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1  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Double-Knit Earflap Hat - Space Invaders Style! on: April 16, 2011 06:39:29 AM
The ease (and fun!) of double-knitting potholders made me want to find a more challenging dk project - and so the earflap hat was begun. I can't find the pattern except for my condensed printout, apparently I didn't save the link and I just can't seem to find the right combination of search keywords to relocate it. But I used a fairly basic earflap hat pattern and created a chart to fill the pattern in between edge and decreases. Being a nerd at heart I couldn't pass up the invaders - they're made up of so few pixels and are so easily recognised that they're perfect to make a basic design.

Here are a few shots to show off the pattern, eagerly taken as soon as I could get my dpns out of the way! The beauty of double knitting makes for a reversible hat that's twice as warm as one with only a single layer, and it turned out super cozy. I personally like the green-with-brown-invaders side, but that's just me.

Here my darling sister modeled the hat for me, and I totally didn't have to bribe her at all to do it.

And if you look closely, you can see that one of the earflaps features the valiant defender of the earth that the player controls in space invaders games, and above him you can see the exploding remnants of his first kill.

Even using dpns for most of it this was easier than I feared, and especially in the charted section it knit up really quickly. The speed of the pattern emerging made it exciting which is good, because I've abandoned rather a few patterns that lost my interest. Definitely a fun knit Smiley
2  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Banksy Cross Stitch on: April 16, 2011 06:22:03 AM
So the boyfriend and I recently discovered the (currently?) fashionable graffiti artist Banksy, and saw his film (Exit Through The Gift Shop) at the local arty cinema. We both love his pieces, so when I saw the chart for his Pulp Fiction piece on Swedish site Fuldesign (which you can download for free here http://www.fuldesign.se/en/gratis/broderier/), I knew it would make a great Christmas present.

By the time I finished it I was running a little late so I forgot to take any pictures of it unframed, so unfortunately I don't have any GREAT shots, but this will give enough of an idea I'm sure.

The details are a little hard to make out from that distance, but the further away you move the easier it is to see the picture in it. If you want to see what it's based on, just google "banksy pulp fiction" and you'll get plenty of hits! I loved the pattern, and how easily you can make out who Travolta and Jackson are, especially given the fairly recognisable hairstyles they had in that film.

I used black aida with two shades of yellow, a white and two grays, and by the end of it I can't say I was sad that it was done - black cloth is a fairly unique challenge! But it's so worth it, and to see this little piece of artcraft hanging on the wall, merging his interests and my skills, is definitely worth it. Don't you think?

(I do apologise for the light glare, and for the reflection of my mobile in the glass. And yes, that's our ironing board it's leaning on!)
3  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Double-Knit Potholders (Totoro & Zero Punctuation) on: April 16, 2011 05:47:01 AM
I'd always been a little intimidated by double knitting - it looked so complicated! Then I gave it a try, and it's not so bad. Especially if you start with something simple - like pot holders.

The original pattern that inspired this was from Off The Hook Astronomy's Star Trek Potholders (http://offthehookastronomy.blogspot.com/2009/08/star-trek-pot-holders-free-pattern.html), but I used my own charts to make these (the colours look much better in person - had to take these shots with my phone) :

The imp from Zero Punctuation (an online video series where a sarcastic man reviews games, usually pointing out why they suck) was my first try, large blocks of colour make for less changes.

Then we have the big, small and tiny totoro from the Studio Ghibli classic "My Neighbour Totoro". I've always loved this movie and wanted to incorporate them into craft - they can be simplified so easily and still stay adorable. I do find the white totoro a little creepy though, makes his big tummy look like a gaping mouth (shudder!).

The best part about making these was how quickly they come out. I tend to get bored with repetitious patterns (no finished afghans here), so seeing the picture appear so fast was rewarding and exciting. The double-knitting also ends up making a double layer of fabric, so they're thick enough to take the heat like a good potholder should! It's a great project for beginner dk'ers.
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