Tag Archive | toys

Our toy has been found

We went back and checked the bus stop pole today after lunch and all that was left was the string! The bag with the doll had been cut off. And I did check the trash can, just to be sure. I hope it is a bright spot to the person who found it!

I joined the Toy Society!

Sometime over a year ago, I came across The Toy Society. It was started by an Australian crafter named Bianca who wanted to bring a little joy to a stranger’s life through the unexpected gift of a toy left in a public place. The whole concept intrigued me and I wanted to be a part of this! I signed up last June to get all the information, and finally, finally I got around to making a toy! This may be a procrastination record. Although, I do plead a little bit of forgetfulness, too. And three children.

A couple of years ago, my mom got me the book 1-2-3 Skein Crochet and these stripey dolls caught my eye.

Aren't they fun?

As patterns go, this really wasn’t difficult, but it did turn out to be a little bit of a pain in the neck. Actually, in the fingers. My hands cramped up so badly making my own stripey doll! It uses a G hook with worsted weight yarn in single crochet. If you don’t crochet and have no idea what I’m talking about, here’s the translation: smallish hook + thick yarn + tight stitches = ouchie. That’s why I didn’t get it done yesterday. My poor hand needed a break! I sewed the little guy together this afternoon.

Yellow, orange, and pink, like Fruit Stripes Gum.

It bugged Rana to no end that I didn’t put a face on this doll. I actually kind of liked it plain; then you can imagine whatever face you want. I prepared the little tag and letter explaining what the toy was about and arranged it all in a ziploc bag. Rana and I scouted out a bus stop on a busy street, but there were already people there. Zut! She suggested that we hide behind a bush until the bus came and picked them up. I thought that might call undue attention to us and proposed just walking halfway down the block and waiting. She conceded, but I think she was still a little disappointed that we didn’t get to sit in a bush.

A few minutes later, the bus came, and we scurried back to the bus stop pole. As I tied the bag onto the pole, I had coaching from Rana: “Hurry! Don’t let anyone see you! There’s cars coming! Get it tied!”

Tied on the bus stop pole. And look! Blue sky!

Toy drop number one! We walked nonchalantly away. Ok, maybe not. We kept turning around to look at it. After dinner we went back by to see whether the stripey doll had been claimed, but alas, he was still hanging from the pole. The wind had blown the bag around against the bus route sign, hiding the “Take Me Home” tag. I repositioned the bag, so hopefully it is obvious that anyone can take it and that it wasn’t just forgotten. Y’know, tied to a bus stop.

I’m also hoping that it doesn’t get thrown away. I think, if we ever use a bus stop again, we’ll choose one without a trash can right there. We will go check in the morning to see what has become of our little stripey friend! I’m already scheming about the next toy to make. I’m thinking a little amigurumi kitty.

If you think this is a cool idea, you ought to check out some of the toys on the Toy Society blog and think about making one of your own to drop!

Crocheting Nemo

Before my girls had even seen “Finding Nemo,” they were already in love with him, thanks to seeing his little fishy face on Rana’s sippy cups. When the July/August 2009 issue of “Crochet Today!” came out, I saw the Nemo {ahem} “Flippy Fish” pattern, I knew it would make two little girls extremely happy.

This issue is apparently hard to find nowadays!

These little guys worked up much more quickly than I expected with all the color changes. They made sweet little Christmas presents and the girls still love them! I made the fins different so the girls can tell them apart, and it works really great. I can never remember whose fish is whose, but they sure know!

On my Facebook page, I have a photo album of different things I’ve made and added Nemo x2. This past fall, a friend of mine, who lives in Paris, saw the picture. He, too, could not resist the cuteness and asked if I would make him one in exchange for something from France. Heck yeah! Deal!

We used to live just outside of Paris for three years (more on that to come!) and one thing I’ve always regretted not bringing back with me was some Provençal fabric. It’s outrageously expensive to buy here in the U.S. and I never could bring myself to spend $30/yd on it. So here, I saw my chance! I asked my friend if he would send me one meter of Provençal fabric in blue; I didn’t even care what the print was! He agreed wholeheartedly and pretty soon, we both had packages in the mail. He was delighted with his little fishy friend and I did an exuberant happy dance in my living room when I opened the box he had sent me:

Not one meter of one print, but 2 meters of three different prints! They are gorgeous! The sunflower fabric is a little heavier and will probably be destined for a tablecloth. The other two are lighter cottons and I can see them as fabulous cafe curtains. We are looking at a move soon, so for now, these fabrics are tucked away in my sewing room until we end up in a more permanent place. Every now and then, I get them out to touch and daydream. I would have made a whole school of crocheted fish for these beautiful fabrics! Thinking I definitely got the better end of that deal! (Gio, you rock!)