Did I mention that I have a bit of an obsession with mushrooms of all shapes and sizes? Me and mushrooms go back a long way, to a little me who helped her parents gather chanterelles in the mountains in summer and who had more books about mushrooms and tickets to the mushroom museum (yes, there is such a thing as a mushroom museum.. only in Austria) than other kids my age had marbles in their pockets. 20 years later I still love mushrooms, be it as dinner or design object. It is about time the Kamis showed some colour. They like mushrooms too. They actually live in them, I’ve heard. They definitely like dressing up as one. See for yourself ;)
If you like Toadstool Kami, you can find him in my Etsy Shop.
That was quite a bit of radio silence.. My cold got (once again) the better of me and I had to lie low and try to finally get all those evil flu monsters out of my system. I spoke to my doctor and he and I both agreed that I would need lots of rest, lots of fresh air (but don’t overdo it) and an extra dose of TLC. So I did the only reasonable thing: I went to Austria, to the small town in the mountains where my grandma lives. Mountain air, hot springs, grandma’s cooking and home remedies finally seemed to make a difference and I am, for the first time this year, feeling almost like the usual me. Not difficult when the first thing you see when you open the windows in the morning is pretty white snow and mountain cabins.
Room with a view
As much as I love winter, if you live in a country where there isn’t a lot of snow and the world is just grey and cold and wet for a long time, winter gets to even the toughest cookies. Being ill for such a long time drained me of my usual energy and enthusiasm and left me feeling bland and lacking motivation. Being back home in the mountain house I’ve loved all my life was the necessary boost I needed to get me back on track, and it didn’t take long for me to start working on things again. It’s a time of quite a few big changes in my personal life, and sometimes we forget to look at the bigger picture and get carried away worrying about the little things. It’s in times of change that I try to remember that at the end of the day all it takes to ground us is doing things we love and feel passionate about. Like crafting. Or a walk in the snow.
Snow covered lake
So as soon as I returned home (bags heavy with new things I made while recovering), the light box was set up and pictures taken, and there will be an update in my shop very soon. To give you an idea about what’s coming, here’s a sneak peak of some new trolls I made. Since plants have been so present in my life in the past few weeks, it’s no wonder they’ve been creeping into my creations as well :)
In my last post I already mentioned how much I like working with natural materials. That doesn’t only apply to my crochet creatures, but to pretty much all of my creative ventures. Be it decorations for the house, gifts or things that just come in handy, I always think it is best to look to nature to provide us with materials, as they will last, are sustainable and usually have a unique beauty.
I have been sick at home for a few days now, which gave me some time to work on new projects and finish old ones (though my pile of WIPs is still considerable..), and make some more stock for my shop. Husky Kami is easily my most popular troll at this point, and what’s not to love?
He’s made from organic sheep’s wool (Bluefaced Leicester to be precise) which is wonderfully soft to the touch and fluffy up nicely when brushed. When I first came up with the trolls I thought of forest creatures, subdued hues, nothing too bright. What a surprise it was when this one just wasn’t having it. He was cute with brown eyes, but something was missing. I handpaint all my doll eyes, so usually have a variety of colours lying around somewhere, and I thought: Why not.. And that’s how he became what he is today.
My evil cold that’s been plaguing me for a few weeks now has flared up again, so I thought I’d post some happy pictures to cheer everyone up on this cold and grey day. I love making these little chaps. They are such happy mischiefous creatures, and they come in so many variations. All my trolls are made from pure wool, unless specifically requested otherwise. I have made vegan versions, but personally I always prefer natural fibers over artifical ones. Whenever I travel to a new place, my path always leads me to the yarn shops, farmers markets and little independent artists. I have recently taken up spinning myself and am saving up for a wheel of my own, there is so much to learn.. I have a passion for handcrafted things, and I love being in nature and working with what I find during my walks in the woodlands behind our house. The yarn used for this troll is Rowan Colourscape Chunky, which has a lovely handspun look and check out how pretty the colours blend on this guy’s tummy.
When I was a little kid I used to watch a show on TV called ‘Pingu’. I was completely smitten with the way he honked at his friends and curled up in a ball to roll away. The hours spent trying to imitate ‘penguin sounds’ surely had to pay off someday. Alas, I didn’t become the world’s first penguin interpreter, but my childhood hero did at least inspire me to make my own wool version of him, complete with a little collar and bell because I like the tiny tinkling sound it makes. Pingu himself couldn’t look cuter! Did you know there are penguins who live in South Africa? These cute little birds nest on a beach in Cape Town called Boulder’s Beach. They dig holes in the sand to lay their eggs, and when it gets too warm they sometimes sneak into people’s gardens to swim in the pool. Would you mind sharing your pool with one of these guys?