ScrapHappy May 2023

One of the problems that I have with bollard covers is that I tend to be prompted to make them because of seasonal festivities. This means that in the gaps between such events, I’m at a bit of a loss about what to put out… generally resorting to the floral ones or the Welsh dragon. I’m very reluctant to make something for a one-off event because I’ll never have the opportunity to use it again, so my nod to the coronation involved an oddment of gold yarn…

As to more non-seasonal subjects, what could be more timeless and popular than dinosaurs? And by complete coincidence this week contains International Dinosaur Day (apparently). Mr Snail decided to join in with the fun, but here are my two… one on a bollard and one guarding the sweeties on the counter… not surprising they have not needed replenishing recently! Both dinosaurs were made from scrap yarn, as was the bollard cover and it’s leafy decorations. There is never a shortage of scrap yarn in the shop, as bags of it seem to arrive on a weekly basis… I just need to find a use for all that eyelash yarn that people buy and never make anything from!

The patterns for both the Raptor and the Triceratops are from Kelly of Little Green Bear; the crown, bollard cover and leaves are all out of my own head!


I’ve been inspired to write this (and future) ScrapHappy posts by Kate,  Tall Tales from Chiconia. On the fifteenth of every month lots of folk often publish a ScrapHappy post, do check them out:

Kate,  Gun, Eva,  Sue, Lynda, Birthe, Turid, Edi, Susan, Cathy, Tracy, Jan (me), Moira, SandraChrisAlys, ClaireJeanJon, DawnJuleGwen, Sunny, Kjerstin, Sue LVera, NanetteAnn, Dawn 2, Carol, Preeti, DebbieroseNóilinViv, Lynn and Tierney

If you fancy joining, contact Kate and she’ll add you to the list. It would be lovely to see more non-sewing posts, but any use of scraps is welcome.

ScrapHappy June 2020

It has been rather warm for much of the past month, so I was glad that that I was no longer labouring under last month’s ScrapHappy creation. In fact, after the success of the crochet T-rex (who has, incidentally, been named “Cupcake”) I moved on to another ancient creature. Young Maisie, the recipient of the T-rex, is a big fan of Mary Anning (fossil hunter and palaeontologist born in 1799, who discovered the remains of huge aquatic creatures in the cliffs of the Dorset coast). I thought, therefore, that a pleisiosaur would be greatly appreciated… which it was.

Made using wool oddments, this pattern, like the last dinosaur, is by Kerry Lord:


I’ve been inspired to write this (and future) ScrapHappy posts by Kate,  Tall Tales from Chiconia. On the fifteenth of every month lots of folks often publish a ScrapHappy post, do check them out:

Kate (me!)Gun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Nanette, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Debbierose, Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJean,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawnGwen, Connie, Bekki, PaulineSue L,
Sunny and Kjerstin

If you fancy joining, contact Kate and she’ll add you to the list. It would be lovely to see more non-sewing posts, but any use of scraps is welcome.


It’s been rather warm here recently and so I’ve been reluctant to work on large woolly things – like the jumper that I want to complete, that is worked in a single piece, so provides far too much cover on a hot day. I decided, therefore, to use up some left-over balls of yarn for some little projects.

We have a young friend who loves dinosaurs… so I made her a T-rex.

The pattern is by Kerry Lord of Toft.

I don’t think it’s going to be the last dinosaur that I make – they seem to be popular with children and adults alike. I see some ScrapHappy dinos in the future!

The Chicken from Hell

Reports appear in today’s media of what researchers are describing as ‘the chicken from hell’ – a dinosaur with a bony crest on its head and feathers on its arms, the fossilised skeleton of which has been found in the Hell Creek formation in North/South Dakota (they are cagey about the exact location). This is an artist’s impression:

The dinosaur Anzu wyliei . Illustration: Mark Klingler/Carnegie Museum of Natural History

I can’t help feeling that Aliss is closely related, especially since she has been behaving like the chicken from hell this week.

Black Aliss: our very own chicken from hell

Black Aliss: our very own chicken from hell

It always happens in the spring – she tries to escape, she spends ages trying to penetrate the vegetable beds and she refuses to co-operate. Yesterday she and Esme managed to find their way into the field behind us. Fortunately, Ifan (the young son of the field’s owners, who has his own flock of Warrens) spotted our two and managed to catch them for us. Some investigation revealed a gap under the fence which I have now blocked. This morning she was in the onion bed… at this rate, she’s going to be in a casserole tomorrow! It’s only her prodigious egg-laying that will save her!!

Jurassic chicken

Throughout the film Jurassic Park there are allusions to the fact that dinosaurs are more like birds than reptiles. I think that we have one of their descendents in the garden. Yesterday Aliss was found excavating the root parsley, having somehow got in to the vegetable enclosure. She was removed, the netting examined for gaps, and any sources of weakness dealt with.

Juvenile delinquent chicken

Ten minutes later she was back in there. Additional barriers were added at the points we thought she might be entering.

Five minutes later she was back in there, having flapped over the barriers.

Netting was placed over the top of the target area.

Ten minutes later, she was in there again. Busily excavating.

The netting was rearranged – corners were tucked in, gaps were blocked, canes were used to secure edges of mesh. We watched what she would do.

She began by examining the place she had entered previously – stretching up, trying to poke her head through the mesh. She then moved on round the enclosure. There is a scene in Jurassic Park where Muldoon, the game warden, explains that the raptors

never attack the same place twice. They were testing the fence for weaknesses, systematically. They remember.

And so did Aliss… working her way round the perimeter of the entire area – testing for weaknesses. It took her quite a while, but eventually she returned to her starting point, having been unable to gain access anywhere. And at this point she gave up and went away to investigate another part of the garden.

We should be careful of when we give names. Black Aliss is living up to hers, just as Esmeralda has turned out to be top chicken. I wonder if Perdy will start singing opera next!


And a slight aside – today is the first day we have had four eggs, one from each chicken. A couple of weeks ago there was a day when we had four eggs, one each from two chickens and two from one chicken, but that’s another story…

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