MMM ’16 Sign up

In the nick of time, I remembered to sign up for MMM ’16. More info on what Me Made May is, can be found on the original blog of So Zo.  You can read my pledge below, it’s probably quite similar to last year’s pledge.

MMM16

What it means is pictures of me in real life (hopefully), wearing the odd combinations I pick out on a daily basis… So I apologize for my bad taste in advance!

Since I’ve started knitting more actively this year, I’ve actually managed to amass a pretty reasonable collection of stuff. I’m also sewing dresses for work events, but I have troubles sitting in dresses/skirts; Indian style and skirts don’t go well together. So I don’t wear them enough. This should change, for May at least. We’ll see if I can manage to get myself in tights often enough to honor the pledge…

Wish me luck!

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O.O. the Octopus I

Sometimes you (re)find something that you just cannot ignore anymore.

Eye Right Eye

This happened to me at the start of April. I had found the free Octo the Octopus pattern on Ravelry (posted on Knitty here) way before this time, but I was afraid that it would take too long and would be too many stitches for me to actually finish. Since the first discovery I made some dinosaurs, some dragons and some other large projects.  Then, my office wanted to have a knitting project for themselves. They really liked the Allosaurus even though it looked quite angry and wanted something for their own office that could be a group project. I suggested this Octopus that I’d found ages before. Everyone can knit a leg and I can join them to a head at the end with Kitchener stitch.

Starting this project in the office gave me some real craving to make one for myself. I didn’t want to make it in the same colours as the office one, but they had picked all the fun colours: blue on top but the entire rainbow for the bottom of the – legs? arms?  – tentacles. This meant that I had a choice to make!

Flat Spread

I decided to buy a gray and brown ball of yarn and make a striped octopus. I googled ‘striped octopus’ after I’d already knit 4 stripes and found that there is a striped octopus, but it has white too. So off to the shoppy I went again and got some white. The stripes at the top were very regular, so I sewed in a line of white stitches to break it up a little. Then I just went and did completely irregular stripes. All the tentacles follow the same stripe composition and the bottom of the tentacles and his belly are blue. I followed the pattern closely (including errata), however, I did not want to knit with fingering weight yarn. So I substituted with some thicker yarn not knit double and changing the knitting of the eyelids. Google pictures told me that there is an octopus with white eyelid edges, so I chose to do that to get an even edge.

It went a lot quicker than expected. I finished him in under three weeks with most of my free time knitting him. You can find my notes on Ravelry here, they are quite limited *cough*. The reason why this post is posted a little bit after he was finished was mostly because he didn’t really have a name yet. After extensive discussion, we have come up with something…

We are pleased to hereby introduce O.O. Octopus I, Otto Octopuff Octopus The First, to the world. He was finished on April 21, weighs 539 grams, and measures 88 centimeters from head to tentacle. He will rest throughout working hours.
  

To scale

Otto will live on a stool in my living room, actually the black one you see on the left of the picture above. In the picture I’m holding him for scale (note, I am 1.58 m tall), he is quite big! Right now, I do believe that O.O. and the Dragon tie for first spot of most awesome knitted animal..

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Triangle Scarf – Maimu

Scarf

A triangular scarf is what I have also been working on the past couple of weeks. I started it on April 1st and dumped it in a corner on April 6th when I wanted/needed/craved knitting the Octopus. After finishing the Octopus, which still needs a name and has not yet gotten a blog post because of that, and going on public transport for a trip in the weekend, I knew I needed a project. So I grabbed the 2/3 finished project from the corner and put it in the bag.

Scarf

I found the pattern on Ravelry, it was free and created by E. Pauwels and you can find it here and my ‘notes’ here. It’s a really quick and easy knit, and you only have to think at the beginning and end of a row. Which is pretty nice when you are knitting on public transport. The pattern did state that it would curl, and it really does curl. This is why I’ve been attempting to block it, which seems to have worked out fairly well. It does not curl up nearly as bad anymore. The pictures above and below are taken with the thing spread out and pinned to a spare bed-chair.

Scarf Scarf

It’s clearly not symmetric in colour stripes, and I’m not sure how I feel about this yet. This is why this may become a present at some point..

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Allosaurus Awesome

Summer of 2015 saw the start of a dinosaur. During the winter, the dinosaur bits lived in a box. In the spring, the completed dinosaur finally saw the light of day.

Allosaurus

This is the Allosaurus from the Knitting Dinosaurs book and on ravelry. I found some yarn in the stash that was green and red and figured it would make a good Allosaurus. It’s very similar to the one in the book apart from red vs. pink and no teeth, but I like that. The arms, legs and head can all be posed. He is a little smaller than I thought he would be when I started.

Allosaurus Allosaurus

His eyebrows also make him seem a little angry, but that’s part of his face and what makes him an Allosaur (left) and not a T-Rex (right).

Allosaurus-Images Tyrannosaurus-Rex-Images

There are a few more dinosaurs in the book that I like, so you may see more knitted extinct beasts roam around these parts in the future.

For now one last Allosaurus picture and then onto the next finished critter.

Allosaurus

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Jeans!

At some point in the past, I found some actual jeans fabric in a second-hand store and brought it home. A couple of weeks ago, I figured it was time to turn the fabric into actual pants. I washed the fabric beforehand, to get rid of some of the residual ink. However, I did get somewhat smurf-like hands throughout the project. It’s definitely destined for some similar colour laundry.

The pattern was a bootcut pants pattern, from the Burda Easy Fashion Spring/Summer 2009 edition, model number 3. I made a number of changes, including different pockets, more of a yoke, a higher waistband and some on the fly things. The back isn’t perfect, but the front is fairly nice and this thing does not sag after a wear. There are definite improvements possible, but it doesn’t seem to be worse than my store-bought jeans. Prepare for pictures…

Front Back

There is a quite severe yoke, and angled pockets as other ones would not have fit.

Yoke Pocket

The front also has pockets which I closed up a little after sewing to create more storage space. I also added a plaid as the pocket lining.

Pocket Pocket

It closes with a hook and bar type closure and again has the plaid as the lining.

Close Inside

This experiment was successful enough to try something similar again. I would like to create some pants that are a little tighter around the legs and flare out later. We’ll see if it happens!

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Time Crunch Sweater

This sweater was actually finished on March 28. I started writing this post a while ago, and then forgot to finish it. So here it is anyway, the first two paragraphs were written in March, the rest today.

Most people have bad habits, or so I’d like to believe. One of my bad habits is going to the Wibra (local shop that also sells yarn) to check whether they have new yarn in stock. — Now, I don’t need more yarn, I have tree boxes full of the stuff and a sheep to spin. It’ll be years before I get through the stash. This however does not seem to be enough for me to stop setting foot in the yarn shop. — Three weeks ago they did have new yarn in stock. A variegated white to black, bulky, 100% acrylic yarn. I needed to have it, so I got 5 balls.

The ‘problem’ with bulky yarn is that it’s often used to make fairly warm sweaters. Spring was approaching, which meant that I had to start and finish this project quickly. I’d found an inspiration on Ravelry, namely the Eased pattern by Alicia Plummer (here on Ravelry). I thought that the yarn would work nicely with this type of project. However, I was not willing to really follow a pattern for this, so I improvised, more on that here.

Front

I figured I’d gotten enough experience with knitting sweaters in the round so the body wouldn’t be a problem. For the neckline, Eased shows some kind of join or something, but I wasn’t interested in that, so I just cast on stitched and ended up with a seamed tube. I put a shoelace through  it and continued knitting. Using a raglan increase to get the sweater shoulders/sleeves/body. Then the mantra ‘keep on knitting’ got stuck in my head, for both the body and sleeves. I knit until beyond the wrists and created a hole for the thumb. This may be the reason this sweater is inappropriate for summer…

Thumb hole

This sweater also has a new skill, the Russian join, which meant that I only needed to finish four threads (sleeve, sleeve, neck, bottom), a true revelation! The project has been worn a couple of times since, so it really was just in time. Right now it’s actually pretty warm here in the Netherlands, and the sweater is in the cupboard for the time being. It’s very comfortable and I like it a lot!

Front Back

I’ve been saving up my projects, so prepare for onslaught!

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Smurf Hat

I’m slowly but surely attempting to make a winter coat, although it’s been in a corner for a while now. It will have a large white/black/blue check pattern with houndstooth within (see below). I am planing to add a yellow lining to the coat and at some point in time (October 2015) decided that it would be a good idea to make hat to go with the unfinished coat.

Fabric

This required yellow and blue yarn which I already had. While looking through Ravelry I found a free pattern for a Garter Ear Flap Hat by Purl Soho.  I knit it up in two days because it was really easy and fast. Then I put it on for something outside, and everyone told me that it looked fairly stupid. There was a pointy end which elicited comments such as a condom, a smurf hat, too bright, a minion and some other non-flattering things.

Old smurf hat Old smurf hat Old smurf hat Old smurf hat

It sat untouched upon my globe. Until yesterday, when I took out the pointy bit and finished it like a normal hat. I also finally finished the ends and it’s officially fit for wear. It may still look fairly minion-y, but I’m hoping it doesn’t look like a condom anymore..

Smurf hat Smurf hat

It covers the ears nicely but I think I used needles that were too big, and the wind does come through quite easily. If I were to try another iteration I’d only use the ear flap section and make something else for the body of the hat. For the project details (which are few) check Ravelry.

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