Holidays Lifestyle Seasonal Uncategorized

A Fantastic Halloween and How to Make it

November 2, 2017

Oh my goodness, it’s November already. October was such a whirlwind. I spent a lot of time putting together our fantastic Halloween costumes and trunk for my church’s annual Trunk or Treat, so October flew by. I’ve been super excited to share with you everything that we did for Halloween. With getting married last November,  I didn’t have a lot of time to think about Halloween last year. I was glad to get back to it again.

This year’s Halloween theme was from the  movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. If you haven’t seen the movie, you totally should. It’s not as good as Harry Potter (because what is?) but it’s still delightful and charming and cute. The Hubs immediately took to Newt Scamander, because he is a fellow Softie Towards Animals, and also because his clothes were cool. So we just took the theme and ran with it! 

Newt Scamander’s Costume

Fantastic Halloween 1

The Hub’s costume is made up of a LOT of parts, and we even skipped a few. In total, the costume included:

You have already seen the Hufflepuff Scarf, so you know that I made that. I also made the vest using the Butterick B6502 Pattern.  I say that I made it, but really my mom provided a lot of help. We simplified the pattern by not making real pockets, and we only did 4 button holes rather than 6 to give The Hubs a little wiggle room. The coat and bow tie are both by elope, which you can find either on Amazon or Ebay. The tweed pants were bought off Poshmark, and hemmed. The wand was also from Amazon. The suitcase was a gift from my Grandpa and I have been using it to store yarn. It made a great candy holder on Halloween

I mentioned skipping some parts of the costume, and that mainly refers to the suit jacket that Newt wears under his coat. Some fine sleuths online had discovered that the jacket is in fact NOT the same material as the pants(though still tweed) and we were worried that it would be too bulky under the coat. I also skipped a few embellishments on the vest, due to time constraints.

Porpentina Goldstein’s CostumeFantastic Halloween 2

My costume was much simpler to deal with. I chose to use Tina’s flapper look. To do so, I used:

The dress is an  Adrianna Papell beaded dress off Ebay. I added the signature strappy bits myself using a sequenced elastic that I folded in half and hot glued (because I’m classy light that!). The shoes were on sale at Payless a few weeks ago (and they’re 3 1’2″! Yikes!). The wig is the Skyelar Classic wig from Arda Wigs in Deep Brown. I paid one of my friends who used to be a hairdresser to trim the wig for me. The wand is make from a clearance knitting needle, clay and acrylic paint

The Trunk

Fantastic Halloween 3

Oh gosh the trunk. This is where my crazy really comes out. The trunk actually came out looking pretty close to my vision, and meshed elements of Fantastic Beasts and Harry Potter. I spent about a month collecting paper towel and toilet paper rolls to make my floating candles a la this tutorial. They were a little precarious as first, but we found that taping the invisible thread to the sides of the candles helped to stabilize it. I was glad we had our candles, because as the night got darker, they helped us to see the balls for our little quiddich game.

Most Trunk or Treats recommend that you have a game for kids to play at your trunk. This is mostly to:

  1. entertain the children; and
  2.  slow the stream of candy.

We chose to make little quiddich hoops for the kids to throw balls into. I bought a three pack of bug nets and cut the nets off. We stuck the nets into tin flower pots filled with concrete. This worked out really well, since the bug nets could still telescope and we could vary the heights of the hoops. It would also work great for quiddich pong, which I’ve definitely never played. And yeah, we totally used ping pong balls for this game. They can be found at Dollar Tree.

Fantastic Halloween 4

Other trunk additions included in our trunk was a plush niffler on a pile of gold, and some silver occamy eggs.  I also made a bowtruckle using floral wire and tape (also from the dollar tree). The tutorial can be found here. Finally, I included a Monster Book of Monsters, which is more Harry Potter than Fanstastic Beasts, but it was fun to make. There’s lots of tutorials out there, but I used this one.  Most of the other embellishments to my trunk were printed from the internet. 

Finished Object Knitting

Yoda Baby Hat and Lightsaber

October 19, 2017
Yoda Hat and Lightsaber

The observant among you will notice that I never shared the Yoda Hat from my Summer Knitting List. It was the last item of the Summer Knitting List that I had to share with you. I actually finished the hat a long time ago, but didn’t give it away until recently. The Hubs and I went to a baby shower this weekend where we were finally able to give the Yoda Hat to it’s recipient. But of course, I couldn’t stop with just the hat. We gave them a full Star Wars themed baby gift, complete with knitted lightsaber!

The Hat

 

I used this Yoda Hat pattern by Shinah Chang.  There are a LOT of other Yoda Hat designs out there, but this one seemed less floppy than the others. It was a fairly easy design to follow, and took maybe 2 days, tops. The ears were a little fiddly. They required a very tight gauge so they wouldn’t flop all over the place. They’re knit separate, and then sewn to the hat.I folded mine a little, like the pattern suggested, so that they would get that distinct Yoda curve. I think they turned out pretty well. 

Yoda Hat and Lightsaber

For the yarn, I used Cascade 220 Superwash Merino held double. I’m always stumped when it comes to yarn for baby projects, but I thought that a superwash wool seemed like a nice choice. I actually ended up really liking this yarn, and bought more to make a Veronika sweater out of it.  It’s very soft and smooth and easy to work with. I used color no. 11, which was the most olive toned of the green Cascade 220 options. Choosing a Yoda color was harder than I thought it would be, because he actually goes through a bit of color variation as he ages. This green is a little more Kermit than Yoda, but I still think it was the best choice.

The Lightsaber

 

Speaking of difficult color choices, did you realize that Luke goes through two different colored lightsabers? I wasn’t really aware of the fact until I went looking for reference pictures for my knitted lightsaber. He starts out with the blue lightsaber given to him by Uncle Ben/Obi-Wan Kenobi. This was the lightsaber originally constructed by Anakin and lost in Empire Strikes Back. This is the same lightsaber that Rey eventually uses in the most recent movies. Later, Luke constructs his own lightsaber (apparently using a synthetic lightsaber crystal, who knew?) and that one was green. Details…

Yoda Hat and Lightsaber

Eventually, I settled on making the blue lightsaber because:

  1. It match the pajamas we bought to go with it.
  2. It looked easier to knit.
  3. The Hubs said it would work better for a baby boy (I tend to get huffy about color coding babies, but sometimes you gotta go with the flow.).

 

I used mostly leftover acrylic trash yarn for the lightsaber. The silver and blue were both Vanna’s Choice, and the black was some Hobby Lobby yarn. I made up the pattern as I went. I am not sharing it here, because it is Not a Good Pattern. There was a lot of fudging going on. I wish I had stuffed the end product a little tighter, because it had a slight tendency to droop and look a little…suggestive… Still, I’m happy with how it turned out. For a baby toy, I think it will be fine.

We paired the two knitted gifts with a Star Wars pajama set and a little gold book about being a Jedi. I thought it was pretty cute. Themed gifts make things so much more fun. I’m on the lookout for new baby patterns now. I am currently in that All My Friend Are Making Babies (On Purpose) stage of life, so I need lots of baby knit ideas. What is your favorite baby knitting pattern? Got any suggestions for my next baby knits?

 

Knitting Lifestyle Local

Yarn Crawl Prize – What I Won

October 12, 2017

If you remember, I was having a bit of a rough week last week. The Hubs was sick. The world was falling apart. Tom Petty had died.. Well the world is still falling apart, and Tom Petty is still dead, but my little world is looking better. The Hubs has (mostly) recovered from his mystery illness. We never found out what it was, and I never caught it, but thank goodness it’s over. Then, on Friday, in the middle of all his sickness and my worry, I got an email. I’d won one of the prizes from the DFW Yarn Crawl! Silly me, I never remembered to check the website, so they emailed me to tell me I’d won!

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize

I like to think that the timing was not accidental. I found out about my prize on the week that I needed it the most. After a few emails back and forth with Cindy, I was able to pick up my prize the next day. And what a prize it was! 

Yarn Crawl Prize – The Bag

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - bag

The first thing you need to know about this yarn crawl prize is that it came in the cutest little project bag! It’s made by Diana Couture in her Serena style. You probably know from my Instagram that I’m a fan of the Fringe Field Bags. However, I’ve found that they’re actually a little small for some of my growing projects, like my Find Your Fade shawl. This project bag is just a bit bigger, but not too big to make me feel like I’m carrying another purse. It’s got great pockets on the inside and a cute little place to draw your yarn out of the bag when it’s closed. I’ve transferred my Fade into this back and definitely recommend it.

Yarn Crawl Prize – The Yarn

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - TO

Inside the (super cute) bag, there was yarn. Oh boy, was there yarn! I was lucky enough to win not one, but TWO skeins of Twisted Owl Lux Sock yarn. I had loved Twisted Owl when I saw the trunk show at Holley’s Yarn Shoppe, but didn’t have room in the budget for it. It made me sad to have to pass it up, but now I’ve got my hands on some! The bright springy colors are so pretty and the watercolor effect of the blending in the yarn. Plus, these are 600 yarn skeins! The possibilities are endless. I love the color names too. One is called Darkwing Duck (love), and the other is Koi Pond (even more love).

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - Brazen

Even though the Twisted Owl yarn would have been a prize enough, my yarn crawl prize contained even more yarn! I also received 2 skeins of Brazen Stitchery sock yarn, in the Afternoon Delight colorway. Its a great blend of reds and blues that I can’t wait to see knit up. The Hubs saw it and immediately said, “I would wear socks in those colors.” So, I guess I know what that yarn is going to be used for…

Yarn Crawl Prize – The Rest

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - Thing for String

I know, there’s still more to talk about. Can you believe this is the 5th prize that I won? Not only did this yarn crawl prize come with yarn, it came with roving! It’s a beautiful bit of roving by A Thing for String. The color is a gorgeous purple, and even has a slight bit of shimmer. At first, I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with it, because I spin very poorly. Then, I remembered that you can use roving in weaving projects and that idea excites me a lot! 

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize - Shawl Pins

Yarnz2Go included some of their fascinating shawl pins in the yarn crawl prize as well. A chicago screw connects two plastic disks in this shawl pin. You push the screw between the stitches of your knitting and it secures the shawl with no damage to the fabric! It’s so clever. I’m so glad to have these, since they’re basically my first shawl pins ever.

DFW Yarn Crawl Prize

The remaining prizes in the bag includes a book on scarves and shawls and these sweet little designs that someone made. I don’t really know what they are. Cindy at Jacob’s Reward Farm told me that they were potholders, but knowing how we dirty up potholders, I’d hate to use them for that! I’m not sure how I’ll use them yet, but they’re adorable and I can tell that a lot of great work went into them. 

This yarn crawl prize created a perfect end to my first ever yarn crawl. I feel so lucky to have won, and can’t imagine what they other prizes looked like, since this was the fifth prize! It came to me at the perfect time when I needed some encouragement, and I’m so thankful to have won. Now, any suggestions of what I should knit with those Twisted Owl skeins? So many possibilities!