Posted in amigurumi, crochet, design

Let’s Talk about the Birds and the Bees

So I’ve taken a small break my chain chomp design to work on a project that’s been ongoing/stalled out for quite some time now.  You may not believe this, but I’m one of those crochet dare-devils you’ve heard of.  Yes, a yarn bomber! *cackles madly*

As far as “walking on the wild side” goes it’s pretty tame I’ll admit, but it’s just the kind of social deviance I enjoy.  I’m not much of an artist, but I’ve always admired street art.  Adding a textile facet to it was just icing on the cake.  I even have a group, though it might as well be dead for all the attention I give it these days.  IF you’d like to check out the FB, you can find it here.

Yeah, if you followed the link than you know the page hasn’t been updated in nearly two years. >.>  My fault entirely because I was the major driving force behind it though it originated on Ravelry.  If you’d like to check that out it has had a bit more activity in the last 24 months. I’m going to try and be a bit better about it starting with my newest yarn bomb.


These birds (there are seven total) are not just my first yarn bomb in a while, but also a part of the Art Assignment that I’ve posted about before.  This one is for Stakeout.  I’ve done several yarn bombs, some recorded, others (many) not and I’ll get around to putting together an actual gallery one of these days, but I’ve never stuck around to see how people interact with them.  This time I’m going to pick a place to set up where I can see how people react and if they take them.  I look forward to seeing what people do.

This pattern is Caroline’s Birds by Marlo D Cairns, but I find it a bit hard to follow so I’m going to edit and repost it (obviously I will not be taking credit for the design).  I also altered the design a bit for myself so I’l probably post my design edits and the pattern I came up with for the wings.

I inadvertently dipped my toe in cliché town when I also decided to bang out a quick couple of bees to give to The HIVE, a Community Innovation Center located in the Tampa downtown library.  I like how they turned out and I’ll include their VERY quick pattern below.


Bee

Materials needed:

Black yarn

Yellow yarn

White yarn

Preferred hook (mine’s G)

Yarn needle

Body:

With yellow MR 5 (5sc)

Rnd 2: inc around (10sc)

Rnd 3: work even (10sc)

Change to black

Rnd 4: *sc, inc* 5x (15sc)

Rnd 5: work even (15sc)

Change to yellow

Rnd 6-7: work even (15sc)

Change to black

Rnd 8: *sc, dec* 5x (10sc)

Stuff firmly

Rnd 9: *dec* 5 (5sc)

Fasten off and weave in ends

Wings (make 2)

With white

MR sc, hdc, 3dc, hdc, sc (7st)

Tighten ring to form wing, fasten off

Sew wings onto bee’s back

I hope you find the pattern easy and fun, let me know if there are any mistakes.

Happy stitching!

Posted in amigurumi, crochet, design

Shaping Shenanigans

Shaping sucks.

Not so much the action of shaping during crochet that, provided you have good, clear instructions can be quite pleasant because you see what you’re making start to emerge and that’s cool.  No, it’s figuring out the shaping of a new project that’s a royal pain in the patootie.  It all started with this unbearably awesome chain chomp cat bed on Pinterest.  I don’t have the building chops to make anything half so amazing, but it did make me want to crochet a chain chomp.

So I start looking into patterns.  Nothing feels quite right, some looked good to me but they all seemed to have their mouths closed and I really wanted one with the mouth open.  So I decided to tool around and try to figure out a pattern for myself (not a bad idea per se, but time consuming and potentially very frustrating).  I will fully admit that I looked up crochet Pacman patterns to get an idea of how to start the shaping, because I was originally at a complete loss.  I have two approaches I’m going to be trying and I started with the first last night.

The first effort was….well it went so poorly that I ripped it back out immediately and didn’t even bother with a pic of it.  My second effort was slightly better in that it was moving in the rightish direction.  Still came out looking like the chain chomp had an under-bite that would make King Charles II of Spain jealous.  Unfortunately I had fastened him off and hidden his ends so much that digging it all out again seemed like way too much effort.  So I moved on and now it’s a cat toy.

  
In this case the third time wasn’t a charm exactly, but it did look a whole hell of a lot better.  Still looks really awkward, partially because it’s not stuffed and hollow, more because it’s not quite a circle, it’s this really wonky shape that I’m not really sure what to do with.  Hmmm, well I did the thing where I wove in the ends here too, so I’m still not sure if I’m going to rescue the yarn, depends how I’m feeling tonight.

  
I also had to rip back the ENTIRE shawl I’d been doing because I realized that when I “fixed” a problem with the design I was setting myself up to make blocking it out to be an actual triangle difficult if not impossible.  So I’m back to triangle one on that project, but it does work up nicely.

  

Well, those are most of the projects I’ve been working on. When new and interesting things come up I’ll post more. 

Posted in blankets, crochet

Yarn, new crochet skills, TETRIS!

So this week hasn’t been as productive as I would like it to have been (when is this not the case?), or rather not obviously productive.  I did learn how to broomstick lace crochet (really cool, but tricky at first) and I really have this video to thank.  I needed to learn so I could crochet my sister an infinity scarf.  I’m using this pattern, but I’ll actually twist it to make it a true Mobius.   The yarn I’m using is absolutely gorgeous.  I was originally going to use a spare PVC pipe I had laying around, but I thought the loops looked too big and awkward so I’ve down-sized to a more moderate wooden dowel.  I just need to sand it a bit to make sure it doesn’t snag on the yarn (I had a picture of the dowel, but wordpress has decided it doesn’t like it.  I’ll take another pic when the scarf is in progress).

Aptly named, wouldn't you say?
Aptly named, wouldn’t you say?

Luckily I’m not the one who bought it, because it’s predictably a pretty penny.  My sister bought it on the condition that I’d make the scarf for her.  I’m really looking forward to working with this yarn, it’s so lovely.  I’ve also made some headway on my new tetris squares, look at them all!

Tetris squares everywhere!

I’ve also got blue, but I need to hunt up some cyan and magenta.  I originally thought I could use my lavender Red Heart, but I don’t think the color’s bright enough.  Oh and if case you were wondering about that pile of unraveled squares.  Yeah, I straightened them all out and reattached the yarn pieces together so I could wind them all back into balls.  It was time consuming.

Since I’ll be visiting my family over Labor Day I don’t know how much I’m going to get done, but I figure I’ll bring tetris square stuff and also my Art Assignment work.  Hopefully I’ll have something more substantial by the end of the weekend.

Posted in amigurumi, blankets, crochet

Productive? What’s that?

-_-;;;
I’m sure it comes to no one’s surprise that I haven’t been as productive this year as I would have liked.  Sure, I recently moved, but that’s not really a great excuse anymore.  I haven’t been a total slacker though; I’ve been churning out granny square blocks for my Tetris blanket when I want something to do with my hands while waiting.

Tacheton wanted in on the shot
Progress!

 

Tacheton (my cat) clearly thinks you’d rather have a picture of him and who am I to argue with that face. XD I’ve got the acid green and blinding yellow down with some black empty space squares, but I really should get the other colors as well.  I figure I’ll just make ridiculous quantities of squares and then just set them up how I see fit when it comes time to actually assemble the blanket.  I’ve also been working on my MLP:FiM design, though I’m a little stuck on the head.  Show accuracy is really important to me so I’m waffling over which design I like better and would really appreciate an outsider opinion.  So here are my head designs.  For reference the pony in the upper left corner was my main model. The poll will be open for one week, please make your opinion known below!  I welcome comments and criticism.

 

Female Head 1
Female Head 1

 

Female Head 2
Female Head 2

 

MLP:FiM body
I’m also working on the body shaping right now.   I think instead of making the neck a second piece that I have to sew on, I’m going to try surface crocheting it on.  I’ve only had one other experience with surface crochet, I’m sure you remember, so I’ll have to be really exacting on this.  As soon as I’ve got the pattern worked out, I’ll post a copy here and hopefully will be able to work on out as a pdf. *does the I don’t know what I’m doing dance*

Finishing up the basic pattern is my goal for this week, we’ll see.