29 September 2014

Kittyflake Monday


Dogs are cute, and bears are adorable, but kitties... My heart belongs to cats! Well, and The Lizard...

My first attempt at creating a Purrfect Snowflake wasn't perfect. Too many stitches in too small a space. Back to the crocheting board. My hand-dyed hibiscus thread turned from pink to gray over the summer, and then it turned a strange hue of cream when I stiffened it. Kitties come in that color, but my first Kitty Flake attempt isn't all that attractive to me.

Not So Purrfect

My second attempt, fashioned with my hand-dyed hollyhock thread, didn't include the kitty motifs because I wanted to work out the size challenge before making another kitty flake. This time, the snowflake looked perfect, although it was headless.

Perfect

The third attempt truly was Purrfect as far as kitty bodies go, but the cat heads still needed just a little work. One more time...

Better, but still not Purrfect

Finally, on my fourth Purrfect Snowflake, I'd worked out all the hairballs. Now it looks like six kitties!

This snowflake may be worked without the motifs, and the motifs may be connected to just about any snowflake bigger than 1.5 to 2 inches.

What lovely eyes you have!

I looked everywhere for googly cat eyes, buttons shaped like cat eyes, oval-shaped beads in cat eye colors, or small enough (3 mm) cat eye embellishments for this Kitty Flake and came up with nothing. So I cut tiny eyes from green felt and even tinier eye irises and noses from black felt.

UGH!!!

I really had trouble cutting such small pieces from a pattern, and the paper pattern I'd drawn on a piece of scrap kept falling onto the carpet as I was cutting because it had the personality of a five-month old kitten. I found that dabbing the paper with a tiny bit of spit to adhere it to the felt helped it stay in place while cutting. But I also found it was easier to cut a strip of green felt (or yellow, orange, purple or whatever Halloween color you like) a little less than a quarter inch wide, then cut nearly quarter-inch rectangles from that, all the same size, and trimmed off the corners for the eyes. For the irises, I cut another strip of black felt just a tiny bit wider than an eighth of an inch, then cut squares from that, all the same size, and trimmed off the corners. For the optional noses (in retrospect, I think the kitties would look fine without the noses), I cut yet another strip of black felt just a tiny bit wider than an eighth of an inch, then cut squares from that, all the same size, then cut each square into a triangle, then trimmed off two tips of each triangle. The third uncut nose tip is the bottom of each nose.

What lovely ears you have!

After this relentless exercise, which probably doesn't involve the loss of weight, unfortunately, I was tempted to down an entire carton of my husband's Ben & Jerry's Phish Food ice cream all by myself and buy the little squirt bottles of dimensional fabric paint for the next set of eyes. Just an idea. If you come up with a better eye idea for this, please let me know because I have three Kitty Flakes still needing eyes!

The easiest eyes??? Photoshop. Heh heh!

Purrfectly Placed

This is another snowflake for our Sisters of the Snowflake Yahoo Group's autumn service project. A Purrfect Snowflake could be the purrfect gift for a child in need of hope and/or smiles. I hope you'll join us in trying to make the world a little brighter this winter.

I'm taking brief breaks from my special project to make snowflakes for Children's Hospital in Denver. If you would like to participate in this service project and don't have a facility in your area you would like to donate to, Children's is one of the top pediatric hospitals in the country. My adopted daughter was treated there many years ago. I know a couple of doctors and several staff members there, and I have known many children who have been treated there over the years. I currently have one friend whose infant is being treated there.


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

Purrfectly Manipulated

Finished Size: 8 inches from point to point for Purrfect Snowflake, 5.5 inches from point to point for Perfect Snowflake
Materials: Size 10 crochet thread, size 8 crochet hook, stitch markers (if desired), small amount of felt in desired cat eye colors and a ton of patience, 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
NOTE: Eyes and nose may be googly eyes, may be made from tiny pompoms and/or buttons, may be drawn with permanent markers, may be embroidered or crocheted, or may be omitted altogether.
NOTE: For small children who put everything in their mouths, no eyes or noses may be more appropriate.

Kitty Cool

Kitty Motif Instructions (Make 6.)

Make magic ring.

Round 1: Ch 2 (counts as 1 dc), 11 dc in ring; sl st in 2nd ch of starting ch 2. Pull magic circle tight.

Round 2: Ch 2 (counts as 1 dc), 1 dc in same st, 2 dc in each of next 6 dc, 1 hdc in next dc, 2 sc in next dc, 1 hdc in next dc, 2 dc in next dc; sl st in 2nd ch of starting ch 2.
If you're not reading this pattern on Snowcatcher, you're not reading the designer's blog. Please go here to see the original.

Round 3: Sk next dc, to form 1st ear 4 dc in next dc, ch 1, sl st in top of dc just worked, 2 dc in same dc as 4 previous dc, sk next dc, sl st in next dc, 2 sc in each of next 2 dc, sl st in next dc, sk next dc, 3 dc in next dc, ch 1, sl st in top of dc just worked, 3 dc in same dc as previous 3 dc, sk next dc, sl st in next dc; bind off. Weave in ends.

Mark 2 middle bottom dc of each kitten motif chin.

Purrfect Snowflake

Purrfect Snowflake Instructions

Make magic ring.

Round 1: Ch 5 (counts as 1 dc and ch 3), 1 dc in ring, * ch 3, 1 dc in ring; repeat from * 3 times; ch 1, 1 dc in 2nd ch of starting ch 5 to form 6th ch 3 sp of Round. Pull magic circle tight.
If you're not reading this pattern on Snowcatcher, you're not reading the designer's blog. Please go here to see the original.

Round 2: Ch 2 (counts as 1 dc), 2 dc over post of dc directly below, * 3 dc in next ch 3 sp, ch 3, 3 dc in same sp; repeat from * around 4 times; 3 dc in starting ch 3 sp, ch 1, 1 dc in 2nd ch of starting ch 2 to form 6th ch 3 sp of Round.

Round 3: 1 sc over post of dc directly below, ch 6, * 1 sc in next ch 3 sp, ch 6; repeat from * around 4 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st starting sc.

Round 4: * 2 sc in next ch 6 sp, ch 3, 1 tr in same sp, ch 3, 3 sc in same sp, ch 2, 1 tr in same sp, ch 3, 2 sc in same sp; repeat from * around 5 times; sl st in starting sc.

Round 5: * Sl st in next sc, to make first leg ch 6, 2 tr in top of next tr, ch 3, sk next ch, 1 hdc in next ch, sk next ch and next sc, 1 tr in next sc, to make neck ch 9, 1 sc in each of marked middle dc stitches on chin of motif, 1 sc next ch of ch 9 and in each of next 2 ch, 1 hdc in each of next 3 ch, 1 dc in each of next 3 ch, 1 tr in same sc as previous tr, sk next sc and next ch, to make second leg 1 hdc in next ch, ch 3, 2 tr in top of next tr, ch 6, sl st in next sc, to make tail ch 12, 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook, 1 sc in next ch, 2 sc in each of next 3 ch, 1 sc in each of next 6 ch, sl st in each of next 3 sc; repeat from * around 5 times, omitting last 2 sl st of final repeat; bind off. Weave in ends.
NOTE: If desired, neck may be made shorter by chaining 6 instead of 9 and working 2 sc, 2 hdc and 2 dc after connecting head motif. If desired, tail may be made longer by chaining 14 instead of 12 and working 8 sc at end instead of 6. Tail also may be shaped in any manner desired by placing increases anywhere along tail, bearing in mind increases close to body of flake may crowd legs.

Perfect

Perfect Snowflake Instructions (because "headless" is just a little too creepy)

Make magic ring.

Round 1: Ch 5 (counts as 1 dc and ch 3), 1 dc in ring, * ch 3, 1 dc in ring; repeat from * 3 times; ch 1, 1 dc in 2nd ch of starting ch 5 to form 6th ch 3 sp of Round. Pull magic circle tight.
If you're not reading this pattern on Snowcatcher, you're not reading the designer's blog. Please go here to see the original.

Round 2: Ch 2 (counts as 1 dc), 2 dc over post of dc directly below, * 3 dc in next ch 3 sp, ch 3, 3 dc in same sp; repeat from * around 4 times; 3 dc in starting ch 3 sp, ch 1, 1 dc in 2nd ch of starting ch 2 to form 6th ch 3 sp of Round.

Round 3: 1 sc over post of dc directly below, ch 6, * 1 sc in next ch 3 sp, ch 6; repeat from * around 4 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st starting sc

Round 4: * 2 sc in next ch 6 sp, ch 3, 1 tr in same sp, ch 3, 3 sc in same sp, ch 2, 1 tr in same sp, ch 3, 2 sc in same sp; repeat from * around 5 times; sl st in starting sc.

Round 5: * Sl st in next sc, ch 6, 2 tr in top of next tr, ch 3, sk next ch, 1 hdc in next ch, sk next ch and next sc, 1 tr in next sc, ch 10, 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each of next 2 ch, 1 hdc in each of next 3 ch, 1 dc in each of next 3 ch, 1 tr in same sc as previous tr, sk next sc and next ch, 1 hdc in next ch, ch 3, 2 tr in top of next tr, ch 6, sl st in each of next 3 sc; repeat from * around 5 times; bind off. Weave in ends.

Finish: Tape wax paper or plastic wrap to top of empty pizza box. Pin snowflake 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 snowflake with glue mixture. Apply eyes and noses, dabbing with an extra drop of glue if necessary. Wash paintbrush and container thoroughly. Allow snowflake to dry at least 24 hours. Remove pins.

TIP: Because of the long necks and the big heads on this snowflake, I used a strong mostly glue/water solution for the first stiffening. After thorough drying, I applied a second coat of straight Elmer's, not watered down, along the necks on the back side to further strengthen my kitties.

Gently peel snowflake from wax paper or plastic wrap. Attach 10-inch clear thread to one spoke, weaving in end. Wrap fishing line around tree branch (or tape to ceiling or any overhead surface) and watch the snowflake twirl freely whenever you walk by! Snowflake also may be taped to window or tied to doorknob or cabinet handle.

Banzai

8 comments :

  1. haha the cat sure agrees in every way, cats rule over dogs and bears. Even death ray eye kitties like in the video. Awesome job with the cat snowflakes to.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Pat (and Cassie and Orlin)! Somehow, I knew you'd approve of this one!

      Delete
  2. Kuule Beanz and watch those hairballs. I like the picture of Banzai, she looks like she's about to begin a mission. Nice cat flake too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Lizard! Maybe one day we can have a kitty of our own...

      Delete
  3. Oh my gosh, I have tears in my eyes from that first video. The cat on the clothesline ... definitely a case of Cat's Cradle!

    Your hard work on the snowflake paid off - it really is purrfect. LOVE the kitty-tail effect! :)

    Re the eyes: Have you thought of printing sets of tiny eyes onto fabric, then either fusing them on or stabilizing the fabric so that you can cut them out and glue them on? Just an idea.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sue, that's an absolutely brilliant idea! No, I had not thought of anything even close to that. And now I can't wait to try it! Gotta get a printer for this computer, though. The old printer (that works perfectly fine with old computers that don't work anymore) won't work with this computer... Grrrrrrrrrrr!

      Delete
  4. I love this snowflake. I'd be a crazy cat lady if I had the resources to do so.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You and me both, Julie! I guess I can have 18 snowflake kitties until they go to Children's Hospital. At least I don't have to pay for food and shots!

      Delete


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