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Monthly Archives: February 2011

Horde or Sloth?

Are the hamsters, or are they bears? The world may never know.

Random factoid: a group of hamsters is called a horde, and a group of bears is a sloth or sleuth. I love the hamsters in Knitting Mochimochi and thought they would make awesome cat toys. The first one I made was the same size as in the book, but Allister almost swallowed it. So I decided to make them with size 3 needles instead of the called for size 1. Perfect size in the cats’ opinion, big enough that Ally can’t eat them, and small enough to still fit in Kiko’s mouth. However, when I made the white ones, they looked more like polar bears than hamsters. Especially because I changed how the legs are made.

Grey has looped I-cord and white is just wrapped yarn.

In the book, the legs are just straight I-cords pulled through the body. Tiny I-cords are a pain in the butt, in my opinion, and I thought the cats might just pull them out and eat them. At first I just looped the I-cord under to make little stub legs, which are the greys above. That was way too time consuming for a cat toy. So with the white ones, I did the same thing as the ears and tails; wrapping the yarn around a few stitches. Much faster, and if you leave long enough tails when you cast on and off, you don’t have to cut extra yarn to make all of those parts. But now I think they look more like little bears then hamsters. The cats love them no matter what I call them, so I guess it doesn’t matter too much. It is quite hard to take photos with Kiko around, she has a sixth sense for catnip.

She thought she could just sneak off with one mid-photo.

I’m using Lion Brand Fishermen’s Wool to make them. I didn’t really want the cats nomming on acrylic, especially because they are really rough on catnip toys. Fishermen’s Wool is 100% pure virgin wool that still has some lanolin in it. Lanolin makes it really nice to work with and also makes a really soft end product. I also love the giant size of the skein. I could make millions thousands of hamsters/bears out of one skein if I felt so inclined. So what do you think, hamsters or bears?

Wonderful stuff, and really inexpensive to boot.

10 Things I Love

A few of the blogs I frequent devote a day to things they love. And I guess one of the things I love is this idea, it is like a little snapshot of what is going on inside their head that week, or at least that is how I see it. So without further ado, here are 10 things I currently love, in no particular order.

1. Stereomood– radio that fits your mood. It is kinda like Pandora, but instead of basing songs off a specific artist, it sets it to certain moods. I found this song there, and I love it. Never before have I heard such awesome yodeling. The song is Hocus Pocus, by Focus.

2. Homemade biscuits. My mom has this quick mix recipe, so it is easy to have biscuits whenever you want them. I love to make them into garlic cheddar biscuits, all you have to do is add about 1/4 cup cheese and a few dashes of garlic powder before you add the water. The pdf is formatted so it will print out to as a nice recipe book.

3. Daily webcomics. Growing up I loved to read the comics section of the newspaper, especially the Sunday comics. I don’t get the newspaper any more, but now I can read current comics by awesome people, instead of ones that were started 50 years ago. Two of my favorites are Questionable Content, which is about indie hipster folk, but not in an annoying way I promise. The other is Girls with Slingshots, about a group of friends and their day to day lives. it is way more excellent than I just made it sound.

4. Firefly. Unfortunately I decided to get into this series very late in the game, and after I had seen the movie. But it is still a great series.

5. Stumbleupon. This is how I come across a majority of the sites I love, and things I would never have thought to look for. Be warned, it has time canceling abilities and before you know it, it is 4 am and you are still stumbling. And you don’t care.

6. The internet. This one is kinda a given, but I love the internet almost as much as I love breathing. When I was younger, when I became interested in something, I soaked up as much as I could about that topic. Now with the internet, I can still do that, just faster and easier. The internet is a beautiful place for knowledge/trivia junkies. And I love to order things online so I get mail that I actually look forward to.

7. Adventure Time. It started as a short for Nickelodeon and it became an internet hit. After which Cartoon Network picked it up to be a full series. It is such a randomly good time. Here are some clips, but you should really check out the full episodes. You can find them online or on Cartoon Network.

8. MochiMochi. I just bought her book, Knitting Mochimochi, and I’m working on tweaking her hamster pattern into catnip hamsters. But more about them later. I love all of her designs, I aspire to knit such fun and crazy things. I love to knit toys, way more entertaining than socks. Also check out her blog for an almost daily dose of cuteness.

Coo and Coy by Anna Hrachovec of Mochimochi

9. Pilot G-2 pens. I love the way they write, and they aren’t too bad to draw with either. They are just so fluid and the line weight is excellent. I also love that they are click pens, because I like to rapidly click pens when I’m thinking sometimes.

10. Our California King bed. While not technically ours at the moment, it is on loan from the parents, it is super comfortable. There are quite a few mornings where I would love to  just chill out in bed with the cats and read all day.

So that is my ten things I love for this week.

Nostalgia Saturdays

Since I have so many projects from the past, way before this blog was even thought of, I would like to share a few of them. So Saturdays shall be nostalgia days, days to remember the projects of yore, at least until I run out of things to reminisce about.

This all started when Will, former classmate and awesome friend, and I were dumpster diving at the end of the school year. You would be surprised what rich freshman throw away, like a whole set of unused acrylics, the kind in the huge squeeze bottles. But I digress, I found these mirrors in the trash. I guess they were cleaning out old offices too or something.

Pardon the quality, I had to snatch if from my Facebook, as the original is lost in the ether of my computer.

There were two of them, and they were a very ugly bronze color. (Which I don’t have any pictures of, don’t know what I was thinking.)When I found them, I almost left them, they were pretty icky. But once I took them home and cleaned them up, they just screamed to be teal, and of course you should always listen to the voices inside old objects.

Fast forward to sometime later, and I was out thrifting with Will, and we came across these eagle lamps. I can’t remember which thrift store it was cause we frequented many in the greater Philly area. They were originally the color on the left.

Again stolen from my Facebook. I really need to organize my photos.

I don’t have a thing for eagles, but I did think it was awesome that they matched my mirrors, so they came home with me. I think they were like $3-4 a piece. So as you can see I painted one of them red. I have some Alexander Henry fabric I made a quilt out of that is my color inspiration for home decor. And the other became teal to match the mirrors.

Again, from Facebook

Now for the tragic part of the story. When we moved back to Utah, we were limited on space, and I made the horrible mistake of leaving my beloved lamps behind. So if anyone knows where to find kitschy eagle lamps, give me a call, I really miss them.

Welcome to Ally & Lucie!

I’m starting Ally & Lucie as a way to document my crafty endeavors and share interesting finds from around the internet. Over time, there will be a little bit of everything, cooking, sewing, knitting etc. I’ve never been able to settle on just one genre of design and crafts, I love them all. I am also teaching some classes in the coming months, so there will be tutorials when the time comes.

One of my major projects this summer is to travel to Mexico with a wonderful organization called Youthlinc, whose information you can find