25 October 2010

Skullflake Monday

Skullflake
Sometimes I study the clouds in search of shapes. And sometimes I see shapes within my snowflake designs.

SkullflakeThis skullflake was inspired by a highly unlikely flake I designed recently. The holes in the flake I was designing looked almost like a skull face. Because it is October, I decided that wasn't such a bad idea. I made this flake on 10.10.10, and writing the pattern was complete in the 10 o'clock hour. Bewitching!

Note to Self: Never design a pattern with black thread! Make a white one, an orange one or even a purple one first. After you finish tweaking, then you can make the spooky black one!

Jack 'o Lanterns full of gratitude to Allicats for helping me work the bugs out of this pattern. I wouldn't have been able to share it with you today without her patience and expertise in testing this pattern for me. And get this... she made her own beads for her skullflake!!!

You may do whatever you'd like with skullflakes you make from this pattern, but you may not sell the pattern. Thanks, and enjoy!

Skullflake
Finished Size: 5 inches from point to point
Materials: Size 10 crochet thread, size 8 crochet hook, 12 clear red 6 mm beads (or whatever size and color desired) empty pizza box, wax paper or plastic wrap, cellophane tape, glue, water, small container for glue/water mixture, paintbrush, stick pins that won't be used later for sewing, clear thread or fishing line

Instructions

String 12 beads onto thread. (I use glue to stiffen tip of thread, let it dry, and then thread beads with "glue needle." I also tend to string more beads than needed, just in case.) I've also included instructions for a beadless version. Skip this step if you are using beads.

Starting at inside of flake, at jaw of skulls, ch 48. Being careful not to twist ch, sl st into 1st ch. Ch 1.

Round 1: 1 sc in same ch, 2 sc in next ch, 1 sc in next ch, [yo and draw up loop in next ch, yo and pull through 2 loops, repeat 4 more times, yo and pull through all loops on hook] (5 dc cluster made), *1 sc in next ch, 2 sc in next ch, 1 sc in next ch, 5 dc cluster over next 5 ch; repeat from * around 4 more times for a total of 6 jawbones; sl st in starting sc.
Round 2: Making teeth, ch 1 (does not count as sc), sc in same st, ch 1, sl st in 2nd sc of 2 sc increase below, *ch 1, 1 sc in next sc, ch 1; working into top center of 5 dc cluster (as shown in photo below), 1 dc, ch 1, 1 dc, ch 1, 1 dc; ch 1, 1 sc in next sc (to minimize "Katherine Wheel hole", pull loop up through cluster below sc instead of just through sc as shown below, but hole also may be camouflaged during pinning and stiffening), ch 1, sl st in 2nd sc of 2 sc increase below; repeat from * around 4 more times; ch 1, 1 sc in next sc, ch 1; working into top center of 5 dc cluster, 1 dc, ch 1, 1 dc, ch 1, 1 dc; ch 1, sl st into starting sc.

working into top center of 5 dc cluster
pull up loop through top center of 5 dc cluster
Katherine Wheel hole stitched over
Katherine Wheel hole
pinned Katherine Wheel hole
Round 3: Round 3: *Ch 3, [2 sc in next ch 1 space] between next sc and dc (top of tooth); repeat [ ] 3 more times; repeat from * 5 more times; sl st into 1st ch of starting ch 3. (total of 8 sc across the top of each skull with chain 3 in between each skull)
Round 4: Forming nostrils, ch 6 (counts as 1 dc and ch 3), *sk ch 3 and next sc, 1 dc in each of next 3 sc, ch 2, 1 dc in next sc, ch 2 (nostrils formed), 1 dc in each of next 3 sc, ch 3; repeat from * around 4 more times; sk ch 3 and next sc, 1 dc in each of next 3 sc, ch 2, 1 dc next sc, ch 2, 1 dc in each of next 2 sc; sl st in 3rd ch of starting ch 6.
Round 5: *Ch 2, 2 sc in next dc, 1 sc in each of next 2 dc, 3 sc in next ch 2 sp, 3 sc in next ch 2 sp, 1 sc in each of next 2 dc, 2 sc in next dc; repeat from * around 5 more times; sl st in starting ch.
skullflakeRound 6: Making eyes, ch 3 (counts as 1 dc), *sk ch sp below and next sc, 1 dc in each of next 4sc, slip bead up to needle, 1 dc in next sc, making sure bead stays at front of work facing you (I place each bead at final yo, prior to final draw through 2 loops of st), 1 dc in each of next 3 sc, slip bead up to needle, 1 dc in next sc, making sure bead stays at front of work, 1 dc in each of next 4 sc; repeat from * around 5 times, finishing with decrease 1 dc (yo, pull up loop through 4th sc, yo, pull through 2 loops, yo, pull up loop through 5th sc, yo, pull through 2 loops, yo, pull through remaining loops) across final 2 sc instead of 1 dc in each of next 4 sc on final repeat; sl st in 3rd ch of starting ch 3. (Total of 13 dc across each skull.)
(NOTE: Notice how placing the eyeballs in different stitches than what I've instructed here changes the personality. Close together and close to the nostrils makes the skull look mean or angry, while placing them further apart and/or higher on the skull – such as next row – makes the skull look goofy or happy.)

Beadless Version
Round 6: Making eyes, ch 3 (counts as *1 dc), sk ch sp below and next sc, 1 dc in each of next 3sc, ch 2, sk 2 sc, 1 dc in each of next 3 sc, ch 2, sk 2 sc, 1 dc in each of next 3 sc; repeat from * around 5 times, finishing with 1 dc in final 2 sc instead of 1 dc in each of next 3 sc on final repeat; sl st in 3rd ch of starting ch 3. (Total of 3 dc, 2 ch, 3 dc, 2 ch and 3 dc across each skull.)

beadless skullflake
Round 7: Sl st in next dc, ch 1,1 sc in each of next 2 dc, 1 hdc in each of next 2 st, 1 dc in each of next 2 st, 2 tr in next st, 1 dc in each of next 2 st, 1 hdc in each of next 2 st, 1 sc in each of next 2 st, ch 1, sl st in same st; repeat from * around 5 times; 1 sc in each of next 2 st, 1 hdc in each of next 2 st, 1 dc in each of next 2 st, 2 tr in next st, 1 dc in each of next 2 st, 1 hdc in each of next 2 st, 1 sc in each of next 2 st, ch 1; sl st in starting sc.
Round 8: Forming tops of skulls, *ch 1, 1 hdc in each of next 2 st, 1 dc in each of next 3 st, 2 tr in each of next 2 st, 1 dc in each of next 3 st, 1 hdc in each of next 2 st, 1 sc in each of next 2 st, ch 1, sl st across next 3 st - sc, sl st and sc; repeat from * around 5 times, ending with sl st in final sc of 6th skull instead of sl st in each of next 3 st of final repeat; bind off. Weave in ends.

This flake is tight and dense enough that it does not need to be stiffened, but it hangs better if stiff. You also may make it with yarn instead of thread (worsted weight, size H hook), but it comes out HUGE, and you need much larger beads.

Finish: Tape wax paper or plastic wrap to top of empty pizza box. Pin skullflake to box on top of wax paper or plastic wrap.

Mix a few drops of water with a teaspoon of glue in small washable container. Paint skullflake with glue mixture, taking care not to drench beads with glue. (Gently clean beads with cotton swab if necessary.) Wash paintbrush and container thoroughly. Allow skullflake to dry at least 24 hours. Remove pins. Gently peel skullflake from wax paper or plastic wrap. Attach 10-inch clear thread to one skull, weaving in end. Wrap fishing line around tree branch (or tape to ceiling or any overhead surface) and watch skullflake twirl freely whenever you walk by! Skullflake also may be taped to window or tied to doorknob or cabinet handle.


skullflake

8 comments:

  1. Wow, I really like these. They look beautiful with the backdrop of the leaves.

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  2. I like the gray one most, lovely pattern.

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  3. Wow, they're gorgeous. Love the white one and the black one! Your photos on the Fall leaves are spectacular!

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  4. This is the most creative use of skulls I have ever seen! Love it!!

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  5. Awesome! Spooky! Love it. :0) Love it in black on the colorful leaves too! Cool!

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  6. Fantastic! I really don't have the patience for such fine work so I really admire that you do. Glad you liked my "metal" snowflake on my post today. I just love them too. I usually give an ornament of some sort with every gift I give at Christmas and I had picked these up late last year.

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  7. I love your snowflakes and will have to ooo and ahhh at them from the computer.

    ReplyDelete


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