Friday, April 29, 2011


     I'm sorry to admit this, but I don't really have anything to show for nearly three weeks of no posts. For the first two weeks I was away tending to my husband as he recovered from surgery and this week has been catch up for everything we missed. I guess I'm allowed to let life happen and all, but I feel somehow negligent.

     Now that's not to say that I don't have plans. Oh boy do I ever have plans! But, since I've been working on the commissions so much I just haven't had the time to implement them. Not only that, but I'm working on three or four commissions all at the same time. I'm starting to think that splitting my focus really isn't helping matters.
So instead of a glorious post full of bright pictures and silly commentary I figured I would just clue everyone in on my life. After all, there's not a lot about me on here.

     My name is Tracey, I'm 23 and I learned to crochet when I was about 10 from my grandmother. I dabbled in it off and on for a few years, then dropped it altogether until I got married. Six months of unemployment equaled a lot of free time and so I picked my hooks back up and started working on a basic granny square blanket. I nearly killed myself with the tedious nature of such a large project. To be honest I never did finish it 100% but I reached a point where "close enough" and "good enough" worked for me.

     It wasn't until this last winter that I started looking into the other things you can do with crochet. Amigurumi was a foreign word to me, and I was completely baffled whenever I came across a little crochet doll. Granted some work out there still baffles me, but I at least understand the stitches behind the art now. My first amigurumi was the little bomb from Mario as a gift. I followed a pattern and was very pleased with the outcome. Next I made a brain slug, and again liked the results. It wasn't until following a pattern for an Invincibility Star that I realized that not all patterns were created equal. What a mess! So I took the parts of the pattern that worked and added my own flair to make it look right. Oddly enough it worked a lot better and required a whole lot less concentration. I haven't looked at a pattern since.

     I free hand all my work now, not because I think I'm better than the patterns out there, but because I'm too damn lazy to read them. Seriously. My idea of good crocheting is being able to only pay 1/3 attention to the yarn and what I'm doing and 2/3 attention to whatever I have streaming on Netflix. That's how I've done all my art (and homework) for years. I think the only time that ever changes is when I'm writing.

     Maybe you glanced at a post I wrote several months ago, but I really have a passion for writing. I despise papers, essays, assignments, and and sort of professional documentation, but I adore writing stories. I've written two unpublished books, one of which sucks, but the other has potential. I hope to send it on to agents by the end of the year. That is if my selection of "editors" will ever actually read it. I've been tempted to start a writing blog, posting chapters and updates, but I worry that someone will steal my ideas. Plus I could really use an income. REALLY use one.

     Oops, distracted myself again. See what I mean? I can't even stay focused on one topic long enough to finished a quick post. Anyway that whole thing was really to say that when I write the world disappears and I only see the events unfold in my head as I scramble to write them down. Crocheting isn't anything like that, it's relaxing and challenging, but not engulfing. I love it when I'm working, but I don't really crave it when I stop. Maybe sometimes if I'm almost done with a big project, but it doesn't bleed into my everyday life.

     This isn't uncommon for me, especially as the winter ends. It's summer now and my mind works more furiously at ideas and concepts, rather than relaxing into nothingness with busy fingers. Winter is the time when I love to craft and sew and concentrate on motions with my hands. Summer is a time to get up and move; and the time to stay up late pouring my creativity into a new world.

     So now the question becomes: will I be able to balance my adoration for crochet with this unyielding need to write again? Also, how the hell did I end up in some philosophical examination of my hobbies?

Screw it, I'm going to go make dinner.

Creatively Challenged,

Sunday, April 10, 2011

I can't stay mad at what is essentially me. I love me!

A duo of baby Benders mischievously drinking. Wait, could one be a prepubescent Flexo? You'll never know!

Commissioned by the ever hilarious, we'll call him Max, who waited patiently through my extended vacation, only then to feel the sting of a yarn shortage. Together we trudged through a battlefield of exchanged Futurama quotes and arrived in awe of Bender the Magnificent.

You know, I once tried to write out what Bender was made up of.  Dolomite, iron, titanium, zinc, lead, all at mathematically impossible percents, not to mention a 0.4 nickel impurity. Then I tried to compile all his "bite my----" sayings. You know, "bite my shiny metal ass" "bite my red hot glowing ass" "bite my glorious golden ass" the list went on. Man that was a great Christmas, am I right Chels?

 Anyway I get a kick out of seeing them both together. It kind of makes me feel like I'm creating an army of Benders to take over the world. Man I don't know what I would do without Futurama.

OK readers. I'm taking off for a couple of weeks. We'll see if I have time to post. I've got some grand plans stored away, just you wait and see.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Why is it the smaller the item the cuter it gets?

So apparently I have some sort of obsession with making Toothless plushies. This is what, my 4th one? I mean Toothless is amazingly cute and all, but I wonder if I'm taking this too far. Bah, who cares when something is this cute!

You may remember my last plush was quite big. Here the two are side by side. The giant one has an 88 inch wing span and the little one ended up with a 46 inch wing span. So I was pretty darn close when I told people he was half size.

The little Toothless is actually not finished in the comparison picture because I had to mail off my giant one! He is now on his way to a new home. It was a bittersweet moment.

How can you not love a face like that! I was so twitterpated when I finished him that I made a collection of excited and cute squees that had my husband doubling over with laughter.


One final note. I almost hate to say this, but I've had so many requests. Unfortunately I will not be sharing or selling the pattern for my Toothless. Right now selling this little guy is the only way I'm getting any income and if I post the pattern I'm afraid that my unique version will be copied and stolen across the Internet. There are, however, several free patterns available on Deviant Art and I would encourage anyone interested in making their own to start there. Thank you for understanding, and as always thank you for reading!

Friday, April 1, 2011

April and a Brain Slug

So I was making a brain slug as part of a commissioned project and thought, what the heck, I'll make my own pattern and have fun posting it. I know there's about twenty million other patterns for brain slugs out there. I mean, let's face it, they are just a ball with a floppy bottom and antennas. However, since I hate following a pattern while I crochet, watch TV, and drink tea, I have the tendency to just make it up as I go along. So here it is. Futurama Brain Slug-Mostly Nerdy Crochet style.

The color is a bit bleached out, which is strange since I deliberately avoided any direct light. I took one picture with a flash (gasp! I know, total taboo right?) and his colors show a little better. He's actually a very pleasant bright green without being too electric. The yarn is called "Moss" and is 75% recycled cotton. Well, actually it's now 100% recycled as I rescued this poor skein from the thrift shop.

Ok, so one more pattern to fill the Internet searches with:

Futurama Brain Slug!

Magic circle with 6 sc. Inc to 12

Inc, sc, inc, sc etc for 1 row

inc, 2 sc, inc, 2 sc for 2 rows

inc after every 5th sc for 1 row

inc after every 10th sc for 1 row

inc after every 20th sc for 2 rows

then do about 12-15 = rows

dec every 4th stitch for 2 rows, then every 3rd for 1 row, every 2nd... you get the idea. Stuff and finish closing.

sl st back to the edge


sc, dc,tc,tc,dc, 4 sc, dc,tc,tc,tc,dc,dc,sc....just make a wavy base using single crochet, double crochet, and triple crochets. Vary and repeat until you've made one round.


sc in the "low" spots (close to the body) and dc on the ends of the tentacles for one row. Just to give a more pronounced wave.

sl st back at the beginning and you're done! Oh, wait. No you're not.

Antenna: make two

ch 16, 3 dc in 2nd ch from hook. sl st back to end of chain. Attach to body.

Don't forget to cut out an eye and pupil and sew them on. I used felt.

Well that's all. Today has been a very odd Friday, but I'm glad I have something to show for it. Oh and happy April everyone!