PlanetJune Craft Blog

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Archive for December, 2010

punchneedle globe revealed!

Ah, this post has been a long time coming… (Previous update posts are here: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.)

I’m not quite sure when I embarked on this project as I didn’t keep any notes; all I know for sure is that my Illustrator design file was last modified in December 2009, so it’s taken over a year to take this project from a 2D pattern to a 3D completed piece. But here, finally, it is: the Punchneedle Embroidery Globe! Click the pic for the larger version:

punchneedle globe (with crocheted orangutan) by planetjune
Hey – it’s PlanetJune personified! Maybe this should be my logo 🙂

Thank you to my orangutan for posing with the globe for these photos 😉

Stitching the two halves together was quite a challenge. I used a curved upholstery needle but it was still really tricky. When I’d stitched 11 of the 12 segments together, I started stuffing. And stuffing, and stuffing, and then stuffing some more. In the end it took about half a standard bag of fiberfill to keep the globe in shape. And I was very glad to have my Detail Stuffing Tool for the final stuffing additions as I stitched the opening closed.

But finally, it was finished! Here are some more views (again, click for the larger version):

punchneedle globe (with crocheted orangutan) by planetjune
Asia and Australia, Europe and Africa, N and S America…

You can see from the above pictures that my globe isn’t a perfect sphere – it looks slightly narrower in the middle picture than in the 2 outer pics. There’s a reason for that: although I did account for the fact that my base fabric (weaver’s cloth) has stretch in only one direction, which changes the aspect ratio of the finished piece, I didn’t realise that by punching so much more densely than usual, I’d change the amount of stretch significantly, so I didn’t distort my pattern enough to compensate for that before I transferred it to my fabric. My finished globe has a circumference of 18″ at the widest point and 17″ at the narrowest. Not perfect, but considering I had no idea if my idea of a 3D punchneedled piece would even work at all, I can live with it.

I’m a geek…

I decided to put on my science geek hat and come up with some estimates of how many stitches went into this project. I came up with two methods for the estimation; both are very rough, but taken together they at least give us some idea.

Method 1: floss length. I counted how many stitches I made with a known length of floss. I kept track of how many skeins of floss I used (28) and the length of each skein, to extrapolate the number of stitches in the whole globe. Result: 55,000 stitches.

Method 2: surface area. I counted how many stitches I’d made in a typical square centimetre on the back of the embroidery, and then used the average circumference of the finished globe to calculate its radius (C=2πr), subtract the stitch loop length (to give the size of the backing fabric) and then its surface area (SA=4πr²). Result: 63,000 stitches.

So I feel fairly confident in saying that there’s somewhere in the region of 60,000 stitches in my globe – and even at punchneedle speed, that’s a lot of stitches!

2011 is almost here

The coming year is going to bring some big changes for me (and Dave and Maui). I still can’t really get my head around this idea of moving, especially to the southern hemisphere – what a change that’ll be! But now, at least I have a way to visualize it:

punchneedle globe (with crocheted orangutan) by planetjune
Canada to Cape Town… it’s even further away than I’d realised!

Thanks for accompanying me on my journey to complete this globe! I hope you like the result. It’s funny that I had no idea how relevant it would be to me when I embarked on this project…

Comments (36)

Christmas CAL roundup part 2

Christmas Crochetalong and Contest at PlanetJune

Happy Christmas!

Here’s the rest of the Christmas Crochet-Along roundup (if you missed my previous post, the other entries are here).

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Meg used variegated yarn to great effect with her baubles.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Di made some wonderfully sparkly baubles using beaded crochet with seed beads – I really love these!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Poor Ginger has been in hospital (get well soon, Ginger) but still managed to complete a few baubles for the CAL – now that’s team spirit!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Reem made an exact twin of my white Christmas tree, but used beads instead of pins to make the baubles.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Erica made this Christmas pudding as her first CAL.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Katie made Rudolph and all Santa’s other reindeer too – how cool is that?! And she cleverly adapted the technique from my PocketAmi witch’s hair to make a bearded Santa.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
This bold red Christmas tree was crocheted by Jo-Ann.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Linda did a little outdoor decorating amid the snow in Sweden with some Christmas puddings (and a couple of Christmas whales thrown in for good measure!)

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Hattalahutta stuffed her tree and decorated it with pearl headed pins and silver star sequins.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Nicole has been busy, making a poinsettia and a tri-colour candy cane…

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
…and a cute little white Christmas tree!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Erica didn’t have any green yarn for her pudding’s leaves, but used green thread to great effect instead.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Jana made her poinsettia into a tree ornament with a little hanging loop.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Lena says this poinsettia and pudding were her first completed ravelry projects 🙂

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
And last but definitely not least, Kim adapted my Elf pattern to make a cutie Merry Mouse to go with her other PocketAmi!

All wonderful, I’m sure you’ll agree… And now to the winners! I used to draw 2 from all the emailed entries:
First prize ($10 gift certificate) goes to Jukatca – congratulations Judy! 🙂
Second prize (free pattern) goes to Robin!

But nobody’s a loser around here: I’ll email runner-up prize discount codes to all the CAL participants within the next couple of days!

Thanks so much for taking part; seeing all these sweet projects has really put a smile on my face. I hope it’s done the same for you with these roundup posts 🙂

And one more thing before I settle down with Dave and Maui for some tea and Christmas cake: I hope you’re having a very happy Christmas. Cheers!

UPDATE: I missed a few pics from my updates – oops! Here they are:

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Cora ran out of time to finish her tree, but did complete a cute snowman for the CAL!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Rebecca had the lovely idea of making baubles to decorate the tree for her family reunion – each family gets to take one home at the end of the reunion. She also modified the pattern to make some into the ‘candy’ shape you can see here – clever!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
…And Rebecca also made this cute elf and snowman into tree ornaments by adding a hanging loop to them.

If I’ve missed your entry too, please let me know so I can add it to this post!

Comments (8)

Christmas CAL roundup part 1

Christmas Crochetalong and Contest at PlanetJune

The Christmas Crochet-Along has been a great success! For the past month or so I’ve had the pleasure of watching the entries come in, and seeing all the special little touches (yarn choices, pattern modifications, mix-and-matching, etc) that make each project a unique creation.

And what better way to celebrate Christmas than to show off the wonderful seasonal crochet-along projects! As there are so many, I’ve split them into 2 posts, and I hope you’ll enjoy looking through all the entries as much as I have.

Stay tuned for part 2 some time tomorrow (well, technically today – it’s after midnight). I’ll also be announcing the contest winners in the next post…

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Seeing double with Silverlotus‘ cute PocketAmi.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
La Ma̱osa crocheted 2 stars and stitched them together to make it more rigid Рclever!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Ellen made both poinsettia types and a Christmas pudding!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Jo-Ann made this pretty poinsettia.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
This stylish green and white candy cane is from Nadine.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Barbara decorated her tree with little decorations from Hobby Lobby.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Mack made a variety of candy canes and modified my Mop Top Mascots pattern to make it more Christmassy.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Robin took my Elf one step further and added a Santa to her PocketAmi collection.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Alicia made a poinsettia table centrepiece.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Jukatca made a striking set of baubles…

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
…a PocketAmi set with an added girl elf…

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
…some candy canes and a Christmas pudding…

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
…AND a poinsettia!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Leigh made some self-striping baubles using a patterned yarn.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Dee made a Christmas pudding for a Ravelry “Christmas Ornament” swap.

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Pysselkiisen made 4 Christmas trees…

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
…a poinsettia…

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
…and a lovely candy cane and Christmas pudding wreath!

Aren’t they all lovely? Believe it or not, these are not all of the entries – I still have plenty more pictures to process and upload once I’ve had a little sleep and put the turkey in the oven tomorrow morning 🙂

HAPPY CHRISTMAS everybody, and look out for part 2 of the CAL roundup in a few hours…

Comments (2)

almost Christmas

Can you believe it’ll be Christmas Eve tomorrow?! I hope you’re more organised than I am this year – I’ve been so busy sorting through all our stuff to find things we can donate or sell before the big move, I haven’t really had a chance to get into the Christmas spirit yet. We only put the tree up yesterday, and I have to brave the hordes for some grocery shopping today – what fun that’ll be!

If you’re stuck for a last-minute present for a crocheter on your list, how about a PlanetJune gift certificate? Buy them in any amount from $5 to $100 and let your recipient choose her (or his) favourite patterns and tools/accessories from my catalogue! And as a gift to you, for every $10 in gift certificates purchased, I’ll give a $1 gift certificate to the purchaser.

So, for example, if you buy $50 in gift certificates, I’ll send you a $5 gift certificate for yourself (or you can pass it on to someone else as an extra gift). This offer is valid until the end of the month. You can instantly send your gift certificates (by email) from your PlanetJune account as soon as you’ve purchased them, so they make a perfect last-minute gift.

Christmas Crochetalong and Contest at PlanetJune

You still have until tomorrow (Christmas Eve) to enter the PlanetJune Christmas CAL (& contest). If you’ve made anything this year using any of my Christmas patterns pictured below, don’t forget to enter – you might win a prize, and you’ll get a discount code just for participating!

  • First prize: a $10 gift certificate to spend on anything in the PlanetJune store
  • Second prize: a free pattern of your choice from the PlanetJune store
  • Runner-up prizes: I’ll send a discount code to all participants, to use against their next order from the PlanetJune store.

It’s easy to enter the contest: just send an email to with either a link to where you’ve posted about your project, or a photo of your completed project. Remember to send one email per pattern you’ve made, so you’ll get your bonus entries!

I’ve sent replies to all the entries I’ve received, so, if you haven’t had an email from me, you haven’t entered yet. Please send your pics asap – I want to start putting together my grand Christmas Day CAL roundup post!

Oh, and while you’re entering contests, how about posting some reviews of the PlanetJune patterns you’ve used this month – you could win the December Review and Win contest…

Okay, I’ve taken up enough of your time – get back to your Christmas preparations!


punchneedle globe WIP (part 5)

Ah, this is an exciting moment: I think this will be the final WIP post for my punchneedle globe, because…

punchneedle project - work in progress

That’s right, I’ve finished punching the northern hemisphere!

(FYI, it looks wrinkly in the pic above because I’ve just taken it out of the embroidery hoop, and there’s no point in pressing the surrounding fabric because it’ll all be trimmed down shortly.)

Now all I have to do is stitch up this half into a hemisphere shape, as I did for the southern hemisphere (pictured below), and then keep my fingers crossed that it’ll all match up when I put the two halves together!

punchneedle project - work in progress
Will the top half match the bottom half?! That remains to be seen…

That final seam is going to be the hardest part of all. I’ll have all that pleated fabric you see in the pic above, from both halves, to wrangle (I think I’ll trim some of the excess from what you see above before I begin). And, as if that wasn’t enough, I’ll have to stitch almost half of it from the outside (instead of working inside-out, as I do to stitch the flat circles into a hemisphere). That’ll be more difficult in this project than hand-sewing the final seam closed in a normal sewing project, because the loops of the punchneedle stitches splay out over the seam I want to sew from both sides, so I think it’ll be tricky to get my needle close enough to the edge of my embroidery to create a close-to-invisible seam. But I’ll do my best!

Please keep your fingers crossed that this all comes together as I’d hoped – it’s been a huge and time-consuming project, and I really won’t know if it’s going to work out or not until I’ve made the final stitches and I either have a globe or a big lumpy mess…

Stay tuned for the nailbiting conclusion of the punchneedle globe project! 😀

Comments (13)

felt poinsettia tutorial

I somehow stumbled into a personal holiday tradition of crafting a different poinsettia every year. With the exception of my first poinsettia (because I was a novice blogger back then and the idea hadn’t occurred to me, so I only have a quick guide that I wrote in the comments of that post) I have a full (free) pattern available for each of my holiday poinsettias – see the links below the pics if you’d like to make your own!

tsumami kanzashi poinsettia by planetjunecrocheted poinsettia by planetjune
polymer clay poinsettia by planetjunepunchneedle poinsettia by planetjune

Top (L-R): 2006 kanzashi poinsettia; 2007 crocheted poinsettia 
Bottom (L-R) 2008 polymer clay poinsettia; 2009 punchneedle poinsettia

So similar, and yet each has its own style. I love this tradition I created! I wonder how long I can keep thinking of new poinsettias to add to the collection…

The 2010 PlanetJune Poinsettia is almost a return to that very first kanzashi poinsettia, but with a twist: to keep it fast and simple, it’s made from felt. It would make a beautiful gift topper or table decoration, and you can increase the size to make it as big as you want – just cut the green squares slightly larger than the red, and you’ll be fine!

felt poinsettia by planetjune

I had intended to make a fancy-schmancy version too, in purple and white, with embroidered petals and leaves, but you’ll have to imagine how lovely that would have been (in my head, at least, it’s stunningly beautiful) – sadly, it’s already too close to Christmas and I just don’t have any more time to spare. Maybe that can be my next year’s holiday poinsettia 🙂

Anyway, I hope you’ll enjoy my 2010 poinsettia design!

Go to the Felt Poinsettia tutorial >>

Comments (2)

Pom-pom Christmas Tree tutorial

I’m going through a bit of a rough time at the moment, trying to sort through all my stuff to sell/donate/pack so we can make the house look uncluttered and get it on the market before we make the big move to South Africa. Although I have about 10 blog posts’ worth of tutorials and information inside my head, it’s proving difficult to find the time to actually write any of them! If anyone tells you that moving to another country (that uses a different voltage, so everything electrical will have to be sold and re-bought at the other end) is easy and non-stressful, they are lying…

But anyway. I’ve managed to squeeze in the time to make an easy Christmas craft: a Pom-pom Christmas tree!

pom-pom christmas tree tutorial

A few weeks ago, I picked up some Clover Pom-Pom Makers, for no reason at all except they look like fun and I doubt I’d be able to find them in South Africa. They are very clever, by the way: very fast and so much easier than having to pass the yarn through the centre of a ring each time! I’ll review them properly in another post when I have more time…

And now to the Pom-Pom Christmas tree tutorial:

__(‘Read the rest of this entry »’)

Comments (14)

Christmas CAL update

Christmas Crochetalong and Contest at PlanetJune

I’m so excited with the response to the PlanetJune Christmas CAL! The Christmas projects are popping up all over the place now, and it makes me happy to think I’ll have played a part in the decorations in so many homes 🙂 I’m including a preview of a couple of projects (randomly selected from the entries so far) in this post to whet your appetite for my roundup post…

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
PocketAmi Christmas by Silverlotus

Don’t forget this part though: if you’d like your CAL projects to be entered in my contest, you have to send an email to including either a link to where you’ve posted about your project, or a photo of the finished project. One email per project (where ‘project’ means one of my Christmas patterns, so if you’ve made 12 baubles, send one email with a pic of all 12). I’ll be creating my CAL roundup and drawing the winners from the emails I receive, so you won’t be entered unless you send those emails!

PlanetJune Christmas CAL entry
Christmas Tree by La Mañosa

I’m just reminding you of this because I’ve only had 11 entries so far, and I’ve seen at least twice that many completed projects, so I think people have been forgetting to actually enter the contest! I’ve emailed an acknowledgement to everyone who’s submitted a project, so if you didn’t get an email from me this morning, you haven’t entered yet.

There’s still plenty of time if you haven’t had a chance to send the email yet, or even if you haven’t even started the CAL yet: you have until Christmas Eve to complete your projects and send me your photos 🙂 If you’d like to participate, you can make any (or all!) of my Christmas patterns:

All 6 Christmas patterns
Christmas CAL and Contest instructions and rules

Will you join the Christmas crocheting fun?

Christmas Crochetalong and Contest at PlanetJune

Comments (1)

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