Beach Time For Barbie

It’s February. That means it’s winter here in the Pacific Northwest. Which means it’s probably the worst time of the year to go to the beach. That doesn’t stop me from dreaming, though, which is what led to this particular crochet pattern.

Presenting the Barbie Ocean Waves Ball Gown! (I am good at some things, but naming is not one of those things.) This is my newest free pattern on Crochet Spot, and I am particularly pleased with this one.


The bodice was tricky, but I’m happy with how it turned out. For once, it’s exactly how I pictured it in my head. Don’t you love when that happens? I pictured flowy sleeves, lacing up the front, and a closely fitted torso that didn’t distract from the Extra™ skirt. And it was a great way to use up all those yarn scraps. Come on, we all have them.


Anyway, why don’t you head over and check it out if you want to make a new Barbie dress? I don’t make them so much these days, and I miss it. You’re never too old. I actually was given a new Barbie for my 22nd birthday, at my request, and have some dresses in the works for her. So keep an eye out for those. 🙂


It’s been a while since I’ve been around here, but college is standing on top of me and refusing to get off. How have you guys been?

Regarding Hildegard

Hey guys. Since its publication in 2014, my free pattern for Hildegard, the Life-Sized Crochet Chicken has remained my most popular post here. I’m absolutely delighted that you all like her so much, and I’ve loved seeing your versions.

Here’s the thing: the pattern isn’t that great. It’s poorly written and has a lot of errors. Trust me, I know. I wrote it when I was 15 years old…cut me a little slack. It’s free for a reason. That pattern is really complicated and huge. If I wrote it up professionally, the pattern would no longer be free.

I’ve been meaning to rework it for some time now, and recently I started this undertaking. It was going to look like my beautiful chicken Harriet. However, she recently passed away, and I don’t have the heart to keep working on it right now. Someday, definitely. But not right now.

So this pattern is going to remain how it is: unedited and lacking. I’ve put disclaimers at the top of the pattern warning people that it’s terribly written and confusing. But the comments have been getting to be a little much lately. Most of you are nothing but gracious and kind, and I appreciate that so much. However, a few people have been impatient with me. And while I understand their frustration, please remember that I’m just a college student behind my computer, sharing my love of crochet with you. I don’t make a single penny through my blog. I have my hands full being a full-time student and working.

This post will serve as my official notice that I can’t provide pattern support for Hildegard. I don’t have the time anymore. I really wish I could help everybody, but I gotta let things slide somewhere. So: undertake at your own risk.

Cheerful posts will resume sometime soon. I’m off to keep studying for final exams now.

An Artfully Simple Tidal Wave

Goodness, it’s been a while. Since I last talked to you guys I have gained a new writing job and a new crochet design job. I can tell you about the second one in a couple of months, but suffice it to say I’m a little bit excited. I tend to favor the “squeal and jump” variety of expressing my excitement, so you’ll just have to imagine me doing that now…


Today I’m sharing some photos of a scarf I made two years ago, and for whatever reason, never got around to posting. At the end of my French 200 series, I wanted to make a gift for my professor, after spending three classes with her. (In the term system, there are three classes in a series, so French 201, 202, and 203.) She was a really classy lady, always dressed nicely even at 9 AM on a Monday morning, so I tried to make something that would live up to her style.


This is made with the Artfully Simple Infinity Scarf pattern from Moogly, which  have loved for years. As the name implies, it’s really simple but gorgeous. I love the diagonal lines and how it highlights the long color changes in this yarn. It was an absolute delight to make.


And I love the button detail in the pattern, because who doesn’t want to incorporate a cool button into something? My mom lets me swipe stuff from her button stash, which is probably where I dug up this one.

The great thing about making a scarf for somebody else is that you can use yarn that you wouldn’t wear yourself. I got a nicer skein of yarn than I usually use. I think it was Red Heart Unforgettable in Tidal. This yarn is just a little bit too itchy for me to wear myself, but I’m super sensitive. It’s always good to check if your recipient has fiber allergies, but I didn’t have that opportunity with my teacher, so I just hoped for the best. This yarn is still 100% acrylic, though, so it’s a pretty safe bet.

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I just love how this fabric looks! My professor loved it and said it would be great for traveling. I hope she’s had a good couple years. It’s so weird that I’m in fourth-year French now. And I’m actually the French tutor at my college. Weird, I tell you, just weird.

Tell me how your November has been going! Thanks for reading, and hope you have a lovely weekend.

Sophie’s Pink Universe, Part 2

I realized I never continued the saga of the pink Sophie’s Universe square. It was supposed to be an afghan for Maisie, but I kinda got carried away making squares and it turned out too big for her.

Much larger than I anticipated! Arranging squares is always tricky. My mom helped me with this. She’s made a lot of afghans herself and is a pro at making sure colors are distributed equally.

Here’s maisie test driving the square. She’s not so happy that this blanket isn’t for her I guess. 😉

Anyway, it was time to join all the squares, which is both exciting and extremely obnoxious.

I went with a single crochet through back loops only. Some of the yarn is pretty splitty , which made it tricky, but this gave the result I was after.

Pile of squares waiting to be joined.

I had to carry them downstairs somehow, and my mom and I giggled over how this looks like a dumpling or something.

I just figured out how to post from my phone, so this is a trial run. Yes, I’ve been blogging since 2013 and I only just figured out the app. Anyway, I’ll conclude the Sophie’s Universe adventure soon. Thanks so much for your kind words on the dinosaur pencil case!

Dorks Have More Fun

I’m a senior in college. I have a part-time job and two paid blogging gigs. I wake up at EIGHT O’CLOCK IN THE MORNING (which was unthinkable to my younger self). It would seem that I know how to Adult, right? In some ways, I guess so. But in other ways…not so much. See, I decided to make myself a new pencil case in honor of my senior year, and this is the result…



Yeah, I’m not a fan of this whole “adults don’t have stuffed animals” business, so I’m starting a rebellion. Care to join me?

I saw a pencil case similar to this in a store, but part of this whole “adulting” thing is trying not to buy as many plush things, so I had to leave it behind. But obviously the idea would not leave my mind, so after a couple weeks’ design struggle this was the result.

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I got to mess around with a zipper, which was both fun and stressful. Sewing is not my strong suit. I can sew on a button with confidence, but zippers onto a rounded crochet thing? Yikes. Still, it has held up so far. I’m bringing it to college for the first time today, so we’ll see. My plush Pusheen pencil case has been well-received.

Here’s a secret: most college students are 100% on board with the cute stuffed-animal thing. They’re just afraid to admit it. So if you lead the way with being unashamedly pro-cute, everybody else will appreciate it!


And the free pattern is available on Crochet Spot should you wish to create your own little dinosaur companion 😉

What should I name it? It doesn’t feel right having this little guy without a name! Please leave your suggestions in the comments and I shall be eternally grateful!

A Year of Cow Pigeon

Today is a very special day.

Today marks the 1-year anniversary of my first sighting of Cow Pigeon.

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(Don’t know who Cow Pigeon is? Click here.)

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I learned about this bird about a year and a half ago, but I didn’t see him myself until September 25, 2018. And boy was that an exciting day.


Since then, I have seen Cow Pigeon 25 times, and have even written a blog post for my university about him. They actually featured me on the university Facebook page for my post about CP, which was delightful, an honor, and exactly how I want to be known.

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So here’s to Cow Pigeon. For helping remind me to keep my eyes open, because you never know when a spotted pigeon can wander into your life and change the way you look at the world.

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Here’s to Cow Pigeon, for helping me get excited over the little things in life.

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Here’s to Cow Pigeon, for helping me connect with complete strangers when I answer their questions about the mysterious bird we’re both gawking at.

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Here’s to Cow Pigeon, for helping me be less self-conscious. I don’t care if people give me weird looks when I get excited about seeing CP. I’m just happy to see my friend!


Here’s to Cow Pigeon, for making me feel like a National Geographic wildlife photographer when I spend an hour following him around to get pictures like this. (Thank you, iPhone “burst” feature.)

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And most of all, here’s to Cow Pigeon for making the world more beautiful.

Crochet Carrot Cupcake

I have a whole lot of photos on my computer of projects that I haven’t blogged about. So this is an attempt to remedy that!

Last year my friend had a birthday and I wanted to crochet him a cupcake. I discovered, through some not-so-subtle questioning, that carrot cake is his favorite. So I used my favorite cupcake pattern from Ana Paula Rimoli’s book Amigurumi World, and this is what happened.


These cupcakes are so fun to make and they don’t take very long. My only modification is to make the last round of the frosting in the front loops only. That leaves a ridge that makes it easier to sew the frosting and cake together.

Before I sewed the frosting on, though, I sewed on sprinkles!


And a carrot. 🙂 This is obviously not what carrot cake is…you don’t just make a cake and slap a carrot on top. But you gotta have that visual pun, right?

Anyway, my friend was pretty happy with the cupcake. I think this was his first crochet gift, but as long as he’s friends with me, it will not be the last. 🙂

Itty Bitty Shoes for Mini Free Spirit

Hey guys! Today I have a quick pattern for how to make shoes for the Mini Free Spirit. You’ll probably remember this doll from all the fandom dolls I make. Well, these characters needed shoes, so this is what I came up with.

These are so cute and tiny and VERY easy to lose, haha. If the dolls are for playing with, it might be best to avoid the shoes. But since these ones were for display, the shoes were appropriate. (I wonder how many Barbie shoes my sister and I have lost over the years…)



  • G hook
  • 2 yards of worsted weight yarn


Round 1: Ch 4. Hdc in 2nd chain from hook. Hdc in next chain. 5 dc in last chain. Turn to work across other side of starting chain, hdc in next ch, 2 dc in last ch. Sl st to first sc.

Round 2: Ch 1, sc in back loops only around. Sl st to first sc.

Round 3: Ch 1, sc 2, (sc2tog) 3 times, sc in remaining stitches. Do not join.

Fasten off, leaving long enough tail so that you can sew that gap together neatly. It’s easiest to slide the shoe onto the doll BEFORE you attempt this. Ask me how I know. Then weave in ends and you’re done! Tip: Crochet over the starting tail as you go to save trying to weave in two ends on this tiny shoe.

Plotting a new book is perhaps one of the greatest joys in my life. Plotting, outlining, and the early drafts of a new story tend to be my favorite part of the process (even if I do want to burn said outlines and drafts once it’s over.) One of the things that inspire me the […]

via indie and aspiring authors share their WIP’s (pt.1) —

I seldom reblog posts, but I wanted to share this one with you! The lovely Lydia Redwine rounded up some aspiring and indie authors to share their works-in-progress, and I’m honored to be one of them. Click the above link to check out the post and read about my book How to Breathe in Space. And check back for the second part! Thank you so much, Lydia, for including me in this fantastic roundup. ^__^

Queer Girls, Dragons, and Rescue Missions | Shatter the Sky Book Review

YOU GUYS. I have been waiting (im)patiently to post this book review, because it’s one of the best books I’ve read in a long time! But I wanted to wait until release day, which was on Tuesday. Shatter the Sky by Rebecca Kim Wells is a must for anyone who likes fantasy, strong female characters, and LGBTQ+ representation.

Also, I’m borrowing an idea from Lydia of Noveltea for this review. She includes a section in all of her book reviews for why she chose the book, and I thought that was a really good idea, so I’m adopting it myself.


About the Book

Raised among the ruins of a conquered mountain nation, Maren dreams only of sharing a quiet life with her girlfriend Kaia—until the day Kaia is abducted by the Aurati, prophetic agents of the emperor, and forced to join their ranks. Desperate to save her, Maren hatches a plan to steal one of the emperor’s coveted dragons and storm the Aurati stronghold.

If Maren is to have any hope of succeeding, she must become an apprentice to the Aromatory—the emperor’s mysterious dragon trainer. But Maren is unprepared for the dangerous secrets she uncovers: rumors of a lost prince, a brewing rebellion, and a prophecy that threatens to shatter the empire itself. Not to mention the strange dreams she’s been having about a beast deep underground…

With time running out, can Maren survive long enough to rescue Kaia from impending death? Or could it be that Maren is destined for something greater than she could have ever imagined?

  • Goodreads | Amazon | 304 pages (I think my review copy was longer, but maybe the font changed?)
  • Release date July 30, 2019
  • I received a copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Why I Chose This Book

I basically lost my composure when I saw the mention of a girl stealing a dragon to rescue her girlfriend. UM, SIGN ME UP, PLEASE. I put in that review request faster than you can say “Claire, I think you’re a little too obsessed with dragons,” and then I jumped through the ceiling when I got approved.

My Thoughts

I feel like I’ve been looking for this book my entire life. It was a masterpiece. I can’t stress enough how fantastic it was. It’s Malinda Lo meets The Goose Girl with a little bit of Game of Thrones thrown in.

The world building was incredible. The history and geography of the world was super well planned, and I felt completely immersed. I would love to see a map. Maybe that will appear in the finished book.

That leads in to the main strength of the book, which is the diversity. As you can see from the cover, the main character is non-white. She appears Asian on the cover and that’s how she is described. Her love interest, Kaia, has dark curly hair and darker skin, as do most of the Zefedi. It’s so realistic to have different people in different parts of the world not look all alike. The culture was really well-developed, too. Maren has to figure out how to fit in.

Kaia and Maren. Ah, they really are the sweetest. I can’t describe how happy I am to have a prominent lesbian couple in a fantasy novel. It melts my heart into a puddle of gay butter. And Maren is bisexual! (Or pansexual.) The one thing I was not keen on is that there’s a bit of a love triangle, which I never enjoy. And bi people tend to be stereotyped as promiscuous or more likely to cheat, so the love triangle doesn’t do any wonders to help debunk that stereotype. That knocks half a star off.

The plot is all over the place, and I mean that in the best way – I didn’t predict a single thing. Maren’s goal at the beginning is to rescue Kaia, but it gets amended several times throughout. That’s because of the outstanding characterization. Maren grows SO MUCH throughout the book and I am SO PROUD of her. She goes from being a shadow of her girlfriend to being this amazing, independent, strong-willed, powerful character and it’s truly amazing to read about.

And, dragon bonding? I’m 100% here for it. The Aromatory is an absolutely fascinating concept and plot point, and I’m super impressed with Rebecca Kim Wells’ creativity.

Honestly, this is one of the best books I have read all year, and I can’t recommend it enough. Thank you so much to NetGalley for the ARC. It did not influence my review; I genuinely LOVED this book.

My Rating

4.5 stars, rounded up to 5