31 October, 2010

Happy Halloween!

I just wanted to post a few pics to mark the passing of one of my favorite holidays. I have always loved dressing up for Halloween...the candy was always secondary.

As a kid, I gave up trick-or-treating at about 9 years old so I could give out candy at my grandparents' house. They always had lots of children to show up for candy. My grandmother also loved Halloween & often we spent days making up treat bags and my favorite, Ghostly Tootsie Pops! (You know the ones made with a tissue & magic marker eyes)

When I was a single parent, I always took Halloween off from my 3rd shift job. It became a special event ... J (my younger son), knew it was a no-holds barred night... we would stay out as long as he wanted to because I would let him stay out of school (bad mommy!)
...it became a special yearly ocassion for us.

This year, I am a little sad... having recently relocated from South Carolina to Pennsylvania, I will be missing my grandson, Zander's first Halloween. So imagine my joy when i received pics in the mail!! I can't wait to see him again and kiss those chubby cheeks! :-)

The 2nd pic was taken at Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia. Obviously SugarDaddy cant resist hamming it up with a piano-playing skeleton man!

The 3rd pic is SugarDaddy & me outside the Broad St. Market in Harrisburg. We were taking pics of me wearing my Punkin Hat... a very nice gentleman walked up and asked if we wanted him to get a pic of us together ... who could resist?

And the 4th pic is a blast from the past! It's my sister, brother and me getting ready to trick or treat... if you dont know, I am the vampire! :-) I am guessing that this is circa 1976 / 1977 ish!

Hope you enjoyed your Halloween... and would love to hear your Halloween memories! :-)
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29 October, 2010

FO: Jan Valentine's (from Hellsing anime) Beanie 1.0 / Crochet

It's not often that my sons think of my crochet as cool. So I was surprised when my youngest son, who is 20, asked me to make a hat for him. I am sure this was partly due to all of the hat-making i have been doing lately; and partly due to the fact that it is getting chilly up here in our new home of Pennsylvania! :-)

He is really into Anime; and one of his favorites is Hellsing. The character, Jan Valentine wears a black cap with a really odd eye symbol on it.

This is my first attempt... using yarn out of my Red Heart Stash... the emblem turned out huge... i have several ideas for my next attempt: intarsia, lighter-weight yarn, embroidery ...

As I am becoming more comfortable with using intarsia, I realized that i really need to start graphing out the designs ... i have always just free-hooked most everything, but definitely seeing a need for graphing!

So... here is first attempt... i hope my son likes it!

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27 October, 2010

Domo-Kun hat 2.0

Here it is... Domo-Kun 2.0!

I just couldn't let the idea go... wanted to improve my original Domo-Kun hat... even though this one isnt authentically colored (I didn't have any solid brown, so i used Red Heart SuperSaver in Coffee Fleck), it's a definite improvement as far as the "bulk" of the hat is concerned.

I decided to make his square red mouth with intarsia method, then embroidering his teeth. Shiny black buttons replace the crocheted rounds for eyes. Also I did this one beanie-style instead of with ear flaps.

I am proud of how both hats turned out... for me, it's all about trying different ideas ...constantly changing... that's what keeps me from being bored :-)

I think I am definitely keeping this one for myself!
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FO: Domo-Kun Hat 1.0 / Crochet

These pics are courtesy of my pal, Camille! They are from her recent trip to Colorado!
I made this Domo-Kun hat for her, as a going away gift when I moved from Greenville to Pennsylvania. She was the my first Twitter-to-IRL friend; when i found out we were going to be moving, I thought back to out first meeting... she was carrying a Domo-Kun key chain... and voila! I decided i should attempt a character hat for her.

This one was made with Hobby Lobby's "I Love This Yarn"... this is probably my favorite acrylic... i chose acrylic for ease of care. I think it turned out well... although a little bulky... which may make it warmer for winter use --- but having worked on some other hats & trying new ideas, i have some thoughts on reducing bulk.

So who knows?
There may be a Domo-Kun Hat 2.0 to show you soon :-)
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22 October, 2010

FO: Halloween Hats - Crochet

Not sure why, but lately it has come to my attention that I really enjoy making hats... not sure why... I seldom wear them myself, but I love making funky hats! :-)

Here are some hats that I made this week while SugarDaddy was out of town. To keep my mind off missing him, I kept my fingers busy.

I free-hooked these... no patterns. These were all made with Red Heart Yarn from my stash.

For the upcoming Halloween holiday, I was inspired by Candy Corn, which is just double stitch with a Front PostStitch band.

I also made a Punkin hat to carry me thru fall...the "lines" of the pumpkin created with Front PostStitches. I think I am definitely keeping this one for myself! :-)

The Purple, Pink, Hot Pink Skullie is just a basic beanie with a skull motif ... which I hope I can duplicate!

Happy Stitching!
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17 October, 2010

I Think He Likes It!

@MikeDistracted was kind enough to post a pic of him getting acquainted with his giraffe hat! I gotta say that I am very pleased with how it turned out!

Thanks, Mike!
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13 October, 2010

FO: Crochet Giraffe Hat

Here is a free-hooked crochet giraffe hat made for another twitter buddy, @MikeDistracted.  He saw pics of a Domo-Kun hat that i made for @SumoChewie (will post that one later)' and wanted me to create a hat for him. 

I am not a huge fan of making the same project over and over... there are exceptions... but i just love the challenge of figuring out how to make something come together.  That's probably one of the reasons i always have 5 or 6 or 30 WIPs going, at any given time.

 I admit it, I have craft ADD ... i get a project started and immediately, i think of several other projects.  And I also know that if I dont start these other projects, I just might well forget my ideas!

I really didnt want to make an identical hat to the one I had made for @SumoChewie --- first off, that was made just for her... it was my going-away gift to her.  And then there is copy-right issues...

So I asked Mike what kind of other ideas he had for a hat... turns out, he likes giraffes... so much so that I know he has a giraffe tattoo!

Well, the thought of a giraffe hat tickled me ... kind of like the Chemo hat i made for my cousin, Lisa.  (She mentioned "eyes in the back of her head", and that got my noggin gears turning!)  I am weird, what can i say? LOL

 sooooooo... then i took some time to figure out how I wanted to do this... I dont mind telling you that I did a lot of "frogging" before coming up with the winning plan :-)

 First, I googled images "crochet giraffe hat:" and then "giraffe" --- and then, I got to hooking! :-)
<-- he looked a little "surprised" when i first attached his eyes ...  i quickly decided that he needed eye lids! :-)

 I used Lion Brand yarn, Vanna's Choice, to be specific.  The colors and textures just seemed right to me ...

I chose Toffee and Mustard ... i ended up using 2 skeins of the mustard and 1 of the toffee.  I am not sure what brand the eyes are made from... some leftover acrylic stash.

I probably could have gotten by with a skein of each (there was a little left over) but because of the soft-sculptured horns, i wanted to make sure that the base of the hat was sturdy enough... so i ended up piecing together a liner for it.

<--- i really love how the free-hooked spot came out!

 This project took me a couple of months... although much of it was spent just trying to decide how to put it together.

 As you can see from the pictures... most of the components are quite simple... just a few tricks to form the shapes...

I would have to say that the nostrils and the spot on the back are my favorite parts of this project.

<-- time to put him in the box with a note (and the left-over yarn for repairs, if needed)

He is safely packed away and traveling to his new home in Greenville, SC.

I cant wait to see a pic of him perched atop @MikeDistracted's head! :-)