Monday, July 21, 2014

Dark Wings, Dark Words

I have lately been extremely obsessed with the Game of Thrones, both the HBO televised version (which I came across first) and then the book series (which I just finished book 5 and now join the ranks of those avidly awaiting the 6th).

So, I got this crazy series idea. Here is the first that I have finished.

I charted it up myself, including even drawing the raven, as there was no available cross stitch design that I could come across on Google that suited what I wanted as far as looks.

I made this originally to knit, however it could be tunisian crocheted as well. I just found knitting to be much easier to tackle for this.

I cast on 80 stitches, 70 for the original layout I had charged, and 10 for a border, where I would have 5 stitches on each side in a garter stitch. Probably could have done better by making it 10 stitches on either side, but I wasn't really sure what it was going to end up looking like so opted for the 5.

I then set to the sewing machine after finishing this, and poorly made up a crude pillow. It ended up measuring about 15" wide and 11" tall. Not a bad size! Laid on it for the first time yesterday. :)

I do have this chart available in PDF version through my Ravelry, so go check it out. (Note: This is only in chart form--I drew it on graph paper and translated it into an Excel sheet before saving it as a pdf.), user name Malkyra :)

I also have the second one charted out and am about 3/5 of the way through... "Winter is coming"... so stay tuned!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014


Everyone needs a little Chewbacca in their lives, from time to time.

I was struck when I came across this yarn, that it looked like a rolled up wookie on the shelf at JoAnn's. I figured I had to try it! It works up very quickly and is super soft, it's fun to work with...and much easier than some boucle yarns I've tried!
This is a modification I did to my bear pattern, as I figured I already had the template, just needed to take off the ears, add some length to the limbs, and voila! The finished Chewie is approximately 14" tall.
Note: This pattern uses US terminology.
Abbreviations used:
hdc - half double crochet
MR - magic ring (alternatively can use ch 2, sc # of stitches in 2nd ch from the hook)
rep - repeat
rd - round
sc - single crochet
sc2tog - decrease stitch
sc3tog - decrease stitch
sk - skip
st - stitch
TO - tie off/fasten off
Materials needed:
H hook (5.0mm)
2 skeins Jo-Ann's Sensations Angel Hair
2 safety eyes, 15mm (can alternatively embroider them)
Small amount of gray yarn
Small amount of red/brownish red yarn
Bristled hair brush to brush the yarn out a little
Yarn needle for sewing arms on
Starting from the top of the head, and working down:
Rd 1: MR – 9
Rd 2: 2sc in each – 18
Rd 3: sc in first, 2sc in next, rep around - 27
Rd 4: *sc in first, 2sc in next*, rep what's between * 13 times, 2sc in last - 42 
Rd 5-19 (15 rounds): Sc around – 42
Rd 20: Sc 28, ch 5, sk 5 st, sc 8 – 42 (these make the arm holes)
Rd 21: Sc 8, ch 5, sk 5 st, sc 28 – 42
Rd 22 - 32 (11 rounds): Sc around – 42
Add in the eyes. I placed the eyes around round 12. Place them where you think is best.
Now, we are going to start making one leg, and will attach the second one later. Looking at your work, you're going to have each leg with 21 stitches. Without breaking yarn, continue:
Rd 1: sc in 21, leaving the other 21 stitches unworked for now.
Rd 2-19 (18 rounds): sc in each
Rd 20: sc, sc2tog, rep around - 14
Rd 21: sc2tog in each - 7
Rd 22: sc3tog three times to close. TO.
Begin stuffing. Attach your yarn back at the first stitch you left unworked. Sc in the unworked 21 to start the second leg. The crotch can either be sc2tog'd or you can sew it with a needle a little tighter to make sure there is no opening for stuffing to come through later.

Sorry for the crappy picture.
I didn't think about posting this,
was just showing a friend
the progress I'd made!
 If I make another, I'll try to
take a better picture of this step.
Ask me if you have questions on
this, though. Wasn't sure how to state it!

On to the arms!
These will be worked up separately and then sewn on to the body:
Rd 1: MR – 6
Rd 2: 2sc in each – 12
Rd 3-15 (13 rounds): Sc around – 12
Rd 16: 2sc in 2, sc in 9 – 14
Rd 17: Sc around – 14
TO. Leaving a tail on each, sew onto body.
This can probably be made several ways, using all sc, using the band as one solid color and then stitching on squares of gray, etc etc. I did some rudimentary color changes and did the gray stitches as hdc into the stitch below and only when working the right side (RS). That way all the yarn carry-overs don't show. There are rows of sc in red between each gray row.

To color change cleanly, you perform your stitch as usual, except before pulling your yarn through the working loops (either 2 in the sc stitch or 3 in the hdc stitch) to finish the stitch, you will do it with the secondary yarn, making sure the strand of the working yarn of the secondary color is draped OVER/ABOVE the primary yarn, to sort of "lock" the stitch. See YouTube for color changing techniques (I learned it from one lady that did a lot of Nintendo themed creations in Tunisian crochet).

I would make a video of this, except my camera takes crappy video, if anyone has seen the "squid hat" tutorial. Haha.

In maroon/red/brown:
Row 1: ch 4, + 1 to turn
Row 2-23 (24 rows): sc 4, ch1 to turn
Row 24: sc in first, switch to gray, hdc into stitch below twice, switch to red, sc in last, turn
Row 25: sc across (in red)
Row 26: sc in first, switch to gray, hdc into stitch below twice, switch to red, sc in last, turn

Continue on until you reach the desired length (mine was 52 rows).
Sc along the edge to give the bandolier a "finished" look, placing 2sc into each corner stitch to keep it square.

Either sew with a yarn needle or sc together to close the belt off.

Let me know if you have questions!!