Week 1, Project 1, £0!

Well I’ve had such a lovely week starting my 52 projects in 52 weeks challenge, and been overwhelmed at the support I’ve received.  Thank you all!
As you may remember, I decided that my first project would be to make 2 little mice that I can use to decorate my fruit and cheese wedding cake when I get married in a few weeks time.  I scoured the internet hunting for a suitable free pattern and came across this little beauty from Janette at The Green Dragonfly  There are some truly fabulous free patterns available on-line (check out Ravelry if you’re not already a member), but one of the key criteria for my mice was the height, as I wanted them to be big enough to be visible, but not so big that they would swamp the display.  Janette’s pattern fitted the bill perfectly as the finished mice are about 8cm tall.

Hand-spinning Annie’s gorgeous dyed fleece all the way from Skye

I was definitely drawn to the ‘Dragonfly’ name when it came up on my pattern search, as the yarn I had in mind to use comes from the fabulous Dragonfly Studio on the island of Skye where we spent a wonderful holiday last year, and where we’ll be returning to on our honeymoon shortly.  Well, I say ‘yarn’, but it was actually hand-dyed prepared fleece that I’d bought from Annie who runs Dragonfly Studio, so it needed to be spun before I could use it.  Annie’s family have a small croft with some rare breed sheep and they prepare and dye the fleece to sell as well as making gorgeous knitted items themselves (and yes, the place really is as idyllic as it sounds!)  After an initial few attempts at hand spinning my fleece last year,  the tubs have sat on my shelf just waiting for the right project!  I can’t believe a whole year has passed since our visit to Skye, but thankfully I’ve got a spinning workshop booked with Annie when we go back as, whilst I managed to spin the fleece into a workable yarn that I could crochet with, it turned out to be more of an ‘art’ yarn than a nice, even 4 ply!  There were some definite ‘knobbly’ bits, and some extremely thin bits that almost snapped, but I’m telling myself they just add to the rustic charm of the whole thing and give the mice a bit of character!!

All that’s needed is a head!

The pattern itself was beautifully written with lots of photos and step by step instructions along the way so it was a really enjoyable project to crochet.  I particularly loved the part where Janette recommends using a stitch marker to keep tabs on how many rounds you’ve crocheted, but then writes, “I know some of you are going to go ahead and not use a marker (surely not!), so if you lose your place or end up a stitch or two out, you can always eyeball it”.  How many of us can relate to that!

The hardest part was definitely giving the little mice a face, and I think I may redo the mouths, but I’m really pleased with the finished result 🙂

Mr and Mrs Mouse

Crochet mice and After Eight cheesecake

 

The mice worked up quite quickly, but I’ve realised that if I’m going to get through 52 projects in 52 weeks, then I’m going to have to make use of every opportunity I can to craft.

 

 

 

Crochet mice and veggie flatbread

 

This was a lovely portable project, so I was able to take my crochet bag with me most places, which really helped.  I know this isn’t going to be an option for other projects, but I’ll just have to make the most of it whenever I can.  Any excuse for coffee and cake eh?!

 

 

The only thing left to do, is to find suitable names for the two little critters.  Any ideas folks? 🙂