Saturday, January 22, 2011

I've Said It Before...

...and I'll say it again...sometimes, being a packrat is a good thing.

I was lurking through the internet tonight and came across another American Girl pattern to try out. It was a quick one to do and it was actually a sewing pattern!

This is actually the photo from the Old Days-Old Ways blog of the cape project. I didn't bother taking a photo of the wanna be American Girl doll I bought wearing the same cape, so I swiped her photo.

This is such a cute little project! You can take a Santa hat and turn i into a cape for an 18" doll. And because I'm a packrat, after I saw this pattern, I went straight to our Christmas decorations in the attic to dig out my Dollar Tree Santa hat to make this cape. I even already had the button for decoration, the plastic snap to keep it closed at the neck and the thread I used for it. I bought NOTHING for this little project.

There are step by step directions, along with other photos, on this blog, so if you want to make this for someone else's doll, it's super easy to follow along.

In all seriousness, this project took maybe 30 minutes. And it was a good way to upcycle/reuse that Christmas decoration that comes out of the attic for one month only every year.

And I'm pretty sure I'm getting carried away with this doll. Remember, it's for my niece who is not yet one year old and I'm not planning on giving her this stuff until she's probably four.

After working on the cape project, I started to clean out my sewing box. I realized I had a bunch of elastic in there I didn't even know about, which will be good for more outfits later on. I even found the Justice League polar fleece I used as a template for my scooter seat covers from December 2009. I figured I could toss it out, since it was kind of a pain in the ass to make any more covers and I can buy them online. But then I thought...

...I can make something with that fabric for the doll! And that's when I knew I was getting carried away.

She's got her polar fleece winter hat, a matching John Stewart (not to be confused with Jon Stewart) Green Lantern scarf, an oval Batman pillow, and a heart shaped Superman pillow. Come on, what little geeky girl hasn't grown up with a crush on Superman?

This might all signify that I need a crafting intervention. Because now I'm thinking...BEDDING!












A Little Change of Pace



I decided I needed a slight change of crochet pace. On Black Friday this last year, I bought one of those American Girl wanna-be dolls from Michaels for my niece. I figure I can work on doll clothes and accessories for her for a couple of years until she's old enough and give it to her later. I realized those American Girl dolls are pretty pricey.

The doll has long brown hair that was down to her knees but I couldn't handle it that long so I gave her a shorter haircut. She's 18" tall like the American Girl dolls.  I don't have any entire outfits made yet, since I jsut started but this is going to be a good way to get the odds and ends of yarn used up that I was saving to go yarn bombing again.


These little jackets are taken from the Church Outfit, posted over at Crochetville. The buttons are for looks only. The skirt started to be the Church Outfit skirt, but for some reason, I got bored with it. I don't know if I'm really feeling this outfit for some reason. I need to do one complete Church Outfit and then I'll know for sure. I think I just have too many projects going on at once and need to get some of them finished!


The shoes are also taken from the Church Outfit. Two of the three purses are based on the outfit's purse. I started changing their shape for something different. I also had some odds and ends for beads so I strung some of them together to make a double twisted bracelet and a necklace.


These are some funky little bunny slippers. You can't see the ears in this photo, but they are there. I think the Fun Fur and the chunky weight yarn have canceled each other out. I should have used lighter yarn for both parts. This pattern came from Cobbler's Cabin's blog. This was a super quick and easy little pattern to work up.

Friday, January 21, 2011

"There should be a 'Captain' in there somewhere."

"Captain Jack Sparrow (Depp) crosses paths with a woman from his past (Cruz), and he's not sure if it's love -- or if she's a ruthless con artist who's using him to find the fabled Fountain of Youth. When she forces him aboard the Queen Anne's Revenge, the ship of the formidable pirate Blackbeard (McShane), Jack finds himself on an unexpected adventure in which he doesn't know who to fear more: Blackbeard or the woman from his past."

Yep, it's almost time for the fourth "Pirates of the Caribbean" movie: "On Stranger Tides." I've enjoyed the first three a great deal. When I watched the first movie, I was doing it to be polite because I didn't think I'd like it. I was wrong.





I've enjoyed them enough that last spring, I crocheted by very own Captain Jack Sparrow. This was going to be a pattern to go into the short lived Etsy store but I never got around to it, so I figure there's no time like the present to post it here to share.

Just a thought though, before posting my pattern. If you decide to make your very own Jack Sparrow, please let me know how he turns out for you. And if you use this pattern, please consider sending a dollar or two over to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. "Founded in 1999 by three visionaries as a small, non-profit, 501(c)(3) patient-based advocacy organization, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network understands the many challenges that patients and their families face in the fight against pancreatic cancer.

"With our national headquarters in Manhattan Beach, California, and a Government Affairs office in Washington, DC, the organization fulfills its mission through a nationwide network of people dedicated to working together to advance research, support patients and create hope for those affected by pancreatic cancer." You can donate online here.

My friend, Jan Rosser, passed away from pancreatic cancer, and if you'd see fit to send PCAN a small donation, then I'd be happy with that. She was a huge Johnny Depp fan. So much so that she actually had a cardboard, lifesize stand up of Johnny as Captain Jack. Someone in her family brought it to her service when she passed. When I see Jack, I think of Jan.

Materials
--E sized hook
--F sized hook
--G sized hook
--Stitch markers
--Fiber fill
--Black, brown and white felt
--Needle and thread to match the felt
--Yarn needle
--Latch hook (If you don’t have the hook, then you can use the yarn needle)
--1 cheap wooden chop stick
--1 quarter
--1 dime
--Black Sharpie marker
--1 unopened package of microwave popcorn, still in the plastic wrap
--2 doll sized buckles (JHB International sells some. Make the belts first to see if they have the size you need:
--An assortment of beads with holes big enough to be threaded onto your yarn & buttons in various colors and shapes, as well as:
----2 silver buttons, nickel or dime sized
----6 small white buttons (for his shirt)
----10 small white or clear buttons (for his vest)
----6 Czech glass blue bugle beads(for his vest)
----6 assorted seed or small beads—assorted colors (for his rings)
--2 skeins of DMC embroidery floss in black (#310) for his hair
--1 skein Bernat Soft Boucle in black (06756) for his hair
--1 skein Caron Simply Soft Eco in Wheat (003) for his skin
--1 skein of Lion Brand Vanna’s Choice (100) White for his shirt and assorted trim
--1 skein of Lion Brand Wool Ease Worsted Weight in Mushroom (#403) for his pants
--1 skein of Caron Natura Espresso (#0208) for the boots
--1 skein of Lion Brand Worsted Weight in Blue Heather for his vest
--Small amount of Caron Natura Black for his facial hair
--About ½ skein of random leftover sport weight red yarn for his 1st belt
--About ¾ skein of random leftover burgundy boucle yarn for his headband

Finished height is about 18”.

Head and Neck with the Wheat on the G sized hook
Rnd 1: Do a magic circle = 7 DC in round and join with a slip stitch. This pattern is worked in rounds without turning.
Rnd 2: *2 sc in next st, rep 7 times from*
Rnd 3: *2 sc in next sc, 1 sc, rep 7 times from*
Rnd 4: 2 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 2 sc, rep 6 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 5: 3 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 2 sc, rep 7 times from*, 3 sc
Rnd 6: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 7 sc, rep 4 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 7: 2 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 6 sc, rep 5 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 8: 2 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 9 sc, rep 4 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 9: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 14 sc, rep 3 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 10: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 15 sc, rep 3 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 11: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 25 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 12: 2 sc in next sc, 54 sc
Rnd 13: 2 sc in next sc, 55 sc
Rnd 14: 2 sc in first sc, 1 sc in each remaining stitch
Rnd 15: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 26 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 16: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 25 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 17: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 11 sc, rep 4 times from*
Rnd 18: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 10 sc, rep 4 times from*
Rnd 19: 2 sc, *2 sc tog, 5 sc, rep 6 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 20: 2 sc, *2 sc tog, 5 sc, rep 5 times from*, 2 sc
Rnd 21: 3 sc, *2 sc tog, 2 sc, rep 7 times from*, 3 sc
Rnd 22: 2 sc, *2 sc tog, 2 sc, rep 6 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 23: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 3 sc, rep 4 times from*
Rnds 24-25: 1 sc in each sc around

You can start stuffing the head at this point.
Rnd 26: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 7 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 27: 2 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 2 sc, rep 5 times from*, 2 sc

Switch to the white for Jack’s shirt.
Rnd 28: 2 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 3 sc, rep 5 times from*, 2 sc
Rnd 29: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 6 sc, rep 4 times from*
Rnd 30: *2 sc in next sc, 10 sc, rep 3 times from*
Rnd 31: *2 sc in next sc, 8 sc, rep 4 times from*
Rnd 32: *2 sc in next sc, 19 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 33: *2 sc in next sc, 13 sc, rep 3 times from*
Rnd 34: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 21 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 35: 2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in each remaining sc around
Rnd 36: *2 sc in next sc, 23 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 37: 2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in each remaining ac around
Rnd 38: 2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in each remaining sc around
Rnds 39-43: 1 sc in each sc al the way around
Rnd 44: *2 sc tog, 50 sc, rep 1 times from*
Rnd 45: *2 sc tog, 15 sc, rep 3 times from*
Rnds 46-48: 1 sc in each sc al the way around and cut off the yarn, leaving a short length

You can start stuffing the torso at this point. Switch to the mushroom for Jack’s pants.
Rnds 49-50: For these rows only, work the sc in the inside loops of the previous row: 1 sc in each sc al the way around.
Rnd 51: *2 sc tog, 10 sc, rep 4 times from* sc
Rnd 52: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 5 sc, rep 6 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 53: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 4 sc, rep 6 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 54: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 3 sc, rep 6 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 55: 3 sc, *2 sc tog, 1 sc, rep 7 times from*, 2 sc

Make sure the body is stuffed to your liking at this point.
Rnd 56: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, 1 sc, rep 6 times from*
Rnd 57: 1 sc, *2 sc tog, rep 6 times from*
Rnd 58: Pull the thread through the 7 sc remaining in round and pull the thread tight so that there's no hole.

Arms and Hands with the White on the G sized hook (Make 2)
Rnd 1: Do a magic circle = 5 dc in round and join with a slip stitch. This pattern is worked in rounds without turning.
Rnds 2-3: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, 1 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnds 4-5: 2 sc in first sc, 1 sc in all remaining stitches around
Rnd 6: 1 sc in each sc around
Rnd 7: 2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in each remaining sc around
Rnd 8: 2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in each remaining sc around
Rnd 9: 1 sc in each sc around
Rnd 10: 2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in each remaining sc around
Rnd 11: 1 sc in each sc around
Rnd 12:
2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in each remaining sc around
Rnds 13-14: 1 sc in each sc around
Rnd 15: 2 sc tog in first sc, 1 sc in the next 6 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the remaining sc
Rnd 16: 2 sc tog in first sc, 1 sc in the next 5 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the remaining sc
Rnds 17-18: 1 sc in each sc around
Rnd 19: 1 st, *2 sc tog, 2 sc, rep 4 times from*

At this point, the arm should be about 4 ½” long. Get a second stitch marker. Use the first one to mark round 19 for later. Use the second marker to continue marking the ends of the rounds. You will come back with the flesh color to round 19 later to add in Jack’s hands.

Rnd 20: Continue with the white. This is where the cuffs of Jack’s sleeves will flare out. Working in the inside loops only, do 2 sc in each sc.
Rnds 21-22: Working in the inside loops only, *2 sc in the first sc, 1 sc, repeat from * until the end. When you come to the end round 22, join with a slip stitch and fasten off yarn.

You can start stuffing the arm at this point.

Switch to the wheat for Jack’s hands. Open up the cuffed wrist of Jack’s sleeve. Find the beginning of round 19 and attach the wheat with a slip stitch.

Rnd 19: 1 sc in each sc around inside the cuff. (Take your time here. I worked 11 sc around this row.)
Rnd 20: 1 sc in the first sc, *2 sc in next sc, 1 sc, repeat from * until the end
Rnd 21-22: 1 sc each sc around
Rnd 23: 3 sc around, ch 4 (turn, and in the chain, work 3 sc, starting in the second loop from the hook and a fourth sc in the base of the chain—this will be Jack’s thumb), 1 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the remaining sc
Rnds 24-25: sc in the first sc, *2 sc tog in next sc, 2 sc, repeat from * until the end

Make sure the hand is stuffed to your liking at this point.

Rnd 26: Repeat rnd 24< Rnd 27: 2 sc tog all the way around and fasten off the round with a slip stitch. Smooth the white cuff around the hand.

Legs with the Mushroom on the G sized hook (Make 2)
Rnd 1: Do a magic circle = 6 dc in round and join with a slip stitch. This pattern is worked in rounds without turning.
Rnd 2: 1 sc, *2 sc in next sc, rep 3 times from*, 1 sc
Rnd 3: *2 sc in next sc, 3 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 4: *2 sc in next sc, 4 st, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 5: *2 sc in next sc, 5 sc, rep 2 times from*
Rnd 6: 2 sc in next sc, 1 sc in each sc for the remaining sc
Rnds 7-10: 1 sc in each sc
Rnd 11: 2 sc tog,  1 sc in each of the next 10 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the remaining sc
Rnd 12: 1 sc in each sc
Rnd 13: 2 sc tog,  1 sc in each of the next 8 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the remaining sc
Rnds 14-16: 1 sc in each sc (17 sc around)

Switch to the Espresso for Jack’s boots.
Rnd 17: 1 sc in each sc (17 sc around)
Rnd 18: 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the next 8 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the remaining 5 sc
Rnd 19: 1 sc in each sc (15 sc around)
Rnd 20: 1 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the next 6 sc, 1 sc in each of the remaining 4 sc.
Rnds 21-23: 1 sc in each sc (13 sc around)
Rnds 24-26: This next part will be the heel of Jack’s boot and will not be worked in rounds but in turned rows. Work 4 sc. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 27: Pinch the heel together so the fold is on the left side. Work a slip stitch through both layers of the fold, across the previous row of sc (2 slip stitches).
Rnd 28: If necessary, work one more slip stitch to get to the edge of the heel. Work 3 sc along the edge, 2 sc tog, work 1 sc in each of the next 7 sc, 2 sc tog, and 1 sc in each of the remaining 3 sc.
Rnd 29: This next part will be the foot, ending with the toes. Do not chain and turn anymore here. 1 sc in the next 4 sc, 2 sc tog, work 1 sc in each of the next 6 sc, 2 sc tog, and 1 sc in each of the remaining 2 sc.
Rnd 30: 1 sc in the next 3 sc, 2 sc tog, work 1 sc in each of the next 6 sc, 2 sc tog, and 1 sc in the last sc.
Rnds 31-32: 1 sc in each sc around (12 sc)
Rnd 33: Press the boot flat across the toes. 1 sc in each of the next 2 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the next 6 sc, 2 sc tog.

Make sure the leg is stuffed to your liking at this point.

Rnd 34: Press the boot flat across the toes. 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the next 2 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the remaining sc.
Rnd 35: Press the boot flat across the toes. 2 sc tog, 1 sc, 2 sc tog, 1 sc in each of the remaining sc.
Rnd 36: Press the boot flat across the toes. 2 sc tog three four times and finish off yarn.

Boot Cuffs with the Espresso on the G sized hook (Make 2)
Rnd 1: Starting with the Espresso, you’ll make a long rectangle, which will be worked in rows and turned. Chain 23. Turn and work 22 sc along the length of the chain. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 2: Do 2 sc in the first and last sc of the rows. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 3: Do 1 sc in each sc in the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 4: Repeat row 2.
Rnd 5: Repeat row 3 but do not chain or turn. When finished with the last row, fasten off yarn.

Wrap the boot cuff around the leg, slightly higher than the color change from Mushroom to Espresso. Sew the cuff shut in the back (there is going to be some overlap) of the leg and fasten off yarn. Do a whipstitch around the top of the boot cuff to keep it on the leg and fasten off yarn.

Collar and Chest on the G sized hook
Rnd 1: Starting with the Wheat, you’ll make a long triangle-like shape (Jack’s visible chest at the open shirt front), which will be worked in rows and turned. Chain 8. Turn and work 7 sc along the length of the chain. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnds 2-3: Work 7 sc along the length of the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 4: 2 sc tog, and work 5 sc along the length of the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 5: 2 sc tog, and work 2 sc, finish row with 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnds 6-8: 1 sc in each sc in the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 9: 2 sc tog twice. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 10: 2 sc tog. Finish off the yarn.

Flip the piece around so it looks like a lopsided V.

Rnd 1: With the G sized hook, attach the white yarn to the piece with a slip stitch to the upper right corner. Work an outline row of sc’s (2 sc per hole) around the two diagonal sides. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 2: Working in the back loops only, work 1 sc per sc around the two diagonal sides. Finish off yarn.

Rnd 1: Starting with the white, you’ll make a long rectangle (Jack’s shirt collar), which will be worked in rows and turned. Chain 27.
Rnd 2: Turn and work 26 sc along the length of the chain. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnds 3-8: Work 26 sc along the length of the chain. Chain 1 and turn between rows. When finished with the last row, fasten off yarn and leave a long length for use later.

Red and White Belt on the F Sized Hook>Rnd 1: Starting with the white, make a long rectangle (Jack’s first belt), which will be worked in rows and turned. Chain 115 (about 52 cm in length).
Rnd 2: Change the yarn to white with a slip stitch, and turn and work 114 sc along the length of the chain. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 3: Change the yarn to red and repeat row 2.
Rnd 4: Change the yarn to white and repeat row 2.
Rnd 5: Change the yarn to red and repeat row 2 but do not chain 1 or turn. At the end of the row, fasten off yarn.

Espresso Belt on the F Sized Hook
Rnd 1: Make a long rectangle (Jack’s second belt), which will be worked in rows and turned. Chain 85 (about 52 cm in length).
Rnd 2-4: Change the yarn to white with a slip stitch, and turn and work 84 sc along the length of the chain. Chain 1 and turn. At the end of the row, fasten off yarn.

Across the Chest Belt on the E Sized Hook
Rnd 1: Make a long rectangle (Jack’s third belt), which will be worked in rows and turned. With the Mushroom, chain 110.
Rnd 2: Change the yarn to Espresso with a slip stitch, and turn and work 109 sc along the length of the chain. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 3: Change the yarn to Mushroom with a slip stitch, and turn and work 109 sc along the length of the chain. At the end of the row, fasten off yarn.

Do not sew the ends together until you have sized it around Jack’s body.

Rnd 1: To make the small belt loop, with the Espresso and the E sized hook, chain 12 and join the ends with a slip stitch. Chain 1 but do not turn.
Rnd 2: Work 13 sc around the loop, 1 in each sc as well as in the joining loop. Join with a slip stitch and fasten off yarn.

Once completed, slide the belt through the loop.< Headband on the F Sized Hook
Rnd 1: Make a long rectangle, which will be worked in rows and turned. Chain 100.
Rnds 2-9: Turn and starting in the third loop from the hook, work 99 hdc along the length of the chain. Chain 2 and turn. Fasten off yarn at the end of row 9.

Weskit Vest with the Blue
Front Pieces on the F Sized Hook—Make 2
Rnd 1: Leave several inches of a tail and chain 8 and turn (the straight edges will meet in the center).
Rnds 2-12: Starting in the second chain from the hook, work 7 sc in the remaining sc. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 13: Work 6 sc along the row. Work 2 sc in the last sc. Chain 1 and turn.>Rnd 14: Work 2 sc in the first sc, and 1 sc in each sc along the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 15: Work 1 sc in each sc along the row. Work 2 sc in the last sc. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnds 16-17: Work 1 sc in each sc along the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 18: Work 2 sc in the first sc, and 1 sc in each sc along the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 19: Work 1 sc in each sc along the row. Work 2 sc in the last sc. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 20: Work 2 sc in the first sc, and 1 sc in each sc along the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnds 21-36: Work 1 sc in each sc along the row. Chain 1 and turn. At the end of row 36, fasten off yarn and leave a good length for use later.

Pocket Flaps on the E Sized Hook—Make 2
Rnd 1: Leave a few inches of a tail and chain 11 and turn.
Rnds 2-3: Starting in the second chain from the hook, work 10 sc in the remaining sc. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 4: In the first 3 sc, work 1 sc, 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 5: Work 1 sc tog. Fasten off yarn and turn piece.
Rnd 4 (opposite side): Attach the blue yarn with a slip stitch to the opposite end. In the first 3 sc, work 1 sc, 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 5(opposite side):  Work 1 sc tog. Fasten off yarn.

Tie Backs on the E Sized Hook—Make 2
Rnd 1: Leave a few inches of a tail and chain 11 and turn.
Rnds 2-3: Starting in the second chain from the hook, work 10 sc in the remaining sc. Chain 1 and turn. Fasten off yarn at the end of row 3.

Back Piece on the F Sized Hook
Rnd 1: Leave several inches of a tail and chain 24 and turn (the straight edges will meet in the center).
Rnds 2-12: Starting in the second chain from the hook, work 23 sc in the remaining sc. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnds 13-15: Work 2sc in the first stitch, 1 sc in each of the middle sc, and 2 sc in the last sc. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnds 16-17: Work 1 sc in each sc along the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnds 18-20: Repeat row 13.
Rnds 21-26: Work 1 sc in each sc along the row. Chain 1 and turn. At the end of row 36, fasten off yarn and leave a good length for use later.
Rnds 27-36: Work 1 sc in the next 16 sc along the row (this will put you at about the middle of the back). This creates the tail on one side of the coat. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 37: You will start this row from the tails’ split. Work 1 sc in the next 14 sc along the row and do the last 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 38: Work the first 2 sc tog, and 1 sc in the remaining sc along the row. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 39: Work 1 sc in the next 12 sc along the row and do the last 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 40: Repeat row 38.
Rnd 41: Work 1 sc in the next 10 sc along the row and do the last 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 42: Repeat row 38.
>Rnd 43: Work 1 sc in the next 8 sc along the row and do the last 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 44: Repeat row 38.
Rnd 45: Work 1 sc in the next 6 sc along the row and do the last 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 46: Repeat row 38.
Rnd 47: Work 1 sc in the next 4 sc along the row and do the last 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 48: Repeat row 38.
Rnd 49: Work 1 sc in the next 2 sc along the row and do the last 2 sc tog. Chain 1 and turn.
Rnd 50: Repeat row 38. You’ll work 2 sc tog and 1 sc.
Rnd 50: Work the last row as 2 sc tog and finish off the yarn.

For the other side of the tail, attach the blue yarn with a slip stitch and repeat rows 37-50 on the unfinished side the vest.

Putting the Vest Together
Lay the back of the vest and the sides together so the top seams are even. The straight edges of the front pieces need to be facing each other. Sew the top part of the shoulders together.

Leaving the armholes open, start sewing the lower sides together to the bottom edge of the front pieces.

Finish off the loose pieces and turn the vest right side out. Sew the six white or clear beads onto the vest front (Jack’s right side), evenly spaced out. Sew on 6 of the blue bugle beads on the left side of the vest, lined up with the white or clear beads. The bugle beads are sewn on horizontally.

Sew the pocket flaps on the front sides at a slight angle, about 3” from the bottom edge. Only sew the top of the flap down, leaved the curved bottom open. Sew two white or clear beads to each pocket flap (one on each end).

Put the vest on Jack and flip him over on his front. Using the extra beginning length on the tie-backs, sew those pieces on to the vest on the short end only. Line up that short end of the tie-back slightly above his waist, close to the side seam. Thread a piece of the blue yarn on your needle and run it through the loose ends of the tie-backs, knotting it on the end.  Pull the ends together and tie in a bow, pulling the vest to fit more snugly.

I pulled the front together and stitched it closed with an “X” shaped stitch with the black thread at about where Jack’s waist would be. Put the red and white belt on him at his waist, double knotting it off to his left side.

Put the Espresso belt on over the red and white belt. I put it on crooked so the red and white belt would still be visible. Since the Espresso belt is shorter, I wrapped it around his waist so one end is on his front and secured it with a few stitches. If you find a buckle in the right size, you can skip stitching the Espresso belt on and buckle it on instead.

Put the third belt on around his chest and over his right shoulder and his left hip. Have the ends meet over his chest, with the end from his hip on top. Secure the ends either with a small buckle or with a few stitches. If you stitch it, leave the last 1” or so unsewn. Slide the small loop over the end of the belt.

Attaching the Pieces
Chest:
Find the front of Jack’s body and make sure all the yarn ends have been woven in and trimmed off. Start with the chest, by laying it on the front of the body, lining up the top edge of the chest with the bottom edge of his neck. Using a length of the Wheat yarn and the yarn needle, sew it to his chest, following the misshapen V shape. Fasten off when done.

Collar:
Line up the collar around the back of Jack’s neck on the shirt line. Using the length you left, use that to sew the bottom edge of the collar to the shirt. (If you have a heavy duty curved needle, this might work better than a straight needle here.) You will have to work in a few darts to make it fit correctly, but you don’t need the collar to be even or straight. Remember, its Jack’s ruffled pirate shirt. Fasten off when done and fold his collar down.

Shirt Edges:
With the F sized hook, attach the white yarn with a slip stitch just under the point of Jack’s ruffled chest piece. Work a series of sc on the surface of Jack’s shirt to create the front seam of his shirt. Stop at the bottom shirt edge. At this point, follow the edge of the white, doing sc all the way around his body until you work your way around to the front and fasten off the yarn. (His shirt is supposed to be untucked.)

Sew the white buttons on the shirt front: 3 of the buttons will go on the shirt below the open area (Jack’s left side), spaced out appropriately: 1 at the bottom of the untucked shirt, 1 in the middle and 1 at the bottom of the open chest. The remaining 3 buttons are to be sewn on the ruffled opposite side of Jack’s open are (his right side): 1 at the collar, 1 in the middle and 1 just above the point of the V.

Arms:
Make sure all the yarn ends have been woven in and trimmed off. When you attach the arms, make sure the thumbs face front. Using the collar as a guide, attach the arms where Jack’s shoulders would be.

Legs:
Make sure all the yarn ends have been woven in and trimmed off. Position Jack’s legs next to each other so they are almost touching. Use the bottom center of the body as your guide. Remember to make sure his boots are pointing front.

Rings:
Sew 3 of the beads to Jack’s left hand and 4 to his right hand. Sew the beads on the outside of his hands. One of the right hand beads needs to be sewn onto his thumb.

Making Jack’s Face
For his mustache, use the black yarn and yarn needle. Find the center of Jack’s face (this will be the top of his ‘stache) and embroider on his moustache. For extra thickness, embroider it twice.

For his goatee, continue with the black and embroider on a V where his chin would be, and do it twice.

For the long beard halves, keeping with the black, embroider two small V’s right below the larger V. Let the lengths of the yarn dangle down a few inches. Cut a piece of the black embroidery floss double of the bread length. Thread it through the V’s. When you’re done, you should have four lengths of yarn hanging down from each side of his chin. Combine the 2 halves of floss as 1 piece, and braid it with the 2 black yarn lengths. String 2 pony beads on the left side and 1 on the right side. Secure the braids below the beads with some black thread.

For his mouth, change to a small length of red and embroider on a small smile below the mustache. For the ends of his smile, work them under the mustache.

For his ears, use the wheat yarn and yarn needle. Find the center of the sides Jack’s face and embroider on his ears. Make sure the ears are even. Instead of doing a C shape for his ears, I did 5-6 slightly diagonal stitches on each side of his head, lined up tight together.

For his eyes, I traced out the shapes on felt, cut them out, and flipped them over to make sure the edges were clean.

On the black felt (black smudges around Jack’s eyes), use the black marker and trace around the quarter twice and cut out two circles. The black marker ink will show up on the black felt, if you work quickly enough.

On the white felt (the whites of his eyes), use the black marker and trace around the dime twice and cut out two circles. Cut on the outside of the marker line on the white, not the inside. Flip the circles over and use the unmarked sides as the tops.

On the brown felt (the irises), use the black marker to draw two circles smaller than the dimes and cut them out. Cut on the inside of the marker line on the brown, not the inside. Flip the circles over and use the unmarked sides as the tops.

Lay the white circle in the center of the black circle. Starting from behind, use the white thread to do tiny stitches around the perimeter of the white circle. By visualizing the face of a clock, I used 11 small stitches. Finish off the yarn once complete.

Lay the brown circle on the iris, with the bottom edges even. Starting from behind, use the brown thread to again do tiny stitches around the perimeter of the brown circle. I used nine small stitches. Finish off the yarn once complete.

To sew the eyes to the face: using black thread, find the top center of his mustache, go up one row and lay the eyes down to the left and right of that center. (The center of Jack’s eyes should be even with the tops of his ears.) Use the same small stitches again to sew the eyes down. I used 18 small stitches. Finish off the yarn once complete.

Making and Attaching Jack’s Hair
Cutting Jack’s hair before attaching it is easy. Using your unopened package of microwave popcorn, start first with the one of the embroidery floss skeins, wrapping it around the package, the long way. (Once you start attaching the hair, you’ll be working with both the floss and the black Boucle together at the same time.) Don’t pull the floss tight around the package.  After you’ve wound around the first skein, cut it from the package at one end.

Pull free one of the black Boucle, and do the same with it.

Lay Jack facedown. Decide where you want his hairline to end at the base of his neck. You will be working across and up to attach his hair, like you would on a latch hook piece. To attach his hair, use a latch hook and hook the hair through the spaces between the sc of his head.

If you don’t have a latch hook, fold the Boucle in half (using only the Boucle for the bottom row), thread the yarn needle, pick your spot, pull the needle though partially (with the loop at the top), and then pull the yarn through the loop, snugging it as you go. Take your time and don’t pull the Boucle too hard. Use 1 strand of the Boucle along for each clump for the first 2 rows.

Stagger your folds to the yarn as you go. Since Jack’s dreads are all over the place, they don’t have to all be the same length.

Each time you start a new row on the back of his head; increase the width by 2 “clumps”: 1 at the beginning of the row and the other at the end. Look at the photo on the above left: his hairline tapers as it goes down the back of his head to the nape of his neck. Since we are working up, we are doing that but in reverse.

When you are ready for row 3 of his hair, start repeating 1 piece of Boucle 4 times and then 1 Boucle/1 floss. Continue this for all the other rows.

Once you get up around his ears, keep about 2-3 sc away from the back of his ears with the hairline. As you come around the top of the ears, keep 1-2 sc away from the top of his ears.

By the time you’ve used up one whole skein of embroidery floss, Jack’s hairline should be about even with his ears. At this point, start wrapping the thread and Boucle yarn tighter around the popcorn package. This will make his hair pieces a little shorter.

Once his hairline is even with the tops of his ears, start using the 1 Boucle/1 floss combination every 6 stitches instead of every other.

Once you get about three rows above his ears, start winding your Boucle yarn around the short sides of the popcorn package. At this point, if it helps, work on the last row of Jack’s hairline on the front. Find the center of his forehead: 2 ½” straight up from the center of his moustache. Put a piece of Boucle there.

On both sides of Jack’s forehead, I worked the hairline across to just past the outside edges of the black around his eyes. At that point, continue working out and dropping down a stitch or two each row to meet up with this existing hair. Picture a set of steps, as viewed from the side. As you work, if you decide his hair is too long or too uneven, don’t trim it yet. Finish putting it all in completely.

Once you have that ring of hair completed, continue to work to finish filling it in. However, since Jack will have a headband and a hat, you can work every other stitch, leaving one unworked in between your clumps of hair. This will lessen he volume somewhat.

Since Jack’s head was crocheted in rounds, follow the rings of the Wheat when you get to the top of his head. This will help to ensure the hair is latched in the right way. When you’re finished with his hair, it should look like the center top of his head is where the hair is coming from.

At this point, Jack’s new hair probably looks pretty wild. We’re going to fix that.

First, cut or break the wooden chopstick so it’s roughly as long as your hand (tip of your middle finger to your wrist). This will be the reindeer shin bone Jack has in his hair. Pick two strands of the Boucle on the top right side of Jack’s head and tie them in a double knot around it (about ¾” to 1” from the end). Keep in mind, the chopstick will not be covered up by his headband, and should be tied in a place where it will hang mostly vertically.

Also on the front right side of Jack’s head, there is a long braid. Thread your sewing needle with black thread. Take 6 strands of Boucle and floss and divide them into 3 groups of 2 strands each. Braid that section and use the black thread to secure the end (run a couple stitches through the bottom and wind some thread around it). Beads do not go on this braid.

Pick a handful of various spots in his hair to braid, making sure to get different thicknesses and lengths. Be careful to not braid too tightly, because you don’t want to rip the yarn out, but you do want to maintain the same amount of tension from braid to braid. Do thinner braids near his face and thicker braids in the back, making sure to work through the different layers.

For my Jack, I think I did about 20-25 random braids. This made for a lot of dreads, but left enough loose pieces (especially around the face and ears) for the beads.

Once you are done braiding, then you can go back and do any trimming if you feel his hair needs it.

Beading Jack’s Hair

Pick 3 of your just created braids (2 on the right side and 1 on the left). Wrap a length of Mushroom yarn around the ends of each dread. (Remember that long braid you started with on the right side of his head? Tie that braid with a longer length of the Mushroom, so it goes up higher on the dread than just around the end.) Tie off the yarn. Neatness doesn’t really count here.

On the left side of Jack’s head, he has one long dread full of beads, ending with a silver coin. Pick the longest piece of yarn (either the Boucle or the floss) and thread it with a variety of beads. The image to the left shows 11 beads. Use enough beads to full ¾ of the piece of yarn you choose and tie at knot at that point. If the two silver buttons you have for his hair are different sizes, use the larger one here. Attach it to the end of your yarn.

Pick a left side dread, as opposed to just a piece of yarn, and bead it with half as many beads from the first piece of yarn. This time, instead of running beads up the length of yarn, sew on a few random beads in the middle of the dread, and one larger on at the bottom. Do not choose the dread you wrapped with the Mushroom yarn earlier.

On the right side, pick a few random dreads (3-4) to place larger individual beads. One of them should be the dread you wrapped with the longer length of Mushroom yarn.

For the dread on top of Jack’s head with the piece of eight: pick the longest length of yarn (either Boucle or floss again) on the top front of his head. If it’s on the right side, so much the better, but it should not be close to his hairline. It will drape over his headband, so keep that in mind as you look for the right piece to use. String it ¾ of the way full with beads and tie a knot at the last bead. Attach the smaller button at the end of this string (Jack’s piece of eight).

Finishing Up
Wrap the red headband around Jack’s head, with the ends on the back of his head. Make it a snug fit, and remember to leave the dread with the piece of eight and the reindeer bone uncovered. Using the same red yarn and the yarn needle, sew the headband snugly around his head (this is not going to be knotted around his head). Depending on the tightness, this will also help to shape his hair. The bottom edge in front should be just barely above the black around his eyes.

Run a couple of simple stitches through the top and bottom edges where they overlap to secure it, and leave a couple of inches of the yarn’s tails hanging.

Fluff the top of Jack’s hair. You are done!

When my Jack was completely finished, the circumference of his head was 18”.

Oh, and that bag of microwave popcorn you were using earlier? Open it, throw it in the microwave and settle down with Captain Jack to have your own Pirates of the Caribbean movie marathon!

Fail!

Are you shitting me? I found this book in my local Book Exchange tonight.



Changing the plots of great works of literature in order to have happy endings? Well, why the hell not with Shakespeare. If  The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn can be edited and changed for the passage of time, then I guess Shakespeare wasn't meant to be far behind.

Part of me wanted to buy this piece of garbage so someone else wouldn't and expose their kid to the wrong Romeo and Juliet. I did like the fact it had been recreated in a storybook format, but changing the ending is just WRONG.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Easter Bunny Basket Crochet Pattern

Every once in a while, I lurk throughout my local Craigslist to see if there are any crochet "needs" posted. About a year ago, I came across a wanted ad where someone was looking for a crocheted Easter basket for their yet-to-be-born daughter. The mom included a photo of her Easter basket and said she wanted a matching one. Her own mother had purchased it when the mom-to-be was just a little girl herself.

This is what originally gave me the idea to try an Etsy store. At the time though, I worked up a pattern for her and a materials list, and even emailed her with what it would cost for said materials and my time (but I didn't send her the pattern). She said she'd get back to me but never did. But that was alright, because I still had my pattern, based on the photo, and a to-be-born-niece of my own, so I ended up making this basket for my sister's daughter.


Materials:--Half skein of medium weight cotton white yarn
--Half skein of Lion Brand Yarn Velvet Spun in Pastel Green (#156)
--One skein of Lion Brand Yarn Velvet Spun in Lavender (#144)
--Half skein of Caron Simply Soft in Orchid (#2664)
--E sized hook
--H sized hook
--N sized hook
--Yarn needle
--Stitch marker for the end of the rows (optional)
--White and black felt
--Tape measure or ruler
--1 medium pink button
--Glue gun and glue stick

Basket:
Row 1: With the Pastel Green on the N sized hook, chain 5 and connect the ends of the chain with a slip stitch to form a circle. Chain 2.
Row 2: In the circle, work 7 HDC. Chain 2. Do not turn the piece as you work on it.
Row 3: Work 2 HDC in the first stitch, 1 HDC in the second stitch*. Repeat from * for the entire row. Chain 2. (11 HDC)
Row 4: Repeat row 3. (17 HDC)
Row 5: Repeat row 3 and fasten off the Pastel Green. (26 HDC)
Row 6: Attach the Lavender with a slip stitch. Working in the loops closest to you from the previous row, do 1 HDC in each stitch around. Chain 2. (26 HDC)
Row 7: Working in both loops from the previous row, do 1 HDC in each stitch around. Chain 2. (26 HDC)
Rows 8-14: Repeat row 7. At the end of row 14, do not chain 2. Make the last stitch a slip stitch and fasten off the yarn (26 HDC).

Handle:
Row 1: With the Pastel Green on the N sized hook, leave a couple of inches of yarn length and chain 31 and turn.
Row 2: In the second chain from the hook, work 1 SC in each stitch in the chain. Chain 1 at the end. (30 SC)
Rows 3-5: Repeat row 2 but do not chain 1 at the end of row 4. Fasten off the yarn and leave a length of a couple inches. (30 SC)

Look down on the basket and decide where you want to attach the handle. Think of the basket top as a clock face. The handle should be attached in the middle of two sides. I attached this handle at 9 and 3 o’clock, by sewing it to the last row of the Lavender, using the extra lengths of Pastel Green at each end.

Outside of the Ears (Make 2):
Row 1: With the Orchid yarn on the H sized hook, leave a length of a couple of inches. Chain 13 and turn.
Row 2: In the second chain from the hook, work 1 HDC in each stitch in the chain. Chain 2 and turn. (11 HDC)
Rows 3-8: Repeat row 2. (11 HDC)
Row 9: In the first two stitches of the previous row, work 2 HDC together, then do 1 HDC in the next 8 stitches, and work the last 2 HDC together. This will decrease the row by 2 stitches: one from each end. Chain 2 and turn. (9 HDC)
Row 10: In the first two stitches of the previous row, work 2 HDC together, then do 1 HDC in the next 5 stitches, and work the last 2 HDC together. This will decrease the row by 2 stitches: one from each end. Chain 2 and turn. (7 HDC)
Row 11: Work 1 HDC in each stitch. Chain 2 and turn. (7 HDC)
Row 12: In the first two stitches of the previous row, work 2 HDC together, then do 1 HDC in the next 3 stitches, and work the last 2 HDC together. This will decrease the row by 2 stitches: one from each end. Chain 2 and turn. (5 HDC)
Row 13: Work 1 HDC in each stitch. Chain 2 and turn. (5 HDC)
Row 14: In the first two stitches of the previous row, work 2 HDC together, then do 1 HDC in the next 1 stitch, and work the last 2 HDC together. This will decrease the row by 2 stitches: one from each end. Chain 2 and turn. (3 HDC)
Row 15: In the first two stitches of the previous row, work 2 HDC together, then do 1 HDC in the last stitch. (2 HDC) Fasten off yarn.

Inside of the Ears (Make 2):
Row 1: With the white yarn on the E sized hook, leave a length of several of inches (more than what you left on for the blue outside pieces). Chain 8 and turn.
Row 2: In the second chain from the hook, work 1 HDC in each stitch in the chain. Chain 2 and turn. (7 HDC)
Rows 3-7: Repeat row 2. (7 HDC)
Row 8: In the first two stitches of the previous row, work 2 HDC together, then do 1 HDC in each stitch three times, and work the last 2 HDC together. This will decrease the row by 2 stitches: one from each end. Chain 2 and turn. (5 HDC)
Row 9: Work 1 HDC in each stitch. Chain 2 and turn. (5 HDC)
Row 10: In the first two stitches of the previous row, work 2 HDC together, 1 HDC in the middle and work the last 2 HDC together. This will decrease the row by 2 stitches: one from each end. Chain 2 and turn. (3 HDC)
Row 11: Work 1 HDC in each stitch. Chain 2 and turn. (3 HDC)
Row 12: In the first two stitches of the previous row, work 2 HDC together and work 1 HDC in the last stitch. Finish off yarn. (2 HDC).

Lay one Orchid piece down with one white piece on top. Line up the bottom edges of each piece and center the white over the Orchid. Using the white length of yarn, sew the two pieces together with the yarn needle. It is possible to go through the Orchid loops without going all the way through the Orchid pieces, so you won’t see white stitching on the back.

Lay one of the sewn ears down with the white facing up. With the yarn needle, sew the purple to the outer right edge of the white.

To Attach the Ears:
With the yarn needle and the extra length of Orchid from the outside of the ears, line the ears up on the bucket so the outer edges of the ears are lined up with the Pastel Green handle.

The ears will droop. Run a few stitches through the top backs of the ears and the Pastel Green handle at the top.

Making the Face:
Find the center of which side you want the face to be on. Hot glue the button in that center spot.

Cut two ovals out of the white felt, about 1” wide and 1 ½” tall. Cut out two circles from the black felt, about the size of dimes. Hot glue them to the white felt eyes, at the bottom of the ovals. Hot glue them to the Lavender yarn above the button nose. I placed them about ¼” away from each side of the button.

Cut out 2 squares from the white felt (the buck teeth), about 1”x 1”. Glue them on side by side, just below the pink smile so the top of the teeth are even with the pink yarn .

Cut 3 pieces of white yarn, about 4 ½” long each (the whiskers). Individually thread the pieces onto the yarn needle and pull them through the Velvet Spun the center (both vertically and horizontally) below the nose. If you choose to, you can run a small bead of glue along the end of each whisker to help hold them in place.

The Tail:
Cut a short length (about 6”) of white yarn.  Wind the white yarn around three of your fingers about 45 times. Slide the yarn off and tie the short piece around the center of the bundle, double knotting it. Cut the loops on each end and fluff the pompom. On the back of the basket, 1 or 2 rows above the Pastel Green, thread each end of the short length of white yarn through 2 separate spaces. On the inside of the basket, tie those ends together in a double knot again and trim the lengths short. Fluff the tail.

Optional:
The nice thing about this basket is you don't have it leave it as a soft, floppy basket. I made it big enough you could put a large empty margarine container in it, one of the 32 oz ones, to make the sides stay up. If you did so, you could run a line of hot glue around the outside rim and the bottom of the container, and then press it into the basket itself.

And by the way, this was the ONLY pattern I sold in my Etsy store when it was open. :)

Catching Up on Christmas, Part 1

I may have officially crossed that line on my way to becoming a crazy cat lady.

It's actually Christmas night as I type this. The guests have all gone home. The kitchen and dining room are clean, and the dishwasher is chugging away on the last of the dishes. My friend, Nicole the Knitter, brought me over an early (for us) Christmas gift from her cat, Odin: the vinyl version of Billy Joel's 52nd Street.

I unwrapped it in my kitchen in front of a bunch of friends and I actually screamed.

Like a little girl.

That had seen a mouse.

And I don't even have a record player. I have it digitally and that's good enough, but this bad boy is going into a frame!

I damn near jumped on Nicole to hug her. She said Portland, OR has the best used record shops in the country. I believe her.

Now, remember, I did crochet Odin a mousie of his very own, to be presented when Michelle and Nicole and I exchange our gifts. But suddenly, his little Strawberry mousie didn't quite seem adequate enough anymore.

So, I went to the sewing machine tonight to whip up a little manly Christmas stocking for Odin. It's big enough to hold two containers of gushy food and his mousie on top.


Burlap and brown cotton duck, and it was scrap material I already had. The burlap actually came from the bulletin board project in August, and the duck was actually from some throw pillows I've been cannibalizing for other projects.

Now, obviously I know Odin is not going to be impressed with a Christmas stocking. But I figure if I'm crafting for her cat, then that's a pretty good thank you for the gift, don't you think?

I actually gave this to Nicole on January 15. We do our group Christmas after the fact, so we can all get caught up on money and time to breathe. Odin got his gift before the rest of the group because Nicole came over for another Doctor Who marathon yesterday. She said he's already been beating the hell out of the mousie and using his stocking (which I ended up writing his name on the cuff) as a nap mat.