Friday, February 25, 2011

Chicken and Chips, and Lovecraftian Madness.

Well, I've been a little busy recently because I've been starting what is probably the biggest project of my life - a PhD. But, I've had time for a few random bits and pieces.

First up, our friend Meighen had a going away party because she's moving to The Country for a new job. Somewhere along the way, there was an in-joke about chickens, which resulted in this:

It's based on the amigurumi chicken pattern from Snoodle Studio. But as you can see, this one is a city chicken that wears jeans. It knows how to hang out at the Belgian Beer Cafe, but I'm not sure how it'll go in a more pastoral setting. Maybe it will get eaten by a donkey. That happened to me once, in the country.

As you can see, it has a speech bubble. I cut the bubble out of paper and taped it to a toothpick, and then, um... Stabbed it into the chicken's head. It's a bit vicious-sounding, but it did have the intended effect of turning the chicken into a good-bye card. This is an idea I must file away for future reference.

Apropos of nothing, here is a squid:

But not just ANY squid! It's a data squid, with a usb in it. If you desire one too, submit ourself to the instruction of Mademoiselle Chaos at ParaNoire. But be warned: once you realise that the highly flexible tutorial could potentially be applied to everything you own, there will be no turning back. Everything you see will become a potential squid.

Something something elder gods something something something ultimate power.

Squid squid squid *maniacal cackling*.....

And finally, I leave you with this.

I have nothing further to add.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

How Is Babby Hat Formed?

One of my cousins is going to have a kid this year. This is not an uncommon occurrence in my family, my cousins are constantly popping out sprogs. They're mad keen for it. What's unusual in this case is that I have advance warning. Usually, I only hear some months later that Cousin X has had a baby.
"What? Number two already?" I say.
"No, no, this is their third one." (Seriously. I have had that conversation).

In this case, this baby will be this particular cousin's Baby Mark I, so that is kind of a big deal. Also, when I met his then-girlfiend-now-wife, she was really interested in the jumper I was knitting for Dad at the time, so obviously that put her in the good books with me. So, I decided this was a perfect opportunity to dive into the oceans of cute-cute-cute and also fun baby knitting patterns on Ravelry. When I came up for air, I had in my hand a real pearl: the LeLeLe Baby Hat from the blog 'A Pregnant Woman, a Schnauzer and a Cat Walk Into a Bar...".

Knitting baby clothes was a new kind of things for me. Knitting clothing for other people is always a bit of a test, I think. The problem is, you don't always have the luxury of them being constantly on hand to test out the sizing, and this is an extra problem when the person concerned isn't born yet. I mean, it's head is probably currently doubling in size every week or something. This makes sizing a bit of a conundrum. Plus, if you're a dork like me and don't think things through, you'll probably decide to use yarn from your stash, so you have to knit in a completely different weight of yarn to the original pattern, thereby having to re-jig the gauge and sizing accordingly. Doing this made me realise that I really don't know how big a new baby's head is. So, I just sort of guessed and then made the hat a bit bigger. It can always grow into it, right?

When I first saw the pattern, I was really excited about the long tasselly bit with the pom-pom. But, by the time I got up to that bit, I was worried about being able to make sure it was baby-safe, so I skipped the pompom. So, the result was more of a pointy, rainbow elf-hat, modelled here by my giant Hello Kitty PEZ dispenser:

(That PEZ dispenser dispenses WHOLE ROLLS of PEZ. Not just single sweets. It's a meta-PEZ dispenser.)

The baby's not actually due until April... I hope it doesn't turn out to be twins, then I'll feel really bad for only knitting one hat.