New Year Resolution

It’s a brand new year 2010 now. Where are my new year resolutions?

Getting very lazy lately on not updating this blog as often as I wanted to be. I was busily doing crocheting.. Yeah all the excuses…

Last few weeks of  year 2009 I was doing some last minutes projects: a modified ‘Hobbes’ from my tiger pattern, some mini christmas wreath to give to my family and friends, roses for a friend. Currently I am working on a Strawberry shortcake blouse.  I have placed my ‘Hobbes’ at etsy on sales now. Many viewers but no takers. Hmm..

Today I have finally take up the initiative to make out some resolutions for my future crochet projects:

1) Make a lightweight jacket from a design stated in Inside Crochet magazine (looking for soysilk yarn online, they are so expensive…)

2) Design something for the valentine  gift season, hello kitty? Heart shape cushion? Roses? Any ideas?

3) Seriously updating this blog for more crochet techniques: from basic to advance. At least two times per week  ( readers, please kick me if you don’t see any new blogs updates for a while :P)

4) venture to other kind of small accessories design like: hair bend, pin cushion, potpourri, etc.

5) Learn fulling (felting) – the process of shrinking knitted or crocheted pieces. You many wonder why would I want to shrink my precious handmade pieces so as to get a different kind of texture from its original pattern. I’ve been doing some researching on this and find it quite interesting. I think I would start something small first  like, a small pouch or something.

6) Last but not least, finish all my half done projects which include: handbag, cushion cover or pot holder, tissue box cover or cushion cover? That is for myself to interpret and determin. haha!

So hope that I could fullfil what I have written above. Time will only tell..

A year later I will make a point to come back to this blog to update what I have actually done.

So have you done your new year resolution yet?

My New Shop and Latest Products

Yesterday I was busy setting up my new shop at Etsy (see links at the right of the blog). It took me a whole day to upload my 8 items and write-up on each of them. But it seems the effort taken has somehow rewarded. Some one has placed order for my cute snowman and I receive another email showing interest with my tiger doll and requested for custom-made to Hobbes instead. I  am very happy viewing at the responses after one day of show case. It really gives me a boast on what I am doing. Thank you for all the support.

I have completed my skirt crochet. It turns out to be pretty wearable and cozy. I really like it very much. Just need a bit more touch up to reduce the button holes size as I used  much smaller size buttons.

My next project would be a cushion cover using a motif design provided by Inside Crochet Issue 3. As I was half way doing, I figure that it could be changed to a tissue cover box instead. Will post the outcome of the project in the future.

While you are in the process of crocheting a product, you never know what could happen down the road. The same things happen about life. That is why I enjoy crocheting so much. So enjoy the process of making and let us hope for the best outcome!

Bye bye Mr Snowman
Edge pattern at bottom of skirt

Colorful Motif

New Calendar for Year 2010

I have been wanting to make my own calendar for a long time. Now I finally have my dream come true.

I recalled in the olden days where digital cameras and digital photos are still not that popular, I use to take scenic pictures when I went overseas using my film camera. After the pictures were developed ( not like digital photos, whereby you can see the result the instance you took the picture) I would then choose the best photos I like and redevelop in a larger size as I wanted to use them to make a calendar. Until now, that 12 chosen pictures are still left in my drawer untouched.

With the advance of technology, I can easily make my own calendar and insert with my favorite digital photos easily with the use of the software available in the market.

I recently came across the software, SmartDraw and use a trial version of the software to make 2010 calendar. Within two days, I have already completed making a yearly calendar and a monthly calendar with my favourites crochet dolls photos. See the below picture for the yearly calendar I’ve made:

One thing about using a trial version of the SmartDraw. There will be printed wordings appear below the picture. I have to do some work to remove that. If you are interested in getting a pdf copy of my yearly calendar, send me a request to my email address: tinggreat@gmail.com.

By the way the year 2010 calendar was highlighted with Singapore holidays. I have to manually add in the holidays as the Smartdraw software have public holidays options for only limited  countries, Singapore is not included. 😛

My New Skirt

Sometimes you will need plenty of passion to keep things going.

Especially when you have a challenging crochet project on hand.

I just started making a skirt since last week. I was wondering when would it take me to finish and then suddenly I found myself now crocheting the belt of the skirt using Tunisian knit stitch. As mentioned in my previous post, this is the first time I am stitching Tunisian knit stitch. This would be a challenge for me to get my tension right so as the skirt would not appear either too tight or too loose. I can’t wait to wear my finished product!

As I was doing my skirt, I sort of wanting a sewing kit on hand so that I could keep my accessories. I found a coin purse that I did last month back, a cute cat face. I have left it unfinished for a while due to I could not find a suitable zipper for the purse. Recently I managed  to find a 10cm long black color zipper to match the purse and managed to finish sewing it. Although I like to crochet, I somehow hated to do hand sewing and always left my finished crochet bags with zippers and lining waiting there to be sewed. Guess I lack that kind of passion to keep things going then. ;P

As seen at the left picture, beside the purse is a pin cushion that I just modify from a snowman head. Isn’t it cute?

So are there any crocheters out there having some of your unfinished crochet projects hidden some where?  Time to stop giving yourself any excuses. It is coming to year end and what are you waiting for? Take them out and give a boast to your passion and make it a point to finish them.

Happy crocheting!

Thank You For Your Interest

I receive emails recently from people who were interested with my tiger crochet pattern. That really give me a boast of confidence. Once again thank you for your interest. Hope to see some feedback if you enjoy doing it.

I really wish I could go further to design more things in the future. Other than amigurumi dolls, I wanted to widen my design to other areas like handbags, blouse, skirt, accessories, etc.

Recently I’ve come across this crochet magazine from UK: Inside Crochet that gives me further inspiration for doing more crochet product. I am currently making my first skirt crochet by following a pattern given in Issue 3. The design make use of alternating between two single crochet(double crochet in UK) and two double crochet (treble for UK) as the base. Some lace pattern at the end of the skirt that make its look sexy and elegant. The belt of the skirt is of Tunisian knit stitch and this would be my first time crochet with this pattern. I’ve made a sample of the pattern to check my tension and it turns out that I quite like the Tunisian stitch. Can’t wait to see the end product.

You can find the digital back Issue copies at: http://www.yudu.com/albums/items/82881

I really wish that one day I would have the chance to meet some of the crochet experts and learn from them the technique of design and dye yarn color. I also wish that I could stay in a country with four seasons and so I could have more product idea to design a winter jacket or an autumn scarf. Now I could only wear my crocheted jacket in an air conditional room. 😦

Where is the Snowman?

This is my latest design, a simple snow man.

You can display it on the table in your office or at home.

Every time I feel worry about anything, just take a peep at it and all my worries would melt down.

Every time I feel stress from my work, just squeeze it and all I would feel better.

Living in a tropical country, I seldom have the chance to see snow. I remember the first time I touched and played with snow was at Kirkland, near Seattle on a business trip in year 2001. They said it seldom snow over there. On an early morning in January, I woke up feeling pretty cold and saw this beautiful sight outside our rented apartment. At the car park place just outside the apartment were covered with a foot tall of snow. I saw those cars that were parked without a shelter were covered with layers of snow. That kind of feeling seeing every way was white was kind of a thrill to me.

Me and my colleagues were amazed by the scenery. While waiting for the car to warm up (so that we could drive to work) we four adults were happily playing with snow like no other kids.

Some of those family that lived in a valley had their road path all stuff wth snow that they were strained at home until the path were cleared by snow remove vehicles. There were news reported that people loved the snow so much that they rather took a day off from work or school to admire at the amazing whiteness that only came once in every four seasons.

If there will be snow in Singapore, I will definitely be thrilled and just spending all my time watching the amazing beauty created by the nature. Long live the snow!

My Recent Products – Crocheted Dolls

Full Collection of Crocheted Dolls
Full Collection of Crocheted Dolls

I felt like a creator lately, making all this cute Amigurumi dolls. The process of starting without knowing what would become, until seeing the end of each of them presenting itself was unbelievably thrill. Stuff dolls make such a wonderful gifts to the kids, and to those who are still young at heart. As for me, I enjoy more in the process of making rather than receiving them.

My mini journey (about 2 months) of doing crocheted amigurumi dolls made me a proud ‘mother’ of 13 dolls. I was quite reluctant to make one in the first place as I always thought that making crocheted dolls were very tedious and I am no good in doing craft. But after making my very first one, I got hooked onto it and made another 12 more.

I started by following the pattern as stated. Japanese patterns are very precise and easy to follow too. Their designs take each single details into consideration and you could imagine how precisely the doll would be like.  Most of the doll design comes with 9 parts: the head, the body, the two front feets, the two back feets, the ears and the tail. Some have nose protuding and that add on to another new piece. Some come with dresses, sling bags, hats or other accessories like a ribbon or a flower. The eyes were either made by felt or plastic knobs. Some would need some cosmetic stitches for their eyelids, mouth or whiskers. You never know what it will look like until you have finished till the end. Each one is so unque even if I make another same pattern doll  it could never turn up to be the same look. That is what make handmade so precious.

So far, I have make one Doremon, one Doremi, two Hello Kitty, one Maneki Neko, one dragon, one Hippo,  two cute bears, one dog, two pandas. The latest one that I made was a tiger doll. I wanted to do a tiger doll as next year will be the year of tiger. As I search through the internet, I came across the picture of a crocheted tiger doll. What I did was by looking at the picture, I found some similar patterns that I have used to make for the other dolls and improvise on them to create the pattern. It took me two days to try out and complete recording down the patterns and assembly the parts to the finished product. I’m kind of satisfied with the result. With this I am more confident of creating new pattern in the future. Tiger FrontView

I guess I my fingers would still be busy for a while. May be no more dolls (unless there are incoming request) but something else like bags or wearable outfit. But again you never know. I probably came across some cute doll pictures and my fingers become itchy again. Haha!

Most important of all is enjoy the process of making!

Cheers!

P.S. : Anyone who is interested in getting the tiger crocheted pattern (pdf format) for free can send me a request via email: tinggreat@gmail.com.

After notes: Due to increasing response for getting the tiger pattern, I decided not to give out freely. I will place the pattern for sales at Etsy http://www.etsy.com/listing/61869199/cute-crochet-tiger-pattern.

My Recent Projects for the Month of August

I have been doing a lot of crochet works lately. My latest unfinished projects include: a Japanese Cat doll, a dragon doll, a nylon string bag and a seat mat. My ‘going to start’ projects list includes: a Doremon doll, a Hello Kitty doll, a flowery floor mat.

I wanted to write up for each of the projects I did in this blog and some hints and tips for who are interested to do crochet or currently doing.  Lots of things on hand and I am speeding up right now.

The side of the bag
The picture show at the header banner of this blog was taken from the base of the nylon bag that I was currently doing. I like the pattern: a simple alternately between single crochet and double crochet forms a pretty unique pattern for the side of the handbag. I was delighted with the choice of the string I used that turns out with a bit of sparkling effect. Can’t wait to see the end product. I am still sourcing for the hairy yarn to finish up with the top and the handles.

You can refer to this for the rest of my recent works:

http://picasaweb.google.com/tinggreat/AugustProducts#

7 Great Reasons on Why Crochet

Why Crochet?

As mentioned previously, I have started crocheting since I was young.

This hobby has all along accompanied me and became one of my best hobbies that I spent the most time with. What is so interesting about crocheting?

1. A hobby that can do with other things

Those who are extrovert would think crafting kind of hobby is boring. You spent all your time sitting down there dealing with entangling yarn. I am an active person too and yet I don’t find crocheting boring. So why is it so?

I do crocheting while doing other things too,like:

• Watch TV show

• Chating with friends

• On the public transport during a long journey

• Listening to music

It enhances my enjoyment while doing other things. It helps me to train up my mind to do things in parallel, not to mention one a while I would miss out a stitch or so. 😛

2. To Make Unique Present

How many times when come to Christmas season or other occasion that you are stuck with what to buy for a present to your families or friends? Or you could have a great favor to return to a deal friend and you find that it is not fare to just buy some commercial ready made stuff that does not show your sincerity.

Make something unique! Learn what friends need and the next time when you come across some interesting crocheting project think of who is suitable to receive such unique gifts. Surprise your friends and family and at the same time show how thoughtful you are.

3. To Master Creativity

How many times you wanted to start a new crochet project and found that you could not find the material you needed? You did not buy enough yarn to finish your project on hand and the yarn was all out of stock? You panic and scratching your head wondering what to do next?

Orange BlouseMost people when dealing with such situation would just give up and wasted the effort they have done so far on the crocheted project. As for me after years of crocheting, I have master the principle of not giving up hope on any uncompleted projects. I once did a crocheted blouse with single crochet on back loops all the way, only to find out at the last stage that I did a wrong estimate and the blouse turn out to be too short. Instead of redoing the whole blouse, I did a separate crocheting piece and join to the bottom of the existing blouse. In order to cover the joints which turn out to be pretty obvious with holes in between, I bought a ribbon of similar color and run it round the holes to cover it. It turns out to be another new design for the blouse. So always exercise think out of the box to save projects from failing. you will never know how great your creativity could be unless you try out.

4. To Learn Nothing is Impossible

 There are times that when you read a very interesting crochet project that you wanted so much to make it, you could not understand how to make a certain part. You read the book, do some research on it and still could not figure out what is all about. You are frustrated as your project only left this last part of puzzle to resolve. I have encountered many times on this, what I did was leave the problem aside. A few days later I will come back to the problem again with a refresh mind and I could see the problem in a different angle. Try a few more times until if finally works. Never give up on anything that hinder your progress with a never say die attitude.

5. Learn to be Patient

How many times when you will doing crochet half way and the yarn got entangle?

I admitted that I am not the type who loves to disentangle yarn. Although some of my friends do love it. There are times that you have to repeat the same pattern and keep crocheting until it reaches its required length, especially when you are doing big projects like a sweater or an afghan. Just like growing a plant, you need a lot of patient and care to the project that you are doing in order to make a good product. There will be times that you need to restart all over again due to wrong doing (too short or too long or too ugly or whatever). Crochet makes me learn to be patient and consistent with my hard work. One day I would see my beautiful unique product born into this world!

6. Broaden Your Circle of Friends

You wanted to learn new things and understand what problems the others like you may encountered? Signup some of the crochet forum, meet up with a few friends who share the same interest and crochet together once a week. You will be surprised how much you could learn from each other.

7. Decorate you home & Feel Proud of It

When you invited your friends or relatives to your house, remember to show off a bit of your products displayed at home. It helps to create a unique environment to live in and at the same time be proud of it when being praised. I have all my products” crocheted window curtain, table runner, coaster, all decorated at different corners of my house. You would feel good and you could easily enter a conversation with whoever visited your house.

 

Having stated so much goodness for crocheting, aren’t you getting ready to learn this wonderful hobby? Or do you have some unfinished project hidden some place? Quickly take them out and continue doing. Action makes the world go round!

Journey To Crochet

My Crocheted WorkI have learned how to crochet since I was very young. I remembered I learned it from my aunt. I used to stay at my grandmother’s house during preschool days. I have an elder brother and an elder sister with age gap of 4 to 5 years. My mother was too busy taking care of them during that time and I was then placed over at my grandmother’s care. From there onwards I always learn things from adults as there were no other kids around my age then.

I remembered I was always playing alone. When I was old enough to go to school, I seldom make friends and I spent my school holiday either stayed at home or again at my grandmother’s house. That was how I picked up a few things like typing, crocheting, singing Christmas Carol before any of the kids of my age.

I recalled I made a tumbler crochet cover during primary schools. I even made a very simple scarf for my classmate in primary six. My interest in crocheting went on and off as I grow older. I picked up a few more other hobbies like cross stitching, knitting, hardanger, and paper clay making. Still I find crochet is my beloved hobby.  Over the past 3 years I have constantly doing crochet work again. The crochet products that I have made so far ranging from motif  to scarf, blouse to handbags,  window curtains and afghan. I find a lot more interest to create my own piece of work rather than just following the patterns on books. I wanted to pursue this hobby further and hopefully one day I could come out with a book of my own design on crochet work. I am now working towards my dream now and hope that I could have constant inspiration to guide me towards achieving this goal.

Wish me luck and I hope if anyone out there who have the same hobby as me could drop me some comments on my work in this blog.