Attempting Crochet. Again.

I bought a book recently because it was so super adorable I could not stand to not have it in my house:

And yet, I cannot crochet so creating a wee Chococat is currently beyond the scope of my abilities. I mentioned to a friend of mine that I wish I could hold the meaning of the crochet stitches in my head for more than an hour at a time. She said to me:

That’s easy peasy. It has to do with how many times you yo the hook before starting a new stitch.

Single – 1 yo
Double – 2 yo
Treble – 3 yo

Half is you yo 2 but act like you’re making a single.

That sounded super easy to me, too. So when I got home I pulled out this little flower crochet kit that came with one of my knitting magazines. I looked at the instructions for it and this was my face:

I may have actually said those exact words, but I looked considerably less high than this cat.

So I hooked up with Mr Google and looked up the stitches and was able to complete these:

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But I’m 80% sure that when I try again I will have to look up the stitches tomorrow when I try to make the third flower in the magazine.

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Traveling

Traveling and knitting. Knitting and traveling. Five hours of near constant knitting on the plane and my black hole is still incomplete.

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I’m convinced there is no end to this skein.

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Geeking Along

I finished my first and second geek blanket squares! At this rate I will have my blanket ready by Christmas of 2015.
Here is my lovely Companion Cube:

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I’m rather partial to the dark pink charcoal grey combination. It pops nicely.

Geek square number two is a darling rendition of the monster Cthulhu:

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I’ve been told he appears to be hula dancing. :p

The tentacles were so hard for me. I couldn’t do anything else while I was knitting the middle section without having to tink and start over. And he’s still got a couple of freckles. But don’t point them out. He’s sensitive.

Both squares are made with Knit Picks Wool of the Andes. The Companion Cube is in Rouge and Onyx Heather. Cthulhu is knit up in Green Tea and Opal Heather. If I had my druthers (or better planning) I would have bought a second ball of the Onyx for Cthulhu, but I think the contrast is nice nonetheless.

I’ve already cast on the next square!

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It’s Time

Last year I bought a sewing machine. I bought it because
A) I want to learn to sew and
B) it’s ADORABLE!

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Yes, my grown behind is the proud owner of a Janome Hello Kitty sewing machine. The GREEN one, mind you. You knew I loved kitties!

When the sewing machine arrived it languished in the box. It sat in my entry way making an excellent landing spot for my purse. After about six months Mr Liu moved it out to the garage where it suffered for another six. But no more!

BabyLiu has decided to be Robin for Halloween. So the rest of the Liu’s will fill in for the other Teen Titans. Mr Liu will be Cyborg, LittleBoyLiu will be Beast Boy and I will be Raven. Little Girl (BabyLiu’s Cabbage Patch doll) will be Starfire.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/0/04/TeenTitansTogether.png

BabyLiu’s costume was purchased. So was the shirt that Mr Liu’s no fun self will be wearing. LittleBoyLiu and I need modifications, though.

This is Beast Boy:

http://img1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20090726203523/teentitans/images/7/70/Beast_Boy.jpg

As you can see, he has on a purple and black uniform. After looking around for a long pants/sleeved one piece, I settled on a purple romper that I will sew black legs and sleeves on to. I will also cut out some grey fabric and make him a wee belt.

This is Raven:

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I’m being fairly lazy here. I bought a black turtle neck and white skinny jeans. I also bought her belt off etsy. But for the life of me I cannot find a purple cloak. So I will attempt to sew one.

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Gulp.

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More Mystery!

Riding high off the success of my successful (and on time!) completion of the Summer Mystery Shawl, I jumped right into SweaterBabe’s mystery scarf knit along. I figured what the hell. I’m going to need Christmas presents in a hot minute here anyway. In keeping with many of her knits, this one will be light and airy. I took a jump into my stash and pulled out this beauty that was even one of the recommended yarns!

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Knit Picks Aloft in Tranquil. Finding a set of US9 needles was considerably more difficult. I found a single straight needle and one DPN before I put hands on the circulars pictured. And after a single row I looked for the second straight needle again. I didn’t find it, but I did lay hands on a second DPN. There are simply not enough stitches to justify all that cable.

Aloft has mohair in it. You may know that mohair is the knitting equivalent of superglue. It’s not really a fiber you can frog when you mess up. I’m certain that’s the reason any time I knit with mohair my brain looks at what should be a relatively straightforward pattern like “YO, K2 K2tog” and turns it into this:

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So this got cast on a couple of times and I have a small ball of unusable fluff in my living room. But, eventually, success was mine and I completed the first clue. Since I’m using DPNs and can’t really stretch this out, I’m not at all certain what the pattern really is. It is fluffy and soft, though! :D

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From here on I knit sloooooow.

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Getting My Geek On

I’ve mentioned Dr. Llama’s Geek Along before with no actual geeking occurring. No more!

In preparation for this long term project that I walked into halfway to done, I created a spreadsheet (because sometimes I am organized) and went through all the available squares and determined which are on my MUST MAKE list and which are on my Probably Should Make list. Then I added the yarn colors I wanted to use to make each square. Then I looked at my stash and laughed because the only solid colors I have are in sock and lace yarns. I went online found a yarn that would work and ordered up all the colors I would need for my MUST list of squares.

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I managed to hit a sale and ordered the biggest box of yarn to arrive at my door. It’s a selection of colors in Wool of the Andes which was on super cheap at the time. Then I cast on my first square.

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I went a bit rebel and decided to cast on an alternate square first. The Portal Companion Cube. Why? Because like Cartman, I do what I want! Also, I think the Companion Cubes are adorable.

The knitting gods apparently didn’t appreciate my decision, though, as I had to recast this sucker twice. I’ve also got a mis-stitch right below the heart now that I’ve decided I can live with more than I can live with frogging it again. I’m hoping all the double knitting I’ve got planned for the future helps my speed because I am sloooooooooow right now. Also having two balls of yarn makes this terrible for transit knitting so I’m only working on this at home. After the Liu Children have gone to sleep. So mostly during The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. After I’ve finishing raiding other towns in The Simpsons Tapped Out. Because priorities.

The square is going to be larger than I originally believed. Based on what I don’t know since the introduction post clearly indicates that each square will be 10in x 10in. But the final blanket if one completed all 48 squares will be of a good size. I don’t think I’m going to complete all of the squares. I’m aiming for an afgan but might end up with a baby blanket. We shall see!

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As You Wish

BabyLiu had decided that she wanted a hearts birthday. This would have been super easy if she had been born in February, but I’m not that lucky. One Sunday before her birthday, BabyLiu pulled a ball of yarn off my shelf and said “Mommy, make a heart for me. For my birthday!” I said okay, give me a minute to find a pattern.

The yarn BabyLiu had pulled off the shelf was a remnant of a ball of Sugar n Cream in Summer Splash. Since she had selected a cotton yarn well known for it’s dishcloth-ness I selected a heart shaped dishcloth. It’s a pretty simple pattern so I ran through it quickly. Until this:

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That, my friends, is a yarn tail. A tail two rows from completion. After cursing the yarn gods, I took a dive in my stash to see what I could find. I was reasonably certain I had a ball of solid green that matched. But I found something even better:

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A GIANT skein of the exact same color! And once again my well stocked stash pays off. The heart was completed!

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BabyLiu loved it! Loved it so much so that every day that week she pulled a new ball of yarn off the shelf and asked for another heart. She would say “Make a heart for my birthday from this. Knit on the bus! Where are your sticks?” My girl apparently has a fondness for cotton yarn. I suspect this is because the mohair is above her line of sight. So I did as instructed. I knit her hearts.

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At the end I had eight hearts (my sister snagged a purple one while she was visiting) and a happy girl.

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