Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Big and the Necessary Evils

Big (the hubs) thinks I have way too much stuff.  *HE not me!  Feels that there might be a little bit of a problem happening over here in Cupcake land.....
It's not my fault. It really isn't. It's certainly not my fault that there are places like Pinterest, Etsy and (oh no!) Ravelry. Someone took the time to create the wonderful hand knit, handmade, yummy things on those sites AND post their patterns...so obviously it must be some sort of an obligation on my part to make some of them! Right?! Can I get a 'heck yeah'!!?? Yeah! Oh yeah... A necessary evil to help out the world of creative people and get my own creative juices flowing at the same time!  I don't see a problem and I certainly don't see where it is my fault that the creative world requires a certain amount of 'stuff'! 
Another thing that makes the amount of this creative stuff seem a bit too much..... knitting needle (notions too) manufacturer's and pattern creators must work in cahoots!  I mean c'mon! How come every stinkin' time I go to make something I end up having to go buy more yarn (snicker) and usually a new needle or two? Seriously.  IF my favorite designer(s) would just work within the confines of my needle/yarn/stuff stash it would be all good.... sigh...
See what I mean? It totally isn't my fault that I have so much stuff. It really isn't. I mean really. I've made stuff for just about everyone in my family and they love it! So.. the necessary hardship of buying another needle set, circular, straight, cable... whatever... is totally justified. Totally. 
More yarn? Ha! That's a given. Pattern calls for certain kind of yarn = another trip over to the yarn store. Duh! Not my fault that another skein of something yummy spoke to me from the shelf....
yeah, yeah... you've heard them too so don't act like I'm all schizo or somethin'.....
Wanting to make something for someone means you gotta buy stuff. Have to. It's necessary. Totally. Must lay out certain amount of cash and then the time to do it.  So... since I'm already at the store.. what's a little extra yarn or a notion or two in the scheme of things? He he he....
My stuff really isn't a problem until Big sees it and then starts snooping around looking around and realizes that hey! She's got more stuff. Keep your hands off of my stuff Big & nobody gets hurt!
The only time it honestly gets to be a problem is when stuff starts to pile up.... which is why I organize!! It's all neat & tidy at my house. Okay.. usually it's neat & tidy.
That means storage!  All right... for the hubs... hiding it! Another necessary evil... make sure the hubs doesn't see it all at once. Might be overwhelming for him and he would then have a problem. Or I would...
I've come up with some pretty creative ways to store my stuff and yep! A lot of it is right out in the open! I have a lovely bowl with some lovely (read expensive) yarn in it. I had to have it ~admittedly an impulse buy and I totally don't want it to sit in the drawer all lonely & forgotten.  It's necessary (See? There is that word again) for it to be out on 'display'! Which just means that my house has a certain ambiance if you will. Cozy. Yarn is cozy & that's the designer look I'm going for.
I've cleaned up and cleaned out. Really. Don't laugh. I have. I've gone through some of the stuff that has been given to me and passed it on to some new crocheters & knitters. I've also sold some and even done the obvious... just didn't buy any. That hurts let me tell ya'.
This whole yarn/knitting thing has created a vicious cycle... to make more you must buy more. To buy more you must have a wonderful hubby like mine who loves you enough to turn a blind eye to the stuff poking out of drawers and cupboards!  I just need to make sure that he gets into the habit of checking the couch for yarn and/or needles prior to sitting......
 Even Big knows that more yarn and more yarn related things are a necessary evil for the warm hats, scarves and sweaters he wears!  Like I said Big... stay out of my stuff ..... and do not open any drawers, cupboards, closets without prior approval!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Should've Started in July....

It's almost Halloween but I'm already thinking about Christmas and it's not because the stores have Christmas displays... which really stinks, but it's because I've decided to make stuff for my family rather than buying gifts.  Most of my family doesn't really need anything anyway and will totally love (THEY BETTER) a handmade hat, scarf, warm thing from me. I hope.
The list isn't really that long.  There are only eight  of them, but I really need to get a move on if I'm going to get it done.  AND then... what about Aunt G, my brother and his two guys, and, and, and.... oh my. Let's start by making a list and checking it twice before we go much further here.
I've started a sweater for Boy Wonder (way back in June http://crustycupcakes-schi-schuknits.blogspot.com/2012/06/more-wallaby-fun-madness.html) and I haven't done anything with that in a while.  Okay, put that into the pile on top of the knitting basket.....

I've finished the Little's Bat Hat *shown here on my lovely model Boy Wonder! and will be painting up a cozy coupe to resemble a batmobile for him too! He's a lucky grandbaby for sure!
I want to make his big sisters fingerless mitts & neck warmers and I'm sure glad there is only two on that list!
 I know the colors I want to use and have the yarn so let's put that into the pile too!
Now that brings us to DIL (daughter in law).... I'm thinking a floppy, slouchy hat but have no idea what color to do it in. Just going to have to ask her I guess!
Boy's Big Brother #1,  not sure I'm going to make him anything; he's pretty fussy... but... how about a Bathat too!  More yarn into the pile!
Boy's Big Brother #2  will be getting some sort of hat and neck warmer for hunting camp. Just need to decide if it's going to be camouflage or bright orange.
Now that leaves me with PPU, MPU (Papa & Mama Parental Unit) and Big himself. Sigh....
I have no idea what to make for PPU. I've already made him a cool hat and a neckwarmer last Christmas and I know he wears it, but.....
See... he looks like some sort of bank robber! He looks funny so I know for sure he wears it. He's kind of like that!
MPU is getting this lovely, LOVERLY cowl/neckwarmer made out of Shalimar Breathless and I think it will look fabulous when she's out for a spring ride on her Harley!
Big.... he's another story. He likes everything I make him, but he's usually the guinea pig so he's got one of everything..... although there is that sweater lurking in the bottom of my knitting basket. *I started it a year ago, messed it up, tore it out, started over and well... let's just say... there it sits...
Yikes! There is only 63 day...... until Christmas.
Good Grief! I better get my knit on!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The BatHat!!

It's complete! Well.... almost... I have to weave in my ends and figure out how to make the ears really pointy and stay pointy!  AND the best part is... no pattern! No directions! I had an idea and a basic concept from someone else... but I totally ran with it!! The second best part is... I like the results!!
Now that doesn't happen very often; me running with an idea and making it work AND actually liking the results when I'm done. Wow huh?

 Remember where I started? A bat hat pattern I found online. It wasn't knit in the round so it had to be seamed up the side.... which makes it super duper not stretchy and in this instance would only fit someone with a head shaped like Bart Simpson. Bummer.
The Little I wanted to make it for definitely has a round head...
So... totally stepping out of my comfort zone, aka boring box... I figured I could make one up on my own. I hate seaming so it had to be done in the round and had to have the pointy ears. That's the only requirements I had.. oh! It had to have an eye mask look to it too!
Using a #7, 16 inch circular needle, I cast on 100 sts (based on a hat for my 9 year old) and then knit in the round for 6 rows. *could be 4, 5, or 6 whatever you like*. On the round I wanted to add the eye mask part *this part I wish I had done a bit different* I knitted over 25 stitches and then bound off 8, knit 5, bound off another 8 and then knitted around to the other side. On the next row I just knit over to the bound off stitches and then cast on 8 more (onto the right needle with a backward loop), knit the next 5 stitches and then cast on another 8. Then all you do is knit, knit, knit all the way around and up until you get it to where you want it. In this case it is about 7 3/4 inches. I think I would go to 8inches next time only because that would be an even number.   When you get to the end... don't decrease!! Flip the whole thing inside out and just do a 3 needle bind off. This way you end up with a tube shape. I haven't done anything to the ears yet, and I have to sort of tuck them to make them stand up.  When I weave in my ends I'm going to run a little stitch line along the bottom of them so they stand up more.
Cute huh?
I like it when Boyo wakes up in a good enough mood to be a model!
oh... the part I would do differently...
The 'face'. It's a little bit off center because I counted over 25 from the beginning and did the bind off, knit 5, bind off. I should have went to the middle of the side (1/4 way around) and then divided the stitches up to make sure I was centered on that one side. Oh well... next time!!
So that's it! Schi-Schu Knits OUT of the box!!
The BatHat Pattern
Washable, Worsted Weight Yarn *I don't know how much, but it wasn't a lot*
Size 7, 16 inch circular needle
4 stitch markers *one different than the rest for marking beginning of round.
Cast on 100 stitches *fits 9 year old
Use a marker to mark the beginning of round and then place one every 25 stitches
Knit in the round x6 rows.
On 7th row... knit over 15 stitches.... bind off 8, knit next 5, bind off 8 more. **Your stitches on this row should be relatively centered around the stitch marker placed between the beginning and middle of round!!  Knit to end of round.
8th row... knit over to bound off stitches, cast on 8 (onto R needle with backward loop) knit the next 5 sts, cast on 8 more (onto R needle with backward loop) You can now take off all the stitch markers except your beginning of round marker!
Continue knitting (in round) until you have 8 inches of hat from cast on edge *bottom edge*.
Flip the whole thing inside out while it's still on the needle and use a size 7 dpn to do a 3 needle bind off.
Flip it back out, weave in your ends and tuck your ears in to make them pointy!
Place on smiling kid and pretend he is BatBoy!!
oh.... wouldn't this be cute in red and maybe some pointier ears?? Hmmmmm