Wednesday, 14 November 2018


Last week I had to make a quick trip to the seaside town of Scheveningen in the Netherlands, where a family member was admitted to hospital. Sadly he won't be going home again, so I had to clean out his apartment and organise lots of things.
Needless to say it was a stressful week, although thankfully some good friends came to help and it was lovely to see them again, even under these sad circumstances.
I brought my current crochet project (the Happy Whirl shawl) but didn't crochet a single stitch - during the day I was too busy and at night too tired (jet lag...)
I did go for an early morning run three times (not difficult since I was awake at 5am most days). It was cold (around 4 degrees centigrade), colder than it ever gets in Queensland, but invigorating! (and so good for my mental health)

I had to stop a few times to take photos of the gorgeous sunrises and the stunning sky:

(more pics on the photo blog)

Of course I bought some Dutch delicacies to take home to my boys (liquorice, spiced cookies, Saint Nicholas treats, syrup waffles). I also got some crochet books and bookazines:

The top right book, Haken met Joep (Crochet with Joep), is written by a 17-year-old boy called Joep who learned to crochet when he was six and now sells handmade beanies in his online shop. How cool is that! (I showed it to my boys, but sadly it hasn't inspired them to take up crochet).
The amigurumi book was a belated birthday gift from my sister-in-law. It's written by Dendennis, a Dutch guy who designs very original amigurumi.
And I'm sure the Scheepjes Yarn bookazines need no introduction, they are just chockful of gorgeous projects.

Now I'm home again, exhausted and once more suffering from jet lag... I still haven't picked up my crochet hook but will do that soon - have to finish my middle son's amigurME doll!

Monday, 22 October 2018

Jacaranda time

October is jacaranda time in Queensland. There aren't as many jacarandas on the Gold Coast as in Brisbane, but that only makes them stand out more. Here are a few pics of my favourite jacarandas in our area.

Meanwhile my Happy Whirl shawl is slowly growing:

The second colour change has happened! Can't wait for the purple to appear.

I have also made a start on my fourth amiguruME doll. Stay tuned for a reveal soon!

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

New Whirl project

A while ago I treated myself to another Scheepjes Whirl (I bought my first one last year in the Netherlands and used it to make a Lacy Pineapple Shawl). This time I chose the Brambleberry, a gorgeous blue and purple colourway.

After finishing the third amiguruME doll (and before I start on the fourth) I wanted a simple project, something that doesn't require too much thinking or counting. I decided on the Happy Whirl Shawl designed by Atty van Norel. So far I'm really enjoying it. The first colour change has just happened - always an exciting moment!

Remember the sun visor I made a while ago, from a pattern in issue 71 of Simpy Crochet? Today a kind lady on Instagram let me know that it is featured in the current issue - and as it will take a while before it's in the shops here in Australia she sent a few pictures as well. Thanks Lisa!

Can't wait to get my hands on this issue! (not that we will need mittens or jumpers here anytime soon... It's warming up quickly and summer will be here before you know it)

Saturday, 29 September 2018

Let's dance!

She's finished! My third amiguruME doll: my yougest son's dance partner.

Her hair is supposed to be in a bun, but as a mum of three boys I have no idea how to make a bun ;-)

So I just tied her hair back...

Next up is my middle son... and his guitar!

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Weekend in Sydney

Last weekend youngest son and I travelled to Sydney, where he and his partner competed in the Luna Park Ballroom Dancing Championships. They did very well and took home two silver medals and one bronze!

You can watch them dance the waltz and the quickstep here:

We stayed with our Dutch friends in Sydney. They have two Cocker Spaniel puppies, so I crocheted a bone for each of them:

Happy to say that they loved their presents!

On Sunday morning we visited the Organic Markets in Marrickville where I bought this hemp twine:

Perfect for another market bag!

Monday, 3 September 2018

Look who's here!

My second amiguruME doll - my youngest son Robert, the ballroom dancer!

He loves it! Here we are together:

Now I have to make his dance partner too, of course...

Saturday, 25 August 2018

Hi, it's me!

May I present... myself! Okay, my legs aren't as skinny IRL, but apart from that surely the likeness is striking?

Well, maybe not, but I'm still very happy with my running alter ego. Or, as someone called it, my personal action figure!
To make it I used this brilliant book:

It's not a standard pattern book - it has chapters showing you how to make heads and faces, upper and lower bodies, feet and shoes, hair, and accessories.

And most importantly, how to customise them so they look like the person you want them to look like.

I loved making this doll, and especially enjoyed adding the finishing touches, like my Garmin running watch:

... and my aqua running shoes!

If my kids had still been little I would definitely have started by making little versions of them instead of myself, but I thought my (almost-) teenagers wouldn't be interested. Imagine my surprise when they all said they loved mini-me, and could I please make dolls for them as well?

... Of course! ;-)

PS Yes, I still have to add my glasses, but so far I haven't been able to find the right material. So let's just assume for now that mini-me is wearing contacts...

Friday, 17 August 2018

Textured cushion

This cushion was a 12th birthday present for my youngest son's dance partner.

Her mum chose the pattern (the Textured Pillow Cover by Leelee Knits) and bought the yarn (Spotlight Value Balls).

I enjoyed making it and the birthday girl loved it, that was nice :-)

These two have now been dancing together for six months and it's amazing to see how much they have improved in that time.

They have danced three competitions together so far. Here you can watch them dance the Merrilyn, a New Vogue dance:

The next competition is in September at the Luna Park in Sydney. Very exciting!

Thursday, 16 August 2018

Sun visor

Look what I made! A crocheted sun visor. There was a pattern in issue 71 of Simply Crochet and I just had to try and make one - in purple, of course. Really happy with the result!

A good way to combine my two current obsessions - crochet and running!

Thursday, 26 July 2018

Yarn bowl

My pottery course is now finished, but I did get to make a yarn bowl. I'm very happy with how it turned out - it's big (quite a bit larger than my other yarn bowls) and blue, and I love it!

It's exactly one year ago since my mother-in-law taught me to crochet and I made my first granny square. What a year it has been!

Here's to many more crochet projects!

Friday, 13 July 2018


I enjoyed my first amigurumi project so much that I was keen to try some more. Here are a few things I've made in the last week - the ice cream keyring was a birthday present for my son's girlfriend (free pattern here). The bone (free pattern here) is for Barney, of course:

At first he wasn't very interested...

But after a day or two he started playing with it!

I also made a little doggie - it's supposed to look like Barney:

I bought the pattern (Simply Cute Dachshund) on Ravelry. The brown 'dog eyes' seemed like a good idea when I found them in the craft store, but I now wish I'd used round black eyes...

I'm not as happy with this project as I am with Dominic the Dopey Dragon, but the boys like it and tell me they think it does look like Barney!