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11  It's A Jungle Out There! - Animals Afghan in Crochet: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: May 24, 2013 08:51:50 AM
I bought a kit to make this afghan from Mary Maxim's.

The pattern is in Leisure Arts booklet called A Year of Baby Afghans and this was the afghan for August. The yarn is Mary Maxim's Starlet in medium blue.

The afghan was so hard for me to do. You really need to know your crochet abbreviations and pattern-reading skills! Plus, lots and lots of counting stitches. This is a 'no-distractions; I'm crocheting!' type of project for sure. LOL!

The stitches used mainly Front Post Double Crochet and Single Crochet stitches, (in the back loop only).

This was actually fun to make, (despite it being so difficult for me).
I like how it never tells you what animals you were working on. You only had the photo in the pattern book to go by and so you just hoped that you were doing it right. The animals slowly begin to emerge from your stitches and it's pretty neat!

One animal I thought was a baby elephant, I decided must really be a bear. No long trunk. That one in the bottom and top center.

The afghan is bigger than I expected too.

Mary Maxim had put a note into the kit in which they suggested that you begin the project with a smaller H hook and gradually use an I hook and then finally a J hook so I did that. It's to prevent what they called "tenting" in the middle. I guess that's like bunching up like puffy tents. So anyway, beware if you tackle this afghan too. You might want to do the same with switching out the hook sizes gradually.
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12  Hiddleson Baby Animals Filet Crochet Afghan in Crochet: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: March 29, 2013 10:55:21 AM
YAY! I finished at last!

This is a filet crocheted afghan using an Elizabeth Hiddleson pattern.

Here's the back. You can see the seems where I joined the squares and the center panel pieces.
The hardest part was making those two middle panels. In order to have the crochet stitches go the same way as the squares, it had to be worked up width-wise instead of the longer length, (which would have been SO MUCH easier!) In fact, for the sides of the afghan, I just went ahead and did those along the length of the afghan to save my sanity!) LOL

I altered a couple of the animals that I thought looked a little weird on the graphs. The rabbit's head I made come to a pointed nose. (The graph was so icky! It kinda had a double cheek thingy going on.) I also made the cat's nose come to a point. (The graph looked like one of those flat-faced cats, (like Crookshanks!),  which didn't seem to look right in profile like this.) And also the elephant was too small for it's square. So I added a mound and some clouds to fill in the square.

I liked these squares because each one was finished with only one ball of Cebelia thread. Not having to buy two. YAY!!

The border is done with Coats and Clark Old Fashioned thread in ecru. Both threads are size 10. The crochet hook I used was a 7 (1.65 mm) steel Boye.

Happy Easter everyone!
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13  One Small Step - One Giant Leap - Sweater Jacket in Crochet: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: November 16, 2012 06:53:08 AM
This project is my tribute to the late Neil Armstrong who passed away in August of this year.

This is the back. This is supposed to be Neil Armstrong as he steps off the space capsule onto the moon and says his famous quote, "One small step for man. One giant leap for mankind." I tried to emphasize the step footprint there at the bottom with the moon boot tread in the dirt.

Here's the front. (Yes. that's me). It shows a rocket taking off and an astronaut attached with a cable to a space capsule. Below there is a planet and the middle has pockets on each side for the hands. (It's supposed to be a sort of flying saucer spaceship.)  On the alien spaceship pockets is the quote above. 

Here's the front laid out flat. For the astronaut and capsule I used this old Mary Maxim sweater graph pattern from 1966 that I found on e-bay.

The pattern also has a rocket ship on the inside but it was kind of "blocky" looking and I wanted a curvy-lined rocket so I made my own on graph paper for the left side of the front.

This is the back laid out flat. For this I used neat vintage Marimekko fabric of a floating astronaut which I took a photo of and graphed online.  I made a hat to match the sweater.

This sweater jacket turned out huge and I had to crochet inside belt loops and a crocheted sort of belt to cinch it all the way around so it would fit better.

The whole thing is tunisian crocheted except for the sleeves.
The front is two pieces for each side. Then there's the back piece.

The sleeves are just double crocheted by doing a front post double crochet, back post double crochet, alternately around and around for a million rows until I reached the length of sleeve that I wanted. It gives the sleeves some stretch, (sort of like socks), and looks/feels really cool too.

I made the hat this way too after making a circle starting at the top. So the hat stretches out nicely too.

This moon landing was one of the biggest events in my life and I'm happy to have made the event into a sweater to cherish the moment forever.
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14  Swanky Skankin' Skellies Sweater in Crochet: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: July 02, 2012 06:51:03 AM

This is my first tunisian crocheted bulky sweater.
I found this old Beehive sweater pattern on etsy with Mexican dancers and bongo players with music notes. It's a knitting pattern but it is graphed so it can be used for tunisian crochet too.

I loved it but wanted to make it with a really cool dancing skeleton graph I found here http://www.myphotostitch.com/Make_Pattern/Make_Pattern.html on a do-it-yourself graph pattern making site.

At this site, people have made their own graphs which get posted for a while. But they only post photos of the finished graphs for a short time so its not there anymore and I have no idea who made it. Im so glad I saw it and was able to make a copy before it was deleted!

After I got the bongo player pattern I realized that I needed a sweater pattern for a much larger person than on this old pattern. Soooo, I got a Mary Maxim Titan bulky sweater pattern book here. http://www.marymaxim.com/titan-bulky-jackets-pattern-book.html

It was on sale, (still is), and it has lots of nice patterns too. So I used this Titan booklet for the sweater size, used the old Beehive pattern for the bongos and music notes, and used the skeleton graph to make this.

The sweater is almost all wool. I used I Love This Wool from Hobby Lobby, and Lion Brand Fishermans wool yarns. I had the intention of felting it but after I put it together, I realized that it would shrink way too much and never fit. I used a size J cabled afghan hook.

I took photos of the sections I made before assembling it. This way you could see the patterns more clearly.

I made the back first. I had to make the skeleton twice - reversing the pattern for one of them. It was confusing at first but you get used to it.

Heres a photo of the two front sides of the sweater. I used soft Watercolors yarn from Lion Brand Yarn for the stripes. I think that yarn is discontinued now.

Finally heres the sleeves. Now, I asked my husband, (who actually played the drums in high school), if the notes were correct and what about if I reverse them for the other sleeve? (It says to do that in the pattern).

I showed him the photo on the Beehive booklet. I wanted to make sure it was right. Well, he said one was right, the other not. Well, I wanted to get it right. But I guess I misunderstood him or something. So, consequently, I think I made them both wrong. (At this point, I dont care anymore) LOL!

So after taking the pre-assembled photos I went to put it all together. Ugh! It was so hard!

The sleeves kind of come in at an angle from the front and back and so when joining you kind of just have to free-style it. Plus, crochet is so bulky.

After trying several things, I finally wound up weaving black yarn through the seams and cinching it. Its still bulky but, believe me, its much better than it was. I have a few more photos of it all together. My son took the pictures and the color is not as accurate as the separated piece shots I took of it alone earlier.

I have two multi-strand crocheted yarn ties for closure. I added a lot of soft fluffy trim all around too. I was going to make pockets but didnt want to cover over any of the skellies.

I cant wait to wear this! Its perfect for Halloween or Da de los Muertos occasions. Its so dang hot right now but it will be great for fall here in Indiana.

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15  Two Vintage Zodiac Needlepoints in Needlework: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: February 13, 2012 10:53:02 AM

These are two Zodiac vintage Gemini needlepoint kits from 1977.
I bought the kits on etsy.

The Libra one had about an inch done on one corner and that was it.

The Aries one wasn't worked at all.

I finished the Libra needlepoint in December and the Aries one in January.
The kits had real Persian wool too. Great quality and they just don't make graphics like these anymore.

I love retro vintage needlepoints!
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16  Fairy Lights, Fairy Fey, and Fairy Fish Afghan in Crochet: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: December 23, 2011 06:49:45 PM

This project all started a while ago when I was looking up Blue Fish Clothing on etsy. (Blue Fish is a line of clothing for larger sized women. They are pricey and etsy sometimes has sellers with used Blue Fish clothes for cheap).

Anyway, I stumbled upon this t-shirt

sold by a shop called spitfaced.
It's not from the Blue Fish Clothing line. It's just a t-shirt with a blue angel holding her pet blue fish. (At least that's the description from the seller).

Well, I just loved this design for some reason. It's just awesome-looking!
(I did buy the shirt but it's only a large and I'll probably have to make it into something else like a t-shirt bag or something.)
The back of the shirt has a url for a now-gone website of some kind.

Anyway, I used the above photo of the t-shirt, uploaded it to Microrevolt, and graphed it there.
I decided to de-wing her as she looked so elegant running I didn't think she needed wings anyway.

I changed her from blue to green. I had more green yarn. That's basically why.

I added circles of colors like floating orbs to fill in the background where I thought there was too much blank space.

And I used a variegated yarn in fall colors. It's interesting using variegated yarn in tunisian crochet. You never know what it's going to look like.

Here's a photo of the back of the afghan.

The afghan measures 28 1/2 inches wide by 46 inches high.
It's tunisian crocheted using a size J cabled afghan hook.

I'd be fun to make her in different colors and different colored backgrounds too.
Well, I hope you all enjoy looking at it. It's really a fun design.

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17  Hemmingway's Cat by Picasso - crocheted afghan in Crochet: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: November 05, 2011 12:49:30 PM

This afghan represents a ceramic sculpture Pablo Picasso made for Earnest Hemmingway in appreciation of a gift of a box of hand grenades Hemmingway gave to him back in the 1940's. No, really.

The sculpture was stolen from the Hemmingway House, (now a museum), in Florida back in 2000. It was broken into pieces by the time the museum got it back and was stored in the basement for a time.

Then an artist named Bob Orlin made a recreation of the sculpture of which now sits on a mantle back in the Hemmingway Home.

I used an design made for a stained glass piece by an artist named Judy. I have provided a link to her website in my blog as well as photos of the original cat sculpture and replica. Also a brief story about the artwork. It's a pretty interesting story.
(My blog link is at the bottom of my post in the signature section.)

The afghan was crocheted using a size J flexible afghan hook.
The yarns are I Love This Yarn and Red Heart.
I wanted to use Mondrian colors in basic blue, red, yellow, black, and white.

It's a small crib sized afghan of 32 inches wide by 47 inches high. I think it would look great hanging on a wall.

This is the back of the afghan.
I think this is one of my favorite afghans.
I love it!

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18  Snape Halloween Pumpkin in Halloween Decor and Parties by pesky pixie on: October 30, 2011 07:04:59 PM
I was inspired by the wonderful Cheshire Cat I saw earlier on this board and really took the time to try and create a Snape pumpkin this year.

Here he is. I know he's not perfect or anything but I don't think it's half-bad.  Grin

Here's the pumpkin in the flash light. The left side hair didn't show up, nor did the eye but I can still tell who it is. I like it!

I got the stencil at Pink Ray Gun's site here.

Happy Halloween everyone!

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19  United States of America map afghan in Crochet: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: September 16, 2011 11:24:22 AM
Have I got a great pattern to use up all those yarn balls you have stored up in your stash bins for so long!

The pattern is from Lion Brand yarns and it's called Lion Country Afghan and it's found here...

The title sounds deceiving because a 'country afghan' could mean it's a sort of folk art or country scenery type afghan instead of the country of the United States of America.

Anyway, it says it's a knitting pattern but since it's in a graph form you can just use the graph to crochet it in the tunisian/afghan style pattern instead.

This took me about a month to make. I used up a lot of my left-over yarns from previous afghans I'd made.

I did have to buy more skeins for the background - it takes about six skeins of Red Heart Super Saver for that. Also I ran out of yellow in the middle of Texas and had to get another skein of I Love This Yarn. (You can see there's a slight color variation even though it's the same yarn color.) I thought I Love This Yarn was a no dye lot type of yarn but it's definitely different.

In fact, even the background yarn in Red Heart was changed. I used Royal Blue starting on the east coast and ordered the yarn through the mail. When I got it and started it you can see the yarn color difference.

Oh well. It's a sort of patchwork-looking afghan anyway with all the different colors used in the states.

When I reached the Four Corners states part on the graph, I noticed that they didn't meet exactly and so I made sure it was correct for my afghan. (You might want to look out for that if you make one of these and that matters to you too).

My finished afghan, (using a size J cabled afghan hook), is 65 inches high by 81 inches across. For the border I did six rows of the basketweave stitch alternating red and white left-over yarns so the colors vary slightly. I figured since the background was the royal blue that red and white stripes would look nice as the border.

I also made purple borders around Alaska and Hawaii to indicate that those are just insets and the states really don't belong there, (even though that's fairly obvious to folks).

I had a hard time fitting this all into one photo shot and had to get my sons to come and hold it up for me. Sorry it's not laid out nice and flat.

Here's a shot of the back of the afghan too. It's nice and neat.

This project was so much fun and I really enjoyed making it!  Grin
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20  Statue of Liberty - Twin Towers afghan in Crochet: Completed Projects by pesky pixie on: July 29, 2011 11:08:29 AM

This Statue of Liberty afghan is tunisian crocheted with a size J cabled afghan hook.

I used this free online "coloring book" picture of the statue made by Shala Kerrigan.
I graphed that photo at Microrevolt's knitpro website.

For the two towers on either side of the statue I crocheted them by doing the basketweave stitch while switching the colors so that it looks like windows in the buildings. (I know that the statue would really be facing to the right when photographed with the towers but I wanted her facing front of course).

I chose a lot of aqua and turquoise colors because the of statue but I thought they looked nice for the buildings too. Kind of somber.

I'd been to visit the statue and the World Trade Center back around 1979 and I've posted some of my photos of that trip in my blog.
That's why this afghan is special to me.
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