Tag Archives: toy

Gift giving, only a few weeks late.

So, the Mister and I have been dating for three years now. We don’t have an actual anniversary date–just a general idea of when we first started dating. This means that sometime by the end of September, we’ve given each other our “anniversary presents.” Now, this is never on the same day from year to year, nor do we exchange presents on the same day.

For example, in the middle of September he bought me a new tire for my car that I needed desperately (which also matched very nicely with the tire that he gave me for Valentine’s day. It may not be romantic, but it’s practical and my job requires me to drive a lot, so it’s definitely welcome). I in turn make him something every year. For our first anniversary, I made him a camp fire. For our second, a small computer.

This year? A monster joined our menagerie.

This is Cecil. He’s a monster from The Big Book of Knitted Monsters by Rebecca Danger. He took me forever to make, seeing as I can only knit on free time when the Mister isn’t around, and that only happens on my lunch break. I started him in August, and didn’t finish him until October 7th. I probably would have finished him loads sooner if I had taken him to Texas with me, but I didn’t want to deal with knitting needles on the airplane coming home (I know you can take them through security, but metal needles in Texas seemed like something that would get me pulled out of line.)

Cecil was a really easy project. I had originally thought I would use different feet for him than his pattern said to, but when it came down to crunch time, I followed the pattern exactly as written. And this pattern is very well written, as is the rest of the book. Each monster is laid out row by row for exactly what is happening when. I am definitely planning on making a few more monsters and sending them on their way.

As I took Cecil’s photos yesterday evening, he was very chatty.

“Grrr grrr gggrrrrrrrr grr grr, ” he said.

He thinks he’s going to be a celebrity and has chosen the stage name Stripy McEarballs for all his cameo work. When he’s not posing for photos, I usually find him working on the small computer that I made for the mister last year. All of the other boys in the house seem to really get along with Cecil, and they all cuddle together to watch Sunday football.

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Elephant for Grandma.

Baby Elephant

This year, my Grandma is  celebrating a banner year—her eightieth, in fact.

In tribute to her and for an awesome birthday present, I decided to knit her an elephant. She loves elephants. My cousin counted all the elephants in grandma’s house once and came up with over 100. I’m sure the number has climbed even higher since the family is continually gifting her items swathed in the pachyderm.

When I ran across the baby elephant pattern by Hansi Singh (link to pattern on Ravelry*), I knew I had to knit it for her. I always have trouble finding her gifts (I feel like I shouldn’t encourage the elephant gifting, as my family had me trapped into penguin-gifting for awhile), but she didn’t have an elephant especially handcrafted for her by family. That makes it okay, right?

*I wouldn’t usually link directly to Ravelry since it requires you to login (and thus join) to see anything, but right now Hansi’s Etsy shop is empty, and the only sure-fire way to purchase her patterns is through the Ravelry pattern store.

Pattern Notes:

  • Very quick to knit up, two pieces (head and body).
  • Think the head alone would make a very interesting brooch, if you’re into that sort of thing.
  • For some reason, when I picked up the stitches to make the belly (4 stitches from holder, pick up 18, repeat) following the instructions directly afterwards would have centered the decreases on a diagonal from leg to leg. Instead, I knit 4 stitches and then followed the directions which gave me the decreases centered between the legs.
  • It reads like you pick up way too many stitches for the tail, but it looks okay once done.
  • I did the bottoms of two feet, knit the belly to the kitchener stitch, stuffed, kitchenered, and then used the other two open legs to completely stuff the body full before knitting them closed.
  • While it seems silly to bind off in the CC at the legs only to pick up stitches in the CC to knit a row and pull tight, it really looks and works better this way for the legs. Gives it a definite edge instead of rounding.

In all, I really like this pattern. It’s really well written, easy to follow, and not entirely sure that my problem with the belly decreases wasn’t my own fault (for all the completed projects on Ravelry, no one complained about a problem).  I will probably make this again; the dogs go crazy for it when they see it, and it’d be the perfect size for a baby toy.

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