Monday, December 21, 2009


I promised more crafty-gifts, and lo and behold, I present to you, CephaloPod, the squid iPod Cozy!

CephaloPod is made from SquiPod iPod Cozy, in Caron Simply Soft Shadows, on size 8 double pointed needles. I got the buttons for 50 cents (total!) at Windsor Button after work today. I'm enamored. I want one for myself. I stupidly didn't decrease the amount of stitches in the pattern, even though I used worsted where the pattern called for sport, so he is really more camera-sized than iPod sized. Shhh. I'm throwing him into the Yankee Swap tomorrow, so we'll see how he goes over!

Mario Tree Topper, v 2

On Ravelry come the fall, talk inevitably turns to holiday knitting/crocheting. "What are you making for people for WHATEVER-HOLIDAY?" The posts are then replies with copious lists of "This for that person" or, "I don't knit for HOLIDAY because everyone around me are ungrateful jerks," or, "I'm lazy/not good enough/whatever." I'm usually in the lazy category, but suddenly I realized that I was nearly finished making my fourth gift of the season.

You've already seen one, Z's scarf. There's another present that I dare not post lest the recipient reads my blog (I don't think the recipient does, but you know), and I still have a tentacle to knit and eyes to sew on for another. But I did give M & E their Mario star tree topper!

At my holiday party, M requested a star for their tree, but bigger, hopefully by their holiday party, or at least by Christmas. No problem. On Saturday, I crocheted their star, which is probably twice as large as mine (I haven't measured them, but that'd be my guess). I actually was an hour late to the party because I was hurriedly seaming and stuffing the star while T played the new Super Mario on my Wii.

I used the same pattern and yarn and hook as last time, but I did make modifications for the size. After round 5, I repeated rounds 4 and 3 once each, for a total of 60 sc around. The points were therefore 12 sc at their bases instead of 6. I decreased for the points at the same rate as in the original (so decreasing on rows 3, 5, 7, 9, 11 and 12).

They are pretty pleased with it, as am I. Will have pictures of the other two presents for you shortly!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Breaking Radio Silence: More Knitting and Crocheting!

Hello, blog. Long time no see.

This year, I decided to save some money by knitting presents. I can't show you one of them yet, but I already gifted one of them to Z, who left to study viola de gamba at the Hague for three months this week. I actually finished the scarf (the bind off and weaving-in-of-ends) at her going away party, and then wrapped it around her neck.

I think it was a hit--she wore the scarf the rest of the party, and then left my apartment without the scarf she'd worn to my apartment in the first place.

Yarn: Malabrigo Worsted in Velvet Grapes
Pattern: My So Called Scarf
Needles: Size 11s (I love my Options!)
Ravelry page
This was much quicker to knit than the last My So Called Scarf that I made. Since I, you know, actually worked on it.

While cruising the Atheist and Agnostic Crafter's boards on Ravelry, I saw someone was knitting a Flying Spaghetti Monster tree topper. I thought that was a pretty awesome idea, and then I had an even geekier idea: a Super Mario star tree topper! The only pattern I could find was a crochet pattern, and while I taught myself to crochet over the summer, I hadn't actually done anything past learn the basic stitches. But I decided the idea was too awesome to not at least try, and so I toddled off to Windsor Button after work one day this week.

Windsor Button is a fabulous store in downtown Boston--they have a wall of buttons, sewing supplies, random craft supplies, and of course, yarn. I haven't seen many yarn selections like the one at Windsor Button--craft stores like Joann's have a limited selection of yarn companies, and they tend to focus heavily on Red Heart, Lion Brand, Caron, and Patons. Local yarn stores might have Patons, but are unlikely to have the rest. Windsor Button has everything from Red Heart Super Saver on up to Malabrigo and Sea Silk. It's a fantastic store, and I love that they have a smattering of everything. And while I normally hate acrylic, I knew that Red Heart was going to be my best bet for the bright, bright yellow I'd need for the star. I very much appreciated that I could walk from my office to Windsor Button and get the yarn I needed, rather than having to get in a car and drive to a big box store.

Anyway, I wound up ripping the star out a lot, and re-crocheting it. At one point, I had all of the first star done, and all but three points on the second star done, and redid them both. I had some beginner's difficulties, but I learned a fair bit, including how to read my work some. And so, lo and behold, my first crochet project!

I know have to figure out how to attach him to the tree. And prevent all my friends from grabbing him and running around my apartment singing the invincibility music from Super Mario Bros games during our party next week.

Yarn: Red Heart Classic Solid in Yellow, Cascade 220 in black for the eyes.
Pattern: Super Mario Invisibility Star
Hook: Size 3.25 mm (D)
Ravelry link
The pattern calls for a size E hook, but I didn't have one and was too impatient to wait for another trip to the store to acquire one. I'm quite happy with the results, though!

Update: Here it is on the tree!