Biggest EVER Black Friday sale is LIVE!

FreshStitches’s Black Friday sale is now live (a couple hours ahead of the scheduled midnight, November 24th EST) and runs through Cyber Monday. I am so excited about this one… it’s BIG!

 

Black Friday timezones

Different from previous years, items will be on sale the entire weekend, but there are additional bonuses for purchasing on Black Friday (details below).

At the end of Cyber Monday, I am putting the shop on vacation (to prepare for my annual journey overseas for the holidays), so if you want eyes, be sure to order them next weekend! You won’t be able to purchase eyes again until 2018!

Are you so excited? Here’s the sale! Below, you’ll find links to each item, sorted by percentage discount.

 

Biggest Black Friday Sale Ever Craft

Special Friday-only discounts!

Check out the bottom half of that graphic!

Buy $30 and get free shipping to the US, $60 for free international shipping, no coupon code needed!

AND there are extra goodies for Ami Club members! Spend $10, $20 or $45 and get the free item listed! You must add the item(s) to your cart and enter the coupon code to receive your free item. For inventory reasons, I will not be able to honor a free item that you forgot to enter or that is typed into the notes.

Log into the forums to see the special coupon codes!

Small Print and Notes

For the weekend, I will remove the 10% discount on eyes for Ami Club members (it just makes the discounts more transparent for you to see!) Basically, I added that extra 10% into calculating the Black Friday Sales price.

Coupon codes for Friday-only goodies for Ami Club members are in the forums. You may use multiple coupons (for example, if you spend $60, you will get free international shipping AND free 12mm eyes AND locking stitch markers AND 8mm eyes… but you need to enter all 3 coupon codes).

I expect the website to be slow due to large amounts of traffic. I’ve upgraded the server for the weekend, but there may be some slowdowns. If you experience slowness, please be patient and try again!

I also expect a number of items to sell out. Please try to make your purchases as early as possible to get the largest selection!

Due to the large number of orders, I cannot combine shipments. (For example, if you order eyes and then forgot that you also wanted rattles, I cannot refund your shipping and combine the two shipments. I do on normal occasions, but this is a weekend I have hundreds of packages flying out!)

I am so excited about this!!! Get shopping!

Below is a list of links to all of the products, for your convenience!

Eyes from FreshStitches

70% off

These are items that are either being discontinued or that I ordered WAY too many of in one shipment! Snap them up while you can!

Yarn Skein Necklaces

Sheep Necklaces (only gold left in stock)

18mm color eyes

12mm cat eyes

18mm cat eyes

20mm oval comic eyes

60% off

Crochet Enamel Pin

All craft noses:

8mm color eyes

Jumbo clear eyes

Handpainted and Glitter eyes

50% off

Large rattles

Craft Eye Sampler Boxes

ALL Black Craft Eyes:

All Comic eyes:

Clear eyes

40% off

12mm color eyes

Heart locking stitch markers

Tulip locking stitch markers

Puppy snips

Kitty snips

Octopus snips

Sharp mini-scissors

20% off

All bulk eyes (limited sizes in stock):

November Crochet Fun!

November is my favorite month of the year, because it has my two favorite holidays: Thanksgiving and Black Friday!

As always, FreshStitches having a HUGE Black Friday Sale!

The sale will begin a midnight, November 24th (Eastern Time Zone). You are going to find the lowest prices of the entire year! I’ll post more details as we get closer to the date, so you can begin planning!

In years past, I’ve had a different sale every day (so, for example, you’d order on Saturday if you wanted free shipping, Sunday if you wanted a big deal on eyes…), but this year, I’m doing things differently. The sale will last all weekend long, and the more you buy, the more you’ll save. So, you’ll be able to grab a great deal on eyes AND get free shipping! Hooray!

While nearly everything will be on sale, some items will have particularly deep discounts if they’re being discontinued or are less-popular items. This is your time to stock up!

FreshStitches craft eyes

Donny the Donkey

Donny the Donkey

This month’s exclusive Ami Club pattern is Donny the Donkey, designed by Chloe. Isn’t he adorable? Log in to your account to download!

Featured Patterns

As always, we have 3 featured patterns this month that members get for 50% off. Log in to the forums for the code! Patterns include these adorable pilgrims!

Holiday Card Swap

Our card swap is underway, with both domestic and international sign-ups open! This is a great chance to get to know someone else by exchanging greeting cards! Signups open until November 20th.

Holiday CAL begins November 15th!

I’m really excited about our newest crochet-a-long… I’m not going to spill the beans, yet! Members will get the pattern in their downloads, and we’ll all crochet this holiday-themed-cutie together!

 

Hope you’re having a great November, and get your shopping list for Black Friday, ready!

 

Previous Ami Club Patterns now released for individual purchase!

They were exclusive patterns…

As you know, patterns for Ami Club are exclusive to members. And the pattern is only available for that month… until they become ‘de-exclusivized’ (is that a word?)

Maybe you just found me. Maybe a subscription club isn’t right for you.

But now you can grab them!

Whatever the reason you missed out… previous month’s Ami Club patterns are now available for individual purchase! December 2016- August 2017 are now available!

And current Ami Club members save 50% off any or all of the patterns they missed… check the forums for the discount code!

Chock-full of tutorials!

My patterns always include step-by-step photos, but because these are Ami Club patterns, they’re full of even more photos, tutorials and video links! And fun new techniques. You’ll love them!

Want to meet all these cuties?

Click on the name of the animal to purchase via Ravelry (no account needed). If you have a coupon code, enter it at checkout.

Bentley the Bear

adorable bear from FreshStitches Ami Club

Daniel the Dinosaur

Teagan the Teacup

Adorable teacup from Freshstitches ami club

Bonita the Butterfly

Delia the Duck

Adorable Crochet Delia the Duck

Clarita the Pig

Amigurumi pig crochet pattern FreshStitches

Carlos the Saguaro Cactus

Stanley the Sting Ray

Sting Ray crochet pattern

Ellie the Elephant

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SHARE THIS

Yarn Skein Necklaces are back!

Remember that time when I collaborated with Mei of Tiny Hands Jewelry to bring you… exclusive Yarn Skein Necklaces?

They were super-popular and flew off the shelf… and so 2 years later, I have a limited number available!

Yarn Skein Necklaces

And she agreed!

Yarn Skein Necklaces are now available until they’re gone!

These necklaces haven’t been available since 2015 and probably won’t be available again. If you want one, you need to order it now!

At a new, lower price!

Each necklace is handmade from polymer clay, and they’re available in 7 freshstitches-selected colors: pink, red, orange, yellow, lime, blue and purple. Squee!

skein-of-yarn-purple-necklace

You’ll want to hop on over to the listing page to grab your favorite color!

Unlike previous listings, these yarn skeins are being sold as skeins only, without the necklace chain or gift box. So, the price has been lowered from $24 to $18!

 

Order yours, now!

These skeins are made exclusively for freshstitches, and are available until they’re gone! If you have a favorite color (ahem, purple), be sure to grab it, because I know some colors go fast!

Here’s a little video that I made last time… have a peek if the necklaces are new to you!

October Crochet Fun + Fave Links

I know I say this every month, but there is just SO MUCH going on! Fall is the time for crocheting, so I’m just going to go ahead and get started!

October Ami Club Pattern

Isn’t Mr. Jack the Pumpkin so adorable?
freshstitches pumpkin
I designed his arms to be like ‘vines’ that you can style any which way! And I created an easier technique for making the ‘pumpkin grooves’ than many other tutorials I’ve seen, so I hope you find it a cinch.
Ami Club members can hop over to their account and download the pattern!

As always, there are featured patterns that are 50% off for club members. Head to the News & Announcements forum to have a look and grab your coupon!

New Products

Glow in the Dark Eyes

Just for October, I’ve released hand-painted, glow in the dark eyes! Here’s a video so you can see them in action.

These are limited in quantity, so get them while they’re available!

Craft Eye Sampler Boxes

I’ve had lots of people ask me about making sampler boxes available. I usually sell eyes in 5-pair packs, but maybe you don’t want 5 pair. You just want a sampling of the different colors?

FreshStitches eyes sampler

Now I’ve got you covered. Craft Eye Sampler boxes now available in 2 sizes!

Mini Scissors

A rainbow of mini scissors (with adorable Nelson the owl) is now available! A video of how to use them (shown on the previous version) is here:

Giveaway!

You can enter to win a giveaway of 5 amigurumi books, here!

Mini Knitted Books

Crochet Hook of the Month Club

Have you seen this Crochet Hook of the Month club by Louet?

Kollage square crochet hook

You choose either a pointed or rounded tip (whoa!) and the hook is customized with your chosen inscription. So cool!

Amigurumi Patterns.net Design Contest

I’m super-happy to be a sponsor of the AmigurumiPatterns.com design contest!

This is a great opportunity to enter… you don’t even need to write a pattern!

Love my customers!

This one is fun… here’s a little map of purchases from the month of September!

Fave Links

Giveaway: "Mini Knitted" Book Series + Interview with Sahiyo Ishii

Mini Knitted Books

I have an amazing opportunity for you today! Search Press (the publisher of the adorable Mini Knitted series) is giving one reader 5 books, including:

Keep reading for details on how to enter! Sachiyo Ishii is the author of 4 of these books, and she’s joined us to tell us a bit about herself and her process!

Each book is packed with projects (more than 25 patterns per book), using a variety of techniques with simple knitting stitches.

Interview with Sachiyo Ishii


Sachiyo is the prolific author of 4 of the Mini Knitted books, and I was delighted that she took the time to come talk to us! Welcome, Sachiyo!

How did you begin knitting? And when did it take a professional turn?
I took up knitting in my 30’s after my second son was born. I could not knit a stitch until then. I thought dressing my boys in my handmade clothes was trendy and very Yummy Mummy, but soon discovered that knitting requires skill and patience. With my friend’s help, I did achieve my very first piece, but the stitches were messy and uneven, and the sleeves came out in different lengths.

It seemed to me that I had a very long way to go until I would be able to knit a decent garment. I almost gave up knitting altogether, however, I discovered that you can make small toys with basic skills. I practiced published patterns for some time and then, I started creating my own to add personality. I knitted many animals and proposed my current publisher, Search Press the idea of the knitted animal park. It is great to find a channel that I can put my effort into.

You’ve written so many books! Where do you find your inspiration?
I get inspiration from everywhere. When I walk in town, looking through books and magazines, shop windows, everywhere! I am constantly thinking of new designs no matter where I go or what I do. Illustrations and cartoons, felted work and sugar craft are a good source, too. They are already in simplified forms and it is easy to make them into my craft projects.


What do you like to do in your free time?

I enjoy attending fitness classes and swimming. When I get stuck with a project, swimming can be the best solution to get a fresh idea. I don’t do enough but I like visiting craft shops and fairs. I guess I cannot completely be free from crafting.

What is your favourite yarn/knitting needle/craft supply?
For many years, my favourite yarns are Rowan. I love felted tweed especially. It is such a delight to knit with quality yarn.
I have been using bamboo needles since I took up knitting. They are less slippery and keep stitches well and the best of all, they feel great in hands. If you are still new to the skill, bamboo needles are must. I have been using Clover Takumi needles.
My favourite is Clover products. My mother loved them for many years and recently I inherited them all. Some are bought over 30 years ago but still in very good condition.

Is there a favourite piece you’ve made? Perhaps for yourself?
It is hard to say since I have many favourites, but I love the knitted carousel. I have a whole set of amusement park in knitting and would love to do a book someday. Most of my creations are for myself except occasional gifts to my friends. It is great to be an author. You get to keep all samples!
knitted carousel Sachiyo Ishii

Thank you, Sachiyo!

Find Sachiyo!

Website: www.Knitsbysachi.com
Instagram: knitsbysachi
Facebook: www.facebook.com/KnitsBySachi/
Ravelry: sachiyo-ishii
Pinterest: knitsbysachi
Twitter: Knitsbysachi

Enter to Win!

You can enter to win ALL 5 of these books! Just leave a comment (including your email address) by the end of day, October 18, 2017. A winner will be randomly chosen on the 19th and contacted via email. Because of the weight of these books, entries open to those living in the US, only.

The Crochet Wildlife Guide Review + FREE Penguin Pattern + Giveaway!

I am so excited! I love showing off a great book to you… and there are so many goodies! Keep reading to grab a FREE download of the Chinstrap Penguin by Philip Ha (aka Sir Purl Grey) AND enter to win a digital copy of the book, The Crochet Wildlife Guide.

The Crochet Wildlife Guide

You may have heard me say this before on the blog, but I get a lot of amigurumi books across my desk and for many of them, I say, ‘oh, ok. This has some cute patterns.’ And it ends there.

And I’ll admit it, my books are among them.

Much of the bare-bones nature of many books you see is completely driven by the publisher’s desire to save money. Cute illustrations? You have to pay an illustrator for those. Step-by-step detailed instructions? Nope. That takes too many pages. Fancy shaping techniques? Oh, no. That doesn’t appeal to a wide-enough audience.

For a crocheter who wants extra information either because they’re a beginner (and need the help and explanations) or are adventurous and want to try something new (hence, needing explanations of new and complicated stitches), this formula can be very frustrating.

Needless to say, when a book comes to me that breaks the mold, I jump out of my chair with glee!

The Crochet Wildlife Guide

The Crochet Wildlife Guide is a self-published book by Philip Ha and Jeff Wiehler, and the book is filled with creative crochet ideas and an artist’s touch. I was impressed by the coverage of basic crochet techniques as well as detailed instructions and illustrations for each animal.

The Crochet Wildlife Guide bird

Each project contains a diagram (as shown above) that allows you to see each piece and how they are put together. These photos are often what takes a good pattern and makes it amazing and easy-to-follow. (It’s why I include step-by-step photos in all of my individual patterns… no matter how many words you have, sometimes, you just need a photo!)

I was also enchanted by the darling illustrations in the book (including this table of contents).

The Crochet Wildlife Guide table of Contents

The patterns included in the book walk the line perfectly between wildlife-realism and kawaii cuteness. Amigurumi like the red panda on the cover, have little details so the animal is instantly-identifyable and unique, but not fussy and still cute with wide appeal.

The book also includes a table of the skills required for each pattern. This is such a great idea… you can identify the project that’s just right for you!

The Crochet Wildlife Guide difficulty levels

Throughout the book, the authors emphasize places where you can become your own designer, by highlighting small changes you can make or pointing out the design techniques used to create a particular shape.

The Crochet Wildlife Guide Bat

The photography, with animals photographed in nature, is lovely as well.

The book is available for purchase in digital or print form, from The Crochet Wildlife Guide website or from Amazon.

FREE Chinstrap Penguin Pattern

Free penguin crochet pattern

Phillip and Jeffrey have given us a pattern that didn’t make the book for FREE so that you can get started on some crochet cuteness right away!

Click here to download the pattern:  Penguin pattern by SirPurlGrey

Giveaway

Want to win a digital copy of the book? Yes, I know you do!

Just leave a comment (including your email address) on this post before Thursday, October 5th and you’ll be entered to win!

The Crochet Wildlife Guide Flying Squirrel

 

Technique for Joining Standing Legs in Amigurumi without a Hole

Today we’re lucky enough to have a guest post written by Mirena of Mirena Made! Mirena has been a FreshStitches customer for years, and she creates hand-crocheted creations that she sells in her shop. (yes, you too can sell finished FreshStitches animals!)

Thank you so much, Mirena, for coming by and sharing this new technique with us!

New Technique for Joining Standing Legs in Amigurumi

I am a huge fan of FreshStitches designs and of Stacey and I also prefer patterns where the sewing and attaching is kept to a minimum (I suspect there are other amigurumi crocheters like me!)

adorable bear from FreshStitches Ami Club

One of my favorite FreshStitches patterns is Bentley the Bear, which is crocheted using standing legs.  In the standard technique, you get little hole that remains between the legs and you have to sew it afterwards… ah, sewing!

So, here is a technique that eliminates the hole and lets you continue your crocheting without worrying about it!

Step 1: You crochet the first leg exactly as stated in the pattern BUT at the end you cut the yarn, leaving a long tail and you DO NOT fasten off.

Step 2: You crochet the second leg as stated in the pattern (leaving the yarn attached, as instructed).

how to crochet standing legs without leaving a hole

Step 3: You take both legs and you place the first one behind the second one, matching their stitches.

how to crochet standing legs without leaving a hole
Step 4: You place the loop of the first leg on your hook and using its tail you single crochet in the next stitches through both thicknesses. You do 4 sc in total and you fasten off.

how to crochet standing legs without leaving a hole

how to crochet standing legs without leaving a hole
Step 5: You place the loop of the second leg on your hook and you are ready to continue crocheting!

how to crochet standing legs without leaving a hole

The disadvantage to this technique is the stitch count. Normally, you would have 36 stitches after joining the legs but because we crocheted some of them them to attach the 2 legs together, we lost a few stitches. I solve this problem by increasing in the next round.

This technique will work with any pattern with standing legs, you just have to pay attention to the stitch count and adjust accordingly!

What a fabulous technique! Thanks so much for sharing, Mirena! This trick will work perfectly with the October Ami Club pattern… want a sneak peek?

amigurumi crochet jack o lantern

September Crochet Fun + Fave Links

I can’t believe it’s already September! Time is moving so fast (and um, it was 105 in Los Angeles last week… that feels like July to me!).

As always, I have lots of exciting news to share! If there’s something specific you’d like to see on the blog, feel free to leave a comment or shoot me an email!

Mojo the Monster

This month’s exclusive Ami Club pattern is Mojo the Monster!

He uses the new shaping technique we learned for the horns last month (single crocheting in one row below instead of using slip stitches, which have a tendency to bias)… I’m really loving it!

Mojo uses a 24mm black eye… but I also think he’d look amazing by leaving out the white crocheted eye and just using a 40mm eye (by painting a 40mm clear eye. Check out instructions here.) So many possibilities!

Handpainted Eyes back in stock!

FreshStitches handpainted eyes

Last month, I made a limited edition number of handpainted craft eyes just for Ami Club members. They were so popular (they sold out in just a day or two!), that I’ve decided to make up some more!

They are currently available in purple and copper in 12mm. I have a small number of larger handpainted glitter eyes.

handpainted copper eyes from FreshStitches

My plan is to bring in a limited number of colors and sizes on a rotating basis (for example, this month is purple and copper 12mm, next month might be 15mm or glow-in-the-dark), so I encourage you to grab a color that you love when you see it.

Because theses are each handpainted, they’re a bit pricier than usual, and sold per pair.

If you’re looking for a great value and consistent stock, then don’t forget about my commercially-produced colored eyes which come in lots of lovely pearlescent colors! Because they come to me painted from the factory, I am able to offer them at a low price (and they’re way prettier than the dull brown ones you get from craft shops- if they still have eyes in stock!)

Shimmer craft eyes from FreshStitches!

Featured September Patterns

These patterns are 50% off for Ami Club members… the coupon code is in the forum: September Featured Patterns: 50% off!

I went with a theme this month… all of the patterns use 18mm brown eyes! That way, you can buy a 5-pair pack and make all 3… and still have two pairs! Hooray!

Jim the Goat

We went to the county fair last weekend and they had baby goats… squee! I think they’re just the cutest! Don’t let them try to eat your pants leg though 😉

Purchase link: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/amigurumi-jim-the-goat

Jackie the Cow

This pattern is a real favorite… I think he might even be the second best-seller behind Nelson the Owl! Everyone loves a sweet cow, and you can have lots of fun by getting really crazy with the colors! Check out this one I made as a custom order:

crazy crochet amigurumi cow

 

Purchase link: https://freshstitches.com/cow/

Little Ger the Felted Bear

I love felting- just crochet with a wool yarn and throw it in the washing machine! (more detailed instructions are in the pattern, but basically that’s it!) The result is a very sturdy and durable fabric that will make a long-lasting stuffed animal. Give it a try!

Purchase Pattern: https://freshstitches.com/bearfelt2/

Crochet-a-long begins September 15th!

I’m not going to spill the beans on the theme yet, but our new crochet-a-long begins September 15th and runs through October 31st! Everyone is welcome to participate, but only Ami Club members receive the crochet-a-long pattern as a free download. (psst… membership is only $6/month- that’s the price of a pattern! Maybe you want to try it for a month and see if you like it!)

Post photos on Facebook

You may or may not know, but we have a crazy number of followers on the FreshStitches facebook page… over 568,000!

freshstitches facebook

Now, to be totally honest, I’m not really sure who all of the people are… because I certainly don’t have over a half-a-million users on the website! Anyway, needless to say, when we were going through that growth spurt, moderating the page got a little crazy (with people posting a lot of spam and such). To keep it under control, I turned off the ‘post to page’ option.

Now things have calmed down, and I’m trying an experiment. I’ve turned ‘post to page’ back on, and I would love for you to share your crocheted amigurumi– FreshStitches or not (but bonus points if it’s a FreshStitches patterns or feature my eyes!) And we’ll see how it goes!

Obviously, I want a friendly atmosphere and would rather develop content for you than spend all day moderating the facebook group, so if it gets crazy again, we may need to edit. But let’s give it a try!

Fave Links

I hope you have a great September, and for those of you in Florida, please be safe!!!