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!

Marge Featured Image - Pug - CrawCrafts Beasties

What’s Pug Got To Do With It?

Hello there Beastie friends! I hope you’re all keeping well in these rather strange times. To keep things interesting, we’ve got a slightly different new project to share with you this week – a Beastified pug! Here she is now… Hello!

Beastie Marge the Mini Pug - CrawCrafts Beasties

This fuzzy felty lady could probably use a little introduction. Remember the wedding commission I did at the beginning of the year?
Well, the happy monster couple was only part of the deal. I was also asked to Beastify Marge, a charming and elegant pug who came into the guys’ life disguised as a humble birthday card, and then became a member (if not the ruling matriarch) of the family. Here she is getting ready to enjoy the marriage ceremony back in January.
Marge the Pug at the Wedding - CrawCrafts BeastiesUnfortunately, Beastie Marge wasn’t ready in time for the wedding. She takes her appearance very seriously, and that held things up a little! But while the boys and their Beasties were honeymooning, I had time aplenty to get busy with my felting needles.
Marge, the Beastie Pug - CrawCrafts BeastiesTa-daaaah! You know, it’s actually quite strange to see her with feet!

I also gave her a typically twisty pug tail…
Pug Tail - Needle Felting by CrawCrafts Beasties… And her glasses really have lenses!
Glasses for Marge - CrawCrafts BeastiesFinally complete, she was ready to hop in a box and travel to her new home. By all accounts, she’s settling in nicely!

And in un- pug related news…

… Explorer Beastie had a little bit of recovering to do after last week’s St Patrick’s Day festivities
Explorer Beastie after the party - CrawCrafts Beasties… Although, Beastie antics aside, it has been nice to be at home for the last week getting on with some commissions! They’ve been stacking up a bit this past while, but with my teaching schedule completely on hold for the time being, I’ve really been enjoying getting on with some teeny sewing!

Another aspect of monster-making life that’s fallen foul of the coronavirus is our occasional market days. We were hoping to get out to at least one Dublin Flea over the coming months, and to investigate some of the new opportunities that popped up over Christmas too. While an online store isn’t much of a substitute for the fun of a market day, I’ve been giving mine a much-needed refresh to tide me over until I can get behind a stall again. So do drop in and take a look around – or get in touch by email if you just want to talk monsters!

Well, that’s all my news – how are you lot getting on? Are you working from home, or getting stuck into some long-awaited new projects now your day-to-day routine has changed? Let me know all about it in the comments… And stay healthy, wherever you are!

Beastie with Pugaliers and Custom Dye Hair - CrawCrafts Beasties

To DYE for… A Beastie Hairdressing Odyssey

Hello there Beastie friends! I hope you’ve been enjoying travelling around with Paddy and Plunkett these last few weeks – if you’ve missed out you can catch up with their latest antics here, here and here. Don’t worry, we’ll wait for you. All done? Great! Let’s greet a new Beastie, then… It’s been a while, hasn’t it? But this one is dye -ing to meet you too!

Hello there, monster lady!
Hannah's Birthday Beastie, by CrawCrafts BeastiesThis Beastie girl was created as a very special birthday gift… And as you might have guessed from the title and subsequent puns, copying her human counterpart’s supercool hairdo was a really big part of this project! Let’s take a closer look at that colourful barnet, shall we?

Beastie Hair Dye Project - CrawCrafts Beasties

So, we’ve got rich, natural dark brown at the top, multi-tonal blues at the ends… And her hair is curly, too!

Getting this to work really did take a bit of pondering. You see, when humans dye their hair like this, it’s not too tricky. The ends are bleached, dyed in your colour of choice, and then you can enjoy watching the ever-changing tones as the dye gradually fades. Being wool, Beastie hair responds much less positively to the initial bleaching treatment, and that meant I had to start by turning the entire process on its head!

So, I selected a couple of yarns from my stash – one solid blue and one multicoloured hand-dye helped me capture the right array of hues – and set about colouring the “root” ends darker to get the effect I wanted. Since I was only dyeing a very small amount, some sums were involved to make sure I got the reduced quantities of ingredients in the correct proportions. This, and the mixing that followed, had me feeling very much like a mad monster-making scientist!

Then, using highly technical apparatus (consisting of wooden clothes pegs, chopsticks and a repurposed butter tub), I set about dip-dyeing my pre-cut yarn strands. I worked with a colour called Espresso Brown initially, but when two separate dyeing sessions left me with a shade that was more “milk chocolate”, I picked up a sachet of black dye and used it to mix my own custom blend. Phew – third time lucky! I finally had a colour I was happy with, and once everything dried out, I was able to crack on with my usual Beastie hairdressing.

Talk about a learning experience! But it was really cool to take control of my colour selections in this way, and I’d definitely do it again – especially when it comes to trying to match the human hair tones that commercial yarn companies seldom offer in their ranges.

But there’s more to this Beastie than her hairstyle, y’know! To complete her look, I dressed her in black leggings and a black hoodie…
Hair Dye Beastie with Hoodie - CrawCrafts BeastiesAnd of course, the hood can be worn up or down. There are even holes for her ears to poke through!
Hoodie with Hood Up - CrawCrafts BeastiesAnd… Wait a sec, don’t go!
Back view of Beastie Hoodie - CrawCrafts Beasties

Aha! She’s just fetching her four-legged friends to join the photoshoot. Hello, Beastie pups!
Beastie With Pugaliers - CrawCrafts BeastiesThese little scamps are Beastie pugaliers – just like the full-size ones that her new human friend has at home!

Beastie Pugaliers - CrawCrafts Beasties

When I saw photos of the family’s dogs, I noticed that they both had quite distinctive markings. So I used needle felting to make their Mini-Mes as close as possible to the full-size versions! Meet Beastie Lucy…
Beastie Lucy, the needle-felted Pugalier - CrawCrafts Beasties… And Beastie Sanjay!
Beastie Sanjay by CrawCrafts Beasties

And now that we’re all here… WALKIES!
Beastie with Pugaliers and Custom Dye Hair - CrawCrafts BeastiesHow about you? Have you tackled something new recently? If you have, tell us all about it in the comments!

Aaaaand Paddy and Plunkett will be back next week, so be sure to join us then!

Another Dog Lovin’ Beastie!

Tracy Beastie with her Dog - CrawCrafts Beasties
Well, I couldn’t say before, but I actually made TWO Beasties with canine pals last month! And now that this one has arrived in her new home and no birthday surprises will be spoiled, I reckon it’s high time she made an appearance on the BeastieBlog. Please say a big hello to Tracy Beastie!
Tracy Beastie and her Beastiedog, by CrawCrafts Beasties

Tracy Beastie should fit right in with her new family – not only do they have their own merry pack of pooches to keep her Beastiedog happy, her new mum also works as a dog trainer. So they should have plenty to talk about!

Because these two are off to sunny Texas, Tracy Beastie had to dress for the weather – we settled on her mum’s usual dogwalking outfit of yoga pants and a brightly coloured vest top. Oh, and sunglasses are a must-have!
Tracy Beastie's Outfit, by CrawCrafts BeastiesTracy Beastie's Sunglasses, by CrawCrafts BeastiesTracy Beastie in Sunglasses, by CrawCrafts Beasties
Meanwhile, the Beastiedog looks a little like her new kennelmate Evy – a black lab cross with a white blaze on her front. If you look closely, you’ll see she’s sporting a special running harness for walkies, with a removable clip-on lead too!
Black Lab Beastiedog, by CrawCrafts BeastiesBlack Lab Beastiedog Closeup - CrawCrafts BeastiesTracy Beastie Plays With Beastiedog - CrawCrafts BeastiesAnd finally… I sent them off with a snack for the journey!
Tracy Beastie, Beastiedog and Treats by CrawCrafts Beasties
That one little bag must have lasted them well, because here they are in their new home!
Tracy Beastie in her new home! T Donaldson/CrawCrafts Beasties

Looks like they’re settling in well!

My Biggest Monster Challenge Yet!

Dog Lover Beastie - CrawCrafts Beasties

Regular visitors to the BeastieBlog will have noticed that I’ve been a little quiet of late. And for good reason! I’ve been inundated with commissions over the last month (what a nice problem to have!) and for fear of spoiling surprises, I haven’t really wanted to post any pictures. Now I’m finally in a position to start sharing the products of all my hard work, and I thought I’d start with Dog Lover Beastie.

Dog Lover Beastie was the brainchild of the very lovely Daphne, who I met at a market last month. She generously bought a pair of Beasties that day to give away as gifts, but she got in touch with me a few days later to see about getting one for herself too! As the proud owner of a gorgeous Old English Sheepdog called Crumble, she requested a Beastie kitted out with all the accessories she needs when she and her pooch head out for walkies. So I started out by making a pair of wellies, a grooming brush, a motivational bag of treats and a fetching scarlet polka-dot raincoat!
Dog Lover Beastie Accessories, by CrawCrafts Beasties
So far, a pretty standard day’s work here at Beastie Towers. But I figured that I could hardly have a Dog Lover Beastie without a dog… that would just be mean. So…
Old English Beastdog, by CrawCrafts Beasties Dog Lover Beastie with her Dog by CrawCrafts BeastiesOld English Beastdog with collar, lead and bag dispenser, by CrawCrafts Beasties

The dog is, of course, an Old English Beastdog – a very popular breed with Beastie owners! His lead can be unclipped from his collar, and that pink bone-shaped pouch attached to it is a bag dispenser – for, um, taking care of business. Dog Lover Beastie is one responsible dog owner!

Oh, and I also made a Beastdog-sized replica of Daphne’s dog’s favorite football, to keep him entertained.
Beastdog with his Football, by CrawCrafts Beasties
But wait, folks! There’s more! Daphne’s also training to be a neurosurgeon, and she hoped that her Beastie could have some extra accessories that reflected this. Hey, no problem! All she needs is a sneaky costume change…
Neurosurgeon Beastie, by CrawCrafts Beasties
… And Neurosurgeon Beastie is ready for work! As you can see, she’s now sporting some hand-stitched felt scrubs…
Neurosurgeon Beastie in Scrubs, by CrawCrafts BeastiesNeurosurgeon Beastie with Head Torch, by CrawCrafts Beasties… A pretty cotton scrub cap, and a felt head torch!

She may have a busy day ahead of her at the hospital… but she always has time to hang out with her pup after work.
Neurosurgeon Beastie Relaxes with her Beastdog, by CrawCrafts Beasties
And Daphne was kind enough to share photos of Dog Lover/Neurosurgeon Beastie in her new home! Here’s what happened when Crumble met his Mini-Me…
Crumble meets the Beastdog - CrawCrafts Beasties/D. Chen
… And here are the two of them helping her out on the computer!
Dog Lover/Neurosurgeon Beastie in her new home - CrawCrafts Beasties/D Chen
I’m looking forward to seeing the crazy canine capers they get up to!