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1  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Owl-orimetry, with pattern! on: May 08, 2007 08:37:09 AM
I enjoyed the Calorimetry pattern from the Winter 2006 issue of Knitty greatly. So much, in fact, that I decided to make lots of my own. I only followed the pattern to a T the very first time around. After that, I was inspired by all sorts of craftsters, many of whom had altered the pattern themselves. I threw in cables, I made it narrower, I made it much wider.

So when I saw a hat with adorable owl cables recently here on Craftster, I thought that another Calorimetry was the next logical step. So, dear craftsters, I bring you Owl-orimetry.

Look at how pretty I am! Too bad it's not actually in focus.
Of course, when I adapted the owl cable pattern, I forgot to take the spacing between the cables into account when I figured the initial stitch count and pattern. This left me with uncentered owls and giant holes, as I didn't feel like short-rowing the whole way. I did, however, like the way the little tabs looked on the ends, but didn't leave them in for the second go-around, when I figured the spacing correctly.

The owl cable pattern isn't mine, by the way. I found it on the world wide internets. Also, this pattern assumes that you're already familiar with the original Calorimetry pattern, and that you know how to do the accompanying short rows.

Owl cable pattern
(11+3 st rep, beg WS)
1: Work one row of reverse stockinette (purls on the right side).
2: [p3, k8], p3
3: k3, [p8, k3]
4: [p3 c4b, c4f], p3
5-11: alternate rows 2-3, beg and end with row 3
12: [p3, c4b, c4f], p3
13: k3, [p8, k3]
14: [p3, k1, p2, k2, p2, k1], p3
15: k3, [p1, k2, p2, k2, p1, k3]
16-17: rep rows 1-2
18: [p3, c4b, c4f], p3
19: k3, [p8, k3]
20: Work one row of reverse stockinette (purls on the right side).

Important note: as you work the twenty rows with the owl cable, you will also incorporate shaping. I did this with short rows. On each row, short row 1 stitch per side, to avoid gaping holes (like the top photograph below).

Short rows are worked on the first 5 of the 9 stitches on the outsides of the markers. Also, these 9 stitches are worked in garter stitch. To make the fun little narrow tab-like ends, the first short row on either side can be worked over 4 stitches, and the rest of the short rows over 1 stitch.

Cast on 98 sts. (I like the cable cast on; you can see directions on
Knitting Help, about halfway down the page).

Work two rows of garter stitch. On the second row, place one marker 9 stitches in from either end. (The space between these two markers is where your owl cable pattern will be. From the marker to the end of the row is where the shaping magic will happen.)

Begin owl cable pattern. At the same time, start your short rows. (In other words, work your reverse stockinette to the last stitch, wrap and turn, and start row two.)

RS: Sl wrapped stitch, knit to marker, sl m, begin cable pattern for 7 repeats, sl m, knit to last stitch, wrap and turn.

Continue through cable pattern, wrapping one stitch per row. Once you finish row 11 of the cable pattern, you will have wrapped (short-rowed) 5 stitches on each end. Start increasing your short rows, picking up the wrapped stitches you left behind.

Work final row of owl cable pattern. You should be ending your last short row here on this row.

Work two rows of garter stitch.

Bind off. I used the k2tog method: k2tog, *sl st from RH needle to LH needle, k2tog.*

You should have both of your yarn ends, from the cast on and the bind off, on the same side of your FO. Draw each of the ends through the opposite side, and tie them in a bow. Pop it on your head, and go out on the town! You're now just as stylish, if not more so, than xamonster!

My first edge, with a squished owl and a hole.

The new edge, sans hole.

By the way, this pattern is typed up from the scribbles in my knitting notebook, so mistakes are possible. Let me know and I'll fix it up!

Thanks to sundayafternoonhousewife for requesting clarification. Sometimes I'm garbled.
2  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) / Fly Away Home on: March 05, 2007 08:49:34 AM
So ... I've done a total of eight or so ATCs. In the past week. And in my life. I thought it would be fun to enter this challenge. I borrowed one of my mom's many butterfly stamps to create it. I plan on giving the set to her at some point. She loves scrapbooking and altered items, and I thought it would be nice to share some of my first ATC work with her.

First, the set:

And (really big photos of) the individual cards:

You may not be able to tell, but only half of the butterfly is glued down on any card. I wanted them to have a flight-ish quality, so I left one side free.

I'm pretty proud of them, for my first try. I hope you like them!
3  UNITED STATES / Iowa / The Village Knit Wit, Donna's -- closing! on: December 22, 2006 09:22:02 AM
A friend of mine from the Knitty board told me that The Village Knit Wit, located at the Shops of Roosevelt, is closing. They're having a 40% off sale right now. I haven't stopped by, as I just got her message this morning, but it's worth checking out.

Also, I've heard that Donna's Country Collection in Valley Junction is closing; Donna wants to retire and such. The article was in the Register here.
4  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Hello Yarn skull tote on: September 20, 2006 12:55:04 PM
I got this kit for Hello Yarn's Mini Skull Tote from calico13 for the Magic Yarn Ball Swap, and now am finally posting my FO pix.

The main yarn is Lamb's Pride Worsted. The skulls are Cascade 220 (black) and Cascade Quatro (teal). I used US 10 1/2 circs, and knit flat according to the pattern. I realize now that I forgot to take the color stranding into account with my tension and ended up with a little puckering, but it all blocked smoothly in the end, and has gotten even better with use over the past few days.

Before felting, with Orbit gum for size.

After felting, holding a Wheat Thins box.

Teal skulls before and after felting.

A few more photos can be found on this Flickr photoset. Hope ye like it, mateys!
5  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Savvy? Felted Pirate Tricorn Hat on: September 08, 2006 10:28:46 AM
Just the other day, I was browsing my melange of knitting websites when I came accross a link to Knit Like a Pirate. Now, apart from a slightly damp head and smelling a bit of soggy sheep, I have a brand new hat!

Hot off the needles, on my head, pre-dryer.

On my head, fresh out of the dryer. Shaped with safety pins.

It seems I don't take the greatest pictures of myself all of the time, even if I have a mirror for help.  Cheesy  I took about twenty photos, this being the best.

The yarn is Paton's Classic Merino in black, doubled and knit up on US 13 29-inch circs. It took about 2 1/3 skeins. (The pattern calls for 600 yards of wool.)

I intend to add it to my POTC Depp-wear. The rest of my pirate wear can be found here, including a pre-dryer picture with my cell phone, to model size.

6  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Discussion and Questions / Knitting with beads, size 8/0? (spoiler for calico13) on: August 26, 2006 06:57:13 PM
First of all, if you're calico13, you shouldn't be reading this. I don't want to spoil the MYB Swap surprise!

Okay. I did a couple of searches and didn't really turn up anything helpful, so here goes. My apologies if this is a duplicate question.

So I'm looking at a knitting pattern that requires size 8/0 beads (360 of them!) to be strung on before casting on the project. My problem is, I went to Michael's today and found nothing but 10/0 and 6/0 (well, and a bunch of others that weren't marked using the same system, whatever that system is, and no way to compare them without defering to a beading expert).

The yarn is fingering weight (standard sock yarn sized). I decided against the 10/0 seed beads, as they just looked too darn small. I decided to get two packs of 6/0 beads that should coordinate with the yarn. Do you think that the sizes are close enough, or should I try to find somewhere that has 8/0 beads? I just don't know enough about beads, beading, or bead sizes to be able to tell for myself. I don't want the beads to be too bulky do any of you think they would be?

Thanks for any comments!
7  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / one sock on: July 05, 2006 02:39:50 PM
About three weeks ago, I started a pair of socks. No, actually I started one sock. I then spent a busy couple of weeks as a camp counselor, but managed to get to the toe decreases. This past weekend, I finished *gasp* a sock!

In all its socky glory ...

There's a hole in my gusset, dear Liza ...

The pattern is mimo's 2x2 socks, and you can read a little bit more on them on my blog. I'll post the rest of the pictures, once I actually get the other sock done, here.

Comments and criticism are welcome. (Encouragement is also welcome — it helps me avoid SSS!)
8  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / fake dreads for piratey goodness (fresh photos!) on: July 04, 2006 10:40:50 AM
I finished my costume and wore it to an evening show of POTC 2. It was my roommate's birthday, and my goal was to embarass her as much as possible. She wasn't, though.

This is my face.

The pirate medallion, front side.

The pirate medallion, back side.

A few assorted bobs and scarves for extra pirate fun.

In progress ...

The first 12, displayed on a Dasani flat.

Detail of one strand.

I ended up making about 30 dreads. They're made of 1 strand of Red Heart, random brown fun fur, and a strand of gold (and some brown) embroidery floss. It's the twisted cord method: take a strand (or many strands) of yarn about 4 times longer than you want the finished product to be, fold it (or them) in half over a finger or a knitting needle (or put it on the hook of a drop spindle), twist in one direction until it starts to double back on itself, then fold it in half and let it unwind a bit. The result should be a loose-ish cord. I slipped the loose ends of the cord through the loop that was on the needle/finger/spindle. I didn't need to knot them.

I threaded some beads on, to get the beaded dread effect. You can see that in this photo on the right, tucked behind my ear for some reason. It took a little trial and error to get it in the right place, but it wasn't difficult at all.

They're all safety-pinned to a nylon stocking on my head. (I bought a cheapo pack of three pairs of thigh-highs for $1 at Dollar General. I found the bandanna there, as well; it was also $1.)

The pirate medallion is made of polymer clay (Fimo), which I made at work on Friday before the show. I cut the round shape with the lid of my Burt's Bees lemon cuticle cream. It worked perfectly. The detail was done with a mechanical pencil and a paper clip; the latter worked much better. When I got home, I baked it at 200° for about 15 minutes, then painted it with acrylic paints after it cooled. I didn't have any gold, so I painted it an orangey yellow and did light layers of silver paint over that. After those dried, I did a quick layer of dark brown paint with a very soft brush, so that the paint would get into the crevices. I wiped it off the surface with moistened toilet paper, and it stayed in the crevices.

A few other photos are located under my Flickr tag yarrrn. I had lots of fun! I'm going to improve the costume for POTC 3 next summer ...
9  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Knitty's Satchel, modified on: March 05, 2006 10:20:54 PM
It began with the Knitting Olympics. I wanted a bag. More precisely, I decided that I wanted to modify Knitty's Satchel to have a mosaic motif, instead of the pattern's stripes.

I cast on a couple of days late due to lack of yarn. I was indecisive throughout the whole project, beginning with the yarn colors. I chose four different hues of Cascade 220 in the end: Blue Hawaii, Bluestone, Chartreuse, and Highland Green. (At this point I was in a bit of a time crunch, as I was moving most of my life the same weekend the KO began.)

I started out with US 15 DPNs, doubling the yarn. Then after a while, I was afraid that I'd run out of yarn. I switched to US 8s and a single strand, only to discover that I hated it. So I cast on for a third time, once more on the 15s. I stuck there. I even managed to find a size 15 circ, which is no small feat in my hometown. I did start to run out of yarn when it came time for the strap, but I discovered a LYS with two of my four shades and was able to continue.

I was knitting for Team Make It Up As You Go Along. I think you could probably figure that out from the way my bag looks. My train of thought was roughly Waves! Diamonds! Seed-like spots! Uh ... line! Uh ... okay, just pick something, I'm tired!

About 1/3 through the body of the bag.

The FO after felting.

That lovely hourglass shape? I didn't aim for that. I kind of forgot to be a little bit looser while stranding. It will either stretch out over time, or it won't. I don't think I'll mind either way. I intend to make at least one pocket for the inside, as well as a little bag for knitting notions or whatever. First aid, maybe.

I finished the entire process on March 5, which included the felting and blocking (and drying) of the bag. The KO finished on Feb. 26. I was about a week late. But hey, now I have a sexy new bag for work tomorrow!

And I'm totally hooked on felting. (Fulling.)

You can view my entire Flickr photoset dedicated to my Knitting Olympics project here, or you can browse my blog to read about my project, if you like.
10  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Craft me! swap on: February 12, 2006 10:11:20 PM
While driving over 200 miles earlier today, I was inspired to craft. (It doesn't take much these days.)

In the same vein as the DIY Twin challenge, I think it would be neat if you crafted your swap partner. As in, you give your partner a photo of you and a list of things you like, and your partner produces a stuffie, or a felted person, or an amigurumi look alike, or a sketch, or a sculpture, or any other crafty representation of YOU!

(On the other hand, this may be just a plot to get an amigurumi version of myself ...)

Good idea? Bad idea? Let me know!
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