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If isn’t obvious from the photoset above, we are expecting a GIRL!!!  We were excited either way, and now we know that Myla will have a little sister to grow up with!  The bond between sisters is so special, and we are overjoyed to soon have two sweet little girls in our family and to share our lives with 

I wanted to crochet some new items for Baby Girl #2 as I didn’t want the poor girl to have to wear all of Myla’s hand-me-downs!  I was ecstatic to find a free pattern for these “Double Strapped Baby Mary Janes" on ChiWei’s blog "One Dog Woof”!  They are absolutely adorable, and I love how they are quick to work up and really help with yarn stash busting since each pair uses such little yarn :)

I crocheted some pairs for our friends who were recently blessed with baby girls too!  Click on each photo above to enlarge it for a better view!  It was fun choosing the yarn colour combinations for each pair, and I love the look of wooden buttons as closure.  The criss-cross straps make it hard for baby to yank these off as well ;)  It’s fun adding a pop of colour when attaching the wooden buttons with embroidery floss too.

I used all different types of yarn that were in my stash, including Lion Brand Vanna’s Choice (grey and pink pair), Loops & Threads Impeccable (red and beige pair) and Patons Canadiana (white and tan pair).  Each pair turned out a slightly different size since each yarn has a different thickness (even though they are all worsted weight yarn).  The red pair held its shape the best and turned out larger and sturdier.  Keep this in mind if you are trying to adjust for size!

We cannot wait to see some chubby little feet wearing these ❤  Once again, you can find the free pattern to make these baby Mary Janes on ChiWei’s blog HERE!

I love wearing my “WIP" (Work In Progress) t-shirt to show off my bump as a proud crocheter and crafter ❤.  I bought it two years ago on Ravelry when I found out I was pregnant with Myla, and I’m happy that I can wear it again with this pregnancy!  Two years have gone by incredibly quickly, and I can’t believe our little one will be making an appearance in a few short months!  

Does anyone have any guesses whether we’re having a boy or a girl?  I will reveal the gender soon since I’ll be blogging about some crochet projects that I’ve been working on for this little one!  

[Note: I just found out today that this “WIP” shirt has sadly been discontinued on Ravelry, so unfortunately they are no longer available for purchase- see HERE.]

Toddler Cabled Slouchy Beanie

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Here is the free pattern for the “Toddler Cabled Slouchy Beanie" that I made for my daughter Myla to match the adult one that I made for myself!

***PLEASE follow along with the step-by-step post HERE as I showed how to work the cabling in detail with plenty of photos :)

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Materials:

  • 4 mm crochet hook (I used this to achieve smaller, more delicate cables compared to my adult beanie- you can choose to use either a 4 or 5 mm hook and adjust numbers as necessary)
  • Medium worsted weight yarn (I used Lion Brand’s Heartland in “Grand Canyon”, 1 skein)
  • Optional: yarn needle to seam up beanie; Clover Pom Pom Maker

Special stitches:

  • Front Post Treble Crochet (Fptc): Yarn Over (YO) twice, insert hook from front to back around post of stitch indicated. YO and pull up a loop, [YO and draw through 2 loops on hook] 3 times.
  • Back Post Double Crochet (Bpdc): YO, insert hook behind post of stitch (insert hook from back to front of stitch), YO, pull up a loop, YO, (pull through 2 loops) twice.
  • Front Post Double Crochet (Fpdc): YO, insert hook behind post of stitch (insert hook from front to back of stitch), YO, pull up a loop, YO, (pull through 2 loops) twice. 

Ribbed Band:

Chain 7

R1: In back loops only, Sc 1 in second chain from hook and in each chain across (6 sc).

R2-67: Chain 1, turn.  In back loops only, Sc 1 in second chain from hook and in each chain across (6 sc).

My ribbed band measured 16.5” or 40.5 cm.  Adjust this number based on desired size.  Fasten off and leave long end for sewing.  Sew short ends together to form ribbed band.  

Cabled Body:

***In each round, the Ch 2 does not count as a stitch.  When joining at the end of each round, join to the stitch indicated (NOT the Ch 2) to make an invisible seam.

Join yarn with sl st at any point around edge of band.

Round 1: Chain 2, work one double crochet in same st as Chain 2.  Work 65 dc as evenly as possible around edge of band.  Join with sl st to first dc (66 dc).  [If adapting the pattern, make sure your final number of dc’s is a multiple of 6.]  

R2: Chain 2, Bpdc around first dc from previous round (same dc you joined to from Round 1).  Bpdc around next st.  Work cabling: {Skip next two dc, 2 Fptc around next 2 dc.  Fptc around first skipped dc and next dc}.  *2 bpdc in next two st.  Work cabling: Sk next 2 st, 2 Fptc around next 2 st.  Fptc around first skipped st and next st.*, rep 11 times.  Join with sl st to first Bpdc.  (11 cables around with 11 sets of Bpdc’s between)

R3: Chain 2, Bpdc around first Bpdc from previous round.  Bpdc around next st.  Fpdc 4.  *Bpdc 2, Fpdc 4*, rep 11 times .  Join with sl st to first Bpdc.  (11 cables around with 11 sets of Bpdc’s between)

R4: Repeat Round 3.

With rounds 2-4, one set of cables is complete!  Keep repeating Rounds 2-4 until desired length.  

R5-7: same as Round 2-4

R8-10: same as Round 2-4

R11-13: same as Rounds 2-4

R14-16: same as Rounds 2-4

R17-19: same as Rounds 2-4

R20-22: same as Rounds 2-4

I completed 7 sets of cables with this beanie measuring 9” or 22 cm (including ribbed band).  Fasten off and leave long end for sewing.  Weave yarn through ends of last round, pull tightly and sew hole shut.  Alternatively, seam up beanie using this method HERE.

Optional: Add pom pom (I used my “Clover Pom Pom Maker”).  Attach pom pom to beanie and you are DONE!

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If you would like to adapt this pattern for a baby, child, teen, etc., please check out this very helpful post by Anne HERE that contains a chart with head circumference sizes (your ribbed band) as well as general hat height (the number of rounds or length of the beanie)! 

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This toddler version is such a cute accompaniment to my adult “Cabled Slouchy Beanie”!  Don’t forget to check out the step-by-step blog post and free pattern to the adult beanie HERE

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Enjoy matching with your mini-me’s!  These “Cabled Slouchy Beanies" are really perfect for the fall and winter and would make great gifts for mommies, daddies, and their little ones!

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I also made a “Chunky Crocheted Slouchy Beanie" for another variation using super bulky (level 6) yarn- you can find the free pattern HERE!  Keep up with all my updates on FacebookTwitter (@AllAboutAmi) & Instagram (@AllAboutAmi)!   Happy cabling!  ❤

Amazon Affiliate Links

Lion Brand Heartland Yarn Grand Canyon 

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Sneak peek of upcoming new design: Cabled Slouchy Beanies (matching mommy and toddler set)!!!

Step-by-step blog post and free patterns coming next week!

I used the pom poms made with my “Clover Pom Pom Maker" for these beanies!  For those who want to get a head start, I used Lion Brand's Heartland yarn in “Grand Canyon" (1 skein for toddler hat, about 1 1/4 skeins for adult hat)!

The winner of the “Freshly Picked" moccasins is Amanda Z.!  Congratulations, Amanda :)  Look for my e-mail so you can tell me what colour and size moccasins you would like!
Thank you so much to all those who entered!  I enjoy sharing about products I love on the blog and I’m glad that I can partner with these artisans and entrepreneurs to bring you these giveaways!

The winner of the “Freshly Picked" moccasins is Amanda Z.!  Congratulations, Amanda :)  Look for my e-mail so you can tell me what colour and size moccasins you would like!

Thank you so much to all those who entered!  I enjoy sharing about products I love on the blog and I’m glad that I can partner with these artisans and entrepreneurs to bring you these giveaways!

Freshly Picked Moccasins Review & GIVEAWAY

I love supporting handmade artisans and moms who have started their own small businesses.  It takes a lot of work, dedication and patience to design your unique product, find your niche market, get your name out there, and hope that your work will be well-received!  

Susan Petersen is one such mom who decided to make and sell her own baby moccasins when she couldn’t find any well-designed, soft-soled shoes for her son.  After using some scrap leather from a yard sale to design a prototype that she was happy with, she decided to start her own company called "Freshly Picked" in 2009. 

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However, Susan was on a very limited budget, so she got creative when figuring out how to earn the money to start her business.  Her brother let her keep the old windows from his window installation business, and she spent the whole summer banging the glass out of these windows in order to recycle the aluminum frames.  With the $200 made from recycling the frames, she started “Freshly Picked”!  

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Fast forward five years and six design changes later, Susan has nurtured “Freshly Picked” into a thriving company that is an inspiration to so many.  She has appeared on “Shark Tank”, has been embraced by celebrities (and their children), and has amassed a huge following as her moccasins are seen as the crème de la crème of handmade baby moccasins (her Instagram account has over 230,000 followers).  After experiencing such success, Susan loves giving back and encouraging others through her “Entreneur Empowerment Movement" on Instagram and also providing scholarships for business start-ups.

Susan’s team over at “Freshly Picked" sent over some moccasins for Myla so that I could review them, and as you can see in the pics above, they come in this modern dust bag!

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"Freshly Picked" moccasins come in a wide array of exquisite colours (see here), and some of my favourites include blush, platinum and gold.  We decided to get the “Weathered Brown" for Myla since it is such a versatile, classic, gender-neutral colour that will match with anything!

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These moccasins are made of extremely soft and supple leather, and the elastic opening ensures that they will not fall off as baby shoes often do.  The fringe along the front, sides and back is a really cute touch, and the bottoms are stamped with the “FP” logo!  There is no discernible left and right moccasin from the start (the same sewing pattern is used for both feet), but each moccasin quickly molds to the child’s feet and it is then easy to tell which one is right and left based on how it curves.

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With the rise in popularity of “Freshly Picked”, these moccasins are now priced at $60.  I admit that it is a hefty price for baby/toddler shoes but clearly there is a market for it and Susan wrote a very good article entitled “Why You Should Raise Your Prices" (see HERE) directed to handmade artists.  In this article, Susan discusses how you must value what you are making and very carefully decide how much your time and talent is worth, particularly if you are trying to make a living from your art.  I respect Susan’s business model and her pricing and how far she has taken her company.  Susan now focuses on other tasks, and when I asked, I was told that all the seamstresses, suppliers and vendors are in the United States.

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Myla absolutely ADORES her moccasins as they are hands down her favourite pair of shoes.  She has worn them almost exclusively for the past five months and I love how they never fall off or get lost!  Here we are at a local Farmer’s Market at the beginning of the summer…

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These moccs are very comfortable for Myla as they are flexible, soft, and have plenty of grip.  They come in sizes 1-10 (for pre-walkers and walkers) and you can check out the sizing chart HERE!  

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On our recent trip to California, Myla pretty much wore them everyday!  They are so versatile as they look cute with both leggings and dresses.  I love the look of the fringe from behind :)

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I can’t tell you how many times we’ve received compliments from strangers when they gaze down and see the cute moccasins that Myla is wearing!

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Here are some photos of our little sweetheart’s first trip to Disneyland!  I love matching with my little girl 

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This is one of my favourite photos from the whole trip: Myla dancing in front of the Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland with that childhood freedom and innocence without a care in the world!

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You can see that Myla has really worn her moccasins down in our pregnancy announcement below from a month ago (I can’t believe I’m already 25 weeks pregnant now!).  The “FP” logo stamped on the bottom is actually completely gone, but the moccasins have held up well with no rips or holes.  They continue to look good even though they have worn down as our “Weathered Brown” choice now has a real weathered and vintage look!  I wouldn’t hesitate to get a pair of these moccasins for our next baby after seeing the quality first hand and how much wear Myla has gotten out of her favourite shoes!

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And now the exciting part…Susan and her team at “Freshly Picked” have generously offered a GIVEAWAY!  The lucky winner will get to choose one pair of “Freshly Picked” moccasins in any colour and size!   You can enter this giveaway using the Rafflecopter widget below, and there are 10 different ways to enter- none of them are mandatory, but of course the more entries you have, the higher chances you have of winning!  This contest is only open to residents of the US and Canada due to shipping costs (sorry to readers from other countries!).  Also, you are not eligible to enter if you’ve won a pair of Freshly Picked moccasins in the last 60 days.  Take a look at all the different moccasins available HERE and have fun entering below- good luck :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

DIY Yarn Storage

Thank you so much for all the love and encouragement you’ve shown us since we announced that our family is growing!  We are truly touched by each and every comment we received through the blog, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram, and we are so excited that we can share these special moments with you!

This blog has not only been a portofolio of my crochet projects, but also a journal documenting things that I love and what I’ve experienced.  In addition to my crochet projects, I’ve also blogged about my love of food and travel, and also topics such as maternity and nursing fashion since becoming a mom.  I created a special tab in the navigation bar called “OTHER" to help document these blog posts and to organize them a bit better so that they don’t simply get lost in the Archive!  To access ALL my previous posts, click the "ARCHIVE" tab where they are organized chronologically by month and year.  

The new “OTHER" tab has the following sections:

  • Food: I’ve blogged about some of my favourite recipes I’ve found on-line (e.g. the Red Velvet Cake pictured above) as well as some of our own recipes!  My Lychee Frozen Yogurt and Layered Fingered Jello seem to be pretty popular :)
  • Travel: We love visiting new places, and it’s been fun sharing our favourite restaurants and sites from destinations all over the world (e.g. the Black Sand Beach in Maui above).
  • Maternity/Nursing/Family: On my journey to becoming a mom, I’ve adapted my style to accommodate my growing pregnant belly and need to nurse a baby (e.g. nursing tank above)!
  • Cosplay & Craft Tutorials: We love making our own costumes and blogging about other crafting projects we’ve worked on (e.g. our DIY Yarn Storage).
  • Reviews: I’ve enjoyed blogging about shops and products that I love (e.g. Clover Amour Crochet Hooks) and hosting giveaways as well!

Check out this “OTHER" tab in my navigation bar to see some previous posts that you may have missed before!

Our Exciting News

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We have some exciting news to share with you all!  Myla is 21 months old and I’m……….21 WEEKS PREGNANT!!!  We are overjoyed that our family will be expanding again as the new little addition to our family will be arriving in mid-December 

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I am so thankful that this pregnancy has been similar to my first with Myla as I haven’t experienced any nausea or morning sickness!  However, once again, I did feel extremely fatigued in the first trimester, but this time round was different since I couldn’t simply nap whenever I wanted to.  Chasing an active toddler around and trying to keep my energy levels up was challenging, but I napped whenever Myla napped.  That meant little time for blogging, crocheting, and designing, so thank you for sticking around even though there haven’t been too many new projects as of late!  Now you know why :P

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It’s so surreal that there is another little one growing inside of me, and that Myla will be a big sister!  I was re-reading the blog post announcing my first pregnancy HERE from two years ago, and it brought back so many memories.  When I look at Myla now and how much she’s grown, it reminds me to cherish each and every day since she is growing up so quickly.  Sometimes the days seem long, but as they say, the years are short, and they really do go by so quickly.  Ryan and I have learned so much since becoming parents, and we’ve been able to experience a joy unlike any other since Myla came into our lives.  She sees the world with such wonder, and we love hearing her laugh and seeing her eyes widen with excitement with every new experience.  To think that we will have another special little one to share our lives with brings us to tears, and we thank God each and every day for our blessings!

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We know that our lives are going to change drastically again in a couple of months as we navigate life with a toddler AND a newborn….and adjust to the lack of sleep again!  Thankfully, I’ve had more energy recently and I’ve been having a blast designing some fall/winter crochet projects.  I also want to crochet some items for Baby #2, so feel free to send me cute baby projects that you’ve come across :)  It feels good to pick up my crochet hook again!  Thank you for supporting and loving our family so much, and we appreciate your prayers for us and this pregnancy!  

Cupcake Bib/Dishcloth

One day while shopping for yarn at Michaels, I came across this free adorable “Cupcake Dishcloth" pattern designed by Twinkie Chan.  Twinkie Chan is the queen of yummy and deliciously cute crochet (check out her site here), and I had seen her mention this project before on her social media.  I excitedly took a copy of the pattern home and began working on it right away with some Bernat cotton yarn that I already had in my stash!

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I was very impressed with this pattern and how this cupcake was designed.  The pink frosting part involves using a magic ring, but rather than working continuously around the circle, you turn your work in order to achieve this semi-circle shape.  The pink edging hanging over the green cake liner adds a pretty and whimsical touch.  My favourite part though was achieving the cabled effect on the green cake liner by working front post half triple crochets (FPhtr) around stitches found in rows below.  I thought this technique was brilliant and I love how it turned out- I’ll have to keep this in mind for future projects!

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The original project includes the pattern for a circular cherry with a loop on the top so that you can easily hang your dishcloth.  I wanted to make this dishcloth convertible into a bib as I wanted to gift it to a newborn baby girl!  Thus, I did not include the loop on the cherry- instead, I crocheted a little stem.

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After following the pattern for the cherry, I did not fasten off.  I did the folllowing:

Ch 6.  Sc 1 in 2nd chain from hook.  Sl st in next 4 chains.  Sl st in next 2 stitches of circle.  Fasten off and leave end to attach cherry to cupcake.

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In order to make this cupcake convertible into a bib, I added these two straps to the back of the pink frosting so that I could run a long neck strap through them:

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To crochet these:

Ch 7.  Sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each chain across (6 sc).  Fasten off and leave ends to attach straps to frosting.

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Next I crocheted the long neck strap consisting of double crochets with a button on the end.  By using double crochets, this made the strap adjustable since the button can fit between any of the stitches!

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To crochet the neck strap:

Chain 70.  Dc in 4th ch from hook and in each chain across (68 dc).  Fasten off and weave in ends.  Sew button firmly onto one end.  (My strap measured approximately 17 inches).

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After feeding the neck strap through the pink straps, this is what my cupcake bib looked like!  I thought that the family could use it at first as a bib, and when their baby daughter no longer needed to use a bib, they could remove the neck strap and continue using it as a cute dishcloth in their kitchen!

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Cupcakes are so pretty and whimsical- I’m sure a Cupcake Dischcloth or Bib would be a welcome addition into many homes and kitchens, especially for those with a sweet tooth!

Myla absolutely detests wearing bibs now, but we managed to get her to wear this Cupcake Bib for a split second to capture this photo before she ripped it off, haha!  Isn’t the bib adorable?

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To make your own Cupcake Bib or Dishcloth, check out Twinkie Chan’s free pattern HERE!  Her post also includes a very informative YouTube video in which she shows you how to crochet the entire project as well :)  Have fun, and happy crocheting!

Sneak peek of upcoming blog post: Cupcake Bib (modification of Twinkie Chan's free “Cupcake Dishcloth" pattern)

Sneak peek of upcoming blog post: Cupcake Bib (modification of Twinkie Chan's free “Cupcake Dishcloth" pattern)

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