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21  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Doop from X-Static Crochet Pattern on: August 21, 2012 06:13:27 PM
Doop is a fictional character in the Marvel Universe who was created by writer Peter Milligan and artist Mike Allred. He made his debut in X-Force vol. 1 #116. He is a green, floating spheroid creature of unknown origins who spoke in a "language" all his own (represented in text by a special font). For a time, he also served as the team's cameraman.

His abilities include levitation, an accelerated healing factor, superhuman strength, and he has an extra dimensional void within his body that can store objects and people.

A friend of mine saw a crocheted Doop on another website, minus a pattern, and sent it to me with a request to make one for his desk at work. David said he liked Doop because he looks like a demented pickle. I think Doop looks like a stoned pickle.

         E sized hook
         G sized hook
         Stitch markers (optional)
         1 skein of Red Heart Super Saver in Honeydew
         Small amount of  yarn, your choice of shade and kind (I used Premier Yarn Deborah Norville Everyday in Royal Blue, ED100-09)
         Fiber Fill
         Red, yellow and black felt (small amount of each)
         Fabric glue
         2 googly eyes, 1" wide
         Yarn needle

Working from the bottom up, with the Honeydew yarn and the G sized hook (This is done in the round. Don't join the rows.):
1) Make a magic circle of 6. Join with a slip stitch here only and pull tight.
2) Chain 1 here only, and work 2 sc in each st around [12]
3) Work 2 sc in each stitch around again [24]
4 & 5) *sc in next 2, 2sc in next* repeat ** around
6-19) sc in each st around
20-23) sc2tog. around, evenly spaced, 3 times

Start stuffing the body.

24) work 1 sc in each stitch around
25-28) increase by 3 sc, evenly spaced
29 & 30) work 1 sc in each stitch around
31) work 1 sc in each of 17 sc stitches, then work 3 sc in each of the next 2 stitches. Finish off the row with 1 sc in each stitch around. The section of 6 sc in the previous 2 sc will become Doop's nose. You may want to leave a stitch marker here for later.
32) work 1 sc in each stitch around
33) work 1 sc in each of 18 sc stitches, then work 2 sc in each of the next 2 stitches. Finish off the row with 1 sc in each stitch around.
34) work 1 sc in each stitch around
35) work 1 sc in each of 19 sc stitches, then work 2 sc in each of the next 1 stitch. Finish off the row with 1 sc in each stitch around.
36) This row starts the uneven bumps on Doop's head. Work 5 sc in as many stitches around. Work a 4 dc popcorn stitch so that it pops to the front of your design. (Work 4 dc in the same stitch. Drop the loop from your hook. Insert your hook from front to back under the top 2 loops of the first dc of the group. Grab the dropped loop with your hook and pull it through the stitch.) Repeat the 5 sc/1 popcorn stitch pattern around to the end.
37-40) Repeat row 36, but adjust the sc so the popcorn stitches are not even with the previous row. His bumps are random. There doesn't even have to be the same number of them on each row. Also, decrease each row by 2 random sc. Continue stuffing the head.
41) work 2sctog all the way around and continue doing so until the top of his head is closed. Fasten off the yarn with a slip stitch and weave in the end.

Cut a circle out of the yellow felt, about three fingers wide. Glue the circle to Doop's chest, straight down from his nose (where you may have left the stitch marker), about halfway down between the bottom and the intention of his neck.

Cut an X out of the red felt, making it larger than the yellow circle, and then glue it over the top of the circle.

Take a small sliver of black felt, about 1" in length, and glue it on Doop's face, below the nose, a couple rows down.

Glue the googly eyes on his face, so the horizontal center of each eye is about even with his nose. The eyes should be spaced out so the vertical center of each lines up with the edge of his mouth.

EYELIDS (Make 2)
You're just crocheting rough half circles here. This will give Doop his slightly stoned look. Working from the bottom up, with the Honeydew yarn and the E sized hook:
1) Leave a good length of yarn and make a slip stitch. Chain 10. You may have to adjust your own count here. The eyelids need to be slightly wider than the googly eyes  you're using.
2) Turn and starting in the second chain from the hook, work 1 sc in each stitch across [9]. Chain 1 and turn.
3-5) Work the first 2sctog and the last 2sctog. All stitches in between are 1 sc each. Chain 1 and turn at the end of each row. Fasten off the yarn with a slip stitch at the end of row 5.

Place the lids over the eyes so the eyes are half covered from the top down. Use the beginning length of each  eyelid and whip stitch the lids in place. Weave in any loose ends and fasten off yarn.

ARMS (Make 2)
Working from the wrist first, with the Honeydew yarn and the E sized hook:
1) Make a magic circle of 1 chain and 5 sc. Pull tight and secure with a slip stitch. Chain 1. This is the only time you'll join rows here.
2) Work 2 sc in each stitch around, including the slip stitch from the previous row.
3-13) Work 1 sc in each stitch around.
14-15) Work 1 sc in each stitch around and work 2sctog in the middle of the row. This is Doop's elbow.
16-17) Work 1 sc in each stitch around and increase by 1 sc in the middle of the row.
18-22) Work 1 sc in each stitch around.
23) Work 8 sc, chain 1 and turn.
24) Work 2sctog, 5 sc and 2sctog. Chain 1 and turn.
25) Work 2sctog, 3 sc and 2sctog. Chain 1 and turn.
26) Work 2sctog, 1 sc and 2sctog. Chain 1 and turn.
27) Work 2sctog  and 1 sc. Secure with a slip stitch and leave a couple inches on the yarn.

Lightly stuff the arm. Position the arm so the flap you made at the end is on Doop's side and level with his neck. Slip stitch it into place. Weave in all loose ends.

FINGERS (Make 6)
Working from the fingertips first, with the Honeydew yarn and the E sized hook:
1) Chain 6.
2) Turn and starting in the second chain from the hook, work 1 sc in each stitch across [5]. Chain 1 and turn.
3-6) Work 1 sc in each stitch around. Chain 1 and turn. At the end of row 6, finish off with a slip stitch and leave a couple inches for the tail.

Working from the fingertips first, with the Honeydew yarn and the E sized hook:
1) Chain 6.
2) Turn and starting in the second chain from the hook, work 1 sc in each stitch across [5]. Chain 1 and turn.
3-4) Work 1 sc in each stitch around. Chain 1 and turn. At the end of row 6, finish off with a slip stitch and leave a couple inches for the tail.

Roll each small square into the tightest little rod you can. Whipstitch up the side of the roll, and attach the finger to the hand (four fingers per hand). Weave in all loose ends.

Doop has a back-up brain in his butt. No, really, he does. Working from the bottom up, with the Honeydew yarn and the G sized hook:
1) Make a slip stitch and chain 17.
2) Turn and starting in the second chain from the hook, work 1 sc in each stitch across [16]. Chain 1 and turn.
3-5) Work 1 sc in each stitch across [16]. Chain 1 and turn.
6) Work 7 sc in as many stitches across. Work 2 sc tog, and work 1 sc in each remaining stitch across. Chain 1 and turn.
7-8) Work 6 sc in as many stitches across. Work 2 sc tog, and work 1 sc in each remaining stitch across. Chain 1 and turn.
9-101) Work 1 sc in each stitch across. Chain 1 and turn at the end of each row. At the end of the last row, finish the yarn off with a slip stitch and leave a tail of several inches.

Lay Doop face down on your crafing area. You'll see the start of the two little cheeks should be facing up towards you. Try to line up the bottom edge of the pocket to around row 6 of Doop's body (where all the increases for the bottom of his body are already done). Using the tail you left, whipstitch the butt "pocket" to Doop's body, through the two sides and bottom edges, making sure to leave the top of the pocket open. Weave in any loose ends and fasten off yarn.

He's a green floaty alien, so why not a strange colored brain? Working with your choice of blue yarn and the E sized hook:
1) Make a magic circle of 1 ch and 5 sc. Join with a slip stitch and chain 1.
2) This needs to be turned into a rough little oval, so work the following sequence around this row: 1 sc, 1 sc, 2 sc, 2 sc, 1 sc. Do not chain 1 unless specified.
3) Work the following sequence around this row: 1 sc, 1 sc, 2 sc, 2 sc, 1 sc, 1 sc, 1 sc, 2 sc, 2 sc.
4) Work the following sequence around this row: 1 sc, 1 sc, 1 sc, 1 sc, 2 sc, 2 sc, 1 sc, 1 sc, 1 sc, 1 sc, 2 sc, 2 sc, 1 sc, 1 sc.
5) Turn the brain over and work some random surface sc over one side. Just try to give it a little bit of texture.
6) Work your way back over to one edge of the brain and chain 40. This is almost like Doop's back-up brain's umbilical cord (you don't want to lose a back-up, do you?).
7) Cut off a length of a couple inches and secure the chain with a slip stitch. Use your yarn needle to sew the slip stitch end of the chain to Doop's rear end, on one side of the inside of the butt pocket. Weave in all loose ends and finish off the yarn. You can either tuck his back-up brain into the pocket or have him hold it. Depending on how you've attached his arms, you can adjust the length of the chain as needed.

22  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Made a Lane Bryant shirt smaller on: July 29, 2012 02:59:24 PM
I just finished this modification this afternoon finally because my in-laws just left this morning from a 1 1/2 week visit. I actually bought this shirt in May from my local thrift store and have just been hanging onto it because I didn't have time to sit down with it. I think it was $2.99.

It's a Lane Bryant shirt, size 22. This is the before picture. I knew this would be a big shirt on me, but I loved it so much that I had to have it. The teal and brown are so pretty together, the fabrics are light and airy, and the embroidery on it (although machine-done) reminds me of a Moroccan design. I'm not a plus-sized woman, but I really did LOVE this shirt.

I knew this might be more of an advanced modification than anything I've done so far. I had to remove the stitching from the top and bottom part of the shirt first, on each side, so I could then take in the sides correctly. From both bottom layers, I took about 1.5 cm in on each side of the shirt where it was already pieced together. Then, I had to go back to that horizontal seam and put it back together.

I did really well with this one! I'm surprised that I was able to keep the vertical seams matching on the top and bottom, considering it was just the bottom I took in and not the top. I haven't taken an after picture but it's considerably smaller on me now and it still looks so good! Yay me!
23  CROCHET / Crochet: Discussion and Questions / Anyway to mimic a knit stitch in crochet? on: July 29, 2012 07:20:53 AM
Hi there. I am a long-time crocheter but somewhat of a new Whovian. That being said, is there anyway to mimic the knit garter stitch but do it in crochet? I want to make a Tom Baker-style Doctor Who scarf but I can't knit. I can definitely do it with single crochets, but I have seen the knit garter stitch and just love it so much.

24  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Slight Shirt Modification on: July 15, 2012 08:17:01 AM

This is an XL sized shirt by Mossimo, that I bought a couple weeks ago at my local thrift store. I think it cost me $2.99, and I like to Mossimo line already. I fell in love with this shirt when I saw it but I didn't try it on. Once I got it home and washed it, that's when I finally tried it on. I really should try the clothes on when I'm shopping for them. The store does have fitting rooms. (This is just the after picture, because this modification is so slight, it doesn't need a before picture.)

Anyway, I'm guessing this shirt shrunk at some point, because the arms were tight. Luckily for me, I found this tute over at Crafty Stylish (http://www.craftstylish.com/item/49711/easy-fix-for-that-tight-uncomfortable-sleeve) on how to fix that.

I won't run through it step by step here, but I dropped the hem, opened up the sleeve, and resewed it. samsstuff, the writer of the tute, has a much better way of explaining it.

I also removed the ties from this shirt. They were long thin ties, secured at the sides, up by that hem just below the bust. The rest of this shirt was loose and billowy, which is a look I love but doesn't work on me. I think it makes me look chunky or pregnant, and I don't want to look either. To take it in a little bit, I used a hint I learned from another shirt I bought at the thrift store.

I scored this awesome black and red checkered Torrid shirt, buttons down the front, collared and with 3/4 length sleeves. It has a line of buttons down the back as well, to cinch it in a little bit. I pinned the back of this shirt so that it was cinched too, and then sewed it down. This brought it in a little tighter by about 3/4".

I have a thin braided leather belt from some other piece of clothing that I think will look good with this shirt, so I can wear that on my actual waist instead of having it up high. I hope this shirt lasts me for a while, because the material is thin. I can't tell if it's supposed to be like that or if it's been well washed and well used.
25  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Dresses into skirts on: May 27, 2012 01:26:33 PM
I've turned two long dresses that my husband got me in Iraq a few years ago into skirts. Over the last few years, I apparently have become a little more...busty. Smiley Yeah, sure, busty, that's what it is. I'm sure it wasn't a weight gain or anything. Each dress was a tank top style and I cut the tops off and made new waistbands.

Before of the blue/grey one. This is a beautiful color in real life! See how the tank couldn't be buttoned?

After of the blue/grey one.

I forgot to take a before one of the khaki one. I really like this one, because the left side hem on it has a random point coming down from the asymmetrical hem. That one is secured on the side with a snap.

I'm really proud of how these turned out. I've tried other clothing modifications before and they haven't turned out yet. Granted, I ripped out the waistband a couple times to get it right, but I feel like I've turned a corner with my sewing with these projects. I can't wait to wear these to work!
26  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / Jedi Robe=Finished! on: May 07, 2012 07:32:48 AM
The on-going saga of my Jedi costume has another item complete=the Jedi robe! I finally finished it up last night. This is actually going to be a part of the Jedi costume I made and submitted last year for the costume contest.

I don't have any finished pictures of it yet and I need to head out the door to work, so here's a picture of it when it was about 3/4 of the way complete.

It's made of 100% linen from Joann Fabric, and the color is called "potting soil." I tried buying the remaining yards that I needed online but the fabric store's website kept saying there was an unknown error. The Va Beach store didn't get any more in since I bought all of what they had, so I had to go to the Chesapeake store to get the rest. That was a bit of a bummer too. If I had been able to buy it online, I would have saved a few more bucks over what the in-store sale price was.

Anyway, I bought a total of 7.8333 yards of this stuff ($95.07...YIKES!) and I don't even know how much I used for the robe as I have a lot left over. But the plus side is this: I have enough left over of this stuff to remake the tabbards and sash of the costume. Since I'm going for the best costume I can make, this is a good time to take another crack at it.

The only thing I wish I had done differently was the hem on the sleeves. For the very bottom hem and the hem around the hood, I used an X style of stitch, instead of a straight stitch, in matching brown thread. I thought having those XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX's all the way around the hems might add a little detail to the robe that only I would notice. If I had been thinking, I would have done those same X's around the bottom of the sleeves as well.

I actually made my sleeves an inch or so longer than the pattern, and I made the hood larger as well.

One of the Jedi robe "trademarks" is that the hood has to be large enough to "pool" on both sides of the head on the shoulders. Sons of the Suns had a nice image there to help show how large the hood should be.
27  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Grocery Store Tote from Purl Bee on: May 06, 2012 02:37:37 PM
I just finished Purl Bee's Grocery Store Tote from http://www.purlbee.com/crocheted-linen-grocery-tote/.

I used an I sized crochet hook and one ball of Lion Brand Yarn 100% pure cotton (189 yards of cotton per ball), in Americana #211).

I've had this yarn in my stash for about a year so it was time to do something with it. I love it and I bought it at Hancock Fabrics because I had come across a wonderfully soft red, white and blue yarn up in Yorktown, VA that would have made some killer socks, but it was $30 a SKEIN. This was my substitute purchase (I still have two more balls of it left), even though the 100% cotton doesn't really lend itself to something cozy an wearable. Those are going to be turned into another grocery store bag as well.

This bag is deceptively strong, by the way. I used it already at the grocery store. While I didn't have  any produce to go in it (I see this bag as a replacement for plastic when I'm buying fresh produce), the bagger we had put a half gallon of orange juice, two cans of dog food and one other thing in it (I don't remember what else there was) and it held up just fine!
28  Halloween / Halloween Decor and Parties / Doing Some Halloween Up-cycling for Decorations on: April 06, 2012 12:16:00 PM
I've seen a variety of web pages of projects for little potion cabinets and bottles and I decided I wanted to try something like that for myself for Halloween. But I decided to make mine be full size bottles.

I actually thought, in the beginning, that I'd need some friends so to save some glass bottles and jars for me, since I didn't really want to buy any. I didn't think that just my husband and I would be able to come up with enough glass on our own. Boy, I was wrong! Smiley

I didn't want to have hand drawn labels on my bottles and jars, because I knew I'd never be happy with how they turned out. Somewhere online, I came across vintage looking Halloween labels and I started saving them. I'm still working on a few other containers, but these are pretty much done.

Wow, excuse the crappy pictures! For some reason, I couldn't get a decent photo of these bottles, no matter what kind of setting I was using. And I actually used my real camera instead of my cell phone! Huh

From left to right: The Swamp Fog jar was a jelly jar in a previous life. For fun, I packed it lightly with Fiber Fill. The Fur of Werewolf jar used to have gravy in it. Now, it's stocked with fur that was shed by my German Shepherd. The Graveyard Dust bottle is actually one I bought because I didn't want all the jars and bottles to look the same. It's got white sand and some shell fragments in it, from Tampa, FL. Last on the right is the Mermaid Scales bottle, which used to have sweet chili sauce in it. It now has cut up rubber fishing minnows in it. Word to the wise: when you buy rubber minnows from Wal-Mart to use them in a project like this, make sure you aren't buying SCENTED minnows. These suckers reek, and unfortunately, I will have to reopen this bottle. I want to add some more minnow pieces to it, and I need to buy one more package. But I did like these minnows: they are two colored, grey on top, silver/white on bottom. All I did was snip them in slices and then I had to put my scissors in the dishwasher.  Grin

From left to right: The Powdered Horn of Unicorn was a former hot sauce bottle. Now, it's filled with broken and crushed chunks of white chalk. The Earth Worms jar was a pie filling jar. Now it's filled with rubber sticky fishing worms. The Twisted Twigs jar used to have olives in it. Now, it's filled with small sticks from our maple tree. The Cemetery Dirt jar was a gravy jar in it's previous life. Now, it's got dirt from one of my flower beds in it.

To be on the safe side, I left the jars of dirt and twigs open and sitting on my kitchen counter for a few days, trying to dry them out. I didn't want condensation build-up on the inside of the jars. I printed out the labels at work on the color printer on regular paper and used a glue stick to put them on.

I actually have a couple more bottles at home, that I'm going to be working on soon: poison, human skin and petrified butterflies. I think I'll fill them with iced tea (so I be seen drinking out of it for Halloween), some candied ginger (so I can be seen eating them for Halloween), and some silk butterflies from AC Moore.

But I have so many more fun labels that I want to use, so I probably aren't too close to being done after all. Smiley I intend to scatter these around the kitchen and dining room for Halloween as decorations. I figure if I got an early start on them now, then I'd have plenty of them when Halloween rolls around so it wouldn't be a mad scramble at the last minute. My husband was actually surprised that I was starting my Halloween crafts so early this year. Smiley I think it's cute I was able to get that kind of honest reaction out of him.
29  CLOTHING / Costumes: Completed Projects / It's never too early to start getting ready for Halloween! on: March 25, 2012 03:21:29 PM
I just completed a new prop for the Jedi costume I've been working: the Jedi communicator. From all the research I've been doing online, it looks like the various communicators are somewhat the same but not all identical.

It's been a little while since I looked at the Rebel Legion's costume standards page for a generic Old Republic Jedi, so I gave that a quick check today.Which I was glad I did...I realized i need to pick up two more small belt pouches. I'm going to hold off on dying the one I have. It's kind of expected that you have some accessories, that aren't toys, to be a member.

Some of the pages I looked at for communicator inspiration and guidance were Kin-Char Bamin, the Grand Florida Alliance, and the Padawan's Guide (of course!). Fun Star Wars fact to share: did you know the communicators from Episode 1 were made from ladies Gillette Excel razors? They are super difficult to find now. I couldn't find one in any store, so I bought mine from a seller on eBay.

So here's what I used to make my communicator:
--1 pink ladies Gillette Excel razor
--Instant Krazy Glue, in the craft bottle
--1 can of Rust-O-Leum Painter's Touch in Aluminum
--1 can of Rust-O-Leum Painter's Touch in clear coat (You aren't going to use entire cans, it's just what I swiped from my husband's stash of goodies.)
--2 scrapbooking brads--unknown size of these, but they were part of the Craftster Flat Rate Paper Craft Supply swap
--2 nuts, from the garage here, the brads just happen to fit perfectly inside these
--assorted washers, I used four
--assorted flat pieces of metal, bought from a local Ace Hardware, I used 9 and don't even remember what they were called
--2 air valve caps from my bike (replaced with some new ones from Christmas)
--2 aluminum rivets, also from Ace Hardware
--tiny bit of red craft paint (for the end of the rivets)

In the interest of not overloading you with progress pictures, I'll just post three:

What I started out with.

Finished front.

Finished back.

More progress pictures can be seen http://amylynn98.blogspot.com/2012/03/one-step-closer-to-being-jedi.html. Thanks for looking!
30  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Getting Crafty in the Bathroom on: March 04, 2012 01:45:42 PM
We moved into our house in 2002. It was built in either 1940 or '41. Off hand, I don't remember. I think the bathroom may have been remodeled once. One of the things done to it was to put the same white plastic tiles that are on the upper part of the bathroom walls onto the top of the toilet tank. I didn't take pictures of it, because it was pretty gross, right from the get-go. It also had, at one point, wallpaper on the underside of the toilet tank lid (Huh) that was black and white with drawings of rubenesque women on it, in a kind of Raphael-esque-style. I suppose that was probably done to make the lid reversible or something.

Over the years, I've picked away at the wallpaper and tiles. I covered the top with some kind of purple, Mardi Gras-theme with a fleur de lis print wallpaper. After awhile, I just threw a folded hand towel over it to keep it covered when I got sick of that print.

But a few days ago, I had inspiration strike and I don't know why. I had some Asian newspapers that came as padding in a couple of Christmas gifts and I saved them. I decided I wanted to use those in the bathroom. I thought about wallpapering the cabinet with them, but I didn't think it was smart to tackle that much space so I did a smaller project with them. I covered the top and sides of the toilet tank lid with those newspapers and some Mod-Podge.

To cover up the folds of the newspaper around the sides, I used some Aleene's New Sew Glue to attach some black satin ribbon from Hancock's all the way around the tank lid. It also matches the trim in the bathroom already.

Just for the sake of breaking up the print, I printed out some vintage Asian postage stamps (some were cancelled when they had been photographed) and laid those on top of the newspaper as well. I tried to stick to warm toned stamps, but I really liked that blue one.

I had a good time with this little project. It's only 2-3 layers of Mod-Podge total. It's nice and slick. Right now, I've got my little make-up basket on the back of the toilet, along with some of my husband's shaving things and a little candle. It's kind of an odd, out of place thing in the bathroom, but it's visually interesting, at least to me anyway, and it's going to be easier to keep clean than regular wallpaper was.
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