BeastieBlog

Sleepy Explorer Beastie - CrawCrafts Beasties

Monster Maker M.I.A.

Ooopsie!

In a change to the advertised programming here on the BeastieBlog, there will not be a new Beastie post this week… Or, unfortunately, for a couple more weeks, either. Between a growing heap of commissions, the reopening of knitting classes, a looming tax return deadline and a few new projects that have been bubbling away on the back burner, I’ve been finding myself spread a little thinly these past few weeks.

Explorer Beastie has too, apparently.

So, we’re going to take a short late summer break, get back on top of things, and return replenished with stories to share in the autumn!

Take care and see you then!

Helen and the Beasties x

Paddy and Plunkett in the Sunny South West

The boys are back in town… But which town?

The sunny seaside town of St Ives - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

Paddy is instantly sold.

“I like the look of this place – where are we, Plunkett?”

Fortunately, Plunkett remembered to bring along the travel guide.

“I think we’re in St Ives! Here, look.”

“The book says that St Ives has long been a popular place for artists to live and work, thanks to the special quality of the light here. I think I see what they mean…”

Paddy, as ever, is less concerned with the light and more interested in getting to the heart of the action.

“C’mon then! Let’s take a closer look!”

Harbour at St Ives, Cornwall - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

Down at the harbour, Plunkett is enraptured. I think he might consider sticking around here and joining the St Ives School of artists himself at this rate.

“Wow, what a beautiful place! And look at that sky!”

Paddy’s eye is caught by something else.

“What beautiful boats! I wonder if…”

Oh no, Paddy. Let’s just nip that idea in the bud right now. We can’t have him attempting to commandeer any more vessels on this trip. Into town we go!

Paddy and Plunkett in St Ives - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

And the town doesn’t disappoint either, with its winding streets, pretty stone buildings, AND…

Plunkett at the Wool Shop, St Ives - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

… A WOOL SHOP!

Plunkett just had to stop and pick out some supplies for his next project. Or projects! He usually has a couple of things on the go.

Fortunately, someone was keeping an eye on the clock.

“Plunkett! PLUNKETT! The humans are going to leave without us! Hurry up!”

And that leaves ME wondering what weird parallel universe the boys have fallen into, where Paddy is the responsible one… Hopefully normal service will resume next week, with some new Beastie friends for you to meet! See you then!

Woof! Or, Another Visit to the Beastie Pet Shop

Hello everyone! I’ve another creature feature for you this week – and I’m surprised at how long it’s taken me to share this special Beastie pet with you! She’s a real cutie.

Hey there, Mini-Penelope!

Mini Penelope - Teeny needle-felted dog by CrawCrafts Beasties

This sweet little French bulldog pup was created to complete a Beastie family which I made a few years ago. Here’s the original trio…

Who's This? A Beastie Family, by CrawCrafts Beasties

They landed in their new home just in time to help their new human friends celebrate their wedding. However, that was ALLLLLL the way back in 2018! And with the arrival of Penelope (a cheeky lil’ French bulldog puppy) during last year’s lockdown, this family portrait needed an update!

So, I grabbed my needle-felting kit, and spent a good bit of time getting to know Penelope a little better. You can too! She and her sister Zoey have their own Instagram account.

And now here’s her Mini-Me!

* Waves magic Beastification wand *

Beastie-Sized French Bulldog - Commissions by CrawCrafts Beasties

And turn and smile for the camera, please.

Penelope the Frenh bulldog - CrawCrafts Beasties

Very nice.

Oh sorry, what’s that? You want to play Fetch?

Miniature Fetch - CrawCrafts Beasties

Maybe the pens and pencils might be a bit big for you, don’t you think?

Beastie Bulldog - CrawCrafts Beasties

Oh. She looks disappointed. Hey, you can still climb on them! Endless hours of fun.

Exploring my work table - Beastie Bulldog Commission by CrawCrafts Beasties

Who’s a good girl?

Good pup - CrawCrafts Beasties

Thanks to Kristen for requesting this fun addition to her little family of woolly monsters!

And be sure to join us again next week, when we’ll be catching up with Paddy and Plunkett. I wonder where they’ve been for the last couple of weeks? See you then!

Meow!

Hey there everyone! And THERE’S a post title that could probably use a little explanation… Have I perhaps switched up in the last week, and moved on to making just cats and cat accessories?

Funny you should ask, actually, because it turns out that the Beasties I featured in last week’s post and the post from the week before are both very much “cat people”. Some of you might even have picked up on that fact already…

Beastie in Cat Hat - CrawCrafts Beasties

So it only seems right and proper that these Beasties should get a feline friend of their own.

Beastie with Felted Kitty, by CrawCrafts Beasties

Awwww, look how friendly she is! See if she’ll climb up on this pincushion so we can get a closer look.

Kitty Closeup - CrawCrafts Beasties

Sweet! But wait… Do I hear more meowing? Does that mean…

More Beastie cats! CrawCrafts Beasties

Yes, our first cat has brought along some friends!

And it looks like they ALL want cuddles.

Beastie kitty cuddles - Commissions by CrawCrafts Beasties

Each Beastie Kitty is modelled after a regular-size cat owned by one of the two sisters I Beastified for this recent BIG project. I used 100% wool roving on a wire frame for their bodies, and various shades of green beads to give their eyes that brilliant feline glow.

And just look how fearless they are! None of them had any problems stepping up onto my giant human hand to investigate.

Needle-felted Beastie Kitty by CrawCrafts Beasties

This is Soy, who belongs to the elder sister, while Zeus…

Another Beastie-sized Cat - CrawCrafts Beasties

… And Prince…

Black Beastie Cat - CrawCrafts Beasties

… Are both looked after by the younger sister.

As you can probably tell, photographing a Beastie black cat is just as impossible as photographing one of the regular-sized ones!

Well, now that we’ve met everybody, it’s time to round them up…

Beastie with custom-made needle-felted cats - CrawCrafts Beasties

… So they can head off to their new home!

Thanks again to Miri for this awesome project… And the Beastie Pet Extravaganza doesn’t end here! Recently I’ve had lots of people asking if I can extend the Beastification of their friends and family members to include their beloved pets, so we’re going to meet some more of those miniature critters next time.

See you then!

Sunshine, Sunflowers and a Summer Singalong

Hey there everyone! And WOW, is it hot here! Well, for Ireland… I won’t invite eye-rolls and derisive laughter from those of you who have been experiencing actual heatwaves over the last couple of weeks by citing temperatures. Let’s just say it’s been a little warmer than usual, the sun is out, and it’s not so bad that we can’t travel because the weather is already lovely right here at home.

And THAT was a pretty roundabout way to introduce this week’s new Beastie… A little monster girl who has a distinctly summery, sunshiney vibe. Oh look, here she is now! Hello!

Personalised Beastie Commission by CrawCrafts Beasties

Oooh, I love your dress! The geometric print makes me think of cartoon sunshines, or maybe sunflowers… Give us a twirl, there.

Beastie Dress, front and back - Commissions by CrawCrafts Beasties

Very nice! I modelled this vintage-style dress on one owned by this Beastie’s human counterpart. The fabric is different, but I copied the full collar and slightly puffed sleeves of the original.

Beastie Mini-Dress with Gathered Sleeves and Wide Collar - CrawCrafts Beasties

You might also have noticed that there’s been a bit of a change to the usual Beastie layout for this project. No stripey legs here! This little monster lady is rocking a pair of cute white knee socks instead.

Beastie knee socks - CrawCrafts Beasties

Now, what next? Sticking with the retro style of her dress, we’re going to add a pair of cool red-framed glasses.

Beastie Glasses by CrawCrafts Beasties

As usual, they’re completely removable, so she can pop them on top of her head when they’re not needed.

Removable Beastie Glasses - CrawCrafts Beasties

Very nice! And, like her sister who joined us for last week’s post, this Beastie also has magic magnetic paws…

Magic Magnet Paws - CrawCrafts Beasties

… To help her hold on to all her awesome accessories…

Beastie with Sunflower - CrawCrafts Beasties

… Like this Beastie-sized sunflower! My sources informed me that our Beastie’s human counterpart loves sunflowers, so I just had to include one in her accessory lineup.

It’s planted in a felt pot of 100% wool roving, which has helped it to grow nice and tall, with plenty of fresh green felt leaves.

A Beastie-sized Sunflower with Felt Leaves, Petals and Pot - CrawCrafts Beasties

And what else can she do? Well, I did mention a singalong, didn’t I? And good news – we get musical accompaniment!

Here you go, Miss Beastie – a teeny little ukulele for you, so you can play us a summery tune!

Beastie Ukulele, by CrawCrafts Beasties

Has anyone any requests? Be sure to share your favourite summertime song in the comments!

And you might think that this haul would be plenty to keep a pair of Beastie sisters happy… But wait, there’s more! Join us next week to find out who joined them when they ventured forth from Beastie Towers into the wider world… See you then!

Bubble Tea and Dungarees!

Hello everyone! As promised in last week’s post, I’ve a new Beastie for you to meet today… And she has so many cool accessories! Hey there, Miss Beastie!

It's New Beastie Time! Commissions by CrawCrafts Beasties

I have to say, I really love this outfit. This Beastie is taking her stye cues from her human counterpart’s actual wardrobe, so including a stripey top and dungaree overalls was all part of the design brief.

Beastie Dungarees - CrawCrafts Beasties

I also personalised them by embroidering one of the littlest Totoros (a creature from the animé My Neighbour Totoro) on the front pocket!

Mini Totoro Embroidery! Commissions by CrawCrafts Beasties

This Beastie also has multi-toned dark brown wool hair, magic magnet paws (so she can really hold onto things) and the usual winsome Beastie smile.

Smile, hair and magic magnetic paws - Commissions by CrawCrafts Beasties

And now, for some special personal touches… This Beastie’s new friend has a favourite hat, and I was asked if maybe I could have a go at copying it. Here’s the original (lifted from this website):

Smoko Oliver Animated Cat Hat

And here’s the Beastified version (slightly adjusted for shorter, broader woolly monster heads)!

A Cat Hat... For a Beastie! CrawCrafts Beasties

Our model seems pretty happy with it, anyway!

Beastie Girl in Cat Hat - Commissions by CrawCrafts Beasties

Now, what else does she need? How about a sketch book and pen, perhaps?

Beastie-sized sketch book and pen - CrawCrafts Beasties

Perfect! And with her magic magnetic paws, she can really hold them too!

And finally, maybe some refreshments are in order. Our human girl LOVES bubble tea (also called boba tea), so it only seemed right to send her new Beastie friend off with a cup of her own to enjoy on the journey. It’s even her favourite flavour – lychee. Yum!

Beastie Bubble Tea - CrawCrafts Beasties

This Beastie-sized boba drink is brewed from 100% wool roving, and is served in a hand-stitched clear cup with a felt straw.

Now, is that everything?

Beastie with all her accessories - Commissions by CrawCrafts Beasties

I think so!

Thanks to Miri for this fun Beastie project… Oh, and did I mention that this monster girl has a sister? No? Well, she does… And she’ll be dropping in to join us next week! See you then!

Famous Feet on St Michael’s Mount

Hello everyone! Last week, we left Paddy and Plunkett pondering the local property market here at St Michael’s Mount, in Cornwall…

However, over the last 7 days, they appear to have had a change of heart.

“I think this is more our style, Paddy. What do you reckon?”

Paddy and Plunkett at the cottages, St Michael's Mount - CrawCrafts Beasties

Aren’t they lovely? These pretty little houses are the homes of the people who look after the castle and its gardens throughout the year. And Paddy seems to approve, too.

“I like these! And look… A tractor! I wonder if they’ll let me take it for a test drive?”

Most of the residents also have their own small boats, which are moored in the island’s harbour.

The harbour at St Michael's Mount - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

Now Paddy can’t decide what to do.

“Oh, and I’d love a go in one of these as well! Who do I ask? Or maybe I’ll just hop into one, and…”

Fortunately, Plunkett has found something to distract Paddy from his plans to commandeer one of those vessels. It seems the boys aren’t the only notable visitors the island has had!

Famous Feet on St Michael's Mount - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

“Human footprints! But why are they metal?”

“Because they were made by some very famous feet, Paddy. Here, look…”

Royal Footprints on St Michael's Mount - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

And further along, there were more to see!

More famous feet - Paddy and Plunkett - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

But just as Paddy was planning where to place his OWN metal paw print (and accompanying plaque), Plunkett noticed that the island had started to become a lot busier.

St Michael's Mount gets busy! H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

“Come on, Paddy! Time to head on to our next adventure!”

Oooooh, where will they end up next? You’ll have to stay tuned to find out! In the meantime, I’ve a new Beastie for you all to meet next week, so be sure to join us then!

Monsters on St Michael’s Mount

It’s been a while since we last checked in with Paddy and Plunkett, hasn’t it? If memory serves, last time we watched them clamber into a nearby knitting bag…

Plunkett Joins Paddy - Beastie Adventures - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

… In the hope that it would whisk them off on an exciting new adventure. Well, it looks like their patience has finally paid off!

Paddy and Plunkett at St Michael's Mount

“That’s some view, Plunkett! Where exactly are we?”

Fortunately, Plunkett has read the travel guide.

“It’s St Michael’s Mount, Paddy. Look, we’re here…”

“Ohhhh, okaaaaay! Hey, is that a castle up there on the hill?”

St Michael's Mount, Cornwall

“It certainly is! And the same family has been living in it for nearly 400 years. The original castle dates back to the 12th century, but some extra architectural bits and bobs were tacked on in the 17th and 18th centuries. Before that, the island was the site of a monastery, possibly from as early as the 8th century.”

“Wow, so this is OLD! Can we go in for a closer look?”

“Yes… Luckily the tide is out, so we can toddle across this beautiful man-made causeway. Or maybe hitch a lift from one of these nice people…”

The Causeway at St Michael's Mount

“Hang on, what do you mean ‘luckily, the tide is out’? What if the tide’s in?”

“Well, St Michael’s Mount is an island at high tide, so the causeway would be underwater.”

“And…”

“And we’d be swimming over!”

“Ah. Better off this way, so.”

Paddy was even more impressed with the castle at close quarters.

The castle on St Michael's Mount - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts Beasties

“This looks like my kind of place, Plunkett! Do you reckon they would like to adopt a little woolly monster?”

But Plunkett was lost in his own thoughts. He felt the nice, warm breeze on his face, and noticed the tropical plants that grow outdoors here all year round.

Tropical St Michael's Mount - Paddy and Plunkett -CrawCrafts Beasties

“Hmmmm… Or maybe they’d like to adopt TWO little woolly monsters!”

Join us again next week, when Paddy and Plunkett will be exploring St Michael’s Mount a little more… And maybe making plans to move in!

Monster Online Sale!

Hello there everyone! Well, I’ve got some news for you all this week… We’re having a Beastie sale!

Yes, you read that correctly!

You see, some of the Beasties I have here in Beastie Towers have developed a serious case of lockdown cabin fever. They want (or perhaps more correctly, NEED) to stretch their little stripey legs and see more of the world. Normally I’d be taking them out to markets through the year, and that would quiet their yearning for adventure for a while. But with no big market days in sight just yet, this seemed like the best possible substitute.

Here are some of the lil’ woolly monsters who are eager to break out and explore pastures new!

And if you fancy a quick Beastie fix, and since we’re now halfway through the year, our printable Beastie 2021 calendar is now FREE!

Beastie Calendar Sale - CrawCrafts Beasties

But you’d better be quick!

The sale is running from now until this coming Saturday – that’s the 19th of June – and it will end at 6pm Irish time.

After that, I’ll be making some changes to Beastie HQ… The most significant being that there will no longer be an online store on the Beasties’ website. Over the past year, the number of Beasties finding new homes through the website has remained the same, but the amount of commission requests I’ve been getting has leapt up… And those commissions are becoming ever more complex, too! So it makes sense for me to focus on that side of things, at least for the moment.

For anyone who appreciates the simplicity of an Aran or Cookie Beastie though, don’t despair! I’m still happy to make these perennial favourites… Just drop me a line. You’ll even be able to add a more personal touch by selecting your preferred colour scheme and winsome monster smile style!

And finally…

Website updates always bring the potential for disaster interesting and unforeseen developments, so I’ll be skipping next week’s post to weed out any potential gremlins in the works. You can still keep up with the Beasties and their antics on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook in the meantime, though… And we’ll see you again in a couple of weeks!

Help me, Superhero Max Beastie!

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s a new Beastie!
Superhero Max Beastie - A Commission by CrawCrafts BeastiesAnd not just any new Beastie – this one is a SUPERHERO!

Last year during lockdown, a customer contacted me to ask if I’d be able to make a Christmas gift for her daughter. This girl LOVES superheroes, and even has a secret alter-ego herself… When danger looms, she transforms into Superhero Max! Not content with merely fighting crime, Superhero Max is also a dab hand at fixing electrical boxes – you know, those anonymous grey or green metal cases you see on pretty much every street.

Well, with material like that to work with, how could I refuse?

First of all, I thought I’d better provide this little monster lady with some tools. She’ll need those if she’s going to fix anything!
Tools of the Trade - Superhero Max Beastie - CrawCrafts BeastiesNormally I’d pop magnets inside these so the Beastie can hold them securely… But since her human counterpart is still quite young, I went for elastic loops on the handles instead, just to be on the safe side.
Utility Belt + Tools - CrawCrafts BeastiesAs you can see, they still fit snugly into her utility belt, ready for action.

She also has a cream-coloured super-suit, based on Superhero Max’s own favourite outfit. And this one comes complete with a special custom-designed hand-embroidered logo!
Superhero Max Logo - CrawCrafts Beasties

But of course, it’s oh-so-important that her identity remains a secret. Don’t worry, Miss Beastie! I’ve got you covered.
Superhero Max in Disguise - CrawCrafts BeastiesWith a red felt mask and starry cape (inspired by her human counterpart’s passion for outer space), she’ll be able to head out completely incognito.

But wait a sec… Doesn’t every SuperBeastie need a super-sidekick?

Yes, absolutely!
Superhero Max and Hop - CrawCrafts BeastiesJust as Superhero Max never goes anywhere without her trusted bunny friend Hop, this Beastie has a cuddly rabbit companion to join her on her adventures, too. He even has the same uniform, including a removable mini cape!
Hop Closeups - Superhero Max Beastie - CrawCrafts BeastiesI also had fun adding in special bunny details, like a fluffy white tail and carrot-inspired sidekick logo.

Well, I think that’s all the angles covered! Just as well, because it looks like someone is ready for takeoff.
Superhero Max Beastie Takes Off - CrawCrafts BeastiesUp, up and… AWAAAAAY!
Superhero Max Beastie, by CrawCrafts BeastiesYikes, she’s flown right out of the teeny photo studio! Um, can I ask everyone to please keep an eye out and report any low-flying Beasties in your neighbourhood directly to Beastie HQ? Thanks and see you next week!