors on the sister to pink as that is a preferred color.

This was the perfect choice for the family it is going to as they have a new baby this year. I've seen several snowmen families but this is the only pattern set I have with a baby snowman. I'm thinking if its a hit, I'll add a second girl snowman next year as I can't imagine little sister is going to want to be the "baby" for ever.

Monday, December 2, 2019

American Girl Ariel's Dinner With Eric

I've mentioned many times how much I love Sweet Silver Creations princess dresses. Shortly after finishing Cinderella's dress I began working on Ariel's dress. You can purchase this pattern here. The shoes are another Sweet Silver Creations pattern School Uniform available here.

As I mentioned with the Cinderella dress these princess patterns do use up a considerable amount of yarn. When my husband asks me why I keep needing to buy yarn when I have so much this is one of the reasons why. While I have a considerable amount of yarn, I end up using up the princess colors pretty quickly. I am working on a strategy to target some of the orphan yarns that have been neglected in favor of the yarns I finish off on these projects again and again.

Friday, November 29, 2019

American Girl Bathrobe

I bought the Crochet World DVD collections and printed a number of the patterns a few years ago. This year one of my goals with the doll donation and even the Big Sister project was to try some of these patterns I've printed over the years and never made. For those of you interested in this pattern it was originally published in Crochet World October 2010 as Dolly's Bathrobe by Kathleen Stuart.

I again pulled from a Sweet Creations pattern, School Uniform purchased here to make the slippers to go with the bathrobe.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving. Wishing all of you a happy, healthy holiday.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

American Girl Let the Sunshine In

This is a wonderful fun summer outfit. It is part of a free pattern set called Weatherby found here. I've made three patterns in this set for the donation this year. This is the first time I've attempted this pattern. I'm not sure how I missed this one before. I found it worked up quickly and it is an adorable summer outfit.

The jacket threw me at first. I'd never made anything quite like it before. However, I was thrilled when it was finished. I'd like to make more like this again now that I understand how it comes together. It makes a cute addition to a dress.

I mix and match patterns all the time to get the pieces I want. The shoes come from a Sweet Creations paid pattern Sun Dress found here. I wouldn't suggest buying a pattern for the shoes, but if you find patterns that you like that fits and doesn't fall off the doll my suggestion is use it across other patterns where you need shoes.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Light Bulb Hot Pad

I've always liked holiday dishcloths and hot pads or pot holders. I find they are both practical and decorative. They add a little holiday color and feel without taking up valuable work space in my kitchen. I'm trying to test out some patterns this year to see which ones I like before seeing if they'd make good gifts.

I like this one, but I even in the picture of the pattern you will see it doesn't lay completely flat if that is an issue for you with hot pads. I was gifted one prior to this and I've found the little bump hasn't been an issue for keeping the pans balanced on top. The weight usually keeps the item flat.

You can purchase this pattern here. As I mentioned previously in a blog about Mary Maxim, e-pattern central has frequent sales. If you want this pattern and you have time to wait, I'd suggest waiting on one of their sales to pick up the pattern.

Monday, November 25, 2019

American Girl Cinderella

I discovered Sweet Silver Creation patterns several years ago and they've been a staple of my Aztec Wishes donations ever since. I've been especially fond of their princess outfits. I love being able to make princess dresses for the donation that are not all that complicated to complete. Do to the skirt this pattern is a bit of a yarn hog, but since I generally buy larger skeins of my frequently used colors this wasn't a problem for this outfit. If you are interested in making this pattern yourself you can purchase the pattern here.

I added shoes to this outfit using another of her patterns School Uniform that can be purchased here.

Friday, November 22, 2019

Puppy Lovey

You'll find it shocking if you've been following along but we are done with the Big Sister doll outfits. This is actually the last item that went into the package and it was a present for the baby a dog lovey. I've gotten hooked on making lovey's as baby gifts. I find them cute and easy enough to make.

I love connecting with fellow bloggers. Especially fellow crochet bloggers because I stumble across patterns I didn't even know I needed. That's how I found this lovey pattern. I was participating in a blog hop and boom there he was and I had my lovey pattern ready to go. You can find the free pattern here.

I've always been a huge fan of purple so that might have been what drew me to this over other free lovey patterns out there. I would have liked a stronger purple in my own, but I was determined to stick with my stash on hand. I have to get rid of it some how folks. I do love how he came out and I hope he is well loved in the years to come.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Button Me Up Baby Doll Romper

As I mentioned in a previous post I'm always looking for patterns that can be adapted to baby doll clothing. This romper set is actually a free newborn set that can be made to fit the 16 inch baby doll. I suspect you can work it to fit a range of sizes if you play with it a bit. You can find the free pattern here.

I was feeling some what whimsical when I chose the colors for this outfit. I was around the time I was making Halloween items and it was a somewhat dreary day. I wanted something bright and cheerful and Halloween colors were on the mind. The hat is the same hat I used in the Annabelle dress the pattern can be purchased here.

This pattern works up quickly and I will be adding it to my donation items in the future. Most likely with less Halloween themed colors.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Peachy Keen Baby Doll

I've been looking at this set since it was posted and thinking I love it but I'll never get to it. You can find the free pattern here.

Well never arrived with the Big Sister project and I loved this outfit. I think what sold me on it was the jacket. It reminded me of the formal church coats from my childhood. We had play coats to wear outside and get dirty, but there was a "nice" coat we were supposed to keep clean and wear for special occasions like going to church. I doubt I ever owned one in pink or peach as the pattern called for, but I do remember them being more formal than the zippered jackets we wore most of the time. They generally were cloth, mostly wool and they buttoned.

I went with pink for this outfit because I am determined to decrease my stash and I had some that was perfect for this project that I really wanted to start using up. This is one of my favorite outfits of the Big Sister project. Partly because I stepped out and did something I didn't think I would do. The other reason is it brought back some happy childhood memories. My thanks to Darski as always for all her wonderful patterns that made this project so much fun.

For those of you following along, the baby has shoes.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Baby Doll Sun Set

This was an adorable outfit I couldn't resist from the free pattern set Sweet Baby Mine found here.

Of all the projects in this set I think this one required the most adjustment to make the outfit fit the larger doll. The other outfits had more cosmetic adjustments in terms of length and width. This one required a little more work to make the proportions fit the doll due to the change in size of the doll. I loved this outfit and it was worth the work to make it fit. I hope to return to it again for the donation project in the future.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Little Angel Baby Doll Layette

I find inspiration for my doll projects where ever I can. This designer has a unique ministry to help parents who have need of burial clothes for their children. While it may seem morbid the clothes often are the perfect size for dolls and free patterns give me an opportunity to stretch my crafting dollars. She models the outfits using dolls about the same size as those I use for my doll projects making her patterns a good match. This layette set is a free pattern you can find here.

I used regular worsted weight yarn on this project although it calls for baby weight. While a 4 it was a lighter weight yarn than my normal worsted and perfect for this project. It was another chance to use up some yarn left over from previous projects. While I consistently buy yarn to get specific colors and weights, I also am always on the look out for ways to make a dent in a every growing yarn stash.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Annabell Crochet Baby Doll Dress

Every so often I start out to make a pattern and it doesn't happen or only part of it works for me. I've learned not to push it too hard or it can break the crochet spirit so to speak. Sometimes a doll outfit isn't right for this time. I started to make a dress from petite designs which you can purchase here. The dress wasn't working for me, but I loved the hat. Where time was a factor I moved on to the next outfit.

I had printed Annabell's Crochet Dress and decided I had to attempt this as part of the doll project. You can find the free pattern here. It had such a dainty almost lacy look to it. When I first looked at the picture I wasn't sure if this was crocheted in thread or yarn. To ease your mind I will tell you the dress is made in 4 ply yarn. This was another great project to use up yarn. I had some left over yarn from a special project I'd made a few years ago for her and now her doll has a dress from the same yarn.

This dress is another that works up quickly. While I think it looks dainty and lacy, it was very simple to create. Again you will see no booties, although the pattern does have them if you'd like to try them for your doll. I did try but the doll didn't like them. This time they were too big and I couldn't fit them. I have a suspicion this doll is going to spend most of its life shoe less.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Sweet Baby Mine Doll Dress Set

As I mentioned the free Sweet Baby Doll Mine pattern set was quite helpful in filling my need for patterns for the Big Sister doll project. You can find the pattern here. This was also a great project to finish up some left over yarn from other projects. I loved this pink yarn but there wasn't a great deal left to do much with for a bigger project. It turned out to be the perfect amount for this project. I had just enough left to finish it without leaving me with more left overs. The white was left over from a bobbin I'd used on her sister's baby blanket. I love projects that finish off yarn. I have all too much to use up.

This is a very cute and quick outfit to make for a baby doll. The cape covering is adorable. I am so glad I decided to tackle this pattern set. This will definitely expand my donation rotation in future years.

For the child I made it for it has the advantage of being easy to put on and take off as well. Little hands can sometime struggle with outfits that are complicated but I tried to focus on outfits that would build dressing skills but not frustrate.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Baby Doll Chistening Set

One of the many things that I loved about the big sister project is it got me exploring patterns I'd never tried before. Tn some cases I'd just gotten into doing the same patterns I knew I could complete in time for the Christmas donation. Some outfits were intimidating. Other outfits like this one might not fit the category of a donation to people you don't know. However, knowing where the gift was going it was a pleasure to try out the Christening set from Darski's free pattern set Sweet Baby mine which you can find here.

I've had this set printed for several years as there are several adorable patterns. I'm not sure why I haven't tackled it before. However, something about this challenge made me look at it and I made my way through most of the patterns. As I mentioned I'm still working through the blanket to finish for the donation. I even adapted the bonnet from the Christening outfit to use in the Pilgrim holiday outfit. If you are looking to make baby doll clothes this is a pattern to download and keep. There are lots of great patterns in it for your doll making interests.

For those of you who have been following these posts you may note I did get these booties to fit the doll. I will have to remember that for future projects.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Baby Nicole

Another outfit from operation Big Sister. This one is from the Mary Maxim pattern Baby Nicole that can be purchased here.

Mary Maxim has been releasing more of their kit patterns as digital patterns. They regularly are on sale for $.99 so I generally wait for the sale to stock up on any new releases I don't currently own. I believe I originally picked this up as a kit when I first started doing the doll donations. I got a doll and an outfit to make and it worked out for me. I later moved on to the soft baby dolls and later the doll moved up in size when the 15 inch soft dolls were no longer available.

However as I've mentioned in previous posts, most patterns adapt and as long as you keep trying the outfits on for fit you can usually make things work as long as the change isn't too great.

While I've had some success with the 18 inch dolls and crocheted shoes the baby doll has been a bit more stubborn about shoes. I don't know if it is the shape of the feet but I find most of the doll bootie patterns seem just to fall off which is why the doll is constantly bare foot in most pictures.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Baby Doll Pilgrim

The Big Sister Doll Project was sent out in the middle of October shortly before the litle girl became a big sister. I loved this project. It got me crocheting again and I had a wonderful time exploring baby doll outfits.

It got me motivated to complete more 18" doll outfits to send off to the donation project. After I'm done posting about the baby doll project I'll hopefully get those posted.

The down side was I haven't posted anything from the project. So it is time to get caught up. Since November has arrived I thought I'd start with a Thanksgiving theme. I've been making this outfit for the 18" doll for years. I'm hoping I can make a holiday outfit for each of the holiday's and get it sent off for the baby doll. In this first batch I sent off the Halloween costume and the Thanksgiving Pilgrim outfit. I recently finished off the Christmas outfit. I'm not sure if I'll have time for a traditional holiday dress. We will see.

On to this outfit however. I've been using Darski's We Gather Together free pattern found here for years to make my 18 inch doll Thanksgiving outfit. I've made my own bonnet for years but never written a pattern. For this project adapting the dress pattern wasn't too difficult as I use a 16 inch baby doll so it required just a little adaptation to change it from an 18 inch doll pattern to a baby doll outfit. The biggest challenge was making sure the outfit wasn't too large, the arms too wide or too long. The apron had to be adjusted to the size of the doll.

When it came time to make the bonnet for the baby doll however I was able to borrow from another Darski free pattern. I used the bonnet for the Christening gown found in her Sweet Baby Mine pattern set found here. Again these patterns weren't written for 16 inch baby dolls but for 14 inch baby dolls. However when you've been making doll clothes for a bit you learn to adapt, especially with baby dolls. Rarely do you find someone who had the exact same doll as you. You crochet for a bit try it on and see how it fits. In this case I changed the bonnet edging.

I love this pattern set and you will see more from it later. The blanket from this set has become a travel project or my I'm just to tired to think project at night. When I finish it that will go into the holiday donation drive. The extra doll blankets get distributed to dolls and stuffed animals that come into the donation without their own blankets. We make sure all the dolls we donate go out with their own hand made blanket thanks mostly to the hard work of friends at Crochetville.

Friday, October 4, 2019

Baby Doll Diaper Bag Items

I started making the items for the diaper bag for the big sister project. This adds the baby wipes and changing pad to the diapers for the bag. You can purchase the diaper bag pattern here.

For time saving I picked Melissa & Doug Mine to Love Baby Food & Bottle Set (Doll Accessories, Easy-Close Bib, Orange Juice and Milk Bottles, 8-Piece Set, 14” H x 11” W x 2.5” L) instead of crocheting the bottles and food items I've made in the past. These items will add to the fun of pretend play with the baby doll.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Post Stitch Baby Blanket

The Post Stitch Baby Doll Blanket was the second blanket I finished while working on the Down on the Farm Baby Blanket. This is also part of the Annabelle's Doll Blanket set. You can purchase it here.

What I like about this set of patterns is that they aren't difficult to make, but when complicated they look quite nice. I also like the way they work with colors. While the patterns call for lighter weight yarn, I always use worsted weight yarn because I have more of it on hand and it works up faster. The weight isn't as much of an issue as it is when you want to put the blanket on a child.

I had forgotten how relaxing these projects can be when you need something to do without being able to focus on counting and changing stitches.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Baby Doll Pumpkin Costume

With a new baby sister getting dressed up for Halloween, shouldn't big sister be able to dress her baby doll up for Halloween too? Well that was my thinking, but there aren't many costumes out there for baby dolls so some creativity was required. I'd been gifted an 18 inch doll pattern for a pumpkin costume. You can find it for purchase here. I decided to simplify the pattern just making the pumpkin section and hat using worsted weight yarn and the suggested hook. I tend to need to go with a larger hook than suggested to make clothes fit so I suspected if I went as suggested I might be close for the smaller 18" doll.

The pattern did require some adjustments to make it fit the 16" dol. I ended up going up a hook size for the hat as it was too small made with the suggested hook. The pumpkin as written would not have slipped on and off as written so I used a pumpkin button to close the opening on the second shoulder.

I've been making pants for years, so instead of going with the suggested pants directions I made "shorts" for the baby to finish off the clothing part of the costume. I decided to go with the friendly pumpkin rather than the jack lantern. It looked a little friendlier for a baby.

This was fun to make. I really enjoyed adapting the pattern to make it fit the doll and love the idea of the baby doll being ready for the holiday. I have a Christmas pattern that I've never had the time to make in previous years for the donation. I'm thinking it would be fun to send off with the Christmas box if I find time to finish it this year.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Tisket Tasket Doll Blanket

As I was working on the Down on the Farm Baby Blanket I found I needed a couple of projects that were simple and easy to travel with which definitely wasn't the Farm blanket. After making the blanket for the Big Sister project I decided it would be fun to make a few. This one is the Tisket Tasket pattern from Annabelle's Doll Blanket Pattern set that can be purchased here.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Baby Doll Sundress and Hat

This is one of my favorite patterns to make for baby dolls. It works up quickly and little ones find it easy to dress and undress the doll without pesky buttons, snaps, or hooks. As of this writing the pattern is still available on the Wayback machine here. The pattern adapts fairly easily for different doll sizes depending on the hook and yarn size. The pattern was written for a 14" doll and I've made it for 15 and 16" dolls.

This gift is coming along nicely.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Baby Doll Carrier and Blanket

I've been making good progress on the doll project, I'm just now catching up on making the posts. The doll carrier is one I make frequently and you can find the free pattern here.

I've been fortunate the last few years and do to the generosity of online friends I haven't had to make many baby blankets for the doll donation. I've had lots of donations that have covered the need. It was interesting to get back to making doll blankets. This comes from my favorite doll blanket pattern set which can be purchased here. This pattern is the Easy Peasy Afghan in the Annabelle's Afghan set.

My favorite part of working on this project was the color of the blanket. It was so bright and cheerful it was a joy to make.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Baby Doll Project

While I always donate 2 baby dolls each year at Christmas this year I had an additional baby doll project. A family member is having a second child and I thought it would be fun for the big sister to have a new baby to play with as well, so I'm making some of the same items I normally make to donate to send off with the baby blanket.

While it's always fun to work on the donations, it is kind of unique to work on a project when you know where the gift will end up. Today we begin with the doll diapers. Every time I write about this free pattern I always wonder if it will be available the next time I post about it as I have to use the Wayback machine to get the link here. I like this pattern because it's been pretty flexible as I've adjusted it from the 12" dolls to the 16" dolls and it continues to work for me. I use snaps rather than buttons as I've found them easier for kids to use.

As you can see in the picture the doll is wearing one and I always make one "extra" so the child can change the doll.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Down on the Farm Baby Blanket

A family member is expecting a second child next month and I wanted to make a special afghan to send. After looking at different pattern options I settled on the Down on the Farm pattern which can be purchased at Mary Maxim here. The pattern is often on sale for $.99 if you are interested and willing to wait.

I had seen pictures of finished projects where people had changed the colors and preferring the changes I decided to make the changes using yarn I had on hand rather than buying additional yarn.

It's been a while since I made a picture afghan and I had misplaced some of my yarn bobbins so I needed to replace them. What I discovered is that I couldn't find them at the local craft store where I'd been buying them for years. Thankfully I was able to get them online at Hobby Lobby. There are several ways to work color changes but I like bobbins the best.

This was a fun project and I'm looking forward to trying some other picture blankets. I picked up a couple of kits when Mary Maxim was having a sale. There always seems to be a need for a baby gift and getting the kits on sale is a great savings. It can be easier sometimes than trying to hunt down the yarn I need.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Three Little Pigs Finger Puppets

The Three Little Pigs was my literary theme for that summer bday I keep writing about. I'd made these finger puppets before and they had been a hit so I decided to try them out again. This time I added a bag as I've learned small things get lost easily.

I've been making this pattern for several years and sadly, it no longer appears to be available for purchase. You can find the listing on Ravelry here. I give you that information so you can contact the designer and find out if she'd be willing to sell the pattern again.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Dog and Bed Playset

This is another summer birthday gift I never got around to posting. This was the perfect gift for a little one who loves animals. I fell in love with this pattern when I saw it online. The extras really make this a wonderful play set. You can purchase the pattern here.

One thing I've tried to do as a kindness to parents when I make gifts with lots of pieces is to add a bag even if one isn't included in the project. Some people use them, some don't but it does make it easier to transport the pieces around the house or to travel with them. It also helps just to keep the pieces together and keep them from getting lost.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Three Little Pigs in a Bag

Once again I've fallen behind on my posting. This was part of a July birthday present. I love presents for kids that connect to books. I found several copies and versions of the book to add to the gift. You can purchase the pattern here.

This was one of my stash busting projects which is why one of the pigs is a different color. I thought I had enough of the dark pink for all the pigs, but I didn't. Time being what it was I chose not to remake the pigs so they'd all be the same shade of pink.

This was a fun project and one I'd make again. The bag makes a great storage holder for the toys.

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