Saturday, March 28, 2015

Frog in the Pond Busy Bag - Free Printables

Good morning lovelies

This week I was introduced to the concept of busy bags (and quiet books and file folder games, but that's for another day) and I have to say, WOW! Where were these little packages of fun when my girls were toddlers?

Originally I was looking for some ideas for easy to make games to include in Angels for the forgotten's crisis bags. The more I looked, the more I fell in love with these little fun educational goodies and figured I'd try my hand at designing one. A bunch of my mummy friends really loved it and asked if I could make more so I thought well, why not! So hopefully these busy bag ideas and printables will become a regular feature here on the mamma blog. I hope you and your little ones enjoy them as much as the little ones in my life do.

My first busy bag idea was for colour matching. Frogs in the pond gives your little one the opportunity to match the colourful frogs to the right pond. This activity is good for colour recognition, hand/eye co-ordination and even math skills (you can count the frogs all together, or ask, how many frogs are there if we add the blue ones and the red ones?) I've laminated my printouts to make them last.

Anyway, enough chatter from me, here is the link to the pdf files. Please let me know what you think and if your little people enjoyed this game.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Upcycled Denim Flower Hairclip - Tutorial

Good morning all!

Today I have another hair accessory tutorial for you all. A fun little denim flower that can be attached to a clip or headband or any number of other uses.

A few weeks ago I had a bit of an Autumn clean out and found in a box a full length denim skirt. We've been in the new house for just past 5 months now, so it was pretty clear this wasn't a skirt I was going to wear any time soon, if at all. But it did have a LOT of material, lovely dark denim material. My mission? Use it all up!

I love using denim for hair accessories. It is sturdy, looks classic and the fray gives it a shabby touch. Of course you could make these flowers with any other fabric you like. I can't wait to test them out with some vintage upholstery fabric I have.

You will need:
4 x 1.5inch squares of denim
4 x 1 inch squares of denim
1 circle of fabric (approx 1-1.5 inches)
Fabric glue or a glue gun
Pearl bead
Clip or Headband

As you can see my squares are not exactly square. It doesn't matter, unless of course it is going to bug you and in that case go ahead and square them up.

Take one of the larger squares and fold it in half.

Place some glue in the centre of the rectangle and fold in half again. Keep your finger on it for a few seconds to ensure the glue will hold.

Place some glue on the back of the square and glue it to the circle.

Repeat with the 3 remaining large squares

 Repeat the process with the smaller squares, positioning them over the edges of the large ones.

Glue a pearl bead into the centre and attach the clip to the back. 

Go forth and make oodles! 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Iris Earrings - Free Crochet Pattern

Good morning all!
Today's post is another new thing for me. Crocheted earrings! I've seen some of these on my friends and they look so wonderful and dainty and pretty. I knew at some point I needed to design some. I love that they look WOW but are really easy to make, which means you can whip up a bunch of colours to suit all sorts of outfits in no time at all. I'll be making a bunch for Angels for the forgotten. 

1.5mm hook
Embroidery thread (2 strands, makes the larger earring) OR crochet cotton ( size 8 pearl cotton makes the smaller one)
2 earring hooks per set
2 jump-rings per set

Picot: ch3, slst into the first ch, picot made.
trc: Triple crochet

1. Ch4, join to form a loop.

2. Ch 6 (counts as first trc and ch2), *trc, ch2* into the loop 7 times, join to the 4th chain. (8 trc's total)

3. Sl st into the ch2 space, ch2 (first hdc), hdc 3 times in the ch2 space, ch2, *hdc 4 times in the next ch2 space, ch2* repeat around, join. (32hdc)

4. *Ch5, slst in the next ch2 space*, repeat around, ending with a slst in the last ch2. End off colour.

5. Join contrasting yarn with a slst to any ch5 space, (sc4, picot, sc4, sl st) in the same ch5 space, (sl st, sc4, picot, sc4, sl st) in each remaining ch5 space. Join with a slst to the start. (total of 8 picots)

To construct earrings: Connect the jump-ring to the earring hook, then connect the jump-ring to a picot on the earring.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Snuggle Cuddle Cocoon Resized - Free Newborn Crochet Pattern

Good afternoon all. 
Ever since the release of the Snuggle cuddle cocoon back in 2012 people have asked for a newborn size. I am pleased to say that I now have instructions on how to make it to fit newborns, and 0-3 months. Jackson is 2 months old in the images (11 pound, 59cm long), so you can see how it fits. If you have a long bubba just add some more rows. This cocoon used the best part of a 140g ball of Red Heart super saver, which is 260yards/238meters so make sure you have enough yarn.
I imagine this would also look super fun with stripes, or large blocks of colour. Have a play with it, I'm sure you guys will find some wonderful colour combo's, you always do :)

As you can see, I also have some lovely worsted weight yarns now, so I can go ahead and make some wonderful patterns with them. Very exciting stuff indeed! 

The flap on the cocoon in the image is backwards. Somehow my baby brain managed to turn the thing in the wrong way. Your cocoon will have a flap facing the opposite direction, unless you actually want it to face this way and in that case just turn the piece inside out :) I'll get new photos when I have a chance to remake the cocoon. 

You will need:
Worsted Weight/10ply yarn I used Red Heart Super Saver in aran fleck for the main colour and Bernat super value in brown for contrasting.
6.5mm hook for 0-3 months
6.00mm hook for an average newborn
5.5mm hook for a small newborn 
4 buttons

Joins are made to the first stitch, not the chains.

With main colour:
1. Ch3, dc 10 times in the 3rd chain from hook, join. (10)
2. Ch3, 2dc in each stitch around, join. (20)
3. Ch3, *1dc in the first stitch, 2dc in the next stitch* Repeat around, join. (30)
4. Ch3, dc in each stitch around, join. (30)
5. Ch3, *1dc in the first stitch, 2dc in the next stitch* Repeat around, join. (45)
6. Ch3, *1dc in the first 2 stitch, 2dc in the next stitch* Repeat around, join. (60)
7. Ch3, dc in each stitch around, join. (60)
8. Ch3, dc in each stitch around, do not join. From here on we will be working in rows.
9. Ch10, turn, dc in the 3rd chain from hook and in each remaining chain, then in each dc across (68)
10- 26. Ch3, turn, dc in each dc across. End main colour.
Change to contrasting colour and sc across, then sc evenly down the opening and back up the other side. 

Sew on buttons and weave in all tails.