Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Wee Wonderfuls

It's that time of year again (no, not the rainy gloomy time though we've had our fair share of that recently), it's book time. About this time of year, soooo many beautiful new books come onto the market, gearing up for Christmas (and a certain craftoholic's birthday in November) and how I do love a good book. Not really of the novel-ly kind, though I am sometimes seized by the desire to read a trashy novel, more of the crafty type. My groaning book shelves in the Den which I had to reorganise just last week following my trip to the Quilt Festival, now appear to have plenty of space for yet more books. So long as they stay attached to the wall that should be fine then!

Whilst aimlessly blog surfing, as you do, I came across a book that simply had to be popped into that far-too-easy Amazon cart.

Oooh, isn't it jolly and pretty, just the ticket as we seem to be heading into Autumn. Noticed how the nights are drawing in? I'm sure I have come across Hillary Lang and her wonderful world of wee creatures before but I certainly have a fair amount of back reading to do on her delightful blog now that I have found it. From the first page, this book is soooooo cute and it just entreats you to get out that needle and thread and get making.

I thought I'd show you some of my favourite pages from the book. Loving this elephant bag. Does a 35 year old need a pink elephant bag with patchwork ears? Surely...

I'm also pretty much in love with Melvin and Marian!

Some of the projects are suitable for beginners. I can see little boys loving pushing this round the floor. This is the sort of project I imagine one could tackle in front of the telly of an evening.

Each cute creation is accompanied by instructions on how to make it, along with clear diagrams.

At the rear of the book, there is also a useful section on "basics" with information on the types of materials you will need, including tools and stuffings, instructions for cutting out the pattern pieces and a helpful guide to hand sewing and embroidery stitches.

The pattern pieces can also be found here which need to be traced. I used tissue paper and I then keep them in an envelope tucked into the front flap of the book.

The project which really caught my eye, though, was this one.

Yes, a 35 year old definitely needs a Katie Kitty!

I made my kitty up in traditional colours of black and white. Whilst the main body pieces are machine stitched, all the body parts have to be sewn together by hand. I used a black wool felt (which I bought to make a skirt last Winter, oops!) and did find turning over all the raw edges a bit tricky. You definitely need patience for this sort of thing (not sure how I managed it then!) as working with the small pieces is quite fiddly. I would say this is definitely not a project for a beginner (or a person who is not soothed by a wee glass of vino along the way).

Jacky Ginge found the whole thing most interesting but really couldn't understand why it took me about half an hour to finally choose the dress fabric!

He decides he's the kitty in charge and positions himself in the way so as to enforce a period of prolonged Jacky Ginger stroking.

But after two days (yikes!), Katie Kitty starts to emerge and looks oh so pretty from the tips of her dinky little shoes with their vintage glass jewels...

..to her pretty little kitty face with its slanty green eyes (buttons found by the Munchkin after much old button box searching)...

...to her rather fetching frock fashioned from vintage fabrics and trimmings.

Oooh, I do so love Katie Kitty!

She's a mischevious kitty though and has decided she rather fancies getting her beauty sleep in the pretty pink vintage crib whilst it awaits collection by its new owner.

But who can deny that little kitty face?!

This would be a great book for making gifts for young ones (or errm, adults who are young at heart). There are some lovely patterns for dolls but there are also some teddies and patterns suitable for toys for boys. There are projects of varying complexity so you could start on the easier ones and build up your techniques before progressing to the more tricky ones. Hmm, now what to make next...


  1. Oh - isn't she gorgeous - well done! That looks a great book. SueXXX

  2. She's lovely..but I think she needs a 'Mr' Kitty now.. don't you? :o)

    Bellaboo X

  3. well done..kitty is gorgeous!!

    when can i come round and rummage through all those books of yours!? ;)

  4. What a fab book...might be one to pop in the basket too! Katie kitty looks rather adorable! Thanks for sharing! xxxxxxxxxxx

  5. Awww she's cute. She definitely needs a Mr Kitty, maybe even a Kitty Kitty.


  6. Oh WOW Kitty looks wonderful! I was sitting on my hands not to purchase this book, but now ... click the order button ;-)

  7. This is beautiful and so cute, what a wonderful book- thanks for sharing! x

  8. I hope your Den is on the ground floor. It looks as if Jacky Ginge is in imminent danger of sliding out of the window there!

  9. Well, it appears that 30-somethings do need elephant bags and little kitties. At least I do, too...

    Great book & excellent job!

  10. Hello Hen. Lordy am I behind on blog reading, but I have had such a lovely catch up of all yours. Never quite so easy in the hols is it? Love the kitty and have always enjoyed your book reviews x

  11. Of course you need the elepahnt, and the Kitty looks wonderful. Now that is definitely a book I am going to have to look at.
    Julie xxxx

  12. Oh wow that is the book find of the century...off to check out her blog!!

  13. So so cute, what a pretty kitty.
    I think you need a whole family of Kittys.
    jacey x

  14. hi hen,

    ooooh... I love her! your katie kitty turned out so cute! picking the dress fabric is always the the most fun part. and btw, once you've sewn on a *gazillion* dolls arms/legs it gets easier ;)

  15. Oh the little cat is perfect. How chich she is with her vintage and hand-made dress. I'm afraid I am very very envious of her little slippers though. I'd love some like that!

  16. Ah look at the little kitty, so cute and I love the clothes you picked out for her. Wish I was so good at sewing, you make it sound so easy! I'm useless at it :(

    All things nice...

  17. So gorgeous - great to think there are good projects for boys too. I love the train - kittens need trains don't they?

  18. The Kitty is just gorgeous! Glad someone else is a sewing/textile book-aholic!!

    Tamzin X

  19. Katie Kitty's beautiful! And yes, you do really need a pink elephant bag with patchwork ears:)

  20. ooohhh I need a Katie Kitty too!!! :) x

  21. Now that is one beautiful little cat. Thinks she looks perfect tucked up in bed. I loved the red fabric behind the book too. Thanks for sharing.


  22. Hi...I'm Laura from Italy! Lovely blog!
    I will link you on my blog and I'd like to invite you to visite also my blog :D

    Laura from Italy

  23. Katie Kitty is so cute. She is sweet in the little bed.I want to make one toooo!
    I love your blog very much. Your crochets are beautiful and all the other think.
    I´ll surely come back soon!

    PS: I have a crafting blog too but I had a longer break for familythings

  24. Oh, Katie Kitty is wonderful! Perfect choice of dress material and I love her bed.
    The book looks excellent, what a good tip re cutting out the pattern and tucking it into an envelope in the book.
    You are so talented and your work is really lovely.
    Carol xx

  25. Adorable! I've seen this book floating about in blogland, now I might have to get it. My favorite picture is of her in the crib! Too sweet!

  26. That kitty is just too perfect! Now I want one! lol

  27. Hi Hen
    I'm a bit addicted to your blog and love your little cat. what a pretty dress she's wearing!
    If you're at your cottage this weekend, you might be interested in Bridport Vintage Market on Sunday. It's a new venture happening on the last Sunday of the month down at the Les Allees area. I think you'd really like it. Check out the pics of last month on flickr. http://www.flickr.com/photos/bridportvintagemarket/4838712764/in/set-72157624150139825/
    Might see you there!
    Have a good weekend

  28. What a wonderful kitty! I have to agree with you, there should be no mention of age ranges for wanting one of those:)

  29. Aahh! She is so cute! Love her pointy toes, like she is about to do ballet! I must buy this book now, thanks for the tip!

  30. Oooooh I love Katie Kitty and her pretty dress! I have been making Alfie and Lizzy toys from Hilary's patterns for years, she is so clever. I hope you have added her to the Wee Wonderfuls Flickr group ;-)

  31. I am loving those bookshelves of yours, and there are some gorgeous things in Hillary's new book (her blog is almost as wonderful as yours, too!). Must seek out this.

  32. oh my god those little pink slippers are just to die for - that is soooo cute !!

  33. Hi, I love this Kitty. Is she for sale? If so, please email me a proschic@aol.com. Thanks!


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