Category Archives: gifts & easy to make gifts & presents

How to Make Woven Brooches with Upcycled Bases

Woven brooches are a quick and easy eco friendly gift to weave on a pin loom – any 2 or 3 inch pin loom will work fine.

The bases of the brooches are made using bottle caps or shapes cut from plastic jugs or other bits and pieces pulled from the recycling bin.

Here’s the video showing how to make them:

Leave a comment

Filed under eco crafts & green projects, gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, jewelry, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, pin loom, tutorial & how to, video tutorial, weaving & handwoven

Weaving swatches on the potholder loom for color and pattern design

Weaving swatches and samples with yarn to learn about color and pattern on the potholder loom is a great design tool, and the bonus is that you end up with some stellar squares that can be used (and gifted!) as potholders or stitched together to make fabulous projects.

Here’s a video that shows why:

Leave a comment

Filed under gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, potholder loom, tutorial & how to, video tutorial, weaving & handwoven

Crocheted Panda Blessing Bear

For the last almost 20 years or so, I have been crocheting, knitting and weaving little bears and giving them away as my way of spreading kindness, comfort, solace and delight.

I have made thousands of them, and I have never had anyone say no when I offer them one.

And, the lovely stories that people tell me about their experiences with them are so special.

(LINK to the Craft Yarn Council of America Website for the explanation about how I was inspired by the events of 9/11 to design the first Comfort Bears and the pattern for the very first one.)

So, anyhow… back to Panda Pocket/Comfort/Blessing Bears……

Last week, I had an ‘Aha’ moment…  I thought….. I should design a Blessing Bear that is a Panda!

After all…. who doesn’t love a Panda?

I set to work on it and came up with this little darling:

I’ve seen that people love the ‘hugging arms’ that allow the bear to hug them back, so I designed the arms to be all one piece.  Perfect for giving hugs.

Although, the little huggetty arms can also cleverly hang onto things….

A dear friend came for tea today and fell madly in love with the Panda, and she was thrilled when I gave the prototype to her.  It immediately jumped onto the clasp on her bag:

I thought that that was very clever of her!

Even though I designed the pattern to be a Panda, it doesn’t have to just be a Panda….

Crochet it in blue yarn, and it’s a Blue Bear of Happiness.

Crochet it in brown yarn, and it’s a dear little ‘Regular Sort of a Bear’.

No matter how you crochet it, please put love into every stitch.

Please DO NOT SELL THEM.

Please make tons of them and carry them in your pockets, because you’ll be amazed at how much joy you can spread by giving them away.  You will bring kindness and happiness and goodness knows, we all need that.

I make Blessing Bears as often and as much as I can and give them to the ministers at our church, and they give them away as part of pastoral care.  Please feel free to do the same.

I love that these  bears bring a ray of sunshine.  I hope that you’ll enjoy making and sharing them, too!

HERE’S THE PATTERN- IT IS MY ORIGINAL DESIGN, SO PLEASE RESPECT COPYRIGHT AND SEND PEOPLE TO MY BLOG (AND YOUTUBE FOR THE VIDEO)-  PLEASE DO NOT COPY OR SHARE THE PATTERN.  

Scroll down the page for the video of how to crochet the Pandas.

CROCHETED PANDA BLESSING BEAR
Designed by Noreen Crone-Findlay (c) 2019
The size of your hook and weight of your yarn will determine the gauge of the crocheting, and the finished size of your bear. When made with worsted-weight yarn, the Panda Blessing Bear is approximately 3 inches tall. When made with thicker yarn and a larger hook it will be bigger.  When made with thinner yarn and a smaller hook it will be smaller.    To make this bear, you will need to know how to make a chain, slip stitch and single crochet.

MATERIALS:
The bears in the photos were made with less than half an ounce of worsted-weight yarn or bulky weight yarn. Hand spun is wonderful.
Black embroidery floss for embroidering the features.  2 tiny beads for eyes- but embroider the eyes if you are going to give it to a child who is younger than 3 years old.

Crochet Hook in a size slightly smaller than you would usually use for the size of yarn to give a denser fabric

A tiny amount of stuffing
Darning needle for sewing seams
Embroidery needle for embroidering features
ABBREVIATIONS:
Ch= chain
Sc= single crochet  Turn= turn the work over and start the next row in the last st of the last row
* to *= you will repeat the instructions that appear between the two”*” signs however many times stated in the pattern.

DIRECTIONS

BEGIN WITH THE FIRST LEG: With Black Yarn: 
Ch 5, leaving about 4 inches of yarn at beginning of ch. This tail will be used to sew the legs up later.
Row 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each ch to end. (4 sc). Ch 1 and turn.
Row 2: 4 sc, ch l, turn. Cut yarn, and draw end through last ch l.

SECOND LEG: Repeat Rows 1 & 2 for the second leg.  Tie white yarn to black yarn end, leaving a 4 inch/10 cm tail.

NOTE: If you are doing a bear in just one color, don’t cut the yarn at the end of the 2nd leg.  Just continue working with it.

BODY: With White Yarn:
Row 3: Work l sc in each of the 4 sc of one leg, then work l sc in each of the 4 sc of the other leg. (8 sc). Ch l and turn.
Rows 4 & 5 & 6: 8 sc, ch l, turn.

HEAD:
Row 7: 2 sc in each sc, (16 sc ) ch l, turn.
Row 8: 16 sc, ch l, turn.
Row 9: (l sc , sk next sc) 8 times, 1 sc in last sc. (9 sc) ch l turn.                                                                                               Row 10: *1 sc, skip next sc* Repeat from * to * 5 times. (5 sc).

Cut yarn, leaving a tail of about 10 inches, pull yarn end through last ch l.

ARMS: Make 1: Note: The arm piece should be about 2 1/2 inches/6 cm long, so depending on your choice of yarn and hook, you may have to change the number of stitches you use to make it.

Row 1: Ch 10, slip stitch in 2nd ch from hook, and in each remaining ch. (9 slip stitches).  Cut yarn, leaving a tail of about 4 inches, pull yarn end through last ch l.

FINISHING:
HEAD: Take the yarn end into the needle and then go through each of the 4 sc at the top of the head to gather the upper edge of head, then pull up tightly. Stitch to anchor.
-Sew center back seam of head.
-Stuff head.

NECK: Wrap yarn end around neck of bear 3 or 4 times, and pull up tightly.
– Stitch over the neck wraps 2 or 3 times to lock in place.

BODY: Stuff body and sew shut.

LEGS: Fold the leg edges together. With the starting yarn end, sew the leg seams. Tie the yarn ends in a tight knot and take all ends inside body.

 

ARMS: Take one yarn end of the arm through the shoulders of the  bear. Pull up to lock the arm piece to the bear.  Use the end to stitch the other end to the bear’s shoulder.  Take the ends inside the bear.

Stitch the other end of the arm piece to the bear and then take the ends inside the body.

EARS: With Black yarn: Push crochet hook into a stitch in the top of the head, yo, pull up a loop onto hook.  Ch 4.
-Cut yarn, pull end through last loop on hook.
-Tie a knot with first yarn end, then thread yarn end into darning needle, and hide yarn ends inside
head.
-Repeat for other ear.

FEATURES: With Black yarn: 

EYE PATCHES:  At the midpoint of the head, take 2 or 3 stitches that cover 2 sc for the first eye, then 2 or 3 stitches that cover 2 sc for the second eye.   Note, if you are making a bear that isn’t a Panda,  skip the eye patches.

NOSE: take one stitch slightly below and between the eye patches.

MOUTH: Take 2 stitches slightly below the mouth.  Take the yarn end inside the Panda’s head.

EYE BEADS: Stitch one small black bead at the center of each eye patch.  Start at the back of the neck- take the needle in through the body and out at the neck, then make a securing stitch then take the needle to the front of the face, stitch one bead on for the first eye, then go to the second eye and stitch another bead on.  Take the needle back through the head and out at the back of the neck. Make a tiny securing stitch and then take the needle into the body and out, pull up and snip the end close to the body.

 

Here is a link to  a bunch of posts for patterns that I have designed.  Sometimes, I call them ‘Comfie Bears’,  sometimes, ‘Blessing Bears’, sometimes, ‘Pocket Bears’, sometimes, ‘Prayer Bears’ or ‘Compassion Bears’.   LINK

Leave a comment

Filed under blessing bear, charity knitting, crafting for charity, crochet, gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, teddy bear, tutorial & how to, video tutorial

Teneriffe Lace Bookmark

Oops! I have been so busy that I totally forgot to make a post here on my blog about the Teneriffe Lace Bookmark.

Yup…. it’s been crazy busy here…. whew….. I’m working on one book, while doing revisions on another, researching the next one,  writing and designing the techniques and projects for new looms that I have designed, as well as all kinds of family stuff…. yup…. busy!

3 Comments

Filed under Dewberry Ridge looms, gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, lace making, Teneriffe lace, tutorial & how to, video tutorial, weave along

Teneriffe Lace Bunny -Teneriffe Lace Weave Along

My wonderful son-in-law suggested that I design and make a Bunny for the Teneriffe Lace Weave Along to celebrate Springtime and Easter.   He’s a genius!

Here’s the video showing how to make the Teneriffe Lace Bunny:

The links that show where to go to get the videos for making the Teneriffe Lace circle and dewdrop are at:

LINK

The looms are available from:

The Teneriffe Lace group on ravelry is at:
and the Teneriffe Lace group on facebook is at:

1 Comment

Filed under Dewberry Ridge looms, gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, lace making, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, Teneriffe lace, tutorial & how to, video tutorial, weave along

Teneriffe Lace Weave Along Fairy Hair

In my last post, I showed how to make a Teneriffe Lace Fairy.

The video got so long that I decided to make the ‘Hair making’ video separately.

And, so, here’s the video showing how to make the hair for the Teneriffe Lace Fairies 🙂

The links for all the videos in the Teneriffe Lace Weave Along is   L I N K

 

1 Comment

Filed under Dewberry Ridge looms, doll & dolls & dollmaking & doll making, gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, lace making, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, Teneriffe lace, tutorial & how to, video tutorial, weave along

Easy to knit comfort or pocket teddy bears

I love knitting and crocheting comfort/compassion/pocket bears.

Here’s Tottie Tomato with a batch of bears that I just knitted.

By the way, in the video, I explained a little about where ‘Tottie Tomato’ came from.

Back to Comfort or Pocket Bears…….

Over the years, I’ve made thousands of them and given them away.

Here’s my newest version… knitted, and then folded and stitched, and oh so sweet!

The pattern is: Knit 20 stitches for 22 rounds and then follow the instructions in this video:

Happy knitting!  And, may the little bears bring you delight in the making, and joy in the giving!

For more patterns for Comfort bears, please click:

Knitted comfort bears

Crocheted comfort bears

 

2 Comments

Filed under blessing bear, charity knitting, crafting for charity, gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, knitting, teddy bear, tutorial & how to, video tutorial

How to make a Heart Ornament with the Incredible Rope Machine from Schacht

One of our Christmas traditions is to make ornaments to give to our family and close friends.

This year, my husband and I are making hearts using the Incredible Rope Machine from Schacht.

It’s the neatest tool… it looks like something Leonardo da Vinci would have invented.

I made a video showing how to make the hearts:

2 Comments

Filed under gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, tutorial & how to, video tutorial

Cutting garments into fabric strips to weave and knit

The flu knocked me for a loop, and as I have been slowly pulling myself out of it, I haven’t had much energy, so my blog has slipped off the rails.

I did want to mention, however, that I made a video about cutting up garments to upcycle them by weaving or knitting with the fabric strips.

In early October, my son in law’s step-dad passed away.

This was, of course, very hard on our grandson.

I talked with him about what it meant to him to have his ‘other’ grampa (not my husband) pass away.

I asked him if he needed something of his grampa’s to hold onto, and he said yes.

So, I asked for a couple of Bill’s shirts so I could make comfort critters with them.

I cut them up and wove them into kittys, as that was what my grandson asked for, so he has one, and other family members have them too.  (I didn’t photograph all of them).

I also knitted a teddy bear for one of our relatives, as he is definitely a teddy bear guy 🙂

The bear and kittys have been well received and they do carry the love that went into every stitch of making them.

I’ve done this before, and have found that ‘compassion critters’ made from upcycled clothing of a dear one is very comforting for people in grief.

Every little thing helps….

Here’s the video:

The woven kitties and knitted bear are made from the following patterns:

https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/88710…

and https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/27430…

4 Comments

Filed under blessing bear, charity knitting, crafting for charity, eco crafts & green projects, Findlay Bear and Flora Panda, gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, knitting, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, personal stuff, potholder loom, teddy bear, tutorial & how to, video tutorial, weaving & handwoven

Mermaids woven on peg looms and weaving sticks

I have always loved mermaids, and I am totally addicted to weaving mermaids these days.

I’ve  made a video showing how I used my Mermaid pattern on etsy to weave Mermaids of different sizes  on peg looms.

I took the original Mermaid that looked like this for the pattern:

And added a wooden face, leather hands, a little tatting, and a seashell:

She was woven on 1/4 inch diameter weaving sticks and is about 11 or 12 inches tall.

Also woven on the 1/4 inch diameter weaving sticks is this Mermaid, woven with hand spun art yarn and  needle felted:

 

The same etsy pattern can be used to make totally different mermaids by changing the size of pegs or weaving sticks used and different thicknesses of yarns.

I used the smallest pegs on my 6 inch peg loom to weave the smallest Mermaid, who’s about 7 or 8 inches tall.

She’s woven on the 1/8th inch pegs.

The Mermaid woven with the 3/8 inch pegs is about 20 inches tall:

I did some geometric pattern weaving in her body, but it’s a little hard to see in this pic.

I used 2 strands of a very bulky chenille yarn held together to weave the largest Mermaid, who is around 28 inches tall.

When I was weaving the different sizes, I did tweak the pattern somewhat to adjust for the differences in the size of the pegs and thickness of the yarns.

Here’s the link to the pattern in my etsy shop:  LINK
(sorry – it’s not free)
Happy weaving and happy Mermaiding!

The looms are from Dewberry Ridge Looms: LINK

 

My book: Peg Looms and Weaving Sticks is available from all your favorite online book sellers, and can be ordered through your local book store.  It’s full of weaving yes-ness!

Here’s the video about the Mermaid dolls:

2 Comments

Filed under Dewberry Ridge looms, doll & dolls & dollmaking & doll making, gifts & easy to make gifts & presents, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, mermaid, Peg and Stick Loom weaving, peg looms and weaving sticks, tutorial & how to, video tutorial, weaving & handwoven