Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Permanent pumpkins


For the past couple of weeks, I've been crocheting some little pumpkins and squashes when I feel like a little break from Big Mama Maybelle, which is fun to work on but also a bit overwhelming at times. I mentioned these pumpkins recently; I decided to make them instead of buying mini pumpkins and squashes like I usually do in the fall to make a table display in my living room. The minis are so cute, and they come in so many surprising shapes, sizes and colors. I really love them. But I can't seem to keep them fresh for more than a week or so, and I always end up needing to buy more, which is a hassle and not especially economical.

I considered buying some realistic-looking plastic-covered foam pumpkins and squashes that I saw in a craft store, but then I thought of crocheting some instead! People (like my friend Gillian) crochet cute and realistic fruits and veggies all the time! So I went looking on Ravelry for ideas and came up with two very nice amugurumi patterns for pumpkins and squashes, sorted my yarns for the most autumnal colors possible, and got to work.


The pumpkins are made with a pattern called Amigurumi Pumpkins, designed by Mevlinn Gusick. This pattern comes with instructions for making pumpkins in three sizes; I made one of each. Aren't they cute? I just love them. The design is really clever; you crochet sort of a tall bag closed at the bottom, fill it with toy stuffing, and use decrease stitches to close up the other end. Then you run long stitches around the outside from top to bottom and pull them tight to create the segmented shape. You can make them squatter or taller depending on how you do the long stitches. I made stitches for eight segments on the medium and large pumpkins, but only six on the little cream-colored one, just in keeping with the sizes. It's really open-ended; the pumpkin shape comes through no matter what. The pattern also includes instructions for making different-sized stems, as well as leaves, which I didn't add (I thought they looked just fine, and a little more natural, without them).


I like the squashes too, but I felt a little less successful with them. They're made with a pattern from Lion Brand Yarn which is part of a larger bundle that you can use to crochet a whole "cornucopia" of harvest fruits and vegetables, including the horn itself! I'll admit right now that I'm very much an amigurumi beginner, and I'm not always good at following the patterns, even with an eagle-eye on my work and a stitch marker. This pattern is also challenging because it has you adding stuffing as you work, which I find difficult because the stuffing gets in my way. These squashes are supposed to have much longer, skinnier stems on them; mine ended up pretty short and chubby. But squashes are usually funny-looking in real life, aren't they? Mine are...unique. :)


My display is on the coffee table in our living room. I laid out a patchwork table runner that I sewed when we were newlyweds (it's reversible, made with two fat-quarter sets, the other side with Christmas fabrics; I'm sure you've seen both sides in my posts). The pumpkins and squashes are arranged on a large, decorative glass platter. I think it looks nice - bright, fun and seasonal. Everyone loves them; I keep finding a small girl rearranging them to her own liking, which is fine with me. Why crochet fun veggie toys if nobody is allowed to touch them? I'm glad I made them and I'm looking forward to using them again and again in the future, when my favorite season rolls around.

Permanent Pumpkins (and Steadfast Squashes)
Yarns: Stylecraft Special DK in Tomato, Khaki, Meadow, Gold, Mocha and Walnut; Baby Bee Sweet Delight (DK/baby weight) in Apricot Jam and Naked
Hook: Clover Amour G/6 (4.00mm)
Patterns: Amigurumi Pumpkins by Mevlinn Gusick; Squash by Lion Brand Yarn


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Have you joined in with my Winter Project Link Party yet? I hope you will join in with our first party of the season. Please add your link soon; the party ends on Saturday! There have been questions about what I mean when I ask for new posts. To clarify, I'd just like to keep the party fresh, and encourage support, by sharing current works in progress or very recent finishes. If you've just written a relevant post in the last few weeks before a link party, that's fine to add. You're welcome to add as many posts as you like in any month's party. Link parties will take place each month, October through March. I don't mean to be bossy, I just want the party to be fun and supportive for everyone. Thanks! And thank you to all who have joined in so far, I'm really glad to have you.

21 comments:

  1. They look great Jennifer, you've done a good job. Gillian's certainly found a lovely craft idea that looks so good. I'm just writing my Winter Project Party now. Cathy x

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  2. Yes, they look very tactile, it's lovely that they're allowed to be played with. I particularly like the cream one and the green squash, they're brilliant. I'm a big fan of crocheted veggies, so cleverly done. I love the idea of a reversible table runner as well - no hunting round for the Christmas one, it's right there. CJ xx

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  3. They look amazing, Jennifer. :o)

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  4. How sweet. I love small crochet edibles but have never made a single one. I think your two sided table runner is genius! x

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  5. They make a lovely seasonal display.

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  6. Lovely pumpkins, I made some a couple of years ago for my autumn mantelpiece xx

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  7. So nice. I don't sit long enough to finish any project but love to see the work of other.

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  8. They're lovely! I like the squashes too. Aren't they fun to make? I love it when you wrap the yarn tight around the pumpkin and it suddenly goes from ball to vegetable. :-)

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  9. Your crotchet veggies are just gorgeous Jennifer, and no wonder the small girl likes to arrange them. I would want to do that too :) They will be lovely to use year after year.

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  10. A two sided table runner is such a clever idea and I do love the pumpkins I would want to keep touching them too.

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  11. Very cute Jennifer...
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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  12. The pumpkins are really cute Jennifer! I have thought of knitting some in the past, but haven't got to that yet. Pumpkins and squash come in all shapes and sizes, so everything looks great. I like it when the kids can rearrange displays like this. Makes them feel more a part of the special season.
    This year I made some knit oak leaves which I felt turned out really well with the shaping. I'm hoping to make the winter project deadline, the last couple of weeks have been chaotic.
    Wendy

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  13. Jennifer, your pumpkins and squash are so cute! Well done! I know what you mean about needing breaks from the big projects. If only I didn't have SO MANY projects going!

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  14. They are cute ! I also liked the granny squares on the last post! Thank you for the Ravelry link. I downloaded the free pattern for my crocheting daughter.

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  15. It is nice to have a project you can keep revisiting, popping one in as the collection builds up. It woul dbe good to do a bauble one for Christmas wouldn't it? I think I might just have talked myself into that one!Jo x

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  16. Oh these are so cute! a great job..

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  17. Ooooh, aren't your little winter squashes and veggies cute! I especially love the little pumpkins -- very sweet!

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  18. What fun shapes to crochet. They make a very sweet display :)

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