Saturday 5 January 2013

A teenager...HOW?

This Christmas I had a (with hindsight, STUPID) idea that I would crochet something for everyone in the family by way of a present. It seemed the perfect combination of home made goodness mixed with money saving genius.
What I hadn't anticipated was time consuming nightmare resulting in and 10 half finished presents the week before Christmas!! At which point a sane person would admit defeat and hit the shops. Sometimes I'm so far removed from sane I scare myself.

I didn't make anything for my own boys as they are only seemingly interested in something with a screen.
I did however manage to find something to make for little nephews Sonny and Luca:
Because, true to form, they refused to wear their flamin' hats. Not even for a minute. Especially not for a photo. Good o!

Anyway - it's a relatively easy pattern - especially if you actually take heed of the gauge thing. I prefer to crochet a hat at least 5 times in order to get the size right....(SO not sane)

So, I already shared Great Granny's blanket in a previous post but I'm shamelessly sharing again because it's one of my 
favourite makes!
No pattern required!
Here are some of the others...ALL much easier than hats with beards...
a scarf each for Grandma and Grandad
A blanket for The Granny
A nice chunky mens cowl for G Kisby 
(v reluctantly modelled by Cleggy!)
Here's the link to the pattern I used for the basic cowl - I changed the final pattern so I could add a toggle.

A poncho for Mabel
Here's the pattern - again I changed it towards the end and added a flower rather than a collar. No pictures of Mabel wearing it....
she wouldn't put it on either!!!

A cushion for my little sister Nelly
 I was really pleased with how this turned out as I didn't use a pattern. I wish I'd taken a photo of the back - it had a fold over (envelope?) with three vintage buttons. 

The wool was from Hobbycraft and the feather cushion pad from Dunelm Mill - the whole finished cushion came in under £5!

I made a couple of scarves too - no photos as yet. 
I got a bit of a fright when I gathered all my wool up and put it in one place - seems a major addiction is growing...
...and that's before I found myself in John Lewis spending my Christmas money on MORE. 
Well, it was half price Amy Butler...what can you do?!
So far I've made a ripple blanket (using Lucy's pattern here)
made some pretty little hearts to brighten up one of the kitchen windows, which was looking bare without Christmas bunting!

Cleggy surpassed himself YET again with the wrapping of 
christmas presents
(you bring the pressure on yourself Cleggy!) 
which is deserving of a separate post.

We had a wonderful non eventful Christmas - possibly the most relaxing since we've had children. I realise that we're in the hiatus between 5am get ups (thankfully over) and 5am get ins!!

The boys were all determined to see in the new year - so we decided to go to the pantomime with The Granny on NYE to start the evening off nicely! We saw Peter Pan starring The Hoff  - it was, of course, very funny.
The boys nagged for use of the binoculars. Cleggy found his last £1 coin, GB had a quick look,  then promptly placed them back in the holder!! The other boys were cross, the adults laughed and GB sulked...but other than that it was great fun!

We managed to include Alfie's name in the traditional on stage birthday shout outs....not sure if he was pleased or not! We were though.....

Our #1 finally became a teenager on 30th December.  
He's shown pre teen tendencies since about 18 months so it's been a long time coming. Alfie lives life to the full, is an adrenalin junkie, has little fear, is smart and funny, all of which means he has been by far the most challenging of our children and has escaped death by a whisker on more than one occasion (literally)!
We wouldn't change him for the world...
bring on the teens!!!!
fee x


  1. spooky , I too just HAD to buy the amy butler yarn from john lewis :-) Happy birthday Alfie, we have a teen in this house in August too :-0 Love all your other makes x

  2. What an hommage to Alfie! Love to collage: and Happy (belated) Birthday to him, and you, prrrroud parents!

    And, how on earth did you manage to crochet all of that? Did you sleep at all? Your crocheting speed (is that a word?) is from outer space, that's for sure. I wonder if you took some steroids....?

  3. So glad you had a relaxing Xmas - you deserved it after all that blinking crocheting - you crocheting-mad genius you! Love the blankie with the hearts and the cushion with the heart. Happy birthday Alfie, what a handsome boy he is! xx

  4. Fantastic crochet pressies! I can relate to that last minute making completely. I resorted to a few New Year presents because I just couldn't quite get it all done.
    Thanks so much for the lovely blocks by the way. They arrived in the midst of the birthday, opening a shop and Christmas frenzy that was December and I'm not sure I ever sent a proper Thank You! They are great and definitely my toy not the children's.
    Happy New Year Chippers!

  5. Happy new year to you and happy birthday to Alfie too......what a busy time you've had but SO worth it....can't beat a homemade gift made with love and care and real these gifts were their favourites! X

  6. Do you have a wool fetish I wonder? Lovely images of your beautiful Alfie. Happy New year to you all xxxx

  7. What a lovely family Fee ... Your boys are like peas in a pod! Love all the hand made presents, might have a go at a cushion myself!

    Enjoy your Saturday evening,

    Love Claire xxx

  8. What a handsome laddy, we have a nine year old who has also been displaying all the teen stuff for more than a few years, so does it mean they leave it behind sooner and become pleasant and less argumental?

    Your makes are lovely, clever you.....yarn buying is a scary thing when you take stock...I guess the point is stash it in different places and then you needn't face facts, until the people call to film 'the hoarder next door'.

    Happy New year to all of you.x

  9. I blame you (and Instagram) for the fact I forced my other half to stop at John Lewis on our way past the other day. I now have a rather large stash of the Amy Butler yarn too. I can't believe you made so many crocheted presents... do you not sleep? Lovely pictures of Alfie.
    Wishing you and your lovely family a very happy new year,
    Victoria x

  10. Boys make wonderful teenagers, happy birthday Alfie!
    And a happy new year to you!
    Vivienne x

  11. Hilarious!

    The hat with the attached beard is pure genius and GG's blanket is a total joy. Scarves, capes, cowls and blankets - how have you not been laid low with chronic crochet claw???

    So glad you had such a gentle Christmas.

    Alfie is a super looking boy - a heartbreaker to be sure.

    Heather xx

  12. Wow - that's a years worth of crochet! You must have worked in double quick time. Such lovely presents and I'm sure much appreciated. I love the montage of Alfie - so handsome - my youngest is now 21 and I enjoyed every one of the teenage years - don't believe what you hear. Hope you have a healthy and happy new year.

  13. Bloody hell woman you can't just say I made a ripple blanket over the holidays and not expect us all to have our mouths just hanging open.

    Would have loved to have seen the Hoff in full flow. The one we saw proudly announced that the dame used to be on QVC.

    Our Rosey's been doing teenager a fair while too. When she was at that dangly baby stage we were holding her up going ooh and aaah at what a sweetheart we'd made when she growled so loudly at us we threw our heads back in fear. We hide a lot now when the demon takes hold, except it's usually me the angers aimed at. Hopefully having your gorgeous boy as a teen will be a lot easier as he looks a gem.

    Lisa X

  14. I love all your crocheted gifts, you must have been working your fingers to the bone. Very much loving your wool stash too!
    Teenagers are the best. They are interesting, growing, changing, developing, complicated, funny, complex and adorable. Have fun with your teen.
    Anne xx

  15. Well, I'll be! You got more stitching done for Christmas than I do all year! LOL! All your projects were darling and I loved the hat with attached beard! I have that in my favs on Ravelry could he not like it? Does his Dad not have a beard? It is too cute plus keeps their face warm like a real one.
    I can just imagine what Cleggy did for Christmas and I hope you post about it. I will never forget what he did for your birthday! He rocks! If I had known someone like that was out there I would have never married the first 2! LOL! The fact that I am old enough to be his Mother has absolutely no bearing on it...Ha! Ha!
    Those boys/young men are so handsome and hopefully your/their teenage years will go easier than mine did with my children....maybe it was the fact that I was an only child but I still have nightmares.
    I hope you have a wonderful New Year....all 365 days of it! Hugs!

  16. Yes, I too was finishing off a quilt on Christmas Eve. It seemed like a good idea at the time, didn't it?
    Have a great 2013. xx

  17. I love that Alfie montage, can't believe our gorgeous boy is a teenager. Actually I can, the signs have been there for some time. Blanket looking good. Hope my birthday scarf is too...
    Nelly xxxx

  18. Good morning my dear and precious Fee.

    Dearest, I know what you are saying about the INSANITY. I did it. I spent my entire December, I MEAN IT...MY ENTIRE DECEMBER, working on a paper wedding dress for a shop in town. The blasted thing took 2000 sheets of tissue paper alone for the skirt. You can view it on my current post.

    I did nothing for my husband as far as a holiday gifts for friends....and to no avail. We shall see what comes out of this design that will be viewed by a large public.

    NOW AS FOR THIS POST...your sons are gems. They are your beloved masterpieces who have been with you to make your life the special and bright star that shines. I wish you continued JOY as you create, as the boys grow and as life presents opportunities to you!

    MUCH LOVE! Anita

  19. Happy Birthday to Alfie!! Such a lovely collage of pictures of your new teenager! Your crochet output is AmAzInG!! I love all the things you've made, each one is a really special gift.
    Looking forward to more crafty collaborations this year, lovely Fee.
    Happy New Year to you and yours!
    Helen x

  20. Wow you did really well with all your makes. I too, succumb to the lure of half price Amy butler and have far too much now. Happy birthday Alfie!

  21. Oh god Fee I feel your crochet pain, I was like a woman possessed trying to cram a tonne of crochet into evenings and weekends during a 6 week period before a Christmas craft fair I agreed to do (my first!). Yours looks amazing as ever, there must've been smoke coming from your hook!

    Happy Birthday to your teen (I'm shitting myself as I'll have one of those too in 26 months, although he's starting to act like it already).

    I hear you with the crochet gifts for boys being a bit of a no-no, screens are king here too :(

    Anyway, Happy New Year to you and yours and I too have already spent too much of my Christmas money on yarn, liking your stash, perhaps I should do a mini post on mine, then again perhaps not, I'd probably be horrified! xx

  22. Wow Fee, that was an ambitious list of Christmas makes, did you sleep at all in December?! You could try harder with that stash though and fill the whole cupboard at least ;D

    Happy Birthday Alfie!

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  24. What an awesome post! The things you made were so pretty!

    I can't believe you crocheted so much!!! I sew my Christmas gifts - so much faster than knitting, lol! Don't worry about not being sane, the year I got my sewing machine, I decided to make everyone rag quilts - more than 2 dozen of them. I finished Christmas morning with bloody fingers.

    Happy Birthday to Alfie, he looks like a handsome devil. ;) I hope your wild child stays safe. (I know the worry, Bettina is the same. I just can't imagine what ten more years of it will do to me!)

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  27. Hello Fee!! How are you?! I haven't popped by in ages because I've been, well, changing diapers, nursing, bathing, wiping dirty hands and mouth and occasionally sleeping! I thought the older Oliver got, the easier it would be, at so far, at 9 months old, I just spend more and more time doing things for him. Sweet boy. I adore him but the blogging and pretty much everything else has taken a hit. It doesn't last forever, right??
    LOVE your thoughtful and beautiful gifts that you made for your family!! That gray pillow with the red heart?! Fabulous!! Will you be making more?? I'd love to purchase one!
    Congrats on the teen in the house! Time flies, no? I bet I will blink and Ollie will be 13!
    Happy new year. I will try my best not to be a stranger!

  28. Bravo for you have me impressed with your crocheting skills. Your projects turned out so lovely! And congratulations on your newly "teened" is about to go a whole lot faster now...once they hit the really does zoooooom! xoxoxo Happy hugs for the rest of your week.

  29. Well done on the crochet presents - I think I'd probably have to start now if I had any chance of completing them for next Christmas!

  30. You are so very creative! I love seeing your crocheted lovelies. Your family is very lucky. Happy January!


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fee x