hey jute

I have such oddly shaped feet, it’s quite difficult to buy shoes that are comfortable. Shoe-shopping is always a time-consuming ordeal. So I thought, maybe I’d crochet my own shoes! That way I could make them custom fit and comfortable!

I have no idea how to make shoes, but I thought for sure there’d be patterns on Etsy, so I looked, and came across a pattern by Wildflower and Sage. I love that it includes instruction for making the shoes outdoors ready. There actually aren’t very many like this one out there.

Was very excited, went out and bought all the materials right after I downloaded the pattern :D I couldn’t find hemp (which is what the pattern called for) at the local Michaels and Home Depot, so I bought #48 jute, and started on the soles…

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Jute is actually kind of hard to crochet with, and I had to use a larger hook than called for. No wonder the pattern called for hemp. Oh well. I just took lots of breaks in between so my wrists don’t get too sore.

So finally I finished making the two soles. If I make them again I probably will follow the pattern for regular width rather than instruction for wide, since I had to use a larger hook. I think wide was too wide. But it’s still ok! There I am waterproofing the soles by lathering them in silicon caulk. The fume was stronger than I thought. Ventilation is imperative.

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Slowly working on the straps, trying them on as I go so the strap placements feel right :D I made the insoles with Bernat Maker Home Decor, which feels kind of like a t‑shirt yarn.

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And here they’re, finished :D

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They’re actually really quite comfortable! I think I made the straps on the right shoe too tight though, they keep pushing my foot forward out of the sandals. But maybe as I keep wearing them and the straps stretch the problem will correct itself.

Side view…

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I’m quite happy with them! Will find an opportunity to test them out outside sometimes!

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It’s really an excellent pattern, highly recommend it! :D

Hope everyone have a happy rest of the week!




So named because I tried working with this yarn on a project while staying in Hongdae, Seoul, and because this hipster mustard yellow seems to go well with the neighbourhood that is known for its urban arts and many indie cafes.

I ended up frogging the project that I was working on while in Hongdae. In the meanwhile, the Ginkgo pattern has been getting a lot of traffic lately and I’ve been thinking about doing a crochet-only remake for those who are not really into sewing. So I thought I’d use this yarn for a new pattern.

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As with all of my patterns, I made the garment to fit me, but it doesn’t involve much shaping at all and I think it’d be pretty easy to adjust size.

Closer up of the lace pattern :D

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I used:
Mirasol IllarisDK weight 100% cotton, 5 skeins, 580 yards (you’d need more yarn if you were making a larger size)
4.5 mm hook
Tapestry needle

Finished measurements:
Bust 30″
Length 20.5″
Length — shoulder to underarm 7″
collar width 9″

Gauge: 6 dc = approx. 1″
To adjust size, add or decrease multiples of 6 ch in foundation ch.
One could also make it wider for a cap-sleeve boxy-top look.



ch 63

Row 1 (RS): dc in 4th ch from hook, dc in every ch across, turn (61 dc).

Row 2–33: ch 3 (counts as 1 dc throughout), dc in every dc across, turn.

Start lace pattern: 

Row 1: ch 1 (does not count as a st), sc in first dc, *ch 2, sk 2 dc, dc in next dc, ch 2, dc in same dc, ch 2, sk 2 dc, sc in next dc* repeat from * to * till end of row, turn.

Row 2: ch 5 (counts as dc and ch 2), dc in first sc, ch 2, sc in ch 2 sp, *ch 2, dc in next sc, ch 2, dc in same sc, ch 2, sk next ch 2 sp, sc in next ch 2 sp*, repeat from * to * till last sc of row, ch 2, dc in last sc, ch 2, dc in same sc, turn.

Row 3: ch 1, sc in first dc, *ch 2, dc in next sc, ch 2, dc in same sc, ch 2, sk next ch 2 sp, sc in next ch 2 sp*, repeat from * to *, ending with sc in 3rd ch of turning ch, turn.

Rows 4–12: Repeat rows 2–3 four more times, then row 2 once more.

Left shoulder:

Row 1: ch 1, sc in first dc, *ch 2, dc in next sc, ch 2, dc in same sc, ch 2, sc in next ch 2 sp*, repeat from * to * two more times, turn.

Row 2: ch 2, sk first ch 2 sp, sc in next ch 2 sp, *ch 2, dc in next sc, ch 2, dc in same sc, ch 2, sc in next ch 2 sp*, repeat from * to * once more, ch 2, dc in last sc, ch 2, dc in same sc, turn.

Row 3: ch 1, sc in first dc, *ch 2, dc in next sc, ch 2, dc in same sc, ch 2, sc in next ch 2 sp*, repeat from * to * once more, turn.

Row 4: ch 1, sc in first sc, [sc in ch 2 sp, sc in dc] twice, sc in ch 2 sp, 2 sc in sc, [sc in ch 2 sp, sc in dc] twice, sc in ch 2 sp, sc in last sc. Fasten off.

Right shoulder:

Attach yarn to the beginning of row 12 of lace pattern at the 3rd ch of turning ch. Work the same as left shoulder.


Work the same as front until shoulders. Repeat lace pattern row 3, then row 2.

Left shoulder: Work rows 3–4 of shoulder for front.

Right shoulder: Attach yarn to the beginning of row 14 of lace pattern at the 3rd ch of turning ch. Work the same as left shoulder.


With wrong sides together, sew shoulder seams together.

With wrong sides together, sew side seams together, starting at the base of the 2nd dc row below the start of the lace pattern, and sewing to the bottom edge of the garment.

Turn garment right side out. Work one row of sc evenly around the collar, basically working 1 sc in each dc, sc, and ch 2 sp. Then work one row of sc evenly around each of the armholes. I find that it turns out pretty even when I work 1 sc in each row-end, and 1 sc in a space between 2 rows.

Weave in all ends. And we’re finished :)

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As always if you spot any mistakes or have any questions please feel free to drop me a note, and I will correct or try my best to assist!

Happy first week of summer!



summer wanderings — doors open

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It was Doors Open Toronto at the end of May. We try to visit one or two building every year. This year we decided to take the long trek to Fool’s Paradise, the former home of Canadian artist Doris McCarthy, who lived to be 100, and donated her home to be an artist-in-residence centre after her passing.

Her home was the first one built on this stretch of the road. She designed and drafted the blueprint for the house.

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As soon as we entered the front door we were greeted by this rug, made by McCarthy.

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Paper owl guarding her desk and all her tools still. “Like she never left,” said the tour guide.

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The Chapter Room”, which she built to write her memoir. It is the coziest room I’ve ever found myself in.

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Perhaps a sunny reading nook.

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Her beautiful chandelier and her beautiful arctic landscape.

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The tour guide told us that McCarthy built all the cupboards in the kitchen by making cardboard mock-ups.

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Neighbourhood children used to skate on this pond in the winter.

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And at the edge of the backyard is the cliff of Scarborough Bluffs.

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There were visitors picnicking…

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And painting :)

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After our own picnic we explored a nearby park. The dandelions were like glowing orbs lining the path.

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Looking down from the cliff. The water was so blue.

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Next time we’ll visit the bluffs from below the cliffs so we can see the layers of sediments!

Hope everyone is having a good weekend!


this week’s awesome finds

All the summery stuff! :D

Cut fox print, also great for t‑shirt! :D From Patchwork Cactus.

These cat donuts are soooo adorable. Original recipe is not in English, but Google Translate does a good job! From Schoen Und Fien.

So pretty and summary, strawberry shortcake in a jar <3 Looks simple enough for non-bakers like me to make, especially if I buy pre-made pound cake… From Make & Takes.

Cutest jellyfish I’ve seen! Pattern from One Dog Woof.

Clothespin fairies for rainy day craft parties and sunny day garden parties. From Crafts Unleashed.

More rainy day crafts! Loo roll ninjas on Kids Activities Blog.

These are the most gorgeous dish cloth, inspired by old-times linoleum floors. Pattern on Mason-Dixon Knitting.

This is just plain awesome. The tutorial uses colour gel filters, I’m not sure where to get those, but I think for a smaller version tissue paper will be OK. From Oh Happy Day.

Enjoy the sun! :D

in transit


Was looking for a project that would be small enough to work on while taking public transit. I find it a great way to de-stress to/from work and dealing with rush hour traffic. (And so it is also necessary to learn to knit while standing in a moving train — it’s quite a skill, if I do say so myself :D)

I found this lovely pattern on Ravelry by The Yarn Juice. I’ve always been partial to sideways triangular scarfs with contrasting stitch patterns and colours. This pattern is perfect.

I started on Victoria Day holiday while taking the bus to my parents’. This makes waiting for the bus much more tolerable.


On the streetcar to the beach!

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Post-long weekend morning… but look, we got seats! This happens like once every 6 months. I’m really pleased with how the purple contrasts with the variegated lime/yellow yarn (which by the way I got in Halifax, hand-dyed by East Anchor Yarns, and I’m so happy to incorporate it in something I can wear :D).

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Fast-forward to weekend again, taking the long subway ride to Scarborough Bluffs (more on that trip later).


This is me binding off 7 days later. It’s a super quick knit! (And yes, that is a Michaels bag with more yarn in it for my next projects.)

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Arriving with a finished scarf! :D (ironically, there was a scheduled closure in the subway line that weekend, which made our travel time quite a bit longer. Well, more time for knitting!)

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I’m really pleased with how it turned out. I love everything about it. I love all the different textures layered together when it’s wrapped around the neck. And it’s wide enough to drape over the shoulders. It’s far too warm to wear it right now but I’ll be sure to bring it with me everywhere comes this fall.

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I used worsted weight yarn and 6mm needles, rather than DK yarn and 5mm needles as called for in the pattern, because I have a lot of worsted weight scarp yarn. It’s really a great way to use up scarps. I think I will make another one as a gift. I also got to practice using circular needles, which I never really liked using. But it’s great for knitting in transit.

Hope everyone’s having a good weekend!



ode to nyan cat

Needed to make myself a new wallet, I thought I’d make something fun :D

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The Nyan Cat pop-tart! :D

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That’s not really a wallet, one might say. More like a cardholder, one might also say. I guess one could use it as a card holder. I made myself a tiny wallet this size when I started working at a coffee shop nearly a decade ago. There were no lockers in the backroom, so I made a wallet that would fit in my jeans pocket, so that it’s always on my person as I worked. I’ve been using the small wallet ever since. My bank cards and IDs fit snugly in it. And the few bills I have I’d just fold them up to fit them in.

In case anyone finds a crocheted case of this size useful, I’ve made a chart! :D And a few notes describing how I made it.


The finished size is about 2.5″ x 3.5″.

I used worsted weight yarn in tan, pink and dark pink, a 3mm hook, and a tapestry needle.

  1. With tan, ch 13
  2. sc in every ch across (12 sc)
  3. Repeat row 2
  4. Begin following the chart adding the pink and dark pink, using stranded crochet technique*
  5. At the end of the chart, you’d have 18 rows altogether. Don’t fasten off, crochet 18 more rows with tan. Fasten off, leaving a long tail for sewing.
  6. With wrong side out, fold the piece in half crosswise, sew the sides together. Weave in ends, turn right side out.

*Tips on stranded crochet for this project:

  • The first row incorporating pink (3rd row of chart) is wrong side, as are all the rows with just pink.
  • All the rows incorporating both pink and dark pink are right side.
  • Changing colours: in the stitch before new colour, yo and draw up a loop with old colour, yo with new colour and pull through loops on hook.
  • Carry the strands of colours not in use as you crochet and wrap the strands in the stitches you make. When working on the right side, carry the strands of yarn on the back of the work. When working on the wrong side, carry the strands of yarn in the front of the work.

Do let me know if you have any questions! :)

Have a good rest of the week and weekend, everyone!