Let’s go with that. So I’m behind on things I’ve wanted to share. I usually post any handmade items I’ve made for gifts, but this past Christmas I received some very nice handmade things that I’ve been wanting to show off.
First, the above knit kitty sitting in a box (as all proper kitties are wont to do) was made by my sister. She said since I always make critters for others, it was time I received one. This little guy hangs out on my desk with me now.
From the kiddos, I got this cool bookcase magnet, and on closer inspection, they didn’t just include some random books, but some of my favorites and my own short story collection. Can you identify any of the titles? I’m not sure the level of detail can really be properly appreciated from a photo.
And to continue the book love, my oldest drew this picture for me. Any Diskworld fan would not need her caption telling us who this is, but I appreciate the thought. She’s only read one of the series herself so far, but that was enough for her to understand my love of the Luggage.
The first amigurumi I finished was this Baron Zemo doll. While I was very excited to have found this pattern, I started to get nervous when everyone I showed it to responded:
“It’s Baron Zemo!” I’d reply.
“Oh!” they would say, “Who’s that?”
But I held faith that if anyone would know who this was, and would know without me having to explain, it was my youngest. They’re a big Marvel fan, and the Winter Solider is their very favorite. For anyone still lost: Baron Zemo is the main antagonist in ‘Captain America: Civil War’ and also important in the ‘Falcon and the Winter Solider’ TV series. And – I was right. They knew immediately and they love him.
A probably more well-known Marvel character is amigurumi #2: Vision. Isn’t he cute? Both patterns are from Guichai on Etsy. They have so many cute patterns it was hard to choose. I changed the cape a little because I picked a yarn that was a little too small to fit the pattern as written.
Since August just finished, this entry could be misunderstood to reflect that month. Alas, I am now a full year behind on my temperature blanket. This represents the temperatures from August 2021.
My Christmas Amigurumi projects from last year were bigger and more complicated than ever, and I admit to having some crochet burnout afterward. I had done very little crochet at all for months. I started up again when the kiddo and I came down with Covid a month ago (coincidentally when many of my co-workers stopped masking – to add my personal anecdotal evidence into the pro-mask collum) and we isolated together in my bedroom. They got me all caught up on the Marvel verse with a week-long movie and series marathon, and I started making progress on the temperature blanket again.
It is interesting to look back at last year’s temperatures at the same time I’m experiencing this year’s. Last year, while the temps were still high, with many days in the 90s, this week has been brutal, with yesterday and today hitting near or over 115. Because I have a record, I know we never hit that high last year. The rest of the week should be in the lower 100s, but that nice green stripe on the blanket representing temps in the low 80s is looking really nice.
Well, now that the sun has set, I’d best get out to water my plants so they have a chance to survive the rest of this heat wave.
I can’t believe I forgot to show off this guy! It was a lot of work; probably the most difficult project I’ve tried so far. There are wires in all the ‘fingers’ and toes and arms and legs and it is brushed to make it fuzzy. It also uses 2 strands of yarn at a time which is not something I’ve done before and it didn’t feel natural to me.
The pattern is from Critter-iffic Crochet. While I am not a fan of having to watch a video to follow instructions, the linked video in the pattern was a life saver for understanding how the toes came together and the complicated assembly. So, due to the complexity and size, I actually didn’t finish this one in time for Christmas, which might be why I forgot to post it when I did finish it earlier this year.
The kiddo who received a bag full of not quite done parts was super paitent as I completed it, and loves it now. They have gotten very into bats over the past year so this guy was worth the wait to them.
So this was a more challenging project than I had anticipated. I thought I would just find a nice wolf pattern and adapt it to the colors I wanted. Well. I couldn’t find a realistic wolf pattern I liked and the color changes turned out to be challenging for me, plus Wolf Link has a bunch of other stuff going on, like the chain around the leg and the green mane-link thing happening and a lot of details and symbols on the face.
I ended up using the German Shepard pattern from Amigurume Pets by Allison Hoffman and doing my best to add the markings, color changes, mane, and shackle. Also, as you can see in the photo, the fringe around the face I just ended up using felt to add on, partly because I was afraid of messing it up and partly because Christmas is a hard deadline and I was out of time to fiddle.
The teen loved it anyway and I noticed he has a place of honor in the critter collections, so I can call this a win.
My niece has a sweet and beautiful grey bunny. A real, alive one. While I believe she likes attention, I thought it could still be fun to have a version that likes being hugged and squished and put wherever she might like, so I made a plushy version.
To save my life I cannot now find the pattern I used. I found one that was what I thought I used, but it’s a paid pattern, and I definitely used a free online pattern because I remember that the website had something blocking printing so I had to sit at my computer when I needed the next step and I had to keep the tab open for a week or so because I didn’t have the time to make it all at once. Also, I didn’t realise until I finished that the pattern didn’t include a tail so I had to improvise one becaue a bunny totally NEEDS a tail. If I can track it down I will edit this to include the pattern.
The other change I made was to use crazy bug fluffy yarn. It’s a size 7 yarn called Chinelle Home that I got at Michael’s. I wanted the bunny to be about life-sized so I used a small bunny pattern but enlarged it with a big hook and big yarn. Plus it is super soft super plush yarn. So snuggly.
It’s all pinks and browns in July. Since I’m now working on this in October/November and I have nice cool evenings where snuggling under a heavy blanket is nice, I thought I’d start catching up. And while I’m keeping up (not falling further behind) I did forget one key thing that is going to interfere with my time to spend working on this project.
I have also started crocheting my yearly Christmas amigurumi for the kids. Now that the kids are big, and don’t go to bed before me, finding time to crochet in secret is harder. Plus I’ve picked a couple tricky subjects to work on that might be fairly time-consuming (no spoilers until after Christmas). Still, I can work on the blanket openly, so I will still have family movie nights and other good times to work, I just don’t think I will be making the fast headway I assumed I would.
Not to mention, NaNoWriMo has begun and while I’m not in it to win it this year, I am still in it.
That’s how far behind I am. But I’ve done more on the blanket this week than I probably have in the last month because our evening are nice and cool, so having a heavy blanket in my lap at night is nice now instead of torture. So I expect progress to pick back up again.
Don’t know if I will ever go as fast as I did in the beginning, because back then it was small enough for me to bring along wherever I went so I could work more often. Although for right now, my youngest is in an art class for about an hour and a half once a week, and even though I have enough time to go home, I’ve instead been staying in the car with my crochet and an audiobook, and it’s so relaxing I think I’ll keep that routine up at least through the end of their class. I can get several rows done at least on those nights.
In general, I am maybe wishing I’d reversed the use of pink and brown. It’s turning out not to have all that much brown in it and I envisioned more, and the pick is getting a bit much. Looking over the July and August numbers, I think June might be the last we see of green for awhile.
As June marks the halfway point, I decided to measure again. It looks like I’m right around 40 inches, which predicts a finished length of 80. That matches with my prediction back in March, so it’s good to see I’m staying consistent. That’s not counting any border I end up adding, but I think this will end up being a great size for our bed.
And since I’ve only been sharing a month at a time, here at the halfway point seems like a good time to let you see the changes over the whole so far:
I’m not sure I remember exactly when I started working on this scarf, but it was at least 3 to 4 years ago. I taught myself to knit specifically so I could make this scarf. I used the pattern labeled as ‘original’ from http://www.doctorwhoscarf.com/s12.html , although I just used the yarn that I could easily find that seemed close-ish to the right colors. I can’t share what exactly I used because most of the labels are long gone and I just don’t know. I know it was nothing fancy: Red Heart, Lion Brand, and that sort of thing.
The scarf and I went to SiliCon with Adam Savage this past weekend. Despite the fact that my ‘costume’ if it could be called that consisted only of the scarf, and the hat, I got lots of nice complements. Got lots of head nods and waves from the other versions of The Doctor when we came across one another. In retrospect, I maybe should have asked for some photos with them, but I was so happy to be out having nerdy fun with masks and without crowds. They severely limited attendance. I read somewhere it is usually 30,000, but was 5,000 this year. For example, here I stand outside a main hall, and just look at all those people nowhere near me. It was great.
We attended both days but I only wore the scarf on Sat because, even indoor with air conditioning, this scarf is heavy and HOT.
Other weekend highlights, was getting signed books from Andy Weir and David Gerrold. I also went to the writer panel with was fun and interesting. I saw so many other cool books in Artist Alley and it was painful not to buy something from each, but we have a very pricey car repair we are trying to navigate at the moment. I have notes and will get to them one day. We collectively did cave in a buy a cute game though. It’s called Gosh Darn Bubbles . We played it at length back in the hotel, and much fun was had. All the cards are fun, but ‘Slappa da Bass’ was the family favorite because it was fun to say.
So I finished May a few days ago, which puts me about a month behind. Hit the light brown level that last day of May, and I think, probably these last few days here in July. So hot. I expect next month will be more pinks and browns and little greens. I’m really happy so far with the way the colors are looking together. Probably not for everyone, but I picked this pallet for me.