Mermaid party’s and more baby blankets!

Hello all! Hope you are all enjoying the bright, if blustery, weather! I have taken five fifteen minutes while both children are occupied with technology to send you a very short longish blog post!

Here’s what I have been frantically trying to finish recently.



Yup, Little Miss H decided no other party bags would do … so sewing machine at the ready I made twenty of these teeny bags for all her friends. Oh the wonder of calico and ribbon. I was really pleased with the way they turned out and all her friends seemed happy too.  Although going to the shop and buying the plastic ones would have been easier I think these will get far more use, won’t end up as landfill and made my girlie happy – all in all worth the effort.

Her party was mermaid themed and although I did not take too many pictures of the actual festivities I did manage to get one of the cake before it was presented to her. This beautiful cake was made by a super talented friend of mine. The picture does not fully do it justice – it was glittery and sparkly in real life and the little yellow spots were actually the most beautiful shells. Just stunning. In Little Miss H’s words ‘You’ve blown my mind!’ I know – too cute!


So after all the cake had been eaten by friends and family I needed something yummy but sweet to put in lunchboxes and these flapjacks fitted the bill perfectly.


Yes they have copious amounts of golden syrup – but Hey they were gluten free… oh and they involved the children (yes even my biggest!) so happy days!


Ahh now this is more like it! A little bit of glorious crochet to relax and rejuvenate after all of the manic party throwing. This piccie was taken just before I sewed all the squares together and added the border. (for where the pattern came from have a gander at my last post!!)



Ah, it was so snuggly! I just couldn’t help but stretch it out on my favourite chair with the night night owl.


Sorry for the overload of pictures but it’s not often that something works out the way you picture it in your mind! Joining the squares together was inspired by Sandra at Cherry Heart and was used for her gorgeous sampler blanket. I did it slightly differently as I worked double crochets into the finished squares to make them 24 dc long before trying to add in the join (sorry if that make’s no sense – if you read Sandra’s instructions it will do!) Then because I couldn’t access the internet I made up my own edging.


I used a 4mm hook to make my blanket and it took 8 (I know 8!!) balls of Sirdar Snuggly wool. I gave it to the lovely lady it was intended for this morning and I am happy to report that she loved it. (Phew!)

My next project will be revealed shortly (also might be a present!! so under wraps at the moment – ha ha!!) then I want to make a pretty mandala to send off to Lucy from Attic 24 for Yarndale this year! Busy busy busy!!

Until next time lovelies, enjoy the sun.






Dream a little dream ….

Hello everyone,

It’s glorious and sunny here at the brand spanking new toadstool and I have something quite exciting to show you. Well, I have yearned longingly for a little space of my own to while away the hours crocheting and sewing and ‘fiddling’ to my hearts content – just reorganising wool has been known to occupy me for quite some time. So imagine my delight when we moved in to find this:




Yes I know … a room of no specific purpose! Well I hatched a plan – whilst Mr Toadstool was talking about ‘ideal server rooms’ and the like ( whatever does that mean??!) I thought to myself … that would make a handy dandy room for me – oh yes it would, it really would. Every time someone was shown round the house they told Mr Toadstool of the need for me to have ‘a room’ and what do you know, he agreed! I do have to put up with some computery kind of stuff being stored in the room but I am a master of disguise and I was sure that I could fully disguise these little necessities! So first thing (before he could change his mind!) I moved in ‘ the yarn’


Next was to prettify the shelves (still not completely finished – I’m thinking crochet edging – it’s on my ‘to-do’ list!)


And then finally to actually work in ‘the room’. This time a little sewing was in order. It is Little Miss H’s birthday party soon and she decided that each guest had to have their own hand made bespoke party bag … I know! I think it might be a girl thing? No 1 Son was never bothered! So out came the Calico (how I love to make things with Calico – I think I may have an obsession!) and the sewing machine. (You’ll notice that boxes of ‘stuff’ still feature in ‘my room’ but I am slowly sorting them out -which generally means finding them new places to live!)


Little fabric bags were made and decoration was added


I am a little bit of a haphazard sewer but I love these little bags – quick, easy and cute for boys and girls. I’ve bought some thin ribbon to add on for handles … only sixteen more to make!!

Then it was on to finishing off crochet goodness! Now several lovely ladies at work are just about to have gorgeous babies at the moment – so my hook has been very busy! The first lovely lady has now been gifted her blanket – you’ve seen the beginnings of it and now here is the finished article (pre blocking – I’m so impatient!)


Sorry the photo is dark – this was my only opportunity to photograph it before it had to leave me for it’s new home. The lady in question loved it (phew – isn’t it always a relief when you know that someone loves it as much as you do?)

And then I started work on the next baby blanket! This lady has decorated her nursery in very pale grey so I am making a sampler blanket using blocks from Jan Eaton’s fantastic book


Product Details

I can highly recommend this book – easy to follow and produces large, beautiful blocks. I’m thinking of edging it with something lacy and will show you the finished blanket when it is all done and edged!

Anyway, Why ‘Dream a little dream?’ – well it is not because of the ‘room’ (that is an extra bonus!) but because long ago when Mr Toadstool was despairing of my crafty nature I thought to myself ‘someday I will make things that people want, someday I will maybe even be able to eke out a little living through making pretty things’ now this is a big deal for me. When I was at school I was told that my work was (in the exact words of my art teacher) ‘too twee’. Well now, these words may have put me off for life from having a go at anything – just think they were said to me twenty years ago and I still remember them which shows the power that they could have held. But no – despite being ‘too twee’ I embraced my crafty nature and have attempted all kinds of different crafts – some successful – some not so much. All of these experiences I am grateful for as they have shaped my tastes today and brought me to the craft that fits me best – crochet. A little bit of ‘twee’ in crochet is not a bad thing – sometimes it’s a good thing. Meetings with all kinds of people have shown me that I do indeed make things that people value and whilst not making a fortune from making pretty things I have a jolly lovely time when I am – money is not the point – the experience and the love for what you are doing is the point. So to my former art teacher I say ‘PaAaA’ and will continue to make things from time to time that are ‘too twee’ and enjoy making them too and to everyone else I say ‘Follow your dream – you never know where it might take you!’

On my crafty table today are these eclectic bunch of lovely things (belonging to both me and Little Miss H!)


Ahh, sunshine, colour and a smattering of crochet – that’s better!

Thanks as always for listening to me rabbit on about ‘stuff’!

Until next time, keep dreaming!



Booties, blankets and the ‘guess what it is’ reveal!

Well hello all, I hope that the return to school is treating you well. It has been a whirl of activity here at the Toadstool recently – more babies due, more presents made. Here are a few piccies for you!


The dotty blanket is complete and has been packaged up to be sent to my gorgeous sister-in-law for her new babe (yet to arrive – he or she is keeping us all waiting!) Here’s the close-up.DSCN1476

I loveed working on this blanket so much. It was therapeutic and filled with love – just joyous to make.

Little Miss H has been asking me for her very own blanket for ages now and so I have made a start.



Very girlie huh? mostly pink and purple with a little deep red, beige and green thrown in for good measure. It has grown since this picture and I’ll try to get a good one of it again soon. It is worked in the granny stripe style and has been great for using up scraps … so I have called it the ‘Happy, Scrappy, Tatty blanket!’

Next came yet more booties


Yes indeed. These were my newborn ones. Then someone requested sized up ones for a six month old. Yes, I said, of course I can do that. Hmmm – I put my thinking cap on as to how to increase the size and … it worked!


Oh yes, I love these booties! They are made with sparkly white yarn and have blue inners. I am very, very pleased with them – can you tell?!

Okay, now for my reveal!

Firstly, I bought this notebook from Paperchase. I love it a lot – only the addition of toadstools would have improved it in my eyes! I loved the birds and as soon as I saw them ‘crochet’ flashed up in front of my eyes! So I set about making one.



This is my very first attempt. I am not 100% happy with him. He needs to be fatter and the flower needs to be smaller, oh and my french knots for eyes need to be a lot tidier. But nonetheless he does resemble the picture a little bit. There may be another bird to follow shortly – this one will use an oval rather than a circle for the body which should make him fatter and then the flower will be more in proportion too. As for french knots I may have to practice … a lot!

Until next time, keep crocheting!



Maniacal Medievalist

aka Esperanza de Navarra. Loving all things Medieval, especially the clothing!

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