Browsing Tag

DIY

Finished Object Knitting

Yoda Baby Hat and Lightsaber

October 19, 2017
Yoda Hat and Lightsaber

The observant among you will notice that I never shared the Yoda Hat from my Summer Knitting List. It was the last item of the Summer Knitting List that I had to share with you. I actually finished the hat a long time ago, but didn’t give it away until recently. The Hubs and I went to a baby shower this weekend where we were finally able to give the Yoda Hat to it’s recipient. But of course, I couldn’t stop with just the hat. We gave them a full Star Wars themed baby gift, complete with knitted lightsaber!

The Hat

 

I used this Yoda Hat pattern by Shinah Chang.  There are a LOT of other Yoda Hat designs out there, but this one seemed less floppy than the others. It was a fairly easy design to follow, and took maybe 2 days, tops. The ears were a little fiddly. They required a very tight gauge so they wouldn’t flop all over the place. They’re knit separate, and then sewn to the hat.I folded mine a little, like the pattern suggested, so that they would get that distinct Yoda curve. I think they turned out pretty well. 

Yoda Hat and Lightsaber

For the yarn, I used Cascade 220 Superwash Merino held double. I’m always stumped when it comes to yarn for baby projects, but I thought that a superwash wool seemed like a nice choice. I actually ended up really liking this yarn, and bought more to make a Veronika sweater out of it.  It’s very soft and smooth and easy to work with. I used color no. 11, which was the most olive toned of the green Cascade 220 options. Choosing a Yoda color was harder than I thought it would be, because he actually goes through a bit of color variation as he ages. This green is a little more Kermit than Yoda, but I still think it was the best choice.

The Lightsaber

 

Speaking of difficult color choices, did you realize that Luke goes through two different colored lightsabers? I wasn’t really aware of the fact until I went looking for reference pictures for my knitted lightsaber. He starts out with the blue lightsaber given to him by Uncle Ben/Obi-Wan Kenobi. This was the lightsaber originally constructed by Anakin and lost in Empire Strikes Back. This is the same lightsaber that Rey eventually uses in the most recent movies. Later, Luke constructs his own lightsaber (apparently using a synthetic lightsaber crystal, who knew?) and that one was green. Details…

Yoda Hat and Lightsaber

Eventually, I settled on making the blue lightsaber because:

  1. It match the pajamas we bought to go with it.
  2. It looked easier to knit.
  3. The Hubs said it would work better for a baby boy (I tend to get huffy about color coding babies, but sometimes you gotta go with the flow.).

 

I used mostly leftover acrylic trash yarn for the lightsaber. The silver and blue were both Vanna’s Choice, and the black was some Hobby Lobby yarn. I made up the pattern as I went. I am not sharing it here, because it is Not a Good Pattern. There was a lot of fudging going on. I wish I had stuffed the end product a little tighter, because it had a slight tendency to droop and look a little…suggestive… Still, I’m happy with how it turned out. For a baby toy, I think it will be fine.

We paired the two knitted gifts with a Star Wars pajama set and a little gold book about being a Jedi. I thought it was pretty cute. Themed gifts make things so much more fun. I’m on the lookout for new baby patterns now. I am currently in that All My Friend Are Making Babies (On Purpose) stage of life, so I need lots of baby knit ideas. What is your favorite baby knitting pattern? Got any suggestions for my next baby knits?

 

Finished Object Holidays Knitting Seasonal

Newt Scamander’s Hogwarts House Scarf

October 6, 2017
Newt Scamander Hogwarts House Scarf

Oh my goodness. It’s been a week. First there was the terrible news out of Las Vegas. Then we heard that Tom Petty had passed. Then we heard that Tom Petty maybe was still alive. The Hubs tells me that this is because you can stand him up at the gates of Hell, but he won’t back down. But then Tuesday his death was confirmed. Now The Hubs has a 102 degree fever, possibly because he is mourning Tom Petty. On top of all that, work has been crazy and I’m pretty worn out.

One of the things keeping me chugging along is thinking about Halloween. Yes. I am that white girl. Except that I don’t like pumpkin spice lattes, but I like chai lattes, so that’s probably just as bad. The Hubs and I decided our Halloween costumes last December, but I’m only just started working on them. We are going to be Newt Scamander and Tina Goldstein from Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Not only do these costumes fulfill requirement of “pick a costume with shoes you’d wear again”, but it includes some knitting!

Newt Scamander Hogwarts House Scarf

A long time ago, I knit a Hogwarts House Scarf in Ravenclaw colors. Not long after that, Pottermore happened, and I was sorted into…Slytherin.  Yes, this still upsets me because 1. Snakes. 2. Dungeons and 3. Not a single Slytherin defended Hogwarts in the Battle of Hogwarts? Not a single one? I call BS. Anyways, like a true Slytherin would do, I created a new profile and got sorted into Ravenclaw.

Newt Scamander Hogwarts House Scarf

This was before I knew that you should trim your tassels to the same length.

A short time after that, I moved to Texas and wore my Ravenclaw scarf, to which someone said, “Nice scarf. Dallas Cowboys colors.” Ugh. Nope. So despite my previous Hogwarts House Scarf failures, I was willing to attempt another for Newt Scamander.

Newt Scamander Hogwarts House Scarf

The Pattern

Newt Scamander’s Hogwarts House Scarf is a little different from the ones in the original series. Firstly, the color has more of a vintage feel to it. It’s the 1920’s after all! I actually  like the vintage style colors better than the originals. I think it makes it look more refined. I’ve gotten a lot of comments from people who didn’t recognize it as a Hufflepuff scarf, but still really liked the colors. 

Newt Scamander Hogwarts House Scarf

Newt’s scarf also differs from the original Hogwarts House Scarf in that it’s stripes are not exactly even. The yellow stripes are just a wee bit shorter than the gray. Karen Stewart Longest did a great write up on the exact number of rows of each color here. The original scarf has 11 yellow stripes, but that came up looking really short on The Hubs (who is about 2 inches taller than Eddie Redmayne). It’s actually a pretty short scarf, since it’s not meant to be worn looped.  I knit 13 yellow stripes instead of 11. I found that looked much better on The Hubs that way.

The construction of Newt’s scarf is exactly the same as the original Hogwart’s House Scarf in that it’s basically a flattened tube with tassels. Nothing really new or challenging here. I didn’t even bother making my stripes jogless. I just folded the tube along the edge where the new color starts and it’s not noticeable.

The Yarn

I used Lion Brand Heartland for this yarn because the colors were right and it was cheap. This yarn is the wooorst. Okay, it’s not as bad as full on Red Heart, but it’s pretty bad. It’s actually fairly soft, but that’s part of the problem, because Lion Brand Heartland is hands down the slipperiest yarn I’ve ever used. And I’ve knit with silk!

Seriously, this yarn would not stay wound in a ball and it made my life miserable. It tangled at any opportunity and just felt loose and slack no matter how I wound it. I was never really attracted to Heartland in the first place, but I will certainly avoid it from now on. It just goes to show that you get what you pay for with yarn.

I don’t have all the the other pieces of the costume put together yet, so if I’m dying later in the month, that’s why. I’m hoping to put together a pretty epic trunk or treat with it all, so I’ll keep you posted. What are your Halloween costume plans? Are you knitting anything for a costume?

 

 

Lifestyle Seasonal Tutorial

Pink Elephant Baby Shower: My Favorite Things

July 20, 2017
Pink Elephant Baby Shower

You will recall that I recently completed a pink version of the Elijah pattern for my upcoming niece. The pink elephant was by design, since I knew I was going to be throwing a baby shower. What better theme for a little girl than pink elephants? Somebody described elephants once and the reincarnated souls of some really decent people and I’d have to agree that I think that elephants are some of the most caring, intelligent animals out there. Those qualities are a great thing for a little girl to strive for, so I thought elephants made a great theme. 

I decided to make the theme a little bit more fun by incorporating the pink into the elephant idea. I normally don’t go for hardcore gender stereotypes for babies but:

1. I had just finished my pink Elijah.

2. I had pink tablecloths leftover from my wedding.

3. The mom likes pink. I like pink. Pink is cute.

Because I live in a teeny tiny apartment, my mother graciously allowed me to use her house to host. This meant that I had lots of room for fun decorations and activities. Here is some of what I did:

Baby Elephant Guest Book

Pink Elephant Baby Shower - Baby Elephant Guest Book

I owe most of this guestbook to AJ at Aspen Jay. She has made this adorable elephant print available online here. Perfect for my pink elephant theme! It’s a 11 x 14 print, which we were able to print at home. You can also have it printed a Office Depot for less than $2 (I checked.). You can customize it to be blue, pink or yellow and it can say the babies name or just “welcome little one”.  I picked “welcome little one,” because I don’t wanna cramp the momma’s style by tying her down to a name too soon. I cut out different shades of pink paper using a 1 inch Circle Punch Tool. Guests signed a circle and stuck it to the print using scrapbooking tabs. After the shower, I just moved the glass to the from of the frame and voila! Easy nursery decoration!

Pink Elephant Baby Shower - Photo Booth

Baby Shower Photo Booth

I used a pink tablecloth and some mylar balloons to create a quick and easy photobooth! The mylar ballooons were bought at Michaels are were totally easy to use. You just blow them up with a straw and they seal shut. The balloons I got even had pre-made little tabs to string them up with. (Otherwise, I’ve heard that you can tape a straw to the back and thread string through that.). To go with my DIY photo booth, I added a foam board Polaroid frame (I just eyeballed the dimensions and my dad cut it out with an exacto blade and a straight edge. Along with that, I cut out some shapes (found here) and glued them to little sticks that I found at the Dollar Store. I’m really happy with how it turned out!

Pink Elephant Baby Shower - Baby Headband Station

Baby Headband Station

I was afraid about how this was going to work, but it turned out to be a lot of fun! I bought several packages of fabric flowers from Hobby Lobby (on each day with a 40% off coupon.) and used these Elastic Baby Girl Headbands from Amazon. The rest is everyone’s creativity! We set up two hot glue guns (on plastic placemats, to protect the table and tablecloth) and a sign and everyone just went from there. The baby headband holder was made from an oatmeal container, painted white and then covered in fabric, hot glued to a candlestick! I’m really pleased with how it turned out!

Note: If your shower has little kids in attendance, you may not want to have the glue guns left unattended. Ours was adult only, and therefore I figured everyone could handle a glue gun.

These were my three major DIY efforts for the shower. I have so much  more that I didn’t get good pictures of. It went by so fast! Not picture are a LOT of pink chocolate drizzled rice krispie treats (so many…) and pink chocolate dipped nutter butters, both of which turned out really well. (Pro tip: apparently you can thin colored candy melts with shortening, which would have made my life so much easier.) There was also cake, and fruit, and I even made 7 layer dip and queso for the first time ever! We decorated the mantle and a special chair for the new mom and also made really cute favor bags for my circus animal cookie favors. Whew!

I feel so accomplished. 

I had a lot of fun to planning and throwing this baby shower. I’ve realized that I really like planning things like this and I can’t wait to do more in the future! I can’t wait until I have a home of my own to host in too. Have you thrown a party recently? What was your favorite part of it? Any recommendations for new things to try? Let me know in the comments!