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!

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!

Beasties on TV - R Moore/CrawCrafts Beasties

Beastie TV!

Hey there everyone! And wow, what an exciting week it’s been… Yesterday morning, bright and early, we arrived at the door of Virgin Media TV studios to appear on their breakfast show, Ireland AM! They wanted someone to talk about how knitting has really taken off again during the Covid-19 lockdowns… And you know, I do love to chat about all things knitting!

Plus, as we are all aware, the Beasties are incorrigible attention hounds.

So, soon after arrival, they fitted me up with a microphone. Then I helped to set up a table display of tasty yarn and surprisingly well-behaved Beasties.
Beasties on TV - R Moore/CrawCrafts BeastiesRoslyn from the Ireland AM crew had the presence of mind to take a few photos of the setup, thankfully… I completely forgot! She also took this picture, which some of you might have already seen on social media.
Me on Ireland AM - R Moore/CrawCrafts BeastiesThen, what seemed like microseconds later, we were live! My Dad very kindly photographed the TV at home while the segment was on and sent me these stills… Here I am, teaching the hosts Karen and Tommy how to knit!
Teaching Knitting on live TV! B Crawford/CrawCrafts BeastiesThey both picked it up incredibly quickly, I was super impressed!

I also brought along a few samples of easy projects that I recommend for beginners, like these little fingerless mitts.Fingerless Mitts for Beginners - B Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties(These are very easy, by the way… And so much quicker than knitting a scarf!)

Here we are finishing up. I was so proud of my new pupils… And of the Beasties. Honestly, I’ve never seen them so quiet.
Knitting on TV - B Crawford/CrawCrafts BeastiesThe knitting revival – you heard it here first, folks!
Beasties behaving for the TV cameras - B Crawford/CrawCrafts BeastiesIf you’d like to see the complete piece, it’s currently up on the Virgin Media Player, here:
https://www.virginmediatelevision.ie/player/show/809/185364/0/

You can access the show from this link for the next 29 days. Some friends of mine in Europe have already watched it without a hitch, but if it’s not available in your country, please let me know! I might be able to send it to you a different way.

Also…

Commissions are officially open again as of today! So if you’ve an idea for a little woolly monster of your own, now is the time to get in touch!

We’ll be back next week with the second part of Explorer Beastie’s countryside adventure – sorry for bumping you this week, E.B.!

Paddy uses Plunkett as a ladder - Beastie Adventures - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

New Adventures Ahoy!

Hello there Beastie friends! How are things where you are? Here on the Emerald Isle, we’re getting ready to start opening things up again… And I know two intrepid little monsters who are looking forward to setting out on some new adventures this summer!

Sure, they’ve enjoyed their virtual travels over the last few months…
Paddy and Plunkett's Virtual Tour - CrawCrafts Beasties… But it’s not really a substitute for the real thing, is it?

So that’s probably why they started hatching travel plans the very second they spotted this unattended knitting bag.

“That looks like it might be going somewhere interesting! What do you reckon?”
Paddy and Plunkett Plotting - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties“Possibly, Paddy… But how on earth are we going to get up there? Normally the humans leave their bags on the floor.”

“Don’t worry, Plunkett…”
Paddy has an idea - Beastie Adventures - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties“… I have a cunning plan!”

Unfortunately, Plunkett didn’t realise that this cunning plan involved using him as a stepladder.
Paddy uses Plunkett as a ladder - Beastie Adventures - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties“Ouch! Paddy, you’re going to have to start going easy on the Full Irish breakfasts… You weigh a TON!”
“Neeeeearly there. Hold steady, Plunkett!”

Finally…
Paddy Climbs Up - Beastie Adventures - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties“Success!”
“That’s all well and good for you, Paddy. How do I get up there?”
“I told you, I have a plan. Hold on a sec…”

Paddy's Plan, Part 2 - Beastie Adventures - H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

“Here you go! Now climb up.”
“Oooh, very clever!”

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

And much huffing and puffing later…

Ready to go? H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

“There, I knew you could do it!”
“…”
Ah. Sounds like Plunkett was still catching his breath. So Paddy packed all the wool back into the knitting bag, making a nice cosy place for them both to hide.

“Where do you think we’re off to, Paddy?”
“I’m not sure…”

Let the adventures begin! H Crawford/CrawCrafts Beasties

“… But I bet it’s going to be fun!”

Hopefully they won’t have to wait too long for the adventures to begin! Have you any interesting journeys in your future? Be sure to tell us all about them in the comments!

We’ll be back next week to catch up with Explorer Beastie. I’m sure he’s got some adventures up his woolly little sleeves too!

Famous Tomb - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts Beasties

Paddy and Plunkett – Russian Around!

Hey there everyone! It’s just going to be a quickie post today… Mostly to clear up the mystery of where in the world Paddy and Plunkett were last week. Did you guess?
A Famous Cathedral - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts BeastiesA good few of you got it right! Plunkett had indeed got his woolly paws on the photos of the short Russian adventure I enjoyed with my good friend and travel buddy, waaay back in 2012. We spent a fun couple of days exploring Moscow, which included wandering through the labyrinthine interior of St Basil’s Cathedral, pictured above.

We also went inside the walls of the Kremlin…
Still Cold - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts Beasties… To see the treasures of the Armoury Museum. That, by the way, includes the Russian Diamond Fund, or “more sparkly things than I have ever seen in my life.”

Oh, and this place?
Famous Tomb - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts BeastiesThis is Lenin’s Mausoleum, and like Paddy, we went in! The embalmed body of Lenin lies in state inside, protected by some very serious, very armed soldiers. Keeping a respectful distance is… um… encouraged, and lookie-loos will find themselves moved on promptly if they stop to stare. Like us, Paddy was probably in and out in five minutes, so Plunkett wouldn’t have been standing out in the snow too long!

That said, he’s decided he needs to warm up a little this week.

On the Beach - Paddy and Plunkett
Original Photo by Asad Photo Maldives from Pexels. Guess who added the Beasties in 😉

I can’t imagine those woollies and tweeds will be particularly comfortable though, so we should probably cut and run while the lads are still decent!

By the way…

If you feel like your own post-lockdown adventures would be enhanced by the addition of a little woolly friend to your travel party, just swing by the Beastie HQ store! There’s a whole host of monsters in there who can’t wait to get out and explore the world.

All-Irish Beasties - CrawCrafts BeastiesAlso, a quick word about commissions – unfortunately my books are currently full, so I won’t be taking any new custom orders until May 25th. For anyone who has been in touch with me already (through email or social media), don’t worry!  You’re all set, and your Beastification is in progress. And if you’re looking ahead to the summer, and think you’d like to have a Beastie to help celebrate a wedding, birthday or other big occasion, be sure to reach out nice and early so your lil’ monster buddy is ready in time.

We’ll be back next week with a new Beastie for you all to meet… See you then!

Plunkett on the Square - CrawCrafts Beasties

Where in the World are Paddy and Plunkett?

Hey there everyone! Well, Paddy and Plunkett are finally back from their last trip
Paddy Driving, Plunkett Leaving - Paddy, Plunkett and Perseverance… So I thought it was time to reboot this occasional feature and send them off on their (imaginary) travels again. We have to keep them entertained, after all.

Ready? Let’s go – where in the world are you, Paddy and Plunkett?
Still Cold - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts Beasties“Not sure… But wherever it is, it’s still chilly here. Even at this time of year!”
“Yes, I’m glad I’ve got my cosy sweater on. Brrrrr!”

Okaaaay – are there any landmarks you can point out, to help us find you?

“Ummmm, how about this? I think it’s a famous cathedral.”
A Famous Cathedral - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts BeastiesThat’ll do! Those colourful domes are very familiar.

“It looks even cooler at night. Check it out!”
Cathedral at Night - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts Beasties

“Oh, and you might recognise the square in front of the cathedral too. It’s massive!”
Plunkett on the Square - CrawCrafts Beasties“The square is named after a colour, and the big wall behind me protects an extensive fortified complex of towers, palaces and churches that includes the official residence of the country’s president.”

“Don’t forget this place, Plunkett!”
Famous Tomb - Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts Beasties“What is it, Paddy? Is it a pyramid?”
“Not exactly… But it is a tomb! Visitors can go inside and see the embalmed body of a 20th-century leader who played an important part in this country’s history. C’mon, let’s have a look!”
“Um… How about you go, and I wait for you here?”

Fortunately, dallying is not encouraged in this particular attraction, so it’s not long before Paddy rejoins Plunkett and the pair go to see some more of the city’s sights. Plunkett is keen to explore a very distinctive architectural style that has become the trademark of this country’s older buildings, especially its churches.
Architecture with Paddy and Plunkett - CrawCrafts Beasties“Cool! The tops of the towers look like onions!”
“Yes… That’s why we call them “onion domes”. Look around you, there are loads!”
Onion Domes - CrawCrafts BeastiesUnfortunately, the onion domes are speaking more to Paddy’s stomach than his artistic sensibilities. So the boys cut their tour short, and head off in search of some lunch. But hopefully they’ve left you enough clues to figure out the name of the country and city they visited today! Be sure to share your guesses in the comments… Answer in next week’s post!

New Beastie Time! CrawCrafts Beasties

New Beastie Time!

Hello there everyone! Wow, it’s nice to be back with a new post AT LAST. I hope you’ll forgive my rather haphazard blogging habits of late… With any luck, this will signal the start of a return to normality. Well, as close to normality as we ever get here in Beastie Towers, anyway!

And speaking of new, it’s been a while since we had any new Beasties around here, hasn’t it? I reckon it’s high time I fixed that. So… Hello there!
Birthday Beastie - New Commission - CrawCrafts BeastiesLook at this… A Beastie lady with THE MOST amazing hair. I had so much fun styling this – I think we’d better take a closer look!
Beastie Hair - New Commissions - CrawCrafts BeastiesI used two shades of pink yarn to give the hairstyle some depth, and added in some soft silvery yarn in the back to mimic her human counterpart’s ‘do.

And this human counterpart – she’s a busy lady! So this Beastie has heaps of accessories. But before we get into those, let’s start with a quick costume change.
Beastie-Sized Cardi and Scarf - New Work - CrawCrafts BeastiesHer scarf and sweet handknitted pink cardi are both removable, as you can see. And, because various lockdowns have forced me to improvise with my existing fabric stash rather than hitting the shops to find what I need, I ended up dyeing the scarf myself! Let’s just say I’m very glad my customer went for a nice neutral grey, rather than something more difficult to match.

Anyway, that leaves Mrs Beastie free to model this pretty floral print top.
New Beastie Outfit - Floral Top - CrawCrafts BeastiesAnd now that she’s not wearing long sleeves, it might be a good time to get on with a spot of baking. Her magic magnetic paws will help her to hold everything.
Magic Magnet Paws - New Beastie - CrawCrafts Beasties

Ready! Cupcake, anyone?
Beastie Cupcakes - Commissions - CrawCrafts BeastiesThanks, don’t mind if I do! They look delicious.
Cupcakes close up - New Commission by CrawCrafts BeastiesRegular readers of this blog will be reassured to learn that, as usual, these delectable treats are free from sugar, fat, gluten, dairy products and palm oil. They’re also high in fibre – wool fibre, of course!

And while we’re on the topic of wool…
Beastie Knitting by CrawCrafts BeastiesThis Beastie’s new human friend is a fellow knitter, so I couldn’t send her little woolly monster out the door without a set of needles and a ball of yarn. As you can see, these ones a bit small for me to use anyway.

Finally, did you spot the bag she was carrying earlier?
Beastie Bag with Rosette - New Beasties - CrawCrafts BeastiesHer new human family has a strong connection with horses, and I wanted to include a big shiny felt rosette somewhere as a nod to that. Beasties have no time for modesty, so it’s a proudly-displayed “Best in Show”!

Hey, is there anything in the bag?

Oh yes.

First Aid Kit for beasties - CrawCrafts Beasties

It’s a miniature first aid kit, to celebrate the fact that this Beastie’s new human minder recently briefly retired from a career in nursing. I say briefly, because when the call went out for Covid-19 vaccinators, she was back in there like a shot (no pun intended)! Definitely worthy of being celebrated with felt and teeny stitches, I’m sure you’ll agree.

Alrighty, I think that’s everything. Time to pack up and ship out!
Time to Go! New Beasties by CrawCrafts BeastiesThanks to Suzi for requesting this awesome Beastie as a special birthday gift for her mum!

And, all being well, we’ll be back next week for another round of “Where in the World are Paddy and Plunkett?”. Be sure to join us then!