Finally Ad-Free!

Funky!

Yeah, so having to deal with the code with a WordPress blog was more than I care to handle these days, so I paid for a plan here. Of my two favorite author blogs, one has a paid WordPress.com, and one hosts his own WordPress.org site. They both look great! While I used to code websites by hand back in the 1990’s, and with Dreamweaver in the Naughties, There are other things I want to do with my time … like creating new patterns! I’ll finally post the Amabie pattern over the weekend, then get back to work on my Funky Puffs, an amigurumi version of those Funko Pop figures.

I’m so happy to not inflict ads on you anymore, and I love the new theme. I’m going to work on a gallery here on my site (so that you don’t have to go over to Flickr to see all my pictures), and Paypal buttons so you don’t have to go to Etsy or Ravelry – unless you want to, I spend a lot of quality time on each myself!

Witch hat – just in time for Halloween!

witch hat picture
How to hide the fact that you look terrible without makeup. But also don’t feel like putting on makeup.

Look at that! I play a lot of casual mobile games, and the ones with cute witch girls are always wearing hats where the peak bends down. I wanted one! I thought that surely a pattern must exist by now … but no. So, it was up to me!

I knew I wanted to make it top-down, so that it’s easier to adjust for size, like my Pokeball Santa Hat. I also like to work in a spiral, which avoids a seam anywhere. I’ve followed many other designer’s patterns that had bends and curves, so I thought, hey, I can do this. The annoying thing about designing patterns is the sheer amount of ripping out involved. Soooooo much ripping out. But once you get a finished product, it’s so very satisfying to think “I did that!”

I actually made it last year, but the cousin that was testing it for me passed away from the cancer she was fighting, and it was too sad to look at it. When I realized it was September again, I decided that I couldn’t let all her work go to waste. I also thought about something a friend said; she considers knitting & crocheting like witchcraft. “You wave sticks around, and suddenly a string becomes a sweater!”

The hat in the picture above has handfuls of stiff tulle stuffed up in the peak to keep it’s shape. It’s far more lightweight than polyfill, and doesn’t weigh the had down and pull it off your head while you wear it. I had some thin armature wire left over from making some dragons (patterns by Crafty Intentions available on Ravelry), so I crocheted that into the brim. You can also get hat wire online; I couldn’t find it at any stores locally pre-quarentimes.

floppy witch hat picture
Totally floppy – no stuffing, no hat wire

black witch hat picture
Stick some decoration on! Crocheted hat band (instructions in pattern) and a plastic glittery Christmas floral spray.

Because of all the work, I’m making this a paid pattern on Etsy or Ravlery. But, I’ll be back soon with a free Amabie pattern!

If you have questions, feel free to comment or contact me on Etsy or Ravelry.

Ch-ch-ch-changes

OK, so things might look a bit weird around here for a while. I’m migrating the blog from WordPress.com, to a self-hosted WordPress site. I was thinking of just paying WordPress.com to take the ads off of my site, but you have to pay separately for all your blogs, and I actually have four, lol (I have an author blog even though I haven’t been published yet, and two personal blogs).

Also, I haven’t been able to log into my Flickr account to add pictures for ages. I went through the migration away from Yahoo, but now the login info I have saved in Last Pass doesn’t work, and I can’t get a password reset to any email address I’ve ever had (the help article under “Can’t log in with an email address” is literally “try every one you’ve ever had”. Helpful!). Anyway, by building my own WordPress site, there are way more plug-ins available, including photo galleries.

Soooooo ….. are you seeing weird random theme photos & stuff? Sorry! Of course, the laptop with all my logo pics & everything died, lol. Everything on my new laptop gets backed up to Dropbox (who I absolutely pay for extra space, since it works on my phone & everything, too). OF COURSE I hadn’t installed the Dropbox desktop app on the old lappy yet, I had to many new things to do to worry about old stuff! And now, here I am needing old files. Dang it!

Anyway. Pardon our mess during construction.

I have a couple products I need to post, but I’ve also been dealing with gallstones all during quarantine because my life is the BEST AND YOU KNOW YOU ALL WANT TO BE ME!!! Yes, that was humor. However, I finally have surgery scheduled! I don’t know if that will make easier for me to post since I’ll be in bed, or harder because of the recovery, lol. I guess we’ll see!

Brown Mailing Paper: Will It Print?

YES!

You may have to wrestle it a bit, but it was worth it for me.

I didn’t even know that Imgur Secret Santa was a thing, but I am so stoked to be a part of it!

At this point I’ve sold over 300 of these hats, so I’m pretty sick of looking at them, lol (that number doesn’t include the amount that I made for charity Browncoat events, which is how I got into the Cunning Hat biz in the first place), but I do like the money!

Starting a little late – so have a Pokeball Santa hat pattern!

Starting my holiday crafting a bit late; life is getting better, but it’s also BUSY. Suddenly I’m getting Jayne hat orders again after a break of a few years. Why? Who knows, lol. (this post has actually been in “Drafts” for a week & a half, lol. SO BUSY!)

I saw someone in a fiber arts group make a Santa Hat with a couple of appliques that make it look like a Pokeball. Pretty much all the comments were “I AM SO STEALING THAT IDEA!!!” Especially since I already know that the Lion Brand crocheted Santa hat pattern has a “crocheted pompom” – basically a ball. Score!

Unfortunately, and like always, there wasn’t one pattern that I liked. The Lion Brand hat is all single crochet, and the Red Heart pattern is double crochet; my favorite stitch for hats is half-double crochet. It’s more dense than dc, but works up faster than sc. It just looks the best, too, in my opinion.

And then there’s the ribbing. All the crocheted hat patterns either had no ribbing, or you made a separate white back/front loop only crochet strip, and then pick up stitches in red, working the hat from the bottom up. Oh heck no, I want a pattern that I can just stop when it’s the right size for the recipient’s head, and then start the awesome front/back post crochet ribbing that we’ve been doing for years.

Well, OK, I’ve made up far more difficult patterns, right? Well, it was super easy to figure out!

Gotta deliver ’em all!

Tips:

~ I do the Pokeball pompom first, and then attach it after I’ve done a few rows of the hat. It’s really skinny in there, and it’s much easier that way.

~ For a regular Santa hat, don’t switch to black yarn, and work that row in red. You don’t need to make the circles to sew on. That’s it, everything else is the same!

~ You can change it up a bit; the one in the example uses sparkly yarn for the white. You can use fuzzy/eyelash yarn for the white, and if you’re not making a Pokeball, you can make a regular pompom to tie on.

~ This one is sized the same as my regular adult Jayne hat; my son’s head is about 22″, which I’ve discovered from my years of selling hats is the size that most people get. If you’re making a hat for a baby or smaller person, just stop when the increase makes it the right size, then work three rows even in red before switching to black or white. To make it bigger, just keep adding 1 hdc to the increase rows, and continue the inc row/ 2 even rows pattern until the opening is as wide as you need it to be. If you make one to go over ‘locs, I want a picture!

 

Pokeball Santa Hat

Gauge isn’t critical, you start at the tip top of the hat and work until it’s the size that you want. I used Caron Simply Soft yarn, and a size G (5mm) hook. Use whatever your favorite combination is.

sl st = slip stitch
sc
= single crochet
hdc = half double crochet
inc = increase, work two stitches into one stitch
dc = double crochet
dec = decrease, insert hook into stitch, pull up a loop, insert hook into next stitch, pull up a loop, yarn over, pull yarn through all hoop on the hook (one stitch made over two stitches of the previous row)
fpdc = front post double crochet
bpdc = back post double crochet
FO = fasten off
(I used to provide links to tutorials for stitches, but blogs and YouTube channels come & go. I know you guys know how to do a google search! I specify how I inc & dc, because there are different ways that people do it that can give a different look.)

I crocheted the example in a spiral, and hid the color changes behind the circle applique. If you don’t want to do that, at the end of each row, join with a slip stitch to the first st of the previous row, chain 2, then work the first stitch into the SAME stitch as the join.

 

1. Work 5 sc in magic/adjustable circle (5 sc)

2 – 3. One hdc in each st. (5 hdc)

4. Inc (2 hdc in same st) in each st around (10 hdc)

5 – 6. Work even 2 rows

7.  Work *hdc, inc* around (15 hdc) (Hdc in next st, inc in the next st, repeat 5x)

8 – 9. Work even  for 2 rows (15 hdc)

10. *2 hdc, inc* around (20 hdc)

11 – 12. Work even 2 rows

13. *3 hdc, inc* around (25 hdc)

14 – 15. Work even 2 rows

16. *4 hdc, inc* around (30 hdc)

17 – 18. Work even 2 rows

19. *5 hdc, in* around (35 hdc)

20 – 21. Work even 2 rows

22. *6 hdc, inc* around (40 hdc)

23 – 24. Work even 2 rows

25. *7 hdc, inc* around (45 hdc)

26 – 27. Work even 2 rows

28. *8 hdc, inc* around (50 hdc)

29 – 30. Work even 2 rows

25. *9 hdc, inc* around (55 hdc)

26 – 27. Work even 2 rows

28. *10 hdc, inc* around (60 hdc)

29 – 30. Work even 2 rows

31. *11 hdc, inc* around (65 hdc)

32 – 33. Work even 2 rows

34. *12 hdc, inc* around (70 hdc)

35 – 36. Work even 2 rows

37. *13 hdc, inc* around (75 hdc)

38 – 39. Work even 2 rows

40. *14 hdc, inc* around (80 hdc)

41 – 43. Work even 3 rows

Change to black
44. Work one row hdc even (80 hdc)

Change to white
45. Work 1 row hdc (80 hdc)

46. 1st row of Ribbing: work one fpdc in next st, one bpdc in next, repeat (80 dc)

47 – 50. Repeat row 46. Work fpdc into the previous row’s fpdc; same for bpdc.

Fasten off

You can work more or less rows of ribbing, depending on the size, and what looks good to you. If you’re using a fuzzy/eyelash yarn, you can just work plain hdc.

Circle applique for Pokeball hat

1 Sc 5 into magic/adjustable circle. Join w/sl st into the first sc, ch 1. When you start the next row, work the first stitch into the SAME st as the join.
2. Inc in ea st (10 sc) Join w/sl st into the first sc, ch 1
3. *sc, inc* around (15 sc) Join, ch 1
4. *2 sc, inc* around (20 sc)  Join, ch 1. Switch to black
5. *3 sc, inc* around (25 sc) Join. Sl st in next sc, FO

Place circle onto hat centered on the black row, whip stitch around the edge to sew in place.

Tie pompom onto hat (if you haven’t already), weave in ends.

 

Pokeball

Small and Medium Sizes Only
Start in Red.

1: Work 6 sc in circle. Leave a long enough tail to tie to hat.
2: Inc in each st around (12 sc)
3: *1 sc in next st, inc* around (18 sc)
4: *2 sc in next st, inc* around (24 sc) Switch to black
5:  Sc in each st around (24 sc)
6: *Sc in each of next 2 sts, dec* around (18 sc)
Begin to stuff piece. Continue to stuff as work progresses.
7: *Sc in each of next st, dec* around (18 sc)
8: Dec around (6 sc) FO leaving a long tail. Thread tail through rem sts and pull to gather.

Large Size Only

1: Work 6 sc in circle. Leave a long enough tail to tie to hat.
2: Inc in each st around (12 sc)
3: *1 sc in next sc, inc* around (18 sc)
4: *2 sc, inc* around (24 sc)
5: *3 sc, inc* around (30 sc)
6: *4 sc, inc* around (36 sc)
7-8: Sc in each st around. For Pokeball, work row 8 in Black, then change to white.
9: *4 sc, dec* (30 sc)
10: *3 sc, dec* (24 sc)
Begin to stuff piece. Continue to stuff as work progresses.
11: *2 sc, dec (18 sc)
12: *1 sc, dec (12 sc)
13: Dec around (6 sc)
Fasten off, leaving a long tail. Thread tail through rem sts and pull to gather.

Circle for front of Pokeball

1. Using white, sc 6 into a magic circle. Join with a sl st to first sc, ch 1
2. Switch to black, inc 6x (12 sts) Join. Sl st in next sc, FO, leaving a tail long enough to sew on to Pokeball.

Place circle onto ball centered on the black row, whip stitch around the edge to sew in place.

Finally made something!

I don’t talk about my depression a lot here, because this is my happy place, and I don’t whine about my troubles in public a lot anyway, which frustrates my friends because they want to be there for me. But I have it, and it’s been particularly sucky lately (for the last couple of years, tbh), and it tends to steal my creative mojo.

However, when your son is going to a Kingdom Hearts meetup at an anime convention, he needs something to wear! I mean, he’s almost 30 now, but you’re never too old to get homemade hats from your mom, lol.

Ta da! Shadow hat!

I’m going to re-do it, though. I only put wire in the … antennae? Is that what they are? They drooped during the day while he was wearing it. I’m going add a wire headband or something to hold it up.

I might be vending at a Harry Potter themed event coming soon, fingers crossed!

 

Phoenix Comic Fest and Holding Hands with Tim Curry

“WHAT” I hear you say? I KNOW! If I didn’t have photographic proof, I wouldn’t believe it myself!

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Unfortunately, my scanner is not doing it’s job, so I had to take a picture of the picture.

I can’t afford such photo ops at cons, of course, let alone the “Tim Curry Experience” where you get to spend time interacting with him, rather than just hustling you in & out just long enough for a picuture. (Although, while I was manuvering my wheelchair, I did get to tell Ming-Na Wen that I’ve been a fan of hers since “ER”, lol).

20180528_144742

My roommate makes bank, though, and always gets a lot of photo ops. Unfortunately, his mom fell on Friday night and ended up in the hospital. He drove down to the city where they live, a couple of hours away from Phoenix. I was talking to him while he packed, and wrapping a scarf for his mom; at midnight he handed me his VIP tags and photo op reciepts. I could have cried … from happiness, and guilt because I was so happy while his mom was waiting for surgery. He didn’t want all this to go to waste, though, which is a good point.

He also knows that I was one of those people for whom “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” meant a lot to. Even if you’re not gay or any flavor of queer, back in the 70’s if you were the slightest bit weird, you were an outcast. “Don’t dream it, be it” is always good advice!

He also knows how obsessed I am with “Agents of SHIELD”. I texted Tom to let him know that Ms. Wen is even hotter in person, lol, because I’m kind of a bitch, lol.

Anyway … after I grabbed Mr. Curry by the hand and he didn’t mind, I just started blathering all over him. When I first wheeled in, he said “We’re twins!” I nearly died of happiness right then. I told him what year I saw Rocky, and how many times I had to re-buy his album “Read My Lips” because friends & roommates kept stealing it (“Totally worth it, though”). He asked me what I do, and what my URL is. Then I was even CLOSER to dying of happiness! And since this blog is where my URL takes you, you should wave in case he actually checks it out! (ok, dead now)

I didn’t wear any of the hats or other things I’ve made, but I do appreciate others’ cosplay. I only took a selfie with one of them, though.

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BADASS!!

One thing I am diligently working on is the pictures for the HP scarf tutorial that I promised to add to that post … last Phoenix Comicon. Sorry. I’ve been busy, I promise! Look!

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And now you’ll have to excuse me while I go and moon over my Tim Curry picture some more…

 

 

Happy World Penguin Day!

penguin family

I should really, really, really make one or two of those cute pengie amigurumi patterns I’ve bought. I have SO MANY patterns, ya’ll. Normal crafters hoard pretty yarn. I never buy yarn except for specific projects – but I still have shelves & shelves of yarn, because I’m a pattern whore. I finally broke down and used the yarn I bought in 2010 for a project that I’m actually doing now. So, progress, lol.

ARGHHH!

Oh dear, I haven’t posted in forever! Um, lots of stuff going on, unfortunately very little of it crafting. I did manage to finish a scarf and a shawl, so yay! I’m currently taking photos as I finish the Harry Potter scarf, so I can update the pattern page to be more of a tutorial for those unfamiliar with double-knitting.

RainbowScarf

Currently making another rainbow scarf (with a black lattice instead of blue), to time how long it takes, so I know what to charge. I’d keep them all, but it hasn’t ever gotten cold enough in Phoenix to wear one. Shoot, I haven’t even worn a sweater. The summer is going to be a nightmare, lol.