08 December 2014

Caribou Floatie Monday

Caribou Floatie Ornament

NOTE: Formal fundraising on Snowcatcher has been paused. I haven't had time to create a new snowflake pattern booklet, and we don't know if or when we will be able to participate in organized charity rides again. If things favorably change, I will announce such in a new Snowflake Monday blog post. In the meantime, the previous eight booklets are still available, and I will do my best to respond to requests for them in a timely manner.

Nope. No snowflake today. Sorry. I needed something special to introduce my latest snowflake pattern PDF booklet, and besides, today's pattern makes one of the cutest 3D ornaments I've designed so far, in my opinion. (To go directly to instructions for obtaining the booklet, please refer to the pink text below.)

I spent nearly a month scrambling my brain like fresh eggs trying to come up with great idea for a cover for the 2015 snowflake PDF booklet to raise money for the Colorado/Wyoming Chapter of the Multiple Sclerosis Society. I'd thought of a cute idea last year, but I couldn't remember it at all. Back to the drawing board.

During our flight home from our nephew's wedding in Oregon just before Thanksgiving, I finally thought of a really cute idea. Going back to work after a couple days off kept me from working on the new cover right away. When I finally got to sit down and begin designing, I discovered I had started a new cover last year when I came up with the assumed lost idea!!! I had TWO covers! Yippee! I'd be all set for next year, if I do another snowflake booklet for 2016!

A few hours later, a third title and cover idea that trumped everything simmering and everything I'd already done came to me in the middle of the night. Now I have THREE covers, which means I guess I have to come up with at least 60 more original snowflake ideas in the next two years so I can keep going and use all these awesome booklet covers!

The funny thing about the idea I used for the 2015 PDF booklet is it was right there in front of me all along, making a real "Duh!" moment when it hit me over the head like a polar blizzard in the high Rockies!

The 2015 booklet is finished!

This amazing idea, however, has drawbacks. Welcome to my personal interpretation of Commercial Law 101.

Recreating snowflakes shown in a movie (or ad, logo or other visual media) in another form of art is considered derivative and is thereby legal in most cases. The snowflakes I've used as models are not individually copyrighted or trademarked, but sharing screenshots of the movie where the inspirations may be found is NOT legal. Period. Not even if I credit them.

The inspiration for 20 new patterns in my new PDF booklet comes from the highest grossing movie of all time, and that particular movie, of which I'm 100% sure you can guess without me even revealing the title, just happens to be from the company that has been known to act like a great white shark when it comes to copyright infringement and theft.

Fortunately, Disney has taken the high road with Frozen, perhaps acknowledging (finally) that artwork inspired by a financially successful movie generates more sales and income for the company in the long run, and so far Disney has not gone to great lengths to shut down any and all derivative work inspired by this profitable movie, as in it has in the past. Thank heavens! Whew!!!

Still, nothing wrong with being safe and making sure no production toes are stepped on, in my opinion.

As a result, my newest PDF booklet required more than just crocheting, writing down everything I did and then taking pictures of what I made. Hours of research and consultation were required to make sure I won't be sued or hit with a C&D letter (that's cease and desist, or immediately stop doing what you're doing, for those unfamiliar with the acronym) if I use this magnificent idea. I don't like it when people steal my patterns and photos, so I'm not about to inflict the same kind of injury upon anyone else, even vicious Great White Sharks. I also can't afford to fork out a licensing fee to use recognizable screenshots to illustrate from whence my ideas came.

Dandelion Snowballs

However, it is legal to use "a few" thumbnails of non-copyrighted and non-trademarked items or characters from a film to illustrate inspirations. (For those who don't know, mouse ears are trademarked and have logo status, and violations are aggressively pursued.) "Few" in legal terminology has a subjective definition (which means the number changes; it could be three, it could be five, it could be whatever whimsy a judge in a courtroom determines). I don't want to push my luck, so I've included only four screenshots, from the introduction at the beginning, in the PDF booklet. One new pattern is inspired by the soundtrack, and I've included a photo of the CD label.

That means there are 15 more patterns I've recreated with thread hidden like Easter eggs throughout the movie, which means you get to try to find them!

my snowflakes on turquoise

My newest snowflake pattern PDF booklet features my True Love Snowflake and Elsa's Braid Snowflake, as well as 18 brand new snowflake patterns, a garland pattern and two ornament patterns, all of which will not be published on my blog.

You may do whatever you'd like with floaties you make from this pattern, but you may not sell or republish the pattern. Thanks, and enjoy!

Caribou Floatie Ornament

Finished Size: 3 inches tall, 3.5 inches across
Materials: Size 10 crochet thread in two colors (I used muted yellow and brown), size 8 crochet hook, optional 2 beads for eyes, optional embroidery thread for eyes, optional permanent marker for eyes, small amount of stuffing, optional sequin for air valve

Caribou Floatie Instructions

Lifesaver Tube

This pattern includes linked double crochet. If you are unfamiliar with linked double crochet, see a tutorial here.

With yellow, ch 20.

Round 1: Taking care not to twist ch, 1 sc in 1st ch and in each of next 3 ch, 1 hdc in each of next 3 ch, 1 ldc in each of next 10 ch, 1 hdc in each of next 3 ch. Do not join on this or any of the following Rounds.
If you're not reading this pattern on Snowcatcher, you're not reading the designer's blog. Please go here to see the original.

Round 2: 1 sc in each of next 4 sc, 1 hdc in each of next 3 hdc, 1 ldc in each of next 10 ldc, 1 hdc in each of next 3 hdc.

Repeat Round 2 for 7.5 inches on the outer edge or until tube forms a donut shape without kinking, working 5 sc instead of 4 every 3 Rounds. Sc in the Round migrates to the right. By extending the sc section by one stitch (without changing the number of stitches in the tube) every 3 rounds, donut shape should not twist. When piece measures 7.5 inches on the outer edge, bind off leaving a long tail. Stuff tube. Using tail, sew tube ends together, stuffing as needed to form smooth donut shape. Weave ends inside lifesaver shape.

Caribou Floatie in the works


With brown, make magic ring.

Round 1: 6 sc in ring; do not join on this or any of the following Rounds. Pull magic circle tight.

Round 2: 2 sc in each sc around.

Round 3: * 1 sc in next sc, 2 sc in next sc; repeat from * around 5 times for a total of 18 sc. Draw up loop in next sc, join yellow and finish sc with yellow. Bind off brown.

Rounds 4-8: 1 sc in each sc around.
If you're not reading this pattern on Snowcatcher, you're not reading the designer's blog. Please go here to see the original.

NOTE: Beginning here, stuff head lightly as needed to make crochet easier.

Round 9: 1 sc in each sc around, decreasing 2 sc evenly spaced.

Round 10: To shape head, 1 sc in each of next 7 sc, 3 sc in each of next 2 sc, 1 sc in each of next 6 sc.

Round 11: 1 sc in each of next 6 sc, 1 hdc in next sc, 1 ldc in each of next 6 sc, 1 hdc in next sc, 1 sc in each of next 5 sc.

Round 12: 1 sc in each of next 6 sc, 1 sc in next hdc, 1 hdc in next dc, 1 ldc in each of next 4 dc, 1 hdc in next dc, 1 sc in next hdc, 1 sc in each of next 5 sc.

Round 13: 1 sc in each of next 5 sc, draw up loop in each of next 3 st, yo and draw through all 4 loops on hook, 2 ldc in each of next 4 dc, draw up loop in each of next 3 st, yo and draw through all 4 loops on hook. (Round does not truly end here, but for ease of counting, next st begins next Round.)

Round 14: 1 sc in each of next 9 sc, draw up loop in each of next 3 st, yo and draw through all 4 loops on hook, 1 hdc in next st, 1 ldc in each of next 4 dc, 1 hdc in next st, draw up loop in each of next 3 st, yo and draw through all 4 loops on hook.

Round 15: 1 sc in each of next 7 sc, draw up loop through each of next 2 st, yo and draw through all 3 loops on hook, 1 hdc in next st, 1 ldc in each of next 4 dc, 1 hdc in next st, draw up loop through each of next 2 st, yo and draw up loop through all 3 loops on hook.

Round 16: 1 sc in each of next 2 sc, 2 sc in each of next 2 sc, 1 sc in each of next 12 sc.

Rounds 17-19: 1 sc in each sc around.

Round-20: 1 sc in each sc around; bind off leaving long tail. With tail, sew head onto lifesaver tube. Weave end into tube when done.

Antlers (make 2)

With brown and leaving long tail, ch 12, 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each of next 2 ch, ch 4, 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each of next 2 ch, 1 sc in each of next 2 ch of ch 12, ch 3, 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook and in next ch, 1 sc in each of next 6 ch of ch 12. Bind off, leaving long tail.

Finish: Stiffen antlers in desired shape and using tail ends, attach one to each side of caribou head. Stuff thread ends into body. Attach wiggly eyes, buttons or beads for eyes, or, if for a small child, consider embroidering eyes or drawing eyes with permanent market. Caribou also looks fine without eyes. Attach optional sequin to lifesaver tube opposite of head as valve stem if desired. Attach hanging string or loop to inside of tube on same side as head to balance weight when hung.

Caribou Floatie Ornament


  1. haha awesome job indeed. Oh yeah, the legal mumbo jumbo can sure stifle a lot. But it has to be there to protect work, even billionaires like Disney. Nice that so far they, let it go lol

    1. Oh, good one, Pat! I should have made use of that phrase in my diatribe!

  2. Love the tree floatie. I like the dandelions too. Crocheting a sphere is impressive!

    1. Thank you, Lizard! The spheres were a pain without a graph to follow, but, well, I guess once again necessity was the mother of all creativity...

  3. This is adorable! Great job on the cover too!

    1. Thank you, Krista! I think the cover is a bit corny, but hopefully it conveys the spirit of what I was trying to accomplish. :)

  4. Oh my gosh, that ornament is adorable!

    I will not enter the contest, having already been lucky enough to receive a bit of your custom fabric, but good luck to the entrants!

    I don't think you'll have ANY trouble coming up with 60 more designs.... :)

    1. Thanks, Sue! I think it's one of the cutest ornaments I've ever made. I have it on my desk at work, and it cheers me when stress gets heavy and ugly. 60 more snowflake designs... I think I can, I think I can, I think I can...

  5. Hello! Thank you for your snowflakes! I love them...I think I am a snowflake junkie!! I would love to get your snowflake books, but I can't see how to get the previous years books. I would gladly donate to your cause! Thanks. Katy
    P.S. I have written this about five times -so if they all show up, I apologize!

    1. Thanks, Katie! I think I'm a snowflake junkie, too...

      What I've been doing is offering last year's booklet to anyone who donates at least $25 and all five booklets to anyone who donates at least $35. Thanks for being willing to fight MS!

    2. PS: sorry I misspelled your name. :(. And got only 2 comments from you, so Blogger was very hungry today!

  6. Lopve your snowflakes! Love the chance to donate! Looking forward to the pamphlets too.

    1. Thank you, Wind Dancer, and I must admit, that is one really awesome screen name! I hope you enjoy the booklets! Thank you for pushing me closer to my goal!

  7. Greetings! I was wondering about one thing. I love your patterns, and would like to try and make them for my fellow ladies on staff as presents in the holiday season. MS is a worthy cause, and I will gladly donate to get the PDF booklets, but I was wondering, will it make a difference as I live in Canada?


    1. Hi, Cindy, and thank you for considering a donation! No, it does not matter to me where you live as long as it's okay with you. Readers have donated from about ten different countries. I do need to let you know I am participating in Ride the Rockies this week and do not have computer access through Sunday of this week, and this is the first time all week I've had phone signal. So I am unable to send the booklet until I return if you make a donation before then.

      I think the ladies in your group will love handmade snowflakes!

    2. Thanks for the answer. :-) I will most definitely be donating! Whenever you get the chance to send the booklet is fine with me. I won't have a chance to make any before the end of June anyways, as I teach and things now are getting crazy with exams and grad! I always try to put at least one homemade thing in my gifts I give to the ladies...first it was hot chocolate, then a bath scrub, next were little stained glass ornaments, and then last Christmas was crocheted dishcloths. It is getting a little hard now to try and think of new things to make. :-)

      Ride safe!


    3. Thank you so much, Cindy! And thank you for being patient with my schedule. I really appreciate it!

      Women are very lucky to be on your gift list! I think homemade gifts each year is so special! I hope there will be enough snowflake ideas in these booklets to keep you busy for the next few years. :) There are patterns for a pomander, a gift box, baskets... so not just snowflakes!


Dusty words lying under carpets,
seldom heard, well must you keep your secrets
locked inside, hidden deep from view?
You can talk to me... (Stevie Nicks)

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