It’s no secret that I love fish. I mean, you can see the Trout of North America calendar over my desk (I’ve been getting it for I can’t even count how many years), the trout potholder, the trout dishes, the ceramic fish lamp complete with scale-print shade, and even the big crab hanging over my bed (I’m not even mentioning the crab fabric I used to cover a second-hand armchair). Just one look at the illustrations of Joe Tomelleri, James Prosek, or Gina Mikel and it is evident why they are beautiful and worth admiring. Yep, it’s love.
These little touches around our home make it feel like our own space in spite of being a rental. But there’s so much more I mean to do in the way of fish-focused craft projects. It can be a fish pattern or even just a little detail in a regular project that makes the difference. Like buttons or a custom appliqué.
It is amazingly simple to add a custom appliquéd fish (or any shape really) to a ready-made baby bib, dishtowel, or apron for a custom gift. I used jersey fabric for these bibs and hand-stitches. The pinking shear edges give it a fun look I think. Also the texture is more likely to catch stray dribbles.
I made two! The other was gender neutral for a baby whose gender was remaining a surprise.
In addition to custom appliqués, I decided to go a step further and do it with some freehand machine embroidery and button updates. But to balance the time it takes for all these touches, I took a knit or crochet cardigan that someone else made (even store bought would work though!) and customised it. To celebrate my friends’ son Toby’s arrival in the world, I made him a fish-themed set, including a Glub Glub Grub Bib, an Appliqued Fish Onesie, and my friend Melissa helped by making a crocheted cardigan with hat. The white fish buttons are available from Cork Button Company. The onesie has one large fish using IKEA fabric that I pre-shrunk with two little stars embroidered for a splash of color.
And these I’ve not made, but would love to…
A Recipe For Fish – Blanket by April Broken
Half Fish Beanie – Hat by Thelma Egberts
Wishy Washy Fishy Tawashi by Rhonda White
Mille’s Fish – Blanket by Mille
Undersea Mobile (pattern #80797AD) from Lion Brand Yarns
But if you don’t want to be crafting right now, maybe just go to the neighbourhood lake or pond and admire the real thing. These fellows are at my office HQ. I don’t get there often, but when I do my favourite lunch treat is to dine with the koi.