Where’s Amiguruthi been?

Hi all.

So, it’s been eight months since my BB-8 pattern. A lot has happened. It started with some health problems, progressed through a break up, and ended up in a new home, new job and new perspective on life.

Suffice to say that now I am in a happier, healthier place there might actually be some blooming updates!

In fact watch this space – in the next five minutes there’ll be a pattern!

Thank you!

Just a quickie – a few days ago I had 1,955 views on this blog because of how much love you guys are showing my Discworld Great A’tuin pattern. Huge, huge, huge thank you to everyone who has shared the yarny love! 😀

And damn how rich could I be if I’d monetised it? Good job I’m so nice (and lazy) 😉

Amiguruthi xxx

2013 in review

Well people, 2013 ends today, and just a huge warm thank you to everyone who has supported me this year! I’ve had some excellent conversations and have been grateful to see the crochet love continue to grow.

WordPress emailed me another on of these this year, and I thought I’d let anyone interested have a snoop through too.

Enjoy the parties tonight!

Love, Amiguruthi x

_________________________________________________________________________________________

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

Madison Square Garden can seat 20,000 people for a concert. This blog was viewed about 69,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Madison Square Garden, it would take about 3 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Amiguruthi is published!

For once I’m actually posting EARLY for you guys! I’m not counting this as a Midweek Squee, even though it’s being posted midweek and is totally squeeworthy, because I probably won’t get time to post at the weekend. So I’m bending my rules a little lol.

Anyway – excellent news! I recently entered a competition in Let’s Get Crafting’s Knitting and Crochet Magazine. You had to pick a starter sentence from three given (I chose ‘Asking the woman at the bus stop what she was knitting turned out to be the best question I ever asked’). I wrote a short story in a Film Noir style, full of puns about crafters of all kinds, and investigating a yarn bombing (see what I did there?).

AND I WON!

The story is published in this month’s issue of Knitting and Crochet Magazine, so UK peeps can get their mitts on a copy from tomorrow (Friday 8th November) although subscribers will have had theirs posted to them on Wednesday (mine arrived then anyway).

This is what the cover looks like. Look! Mentioned on the front too!

It’s a magazine well worth buying even if it didn’t feature yours truly – free yarn, needles and hook and loads of cool patterns.

But you know, buy it mostly for my writing talent 😉

Remembrance Day Soldier (Free Pattern)

Halloween is days away, but I’m in November mode! Remembrance Day, for those of you not in a Commonwealth country, is November 11th and commemorates the end of World War 1 and marks lots of tributes to soldiers who died in the war. To celebrate, my old youth theatre group are doing a show based in World War 2, a sort of unofficial sequel to World War 1 musical ‘Oh It’s a Lovely War’, which I did back when I was a member. I’m friends on Facebook with the woman who runs the youth group and she absolutely loves all the amigurumi stuff I’ve been doing, so she commissioned these:

big group amiguruthi

Six soldiers, one per show as raffle prizes.

I had initially made up this little guy:

mini soldier amiguruthi

because she wanted to sell loads for £1 to raise money for Help the Heroes but there was mind changing and so forth so big soldiers got created and actually I think I prefer them. So I’m going to give you guys their pattern. If anyone wants the mini soldier too let me know.

EDIT: Wow – never realised the little dude would be so popular! Mini Soldier.

Free pattern for the big dude after the jump.

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The Liebster Award

It has been a truly tiring week. I started my first ever proper teachers job at a local secondary school (aged 11 to 16 for those not UK based). I teach Textiles, so I have to get boys on side with sewing. Which has worked largely in the younger years, but is going to be a challenge for the older years me thinks. And some of my students are rather challenging. It’s that kind of school. Fun, not scared me off yet, but very very tiring! Plus I was on stage in an amateur Murder Mystery this weekend, so free time has been spent rehearsing. Phew!

Because of that I haven’t really done any crochet this week (I haven’t even managed to read through any crochet blogs, that’s how busy I’ve been!). But luckily I DO have a post for you, because the lovely Me in Stitches has nominated me for The Liebster Award.

I have to admit I hadn’t come across Me in Stitches before, which is both a shame (because her blog has a lovely mix of crafts and musing and is written very well) and kinda squee worthy because it means that people who AREN’T my friends read my blog too! I’m still shocked that this occurs even though from the lovely comments you guys leave I do know it happens lol.

Here’s the rules for the award anyway:

1. List eleven random facts about yourself
2. Nominate eleven bloggers for the award
3. Let them know about the nomination
4. Answer the eleven questions you were asked when you were nominated
5. Ask eleven questions for the new award winners to answer

Well, if I tag you in this splurge that counts as me letting you know right? Also it seems to demonstrate my inability to do anything in the correct order lol.

Kreepy Kim Sofia, Little Muggles, Treblemaking hookers, Middle of a Stitch, HIJinKs Crochet, My Life With Yarn, AmigurumiBB, The Craft Frog, Crochet Cricket, AmiguruMEI, and Little Yarn Friends.

Go click, enjoy!

11 Random facts about Amiguruthi

1 – I recently started a second blog which will irregularly update when something inspires me, be it world wide news, a social issue or just something I’ve been pondering. It’s called Outside of Amiguruthi.

2 – I dislike calling animals by human names. My pets have always had silly names – Squeak the cat, Scampi and Chips the gerbils – except for one cat as a child which was called Jasper, and even he was named after a character in ‘101 Dalmatians’ instead of it just being a name we liked. Plus I’m sure it was my brother who cast the deciding vote there…

3 – I have recently started sleeping across the bed instead of straight down it. Luckily the other half has a flipped sleep cycle from years of working crappy shifts, so he tend to sleep through the day, but he is trying to reflip it now he’s starting uni in October. I don’t know if I’ll ever sleep well again…

4 – My foot has a bone in the bottom (or possibly it’s one of my toes) which dislocates at the most inconvenient moments. It hurts and can only to fixed by springing up and down then walking across the room and back.

5 – My ideal job would be located in a room on my own where I didn’t have to talk to anyone. Which makes it extra ironic that I’m actually a teacher really. (I’m not anti-social, I just like to have my own space and control over it).

6 – bad grammar really annoys me. I was driving behind a car with a bumper sticker that used the wrong ‘your’ (‘your too close’ not ‘you’re too close’) and I didn’t feel quite right until they turned off a few minutes later and I was free from looking at it.

7 – Johnny Depp is going to knock on my door any day now and ask me to marry him. True fact.

8 – I’m doing my first craft stall in November with one of my friends. I’m not entirely confident I’ll manage to make enough stock but I’m sure it’ll be fine.

9 – I hold grudges for a REALLY long time. Like, years and years. Even when the issue has been solved and move on from, there’s still a little bit of me that will occasionally think of it and get angry.

10 – I happen to think rhino’s are the most graceful creatures ever. I love them! It really annoys me that I can’t work out my own crochet pattern for one that looks right to me – luckily there’re some great ones out there already.

11 – My holiday this year was one night in York (a town about two hours away for me) for the other half’s birthday. I didn’t sleep all night because I find it hard to sleep in unfamiliar places, but since I haven’t been able to afford a holiday in a couple of years then it was just lovely to be not at home. Next year I plan to have a real vacation!

What was next? Bare with me while I scroll up to find out…

11 answers to Me in Stitches’ questions.

1. What item couldn’t you live without?

I should say something like ‘my 3.5mm crochet hook’ but that’d be tacky (*cough* I couldn’t though *cough*) so instead I will say my car.

2. Can you play a musical instrument?

Hahahahahaha! I laugh because I am the LEAST musical person you could ever hope to meet. The boyfriend plays damned near everything under the sun, I would have trouble playing the triangle. I always wished I could play the saxophone though. They’re just sexy. I hate jazz mind you so it’s probably worked out for the best…

3. Who is your favourite artist? (Of the Music variety or of the art variety or both if you feel that way)

Musically Meat Loaf, art wish Salvador Dali. Love me some operatic rock and surrealism.

4. If you were on death row what would you order for your last meal?

I would have a Sunday dinner with garlic chicken, honey roast parsnips and mashed potatoes made by my Mum, followed by a deep friend Mars Bar and a big slab of Cadburys Marvellous Creations jelly bean and popping candy chocolate.

5. Where in the world you most like to visit?

Ireland, proper rural Ireland though not touristy Dublin. It’s so close to the UK I know, but I love the culture and the dancing and the accent and yet I’ve still never managed to go. Maybe for the holiday next year I should look into it.

6. If you were on The Great British Bake Off what would your signature dish be?

Burnt burniness with extra burnt bits. I’m a terrible cook! Although I do make a damned good lasagne and my ginger bread men aren’t too shabby actually so probably those.

7.Can you knit?

I am learning! I don’t enjoy it is much as crochet, but I can do the basics which is good enough for me.

8. Do you have any pets?

I do – the adorable fuzz ball that is Squeak the cat is sat on me knee right now, digging her claws in and trying to annoy me enough that I’ll get up and feed her even though it isn’t her dinner time for another hour and a half. (The boyfriend actually held up in front of the clock and tried to explain the concept of seven o clock, but she wasn’t interested).

9. What did you last dream about?

I just remember there being my and my mister and three bottle of booze on a window sill. Sorry, not a clue what that was on about!

10. Do you know the rules of chess?

In theory I do. I know how all the pieces move. Can’t play it though (much to the other half’s chagrin – he loves chess. The nerd).

11. Who is the hero of the Greek Epic ‘The Illiad’?

Right – WITHOUT Googling, I want to say Homer.
I’m going to Google it.
Oh, well wasn’t  THAT confusing missus?! I’ve not read it actually so I picked a name I recognised associated with it – Homer’s the writer. I feel a little bit more vindicated – the writer brought the poem to the masses therefore he is a literary hero and my answer is therefore still valid so ner!

11 questions for my nominees

1 – Since you’re all crochet or knitting blogs – what is the most prevalent colour in your yarn stash?

2 – What was your favourite subject at school?

3 – The last book you read was ______

4 – Do you have a cleaning schedule or routine?

5 – Do you read any craft magazines?

6 – what did you want to be as a child? Have you managed it?

7 – Describe the outfit that you think suits you best.

8 – What would your perfect day be?

9 – Iron Man or Batman?

10 – Did you cry at Marley and Me (book or film or both)?

11 – Your hero turns up on your door step – why are they there?

And to finish on a funny (knitting related but I’m sure it applied to crochet too):

 

Snuggles the Penguin (Free Pattern Link)

Last week I said I’d blog my sister’s birthday present – and here he is!

Amiguruthi Snuggles

 

It’s Snuggles the Penguin! Snuggles is a pattern by All About Ami, although hers is blue, has a different scarf and no hat. Mine is red because it’s my sister’s favourite colour. The scarf and hat are just to put an Amiguruthi spin on it.

There is a story here. My sister turned 21 last week, and as her present I adopted her a penguin. A real one – she gets newsletters and a certificate and photo and all that jazz, and there might be an opportunity to go and see it. Penguins have always been a joke between us – when we were really really freezing waiting for the bus to school one day we joked that someone should invent spray on penguins, who would huddle round our legs and keep us warm. Genius idea right? We’re researching the technology…

Amiguruthi Snuggles

 

Here’s my sister and her penguins – I’m sure Snuggles will be happy with her (although her cat has apparently already tried to eat him…)

Adjustments and a mini pattern review can be found after the jump.

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Midweek Squee: Oscar the Owl

So you remember back at the beginning of the year I said my New Years Resolution was to learn to knit? And have you noticed I’ve been suspiciously quiet about it? That’s because, after trying a couple of times, I got really, REALLY frustrated and consigned my efforts to the bad idea box.

BUT! It turns out that I was giving up too easily, and the simplest of things would help me actually achieve a cloth of knitted goodness with only the occasional hole when it came to performing a make one (honestly, the crochet increase is so much cleaner!). That thing was – a set of steel needles of a decent length. I’d been trying with short bamboo ones I got from a magazine (‘oh the short ones are good for beginners’ they told me. ‘Bullpoop’ said my Mum, handing over a few sets of proper ones, ‘you need to be able to tuck them under your elbows!’)

Disclaimer, my Mother actually never said ‘Bullpoop’. Nor it’s sweary equivalent. She would never use such language.

It was the expression on her face which said it for her.

So, again I try casting on. Then I try a row of knit stitches. Then I scream in frustration trying to work out the purl stitch and watch around a million YouTube videos before it clicks.

And lo, I created Oscar.

Oscar the Owl Amiguruthi

I highly recommend the Mira Grant ‘Newsflesh’ trilogy to the right by the way – post zombie apocalypse political conspiracy horror sci-fi. Very well written and genuinely funny as well as touching enough to make you cry. I’m on my second read through of book one at the moment and I still can’t put it down, even though I know what happens. 

Oscar the Owl is a bookend pattern I found in Let’s Get Crafting’s Knitting and Crochet magazine which I subscribe to (free yarn through my letter box EVERY MONTH! What’s not to love?!). He’s incredibly cute and the pattern was so simple once I worked out the basic stitches (and watched the afore mention million YouTube videos). He’s stuffed with normal polyfil, but has three big stones in his base to keep him weighted down. The original (and the photo of mine above) has a stitched beak but after taking this photo I decided I didn’t like how it looked because my embroidery is shocking, so I covered it with felt instead:

Oscar the Owl AmiguruthiMuch better!

He’s not perfect, but when I gave him to my Mum the other week for her birthday she was still impressed, which is all I ever wanted. There you go Mum, you can die happy now – one of your kids has FINALLY learnt to knit!

Also, I wrote to the magazine to say thank you, and they published my letter this month 😀

Oscar letter Amiguruthi

Contest Gizmo vs Puppy Love – the results

Hi everyone!

Results day is here. Thank you to everyone who entered the Gizmo vs Puppy Love contest. The hands down winner with 23 out of 25 votes was Gizmo!

Behold the glorious conqueror!

Behold the glorious conqueror!

I do love Gizmo myself and if I were impartial he’d be my vote too, much as I love Puppy Love. BUT that doesn’t mean he’ll necessarily be the ami given away. Who is the lucky winner of an Amiguruthi Original?

TO THE DEMON HAT! Complete with photo bombing slugs. And terrible video quality – webcams are just not what they should be lol*.

Well done to the lucky winner! From the super awesome coding at the bottom of the paper strip I can see you commented right here on the blog, and you’re claiming Gizmo – congratulations, he’s all yours (I’ll miss him though – might have to make another now!).
I can’t comment on the Facebook profile you commented via to get your postal address, so please get in touch with me on my Facebook page or by emailing amiguruthi[at]hotmail[dot]co[dot]uk.

Commiserations to the unlucky entrants, but remember you can always make your own Gizmo or Puppy Love following the patterns linked 😀

*Demon Hat: Part of Amiguruthi’s 21st birthday part costume, often worn at the randomest of times and usually nicked by friends for photo bombing opportunities. Honestly, it’s practically a celebrity in it’s own right!
Music credit: Meat Loaf: Monstro (Bat Out of Hell 3: The Monster is Loose) 

Give away: Gizmo vs Puppy Love

Howdy y’all. I looked at the stats for last week and little Gizmo helped me to my best week on the blog ever, smashing personal records on a daily basis. I’m very proud of him for that. BUT he’s still getting some hefty competition for views from another of my patterns which is, surprisingly for a blog with so many cats, Puppy Love.

P1060748

These two ami’s are responsible for a lot of my traffic, and their publishing also correlated to a big spike in my Facebook likes too. Now, I logged on to Facebook this morning to see I stood at 297 likes. So I thought to myself, SELF! NOW IS GIVE AWAY TIME!

(I’m bad at give aways – I said I’d do one for 100 likes, then for 200 likes, then I considered for 250 likes. So be amazed I actually caught this one!).

Because these two patterns are my top runners, whoever wins the give away will get to choose which one they receive.

Iiiiiiiiin the red corner, weighing in at not very much, is Gizmo! He’s a monster spawning cutie with a heart of gold and a headband of DEATH! (Bow and arrow not included to avoid damage during travel).

Gizmo Amiguruthi

Iiiiiiiiin the blue corner, weighing in at about the weight of a hot dog, is Puppy Love! Ambiguous in gender but wearing the loveablest little ear warmers/ head phones you could ever wish to see.

amiguruthi puppy love

So how do you enter? Well, I’m going to keep this simple. First of all, you must be a fan on my Facebook page. Then you have two opportunities for your name to go in the hat:

1) Comment on this blog post telling me which ami you prefer.

2) Comment on the pinned status on my Facebook page telling me which ami you prefer.

The ami with the most votes will be crowned champion, but the draw for receiving won’t be affected by it’s popularity – the champion may not necessarily be the ami posted out. And hey, if you don’t like any of them but want to try a wildcard of any of my other ami’s, I’ll allow it (although I can’t guarantee the ami is still in my possession, so if you choose a different one and win you might be asked to repick).

And of course, I do have to get to 300 Facebook likes, so get sharing 😉

Good luck! Entry deadline is next Sunday (the 2nd June) at whatever time I decide to get up.