FO Friday – baby afghan, play food and a toy hammock

Whew! It’s been a very busy month but I was able to finish up a few odds and ends and even a new baby blanket. I had family visiting from Arizona last week and used that as my motivation to finish getting my house in order. You know, the usual…hanging pictures, unpacking boxes, tossing and donating stuff. I’ve only been living here for three years now and my house was definitely not ready for house guests but now it is. Yay!

One of the things I did make in the middle of all of this was a toy hammock for my grandson’s room. He has tons of stuffed animals that needed a home that wasn’t the bed or the floor. I made these for my kids when they were younger and thought it would work perfectly for him. He can still see all of his stuffies and get them down if he wants but they are out of the way any other time.

The pattern came from Vanna’s Afghan and Crochet Favorites. It was one of those monthly shipment things. You received a nice three ring binder and a few patterns and every month after you received a few more patterns until the binder was full. It may be a bit outdated but it’s still a pretty good resource for all sorts of patterns. They had different tabs for each type of pattern from toys to household items, afghans and clothing.

I decided to make the net in red and it reminded of spider webbing so I added a blue border to make it Spiderman colors. My grandson has a room full of Marvel toys and signs so I thought this would fit in great. You have to make sure the two sides are set up pretty close to the ceiling and as straight as possible. I found out that if there is any sort of angle the stuffed animals didn’t stay put very well. We ended up taking it down and adjusting after this picture because the animals kept slipping down.

You use double strands of worsted weight yarn so it does make a pretty bulky net. But it will hold a good number of large stuffed animals.

I managed to fit in completing some of the play food I had started and finished up a couple of newer pieces. I’m slowly checking things off of my grandson’s list. Believe me it’s quite comprehensive and he keeps adding more ideas.

We have a head of lettuce (although grandson thinks it looks more like cabbage), peanut butter, individual grapes in a small square container (it needs work), a cluster of grapes, one chocolate chip cookie, two fried eggs, two stalks of celery, cauliflower, a fajita, two bananas and a peeled banana. This one was quite difficult and I’m still not happy with it. I have a pattern for a peeled banana but it is all connected, I wanted to be able to pull the banana out of the peel. I need to make the peeled banana first and then use a larger hook to make the peel and then I think it will fit and look better. But he doesn’t care, I think I’m the only one who does.

The patterns came from a couple of different places, the same as the others I’ve made. An old Annie’s Attic pamphlet and CrochetNPlay Designs on ETSY. It looks like she hasn’t updated anything in a couple of years but the patterns still seem to be available. I really love her designs. They are really easy to do but keep in mind they are definitely not to scale. They are made for little hands and fingers. My grandson is 9 1/2 and still loves to play with the food though.

Another project I finally finished was more place mats. I started these about a year or so ago and played yarn chicken with the last one and lost. I only had half of a stupid row left and ended up having to order the yarn and by the time it came in I was distracted with other things. I finally found the yarn and remembered I had to finish. I love the color combination even though it matches absolutely nothing in my house.

I used Lion Brand 24/7 Cotton again. I sure do love how it works up. It’s so smooth and soft and seriously retains its color and shape even after several washings. These are place mats I did about 2 1/2 years ago. The first picture is right after I finished them and the second was a few weeks ago. They’ve had numerous washings and you can hardly see a difference. I wash them right with my napkins and other place mats in warm water and dry on medium to medium-high heat and have never had an issue with them.

Last, but not least, is a last minute baby blanket daughter number one asked me to make for one of her co-workers. She chose this very easy Vintage Vibes Baby Blanket pattern. When I say easy, I mean very easy. The pattern was written step by step for each round. You know how some patterns have everything in one large paragraph to save room but sometimes it’s so easy to miss a step. Not with this one, the pattern was easy to understand and memorize and worked up extremely fast. I work full time and sometimes don’t get to crochet every night but I had this done in about 4 or 5 days.

I used Caron’s Simply Soft in Country Blue shades along with an off white for the center. I loved working on this blanket and I can totally see me doing more in the future.

My daughter’s co-worker loved the blanket and even sent her a beautiful thank you note. That’s what I love to hear. That someone really appreciates the work and time it takes to make something by hand. It just leaves you feeling warm and fuzzy inside.