Saturday, October 29, 2011
Yes, I know I've been loath to share my monkey with you, although I finished him the weekend before last - why - you ask? I just haven't gotten any really good shots of him - you know, that capture his truly charming monkey essence. Yeah, I'm a bit strange, but he is one charming monkey.
Maybe it's the glazed look in his little monkey eyes...
And, having (unrepentantly) seen Puss in Boots this weekend, I know one must never underestimate the power of fully dilated pupils. :)
Or maybe it's just the silly floppiness of his skinny limbs, which have seemingly limitless potential for hilarity:
Whatever it is, I'm hooked on the monkey.
Everyone I've met is likewise charmed by the monkey- my friend's little boy played with him very politely for hours, and gave him lots of hugs - my niece was much less gentle but his little limbs took the flinging about in great stride. I have also noted, that if I leave him in a certain pose on the couch, he will be in a different one altogether when I arrive home. Providing quite conclusive proof that my mom is playing with him.
A few construction notes - 5 colors of stripes was a pain and time-consuming, but worth it in the end. His mouth is a little crooked, but it just adds to the charm. The pattern calls for a tail, too, but I thought he had enough skinny appendages, and I bet he'll sit better without one.
Linda filled me in on the mystery yarn I used - so here's a quick recap of the yarns on this project:
Top: Louet Gems - Terra Cotta
Bottom - left to right: Bamboo Ewe - Eucalyptus, Wool of the Andes- Cloud and Mink Heather, Bamboo Ewe - Beach Glass
I used size 6 Addi needles and safety eyes from Hobby Lobby. The pattern is called Jerry the Musical Monkey, designed by Rebecca Danger.
So what do you think of the monkey? Yeah, you know I'm gonna make more. Maybe I've even started another one? :)
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
So, I'm thinking of being a Black Swan for Halloween. And, the way I think about being things is by sitting at home in front of my mirror, applying, removing, and re-applying makeup. All. night. long.
I'm not sure the pasty-white look agrees with me, though, so I might alter it a bit. And there's always that chance that people might just mistake me for a KISS fan in a ballerina skirt, but that's the risk of living in a city with a disproportionate heavy metal fanbase, I guess. :)
I was inspired by these 2 videos:
I'm always in awe of how people who do makeup well make it look so effortless. I can barely line my eyes!
I'm also really inspired by the awesome Dia de los Muertos makeup I've been seeing on the web:
I have no credit for that image, by the way - it's been Tumblr'd so often - let me know if you know the source so I can credit it!
I doubt that I could reproduce this, but it's awesome:
Yup, I'm keeping it creepy - what are you gonna be this Halloween? :)
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Bet you thought I wasn't gonna have one of these again, huh? I just wasn't finding anything that inspired me enough to post last month, but I've squirreled away a whole bunch of stuff recently...
The type up there is from a French advertising alphabets book scanned by pillpat:
Putting those letters together in Photoshop took a fair amount of squinting and scooting (isn't that such a formal term) - if you'd like to know what it felt like, try The Kerning Game: type.method.ac/
Boo, I only scored an 85. My defense is that I was sleepy and my contacts were really bugging me, and well, it's hard. Let me know what you score! :)
Lately I've been inspired by all of her scans - especially this lovely illustrated edition of The Little Mermaid:
I love this poster I found via Pinterest yesterday - that muted color scheme really appeals to me:
poster available for purchase here
Lastly, here's some more fun hand-drawn type:
And you know I love that this type is called "Mexican." :)
Thursday, October 20, 2011
Here's a few Pinterest and Flickr faves and a palette I put together, based on their colors. I was getting bored with my old palette layout, so I shook it up a little (and took off all the hex codes, sorry!) I love the warm, fall, mustardy-tones.
All of those colors remind me of these colors, too:
160 over 90 offices, Philadelphia
I'm loving the feeling of fall in the air - it's chilly in the mornings, just enough to wear a very light sweater or windbreaker. Yeah, that's about AS COLD as it gets in South Texas in October. :) Throughout the week, I've been working on my big patchwork blanket, finishing my Watson scarf, and staring at the unstuffed monkey I plan to re-visit this weekend. Oh, and watching a tolerable amount of Veronica Mars, season 3. There's something about the sudden chill, darker mornings, and huge, gleaming moon that make this time of year so mysterious...
Sunday, October 16, 2011
Here was my progress as of yesterday morning - I was finishing up a skinny arm:
Then I spent all of yesterday (almost) stitching and here are the fruits of my labor - an almost finished monkey (he is unstuffed and has no tail, but you get the idea):
While I stitched, I spent a quiet morning watching Late Spring. I saw my first Ozu film a couple of years ago after I lost my father - I'm always careful when I watch them, because as detached as they always begin, they pack an emotional punch that totally catches me off guard.
Like Antonioni, he has these dreamy black and white shots and he's a master of composition:
His choice of cast is nearly identical in each of his films - and Setsuko Hara has to be one of my favorites:
There's something so luminous and joyful and charming in her smiling face.
One of my favorite sequences comes near the end, when her father is trying to convince her to marry - she's afraid to leave him on his own - but you begin to see it's not just that - she's so happy in her current life that she can't imagine a life unlike it...
There's something so incredibly moving about this scene, as her father tries to convince her that she needs to move on - her time with him is over.
It's really a stunning, quiet, wonderful film.
Saturday, October 8, 2011
If you've been hanging around my stream for any length of time, you know I love monkeys. If I know you, I might have even shown you my monkeys. But I thought I'd hit a monkey wall - I hadn't been inspired to sew any more for a loooong time.
This monkey brought me back around:
Yeah, I know, he isn't so exciting yet - but can you maybe envision the monkey he will become? I've just finished up one long, skinny arm and the hand is ready to stuff:
He looks a bit deflated without any stuffing in his mouth, but we'll fix that soon enough.
Aren't my needles so shiny and nice?
A few notes about the knitting process so far - these directions ask you to do Magic Loop for every step - while in the monster book, small appendages like the arms and legs asked for double-pointed needles. Um, can I just say that using Magic Loop instead of dpns is about 1000% easier?! (I feel like a fancy pants since I used the hip abbreviation "dpns", by the way) :)
It just feels a bit funny using needles with such a long cord (I bought mine with a 40 in cord, because I was imagining knitting large stuffed animals - and they were really handy for Higgins / Biscuit. But on a teeny-tiny skinny arm, I had that long cord flapping around every time I turned it and 9 times out of ten it was bouncing off my face (I'm sure the bus riders were amused).
The other thing that is tricky is having 5 different yarns going at the same time. Before every new color I'd have to spend a few minutes distentangling it from the other colors - it adds quite a bit of time to the process. But I think in the end, it will be worth it, because I'm a stripes girl, and I think he looks adorable with his stripe pattern.
I've been faving lots of awesome monkeys on Ravelry, here's just a few:
Hope you're all having a great weekend! :)
Thursday, October 6, 2011
It's that time of year again for chilly mornings that make you shiver, warm socks, scarves (eventually) and sweaters. This is my favorite time of year to knit and make things. I love the way the light changes (I've said it 1,000 times) - there's something wondrous in the sharpness of the shadows...
Saturday, October 1, 2011
I was over on Ravelry and one look at this little guy and my weekend was spoken for:
I don't know what I love more - the monkey pattern, the pose, the awesome photo, or the bright, perfect colors she chose. All of it. I love all of it.
One thing I love about all this crafting I've been doing is how much it makes me think of and notice color. I would have never looked at these 5 colors and put them together, but they look perfect:
Naturally, I was itching to start right away (as usual) so I used the colors I had on hand, and not bad ones, at that. But I'm starting to recognize a very consistent batch of colors I gravitate towards online and in real life:
All except for that rusty, terracotta color - I threw that in for contrast, but it's not in my normal color scheme.
Here are the yarn counterparts:
If you're curious - from left to right they are Bamboo Ewe - Eucalyptus, Wool of the Andes- Cloud and Mink Heather, Bamboo Ewe - Beach Glass. And that rusty terracotta color on top - Linda, help me out (i.e. this was one of many generous gifts from you!) do you recognize it? :)