Saturday, March 17, 2012

Knit And Crochet Design Week: Day Six, Finishing Up, And Pattern Design!!

 This is the last day of design week! It was really fun, and I actually like blogging every day. :)  I finished panda today, and now it's time to show him off! But first, I'll show you the pics leading up to his creation.

 Here are panda's various disembodied parts. >
 His arms at the top.
His ears in the middle.
His legs at the bottom.


                        <  Here are pics of panda being assembled.                              I've learned that it is not only helpful, but almost necessary to have work-in-progress pics if you are going to write a pattern to sell.Before I learned to write my own,  I used to buy patterns, and print them off of the internet. The patterns that were all text were at best O.K. But patterns with pictures to illustrate the idea or technique were much easier to follow.


Here he is all sewn up! >

 And here he is with his little shoes!! They turned out a little different then I expected, more like sneakers than rainboots.

Aren't they cute though? :)

I think I may write this pattern up to sell. Usually if I write the pattern down for myself, it turns out sloppy. However, If I have intentions of selling the pattern, I'm more careful (counting stitches, writing out complete sentences and not just scribbles...etc.) I have been trying to train myself to write ALL my patterns down carefully.If I write a pattern down hap-hazardly, and I want to try and sell it, I have to re-make the item, making sure to write down any details I may have missed, and to count my stitches. After I write them out, I have to type them into the computer, add pictures, and double check my design. It takes a lot more patience then I used to think, but filling my little notebook up with my own original patterns, makes me feel happy! I love writing my own patterns. It's a great feeling when I see pictures of sweet little plushies somebody made with my Designs!

                     Panda turned out pretty cute, so maybe I'll make some more! ^-^
                             I'll probably put panda in my Etsy store soon.

                             Be sure to check out everyone's final design posts, here.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Knit And Crochet Design Week: Day Five, Mess-Ups

Ok, So this is gonna be a fairly short post, because I haven't really made very many mistakes with lil panda so far (I'm happy about that lol). Anyhoo, the biggest problem I had was picking the yarn to go with my white. I delayed starting because I couldn't find a yarn that I liked. I ended up using Caron's Simply soft, in light country blue. It matched my felt, and it's, well...soft.

It's a tiny bit thick for the yarn I'm using for the head, but with a tiny (and I mean tiny) crochet hook, and tight stitching, it's working out alright.

The biggest mess-up I've had so far is panda's nose. I must have stitched it up and pulled it out three times! Here is a slightly disturbing picture of panda as i ripped out his nose for the second ( or third, I kinda lost count) time.

                                   It kinda looks like he's being eaten alive by blue worms (shiver)
Thankfully, that problem was resolved. I have finished panda's body and ears, I should have more pics tomorrow!

       Be sure to check out Stacey's post, and see what my fellow designers are up to HERE!!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Knit And Crochet Design Week: Day Four, Progress Pics!!

Unfortunately, These aren't the best quality photos. My camera's batteries died on me, and I was barely able to upload these few pictures! Well here they are anyway. I haven't progressed farther than the head...hehe

                                                I decided Panda is definitely a boy.....
I used green plastic safety eyes and light blue felt. The first pic is before the felt was secured.

I needle felted his nose and mouth, and secured the circles around his eyes by needle felting them down.

                  Then I added his eyebrows. So worried! So cute <3 I can't wait till he's done!!

                            Check out other day four posts, and Stacey's post, by clicking here!!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Knit And Crochet Design Week: Day Three, Yarn!!

Picking the yarn you want for a particular project , is , in my opinion, one of the hardest parts of the design process. Finding the yarn that will perfectly suit your project is a bit difficult, because it's hard to tell if it will turn out the way you picture it! However I think I have narrowed down my choices to two. I know that I want panda to be either purple or blue. I bought new yarn just a few days ago and I love the texture, I'm just not sure which color to go with!! It's Gala yarn, A mixture of Acrylic, Polyester, and Nylon, and it's sooo soft.

I am definitely using this white yarn for the body and head. It's fingering weight yarn, and I wanted to make panda kind of dainty. The problem is I'm not sure I will like the way the Gala yarn looks beside this white yarn. I may have to make a swatch to see how they look together.

Another difficulty is finding yarn that matches the felt colors I have chosen. Here is a picture of the blue yarn. As you can see It doesn't exactly match up with any of my felt selections. The purple matched a little better, but I'm leaning towards a boy panda.

Don't be surprised if panda isn't made out of this yarn, I'm a bit fickle when it comes to yarn selection. This yarn may get tossed in exchange for something brighter (metaphorically speaking, I'm not actually going to toss my precious yarn!!). And for panda's shoes, if it's a boy I may go with yellow or red,  a galosh/rain-boot kinda look. If it's a girl, maybe some cute little mary-jane's, in black or pink? Oh there's so many choices, what's a girl to do!?

Be sure to take a look at Stacey's daythree post, and find links to all the other participant's posts HERE!!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Knit And Crochet Design Week: Day Two, Techniques!

Too be honest, I probably use the same techniques as everyone else who makes amigurumi. I suppose I can list the different techniques I use anyway, just for fun.

1. I don't use a magic ring, I chain two, and work the desired amount of stitches into the second chain.
2. Generally, I don't use any stitch other than single crochet.
3. Everyone uses a stitch marker right? Wait, that's not even a technique.....
4. I do sometimes single crochet through the back loop, such as, if I want the bottom of my plushie's feet to be flat instead of round.
5. Of course, the invisible decrease,
6. Sometimes I work into the face with slip stitches. For instance, if I want to give my plush eyelids, I slip stitch into the face about four stitches, turn,single crochet across my slipped stitches, slip stitch into the last stitch, then fasten off.
7. I hide my yarn tails inside of my plushy. ;)

I guess that's about all technique-wise!

check out other day two posts here!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Knit And Crochet Design Week: Day One Sketches!!

I was on twitter, when I stumbled upon a tweet about "knit and crochet design week" , That caught my attention, I clicked the link. Stacey Trock(the awesome designer behind Fresh Stitches) is hosting a week long blog extravaganza (sorry couldn't think of a better word) all about the process of designing a knit or crochet object( I think that was a run on sentence...)! It sounded super fun, so now I'm in! Check out the rules and technical stuff here.Also be sure to browse the comments to see what all the other designers are making!! There's some pretty cute stuff in there! :)

Day one is all about starting out, sketching! I <3 sketching, especially when I have an idea I just can't visualize. When you have it right in front of you on paper, it's so much easier to create!A panda popped into my head when I pulled out one of my many sketchbooks, so that's what I started drawing.

The first couple looked more like mice then pandas! But I kept working at it and finally came up with something I liked. :)
Since I have a scanner now, my pictures and sketches look 100% nicer!
I liked the style of this one:short body, long limbs. Long limbed plushies strike me as "trendy" for some reason, and I like that ;)

But this isn't really a finished product...I needed to elaborate. I jotted down another sketch and scanned it into photoshop. This baby needs some color (cracks knuckles).

When I was drawing, I thought this would be a classic black-and-white panda bear. But that's just boring right? How bout' blue for a change? I dropped the eyebrows in the first sketch. They make panda look a little bit like an old fashioned thread crochet bear. Not saying that's a bad thing...without the eyebrows he looks a little blank...eyebrows or no eyebrows...what do you think?

And what's trendier than a pair of cute shoes? I wonder if it's possible to give panda heels?...That's an idea.....

 One thing I love about Photoshop is the ability to easily modify colors. This first sketch is the original, a rough pencil, and colored pencil over it. These next two are simply altered by adjusting the colors on photoshop. Simple, right? I'm still not entirely sure what color I want, (Oh the agony of difficult decisions!!!) I'm also not sure whether it should be a boy or a girl.......

I added the eyebrows to these.

      If I make panda a girl, I can give her a cute dress, and maybe use the high-heels idea! :D
I like the way this one looks, maybe I could use varying shades of pink and purple. In fact, I think I know just the yarn for this job!
                                           Hopefully I'll post more tomorrow! See ya soon!!

                                                             hugs n' kisses -Brea
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