I was craving something more calm and beautiful than the mish-mash of plastic baskets, transparent zippered-bags (like the type a set of sheets comes in), and the assorted cotton sacks we were using to store our kids’ toys in. I wanted something aesthetically pleasing that I wouldn’t mind finding strewn across my couch and living room floor. I just couldn’t find the time, though, to make this project come together. There were just too many other tasks to fill my time.
Then last summer my family was given the generous offer of staying in a guest house in Vancouver for the month of August. We decided to do it! I’m so glad we did: it was a magical summer. I introduced my son to all that I love about Vancouver. We reinserted ourselves back into this city I love and I was pretty happy to root my young son in the community and culture that are so dear to me.
Pacific Spirit Park, Vancouver
An element of the magic was also the guest house, itself. It is a gorgeous modern building that you only see in a magazine. It is constructed from concrete and glass and the ceilings are fantastically high. It is well designed and liveable both inside and out. It is also teensy weensy tiny. Together, my family of four lived in a 200 square foot home. And what a relief that was! How relaxing to have so little work to do in order to maintain our living space! Finally I had some time to do something creative again for the first time since the birth of my daughter in late winter. Exciting!!!
With our living space being so small I also had to keep my project small. Living in a small space so well designed also brought back to mind my own desired project of finding a nicer way to house my children’s playthings. I took the bus (how fantastic to be back in a city with wonderful public transit!) to the closest wool store and the lovely woman working there helped me to find a pattern upon which to base my design. I picked out some pleasing and inexpensive burgundy and cream Peruvian wool and got started right away.
Vancouver Skytrain and one of many, many community gardens across Vancouver
I am not an expert at crochet by any stretch so the pattern was essential. I love the way the original nesting baskets look but I quickly changed things up by doubling the wool, using a 10mm/N hook and substantially increasing the number of stitches around. I also experimented quite a bit with the stitches I used for each row. It was really fun!
Finally last month with the help of my husband we got the hooks up in the kids’ room and the sacs all hung and the toys organized. I love the idea of the Waldorf nature table so we added a narrow shelf above the hooks. My son really loves his nature shelf. And I don’t mind so much anymore when he leaves his bag full of matchbox cars on the sofa.