Monday, April 30, 2012

The Cousin Series - Chapter 3

Chapter 3: Soren

Ah, little Soren...
I have to admit I don't know much about my nephew Soren. He came along when his family was living in Missouri. They moved to Boise and I've been with him for a weekend since then. From that brief visit and by gathering information from family blogs and stories, Soren is an enigma.

FYI: Enigma - a puzzling or inexplicable occurrence or situation 
(yeah, I had to look it up. Just to make sure it was the word I thought it was, shhh!)

Soren is quiet, but very loud. He wants to be alone, but wants others in the house. He sucks his thumb for comfort, but scratches his face with his little fingernails. He loves to watch movies, but then leaves them playing while he checks everything else out. Enigma? A cute little enigma!

Soren was still a little guy when I created this hippo for him. I had no point of reference for his likes or dislikes, so I picked the cutest one (only 5 inches long) and made it.  I've made another one for a friend's new baby and it looks nothing like Soren's. I love that about this creative medium. None of these little creatures are the same. Perfect for our little Enigma!  

I love you Soren! I can't wait to get to know you better. I promise I'll make another one just for you and your emerging personality.  Maybe THIS??   LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!

~ S

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Cousin Series - Chapter 2

Chapter 2: Ripley

When it came to Ripley's ami, it was a no-brainer. But, I have to say, it was also pre-determined.
Ripley's father was is a "monkey-hoarder". (Love you "Papa" A.) His entire life has been a collection of monkeys. So when Ripley was born, it was natural for him to bequeath his collection of monkeys to his new little "monkey". Ripley has inherited his father's tendency for all things monkey (among other collection tenancies we all seem to have). So...when it came to Ripley, as I said, it was a no-brainer.

Ripley is quite possibly the sweetest, most intelligent little man I've ever met. He's tall for his age, handsome, and has the most adorable lisp. He loves bugs, frogs, Ronana, Legos, Ben 10, video games (who doesn't) etc... All big kid now, he has blossomed (can I say that about a boy) into a rip-roarin' 1st grader.  He loves his family and takes his oldest son position rather seriously. He lives in Boise, ID. (too far)

I just love this kid.

So, monkeys run in the family. This pattern came from a Lion Brand Yarn booklet I picked up at Michael's a long time ago. I remember completing him somewhere between the I-70 and the "Panguitch Pass" coming home from a wonderful visit to Utah. The weather was all sunny and GORGEOUS. I looked up at the mountains and sagebrush, added that last stitch to his funky smile, sat back and sighed. 2 down 11 to go...

~ S

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Cousin Series - Chapter 1

...and so begins the "Cousin Series".  

Chapter 1: Addy

Two years ago I vowed that I would make an amigurumi for each one of my nieces and nephews for Christmas. I was feeling confident in my ami-making skills and knew I could probably figure out which amis they would like.  I began in July, only to finish just before Christmas! (I had 13 to make, come on!) I have pictures of most of them (hint, hint...Cees, Telacia, and Carla) and will share them all over the next little while! 

I also recently found the MOST AMAZING picture editing website, PicMonkey. Thank goodness for them in all their "free" glory! These older pictures are rough to say the least, but now they are all "monkey-fied" and are bee-ee-a-u-tiful. I made the first series all vintage-y. So perfect, because these toys are well played with and are all fuzzy with love.  Makes me happy!  

This first toy was for my niece, Addilyn. 

Cuteness abounds with Addy. She loves princesses, sparkles, well...all things girl. Big blue eyes, a sweet "Snow White" voice, and dark brown hair. Sigh...I love my Addy!  So the pink and white bunny with a heart was a no-brainer.   Her home is in Boise, Idaho. So very far away. (sniff) This bunny has been seen in the baby doll stroller, crib, and Batman cave. Yes, Addy is a girl, but very much surrounded by boys! 3 to be truthful, so the bunny's gotta mold to the current situation.

I love flexibility in a woman! Where's my crown?

Here's where to find the pattern. Again Lion Brand Yarn to the rescue! Yea!

I need pictures, check out "PicMonkey", and crowns are a must for all flexible women!
"So say we all!"

~ S

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

I'm gettin' nuttin' for Halloween

Ok. Here's the perfect example of making a set of amigurumi with the wonderful intention of giving them away (to each of the kid's teachers) and they didn't quite make it out the door. This little Bat was so easy to make and so cute to look at I could have made a hundred more like him. Sage just couldn't part with him and I had made them (of course) the night before the Halloween party at school. Remember...tired floating hands, bloodshot eyes...sounds like Halloween! So I caved. Ms. M got nothin'.

This little Ghost was for Mrs. G., 2nd grade teacher extraordinaire! Notice the "was"...yep, caved. In all honesty, I like my version better than the one on the Lion Brand website. I used black felt for the eyes instead of the craft doll eyes. It's a different look but on this guy it's nice. I widened the smile and lowered the face to the bottom of the head. The plan was to sew hanging loops from their heads so they could be ornaments, but again, notice the "was".  Skylar begged for this cutie and won. ** FYI - If you click the link to the pattern and scroll all the way down to the comment section, you'll notice my comment oozing with all the intention in the world!** (epic fail)

I can truly count this little Skull as a success, not because he actually made it to his rightful owner, but because of the golden-hearted little boy who so willingly gave him up. Praxton wanted this skull so bad, but knew his teacher, Mrs. B (another extraordinary teacher) loved, loved, loved Dia los Muertos - the Mexican "Day of the Dead". What a fantastic holiday! She even had an activity where they created the Catrina skulls so synonymous with the holiday. Cool! He wanted her to have this and upon my promise that I would make him a black one with white eyes, he agreed. I have until this Halloween to deliver. Mrs. B loved it! Even now, she keeps it on her desk. What a boy!


Monday, April 16, 2012

You love really love me!

I'm so sorry I've been neglectful of my posting.  I have been working to finish the pictures of all my little creations and it has been most wonderful the last few days, weather wise. 

It always distracts me. 

Why you ask?  I LOVE to take my knitting/crochet to the park/desert/lake, etc.  It channels all that lovely outside-y energy right into my work. I love to listen to my kids play and laugh. To see the breezes in their hair and the sparkles in their eyes. As I watch them and smile and feel, I find my body relaxes and I find that magic rhythm that forms my stitches with continuity. It makes my work electric!

Anyway, just excuses.  I'll have the new pictures up right away and I have some new amis to add to the family.  

I think I hear Hawaii calling me...Make it so!

"It's a beautiful world outside, you should go explore..."
-John Mayer

~ S

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

"I" is what it's all about

The huge pool of talent ceases to amaze me!  

I mean, in how many ways can we reinvent a unicorn? Obviously, many!  I just love this website. She has the most darling faces on her amis. 

It's also amazing to me that everyone's unique personality comes through in their creations.  We all see this in the art, sculpture, knitting, crafting, etc we experience daily. My amigurumis have a completely "me" look. Roxycraft shows in hers. 

I think my children would be clamoring for a look at this cutie above. Each one would be requesting their own colorway and special touches. Sage would want a green colorway. Skylar would want the ENTIRE pink spectrum with a little sparkle thrown in for good measure and Praxton would want...probably...something in the way of a superhero color scheme. Ironman? Superman? (I mean it has to be a BOY unicorn, right?) Sheesh!

There would be requests for felt flowers attached, polka dots, black eyes, green eyes, blue eyes, a different smile, add a nose, please stuff softly so it can be squishy, please stuff firmly so it can stand up better, etc, etc, etc...

What I'm pleased with is that I CAN do these things for them. Happily, willingly.  It draws them close to me. They check in daily with their amis progress. They rejoice in its bits and pieces. I rejoice in their attention. They are sad when I have made a mistake and have to rip out all that work. They pat me on the back and furrow their little brows in true, sincere pity for my tired hands. They get me drinks of water, when what I really want is a Coke, 
"cuz water will keep me healthy." (melt) 

Days go by, the creation process is complete. My hands and arms have that tired, floating feeling. I usually finish in the wee hours of the night after their little eyes have closed. I LOVE to leave their ami on the kitchen table, posed just so.  Morning comes. The shadow of sleep falls from my eyes and I hear them playing with each other in the front room. A smile creeps across my face. I don't have to see the scene, I already know it. 

 My heart goes into these creations for them because they love me with all of theirs. Each is a unique process of creation and they go to a unique and lovely individual.  

All their own. 
As it should be.

Individuality. What a glorious thing!

~ S

Friday, April 6, 2012

I'm Learnin' Somethin'!

Ok, when you see a picture well set up, well lit, well get a sense of...satisfaction.  
Take this for example. I mean, WOW!

From: - another great resource, currently in "good-bye" mode.  =(

A sense of "that's so [insert word here]", right? Well, I'm noticing the pictures recently taken of MY amigurumis leave something to be desired. 

Heck, they were taken on my kitchen table with only the kitchen table light casting shadows and not illuminating the plus-es of my hard work! With the above, well, you catch my drift. Her hard work is well "lit".

So, onward and upwards! This weekend will bring some new variety to my photos. Gone are the days of the kitchen table, oh yeah! I look forward to sharing them. They will not be like Miss Photo Booth above, but hopefully will leave you with that sense of [insert word here].

Kitchen tables are for eating, not taking pictures! 


Thursday, April 5, 2012

On the "To-Do" List!

After my current project is done and my knitting is done and my house is clean and my kids are fed and my trash is emptied and. . .(sigh)

This wonderful designer has so many cute amis to make she'll keep me busy for a good, long time!

I'll let you know! 

PS - The website Craftsy (where this cute pattern comes from) is marvelous too!  
Check it out!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Rubio - the Red-Eyed Tree Frog

This is Rubio. So named because of his 'ruby-red toes', (and he has red in his name and rubies are red...shhh, don't tell her I told you that.) Rubio belongs to my oldest daughter.(10) He is the love of her life. Rubio is a wee little lad measuring only 2 inches. I worked hard to get him like that. I used sport weight yarn and an E-4 hook just for that request. He's perfect for perching upon shoulders and squishing into pockets.

Monday, April 2, 2012


Let's just take this little guy in for a moment shall we...

I know, I know. Every beginner has to start somewhere. 

This was where I picked up the thread or yarn in this case. 

This little bunny was the start of it all. 

I look at this little guy and chuckle to myself.  Those open stitches (you can see the stuffing), the terrible color change on his right leg, the uneven feet, the floppy all shows me where I've come from.

My boy loves him for it. "Quirky" belongs to my son. He loves the floppiness of him, the puzzled look on his face, the odd tilt to the neck. I wonder if it reminds him of his own face sometimes looking at this world with that same puzzled sense of figuring-it-all-out. I see it in myself too.

"Quirky" looks nothing like the example.  I think I prefer him that way.

Here's to learning! Enjoy the journey!  :)

~ S