Wednesday, September 24

Crocheted Minecraft Creeper, Complete

Sinister glow in the wrong, wrong light.
I'm shocked to discover that I never posted photos of the completed Creeper! 
Forced out of the shadows.
For the moment...

I was sure I had. Instead, I'm probably remembering adding photos to Flickr, Ravelry and Twitter.

The finished Creeper stands quite tall. I love the size, and it wouldn't have taken so long to crochet if I'd used a different color block multiple.

Also, if I were to make another, I'd take longer to find the perfect colors first; perhaps even work with a hand dyer! I like that the foam blocks I used for stuffing are green colored. I blogged about a few more Creeper ideas I had here.

It's very sturdy. I crocheted a stitch from each piece together to join - Crochet 101, really. The head can turn just a bit to fixate on a victim, thanks to the slight flex of the crocheted joins (seams).

Here is its project page in Ravelry.
A raging Creeper!! Quelle terreur!!

Saturday, February 16

Chez Chippy: Cat Cave Under Construction

If I didn't have a sweet kitty who wants his own crochet nest, I'd be tempted to turn this into a boho tote, or a big round area rug. I LOVE the touches of mohair and alpaca, and the color blending (which looks richer in person than in photos.)
Bottom and side edge of cat cave.

Chippy Cat loves alpaca and wool, so I'm using up chunky scrap craft store yarns that have some alpaca, mohair, and wool content, and incorporating wool roving occasionally. Most of the time I'm crocheting with two strands of different yarns held together. The solid deep burgundy yarn is thicker, so I used just one strand of that (until I ran out.) 

This started out as a simple wintertime TV crochet project. I was deeply inspired by photos of "Nest" ("Pes√§") -- a cat cave crocheted by Hanne Katajam√§ki. I'm changing two things (besides the yarn): I made the cave opening higher up because I think Chippy will want to nuzzle in and nap below the line of the opening. 

I also plan to add a round crocheted sleeping mat of the same yarns. It will be a removable insert so that I can wash it.

Cave entrance is coming along.
Bulky squishy yarns, random color and texture blending, casual stitch increasing and decreasing: fun and seemingly simple. I've learned a lot from this simple project though! Had to rip out several rounds when I began the sides, because 3 - 4 rounds of the sides (when I stopped increasing) still sat like part of the base, making it much bigger (and yarn gobbling) than I wanted. 

Also, I did some rounds with turning, some without turning, as I pleased. After ripping out to make a smaller base, I switched to turning for ALL rounds, because it came out thicker, stiffer, more structured. See, I rarely do hats or round-bottom totes, or projects in all single crochet, so...learning this stuff now.

Even so it's still a bit on the saggy side. Probably when I cover the top it will cave in a bit. My son assures me that Chippy will love this even more :-) 

I thought using two strands of chunky yarns held together and crocheted tightly would be stiff enough. I see from photos of someone else's project that theirs is saggier, even though the stiff Wool-Ease Thick & Quick yarn was used throughout. Looks like it was crocheted in spiraling sc (no turning for any rounds)? 

Hanne's structured (and wildly inspiring to me!!) pale pink one at her Eilen Tein blog is made from a yarn that now makes me think that crocheted fabric strips would be crazy-stiff!! But not touchable; however ... crocheted t-shirt strips could be both. 

I also realized late that I could have done a "clothesline crochet" type maneuver. I'm seeing fresh ideas for this old basket weaving-like crochet technique of single crochet stitches {UK: dc} over a rope, such as cotton clothesline, that coils in the round. Really, I'm doing the closest thing to a covered basket, which is more sculptural; not so much a hat or tote type fabric.
For specific yarns used, see its Ravelry project page.

Friday, December 21

Home Stretch: A Minecraft Creeper Christmas

OK yes, it's taking me a looong time to finish this crochet amigurumi project. It's partly because of all the teaching I did this year. Try as I might, I wasn't able to use the Creeper as part of my class prep.
Inventory: 20 out of 28 Pieces DONE. Eight remain before final assembly.
I can do this!
For example, none of my class topics include its "jacquard" or "tapestry" or "intarsia" color change technique (for the primitive bitmapped look). None concerned 3-D crochet toys or sculptures either. Not this year, anyway.

Tunisian swatch on the right, single crochet on the left. 
Curious about a Tunisian crochet version? Me too. Here's a quick swatch using Tss (Tunisian Simple Stitch)

I've finished almost all of the Creeper pieces. Today's inventory:

4.5 out of 8 Leg Panels DONE.
The Four Torso Panels (the largest pieces besides the head):
The Eight Toe Panels (my favorite part):
The Tops & Bottoms of Feet (smallest panels of all):
3 out of 8 DONE.
The remaining small panels are perfect for TV crocheting, depending on the show. I'm watching season five of Lost and my crochet hook stops moving when it's on. Can't help it.