Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Fluffy Clouds

Happy Halloween, everyone! Halloween is on hump day this year; not great for having a party. So our friends had an early Halloween Saturday night (and a late sleep-in on Sunday morning).

The best part of Halloween is the opportunity to craft. Other craft bloggers have been able to post earlier in the day than this hardworking girl -- check out their handiwork here and here. The Hipp household, per usual, took a different crafting tack: Bob Ross.


Mr. Hipp + 'fro wig + an artist's palette = the PBS painting master reincarnated. I went as a Bob Ross original painting. My costume was so much fun to make, and I loved having a non-slutty costume. (Click on "Listen" to hear a great musical rebuke to the phenomenon.)

Do you want to be a Bob Ross painting for your next costume party? Follow these simple directions and you too can be non-slutty and FABULOUS:

1.Get two artists canvases, in a value 2-pack that is 40% off if you can swing it.

2. Watch Bob Ross - The Footbridge on YouTube and follow along on one of the canvases. (Mr. Hipp did well, don't you think?)

Faux Bob Ross

3. Paint something fun on the other canvas. Our party host turns 35 today, so the second canvas became a birthday card with lots of space for party guests to sign.

Pumpkin bday card 2007

4. Cut two 14" lengths of grosgrain ribbon. Those who were visited more often by the Boobie Fairy may want to have longer ribbon so that the canvases hang below your bosom.

5. Lay the two paintings face down about 12" apart, top edges facing one another in the center.

6. Take one of the ribbons and use a staple gun to attach each end to the backs of each canvas's top edge, about 1" from the left side. Repeat with the second ribbon, 1" from the right side.

7. Put on your comfiest jeans and some sneakers. If you have long hair, twist it up so it's off your back.

8. Put on your canvases: stick your head between the ribbons and let the ribbons lay on your shoulders. One canvas should be on your front, the other on your back.

9. Optional: Grab some permanent markers so your friends can sign the backside painting.

Have a safe Halloween!

Monday, October 29, 2007

The SIL iPod Cozy, Version 1.2

I just realized I never posted specifically about finishing up this little project. Since finished objects are few and far between at Hipp Crafts, this one simply cannot go undocumented.

Katy iPod 3
Pattern: My own, sized for an iPod Nano
Yarn: Leftovers from Sockapalooza 4 socks
Needle: Clover bamboo US 6 dpns

It is just just a 2x2 rib tube with a little flap at the top, closed at the bottom with 3-needle bind off. A bit of Velcro secured with hand stitching makes sure that the SIL's precious iPod does not escape. Easy peasy, that's the name of the game.

In case you need to make a cozy of your own, the first generation iPod Nano measures 9cm tall by 4cm wide by 0.5cm deep. Teeny.

The second generation video Nano is a whole different story. Mr. Hipp and his little red buddy are officially jealous and would like to have a hand-knit cozy as well. It never ends, does it?

Sunday, October 28, 2007

The Fires and Finally, A Finished Object

This is first and foremost a crafting blog, and I debate internally on how much of my "secular" life to share here. There are times -- of which there seem to be many, lately -- when my life outside of crafting has been so overwhelming that I feel it would be disrespectful not to mention it.

The southern California wildfires are still burning, thankfully none close enough to our home to necessitate an evacuation. The Santiago Fire is in the mountains about 3 miles east of where we live. The smoke and ash in the air make it unbearable to be outside for more than a few minutes, and it is actually much better today than it had been during the early part of this week. Let's hope for a quick end to this disaster, and please keep the firefighters and the people and animals who have lost their homes in your thoughts.

And now, as they say in the morning news when they move from the Iraq War to Britney Spears: "On a lighter note...". The Child's Placket Neck Sweater is finally d-o-n-e and I l-o-v-e it. You can get the milk without buying the cow here (pattern is in pdf).

Childs Placket Neck 003
Patten: Child's Placket Neck Sweater from Last Minute Knitted Gifts
Size: 0-6 month, but bigger yarn resulted in about 12-month size
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool Ease, Dark Rose Heather
Needles: Addi Turbo 16" circulars & Clover bamboo dpns, both in US 9
Buttons: Wood, from JoAnne Crafts, and little plastic ones from some old shirt.
Modifications: Just the yarn, this pattern was super easy to follow as is!
For Ravelry users, the info is also here.

The first thought was to use grosgrain ribbon to line the placket and give stability to the button holes and the button band, but I found the stretchiness in the button holes was a good thing. If they get out of shape, I can take the sweater back and add the stabilizing ribbon then.

Childs Placket Neck 005
Instead, I used smaller plastic buttons to back up the public buttons. They are on there super duper secure, with quadrupled knotting as only a former climbing anchor builder can do. I refuse to let these buttons pop off an get into a little one's trachea.

Childs Placket Neck 001
This dear little sweater was made for a co-worker's impending baby. Since said baby is still impending, the 12-month-old sizing may not work out with the seasons. (Based on informal polling of mothers, babies often wear sizes that are 1-2 sizes bigger than their age. Meaning this baby will probably be wearing the sweater next August...not exactly sweater season in the OC.) I've decided to gift it instead to a family baby who is now a jolly 6-month-old and will be a roly poly 9-month-old come winter. And she lives on the east coast. Perfect!

Finishing this sweater was a pleasant break from the Monkey Socks, which are due to my pal this week. I've got two more repeats then the toe and sock number 2 will be d-o-n-e as well. Gotta get busy!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Monkeys Monkeys Monkeys

We've been monkeying it up here at Casa de hipp.

Koigu Monkey Socks

The color is a bit off in this photo. Koigu is hard to capture in artificial light, and I wasn't ready for photo time until late in the day. This colorway is gives a bit of a twist on my Monkey Sock Swap pal's preferences. She likes pastels, which is a major departure from my stash of crazy bright colors. This colorway has the desired soft pinks and blues but with an occasional shot of electric blue for me! Love love love it.

Part of yesterday afternoon was spent on the monkey-themed goodies to go with these socks. I pulled out some pretty pink fabric from my pile of soon-to-be-thrifted clothes and sewed up a little project bag. Don't worry, the thrift pile clothes are all very clean!

Monkey bag

The outer fabric used to be one of Mr. Hipp's striped shirts (too big) and the inner fabric used to be one of my dresses (also too big -- do we think we're fatter than we really are?). The ribbon came wrapped around a blanket I bought on sale (of course!) at Target. I sewed two rectangles together on three sides for the outer layer, leaving a 1" opening near the top of each side seam. Then I sewed two rectangles together on three sides for the inner layer, this time with no side openings. I put the inner inside the outer and sewed them together around the top and also about 1/4" below the side openings. Thread the ribbon through the side openings, cinch tight, and done!

Monkey bag close up

This is by no means an original design, but if anyone is interested in seeing more detailed directions, let me know and I'll write up a mini tutorial.

And of course, the monkey face. Ah, I love it! It's an iron-on from JoAnn's. A pack of two was only 99 cents, so the backside of the bag has the same little monkey face on it.

Free fabric + free ribbon + 99 cent monkey face iron-ons = happy skinflint crafter.

Oh wait, is this supposed to be a knit sock exchange? I'm getting distracted by all the other monkey craft fun. Second Monkey sock, here I come!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Time Flies

Where have I been since that last post? It feels like ages have passed. Most of my time has been spent are various local hospitals -- my father had a massive heart attack just over two weeks ago. Since then, he has been in an out of the ICU, in and out of consciousness, off and on a ventilator, in and out of operating rooms...and now he is finally home. The picture above is of us a couple of days ago. He is recuperating fantastically well!

Small public health soapbox moment #1: If you and/or a loved one smokes, please consider quitting and/or encouraging your loved one to quit. My father's decades of smoking were a direct contribution to his heart attack and the pace of his recovery. It is possible to quit and so worth it! There are free online resources and my co-worker swears by Nictone Anonymous.

Small public health soapbox moment #2: CPR really does save lives! If you aren't already CPR-certified, do so as soon as possible. My father went into full arrest (no heart beat, no breathing) immediately after his heart attack. Thank goodness he was at a party with several CPR-trained persons. Their quick and effective actions not only led to the later revival of his heart and lungs at the ER but also kept blood and oxygen circulating to his brain, preventing brain damage. He doesn't remember much about what has happened in the past few weeks, but every other aspect of his memory, mental capacity, and personality are intact. The American Red Cross offers classes in most areas.

On the crafty front, I am almost done with the first Monkey Sock for the swap. It is easily the most beautiful thing I have ever knit. I will take photos of the sock itself later today, but here is a glimpse of the delightful Koigu it is made from:

Koigu KPPPM in P425 colorway

Have a great Monday. More Monkey news in forthcoming posts.