Oscar’s Monster Hat

October 25, 2011 in Crocheting, Finished Project

I typically cycle through my various crafting hobbies, and when the weather gets cooler, I bust out the knitting needles and start knitting up hats. However, this time around I busted out a crochet hook! (well, I had to buy one since I didn’t have the right size) Initially, I was going to knit Oscar a Stella Pixie Hat by Kristen Rengren (I actually made Zoe one), but one day browsing through my blog reader, I had come across a post on The Boy Trifecta where Emily did a guest post/tutorial on The Train To Crazy for the Handmade Dress Up Series that’s being done over there. Initially, Emily only had the tutorial on The Train To Crazy; however as of today it can now be found on her blog.

Here’s the hat she made:

Image by Emily of The Boy Trifecta. She gives permission for usage of her photos with links back to her site. The image links back to the specific tutorial on her blog.

Now here’s the thing. I learned how to crochet first, but I typically prefer knitting, mostly because I like the tightness of knitting. One of my biggest pet peeves is seeing knitted and crocheted projects with open spaces.. now this is permissible with lacework but not with your typical knit/purling or various crochets. Besides, I was inspired to pick up the crochet hook since watching the Crochet School series by craftyminx. Man I’m sure namedropping today! Now, I have to say this about Dana (craftyminx) she’s dedicated. She’s not only taken the time to make her videos, she’s taking the extra mile and flipping them so lefties can learn how to crochet too. As a leftie myself, this is Uh-may-zing. I wanted to learn how to crochet initially when I was 9, unfortunately the only person I knew that could crochet was my Aunt Mary who’s right handed. She couldn’t do anything more than teach me how to chain stitch, and I had to wait another 6 years before I was in my sophomore year of High School and I got a book out of the school library that was dated back to the early 60′s and figured out how to crochet at that point. So, even though I already know how to crochet, it’s still refreshing and fun to watch Dana’s videos. It inspired me to crochet the monster hat instead of  knit it!

So back to Oscar’s hat. Emily in her tutorial called for a Worsted Weight yarn; however since I had purchased the yarn for Oscar’s hat with the intention of making a different hat, I had bought a thinner yarn that’s more of a Sport weight yarn (look here if you want to know what I’m talking about) Instead of buying a different yarn, I just used what I had! I went back to my favorite yarn shop and bought more colors as well, since I didn’t have any other yarn in the proper weight.. gotta keep it proportional. Because of the thinner yarn, I ended up not being able to follow the exact tutorial for crocheting up the actual beanie but I was able to follow the same concept. In addition, I decided to make the pupil of the monster eye a bit differently.. since you know monsters have weird eyes*. I did the same number of spikes, but because I wanted them to retain their shape I stuffed them with wool roving. And I made an eyebrow! I love the eyebrow, since I shaped it to look a bit grumpy. His name is Oscar after all. And I also did not make the mouth.

Oscar's monster hat. Sorry there's no better pics!

From what I can tell, the hat’s been a huge hit! I’ve gotten a request to make a hat for someone who wants to pay me for it, but I need to get permission from Emily before I do that. Even though it’s not exactly following her tutorial, it is close enough and based off of her tutorial that I’m not comfortable with doing it nilly-willy. I think the thinner yarn was actually perfect for Oscar.. in my opinion you kind of need to scale your yarn choices to the person you’re making the item for. A super bulky yarn I don’t think is ideal for a baby item! I made the hat slightly large; however it’s going to be his winter hat so it needs to grow with his head.’

*yeah, I know that monsters aren’t real, but who gives a crap?

Off the Needles!

February 24, 2011 in Finished Project, Knitting

Well, I finished the leggings on Saturday night.. both of them! However, I wasn’t paying attention too closely to the pattern, and instead of having the top 2 inches ribbed, there’s only 1.5 inches ribbed -since they are knitted from the bottom up- but i don’t think there’s anything wrong with this. They are so cute an super soft! I don’t have much longer to have a little baby to put into them, so I’m pretty excited.

Legwarmers I made for my baby boy that's due in April.

Anyway, the nice part about the leggings is that due to their size, they do not take up a lot of yarn. The skein of yarn comes in 175 yard lengths. I’m not entirely sure how many yards total that the leggings actually took but I know I could have gotten another pair out of the skein, and POSSIBLY a third pair.

Instead of making a ton of leggings from one skein of yarn, I decided to make a hat instead. I didn’t want to use a pattern that would take up too much yarn in the event that I would run out before I could finish it, so I searched around on Ravelry, and came across a pattern called “Easy Peasy Newborn Sock Hat”. I gotta say, it really was easy peasy! The reason why it’s called Sock Hat is because you use your sock weight yarn to knit it up. I actually learned a lot about sizing my gauge with this pattern, and so hopefully, the hat will actually fit Oscar when he’s born. Granted, he’s due in April, and so I don’t know how long he’ll actually wear it, but at the very least he’ll wear it in the hospital to keep his head warm, and maybe when he gets home.

Hat I made for my baby due to arrive in April

I also learned how to make I cords.. and I was shocked at how super easy they actually are! You really just need double pointed needles and that’s it. Which, truth be told are not all that difficult to knit witih; I find them easier to use than the other kind.  Of course, I ended up with a bit of yarn left, so it’s stashed away for now. But I’m tremendously pleased with myself that I finished TWO knitting projects  within a week (and an extra day) and I used up most of the yarn!  My next goal is to learn how to knit socks.. but I think that’s something I’m going to need to have someone show me how to do.

Of course, I have to end the post with everything together!

Hat and legwarmers together!

On the Needles…

February 15, 2011 in Knitting, Work In Progress

image

One of the many things I know how to do is knit. So, I decided to share a knitting project. I’m knitting legwarmers for my little guy that’s due in April. I started them a few weeks back and actually had one done, but I was very unhappy with it, so I took it apart and started over. And now I’m almost done with the first one again! I think the reason why I was so unhappy with it is because I deviated from the pattern, and my stitch marker was so thick, it caused laddering. In addition, I didn’t transfer stitches around so it ended up being very spiralled looking, something that bugged me quite a bit.

With that said, let me post info about them (currently an it, but I’m making a pair of course). The yarn is 100% merino wool, and it’s Koigu Painter’s Palette Premium in the P 136 colorway. It’s considered a fingering yarn and is 4 ply.  The needles I’m using are made by Takumi and are size 3 US (3.25 mm) and are bamboo. I LOVE the feel of the bamboo needles, and while I have an array of metal knitting needles, I can see myself phasing them out and replacing them with bamboo. What’s so awesome about the yarn and the project in general is that the leggings take up so little yarn, I will have enough left over to make a newborn sized hat to match! But my most favorite thing is the color.. it totally reminds me of an avacado, since it has every color you’d find in one in all stages of ripeness and yes even when it starts to go bad and turn brown.

Oh, almost forgot.. here’s a link to the pattern I’m following.