Sunday, November 16, 2014

Hal Con 2014


So Hal-Con has now come and gone.  It was a crazy wild weekend filled with pretty well everything that you would want in a convention.  There were costumes everywhere you looked, celebrities for autographs and photos, panel discussions on all things from the world of Wheadon to cheese puns.  This was my third year attending Hal-Con but my first year with a vendor table.


I split the table with my partner in crime Raymond Dejardens, writer of comics Shenanigans Tales and Teva One.  My table was filled with the usual suspects, Cunning Jayne hats, Pokeballs, Star Trek Drink cozies, bow ties, and geeky cat toys.  As well I had a few exclusive items made for Hal-Con such as the Scott Pilgrim hat and T.A.R.D.I.S clutch purse.

There was quite a lot of interest from people on the craft itself.  Fellow knitters or crocheters loved chatting me up about my projects and talking about different techniques.  There were event quite a few people who wanted to know if I would teach them the basics of knitting.  It was very exciting.  Now I am filled with ideas to get a geeky stitch and bitch started in Halifax.

Handmade items were everywhere.  On the 1st floor in the exhibition area there were a couple other knit/crochet artists such as Little Bits and Out of the Broom Closet.  Plus there were so many knitted costume items that went by.  I saw someone with a crochet Link hat, and another with a knitted dwarf beard. 

One woman even made her own twilek hat and lightsabers for her and her husband.  









Then the next day she showed up in a crochet yoda hat!





Everywhere you looked there was madness happening.  Costumes of all shapes and sizes.  It was Definitely a weekend to bring extra batteries for the camera.  Day 1 I was dressed up as a unicorn and wore my wonderful horn from Kaidáin Ivy’s Sanctuary for Magical Misfits.
I spent the day prancing around and being generally magical when another horn popped up in the crowd.  
Immediately we ran to each other and high fives ensued.  






For day two I ventured out as the infamous Han Solo, complete with handmade wooden blaster and leather holster.  It seemed to be a good day for it as I ran into two other Han Solo cosplayers.  We discussed at length the differences between our costumes.  My blaster and holster were the envy of the other Solos.  Mostly because my holster was attached with a seat belt bucket which made for easy removal. (You don't want to have to fiddle with your holster when the time comes to go to the bathroom.  Functionality is cosplay 101).






Now that the weekend is over I don't know what to do with myself.  Guess it's time to get the holiday knitting started.  Or maybe I should just keep making Cunning Jayne hats.  The fun never ends!

See all my Hal-Con 2014 photos here.


More on Hal-Con: http://hal-con.ca/









Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Hal-Con Excitement


This coming weekend is HAL-CON!  For those of you not from the local Halifax area, Hal-con is the city's big annual sci-fi convention.  It has been going since 2010 and takes over a new floor of the convention centre every year.  This year there will be some fabulous guest stars such as Mark Sheppard from Supernatural, Morena Baccarin from How I Met Your Mother and Firefly, Kristian Nairn from Game of Thrones, and many more!


I've gone for the past few years but this time is special as I will be there with a vendor table and all my knitting stock!  You will be able to find some of my classic items such as the Cunning Hat (now available in kid's size!), pokeballs, cat toys and bow ties.  Because bow ties are cool!  There are even going to be a few Hal-Con exclusive items! These items are hand-made and will only be available at my Hal-Con table.  

To show off my excitement (and my cool knits) I made up a little photo story for everyone.  Hope you enjoy!


Elsewhere, in a nearby solar system, the away team from the starship Enterprise is exploring the planet surface for signs of life.  Ensign Jefferies wanders too close to the dangerous waterfalls and gets sucked under the water.  The captain rushes to pull him out.  Captain: "Doctor I need your help!"





*WhuurrrrrrrWhuuuuurrrrrWhhhhuuuuuuurrrrrrr*

"Did someone call for a doctor?"





A police box comes flying out of the sun!  It spins around and bashes through the waterfall before hovering above the struggling ensign. The door slides open.

Doctor: "Jefferies!  Grab my hand!"

Ensign Jefferies reaches up and grabs a hold of the Doctor's arm.  He is then hoisted into the T.A.R.D.I.S and brought to shore.

Captain: "That was fantastic!  I would be honored if you would join me and my crew as we travel the solar system."

Doctor: "Mmmmm yeah okay"

And with that the T.A.R.D.I.S and the crew of the starship Enterprise flew off into the pokeball clouds.  Because why not.





Hal-con is being held at the World Trade and Convention centre in Halfax.  It will be running from Nov 7-9th.  You can find me at table 252 with my partner in crime Raymond Dejardens, writer of comics Teva One and Shenanigans tales.  We are squished between graphic artist Andre Myatt and Faith Erin Hicks.



Sunday, October 12, 2014

DIY Yarn Box

There are a few pattern designs that I have on the go.  One of them being some Wibbly Wobbly gloves based off the 4th Doctor scarf.  Designing the pattern has been a lot of fun, except for all of the colour switching it requires.  

The gloves use six different colours that I am constantly switching between.  At first it was not an issue but the longer the gloves got, the more tedious it became.  My yarn kept getting tangled and was all over the place.  It covered every bit of the couch and often extended to the floor!

So I figured there must be a better way.    Thinking it couldn't be too hard I set out to make my own yarn holder.  I've seen some yarn holders on pintrest and had a good idea of what I needed.  There are some great DIY tutorials on how to make yarn holders out of things such as tissue paper boxes or pop bottles.  

I decided to take a large cardboard box so that it could hold all 6 skeins of yarn and anything else I would need.  All I had to do was poke a few holes in the side of the box and pull all the strings through.  I found it worked best to have the yarn un-wind from the centre rather then coming from the outside.  You can find a tutorial on  how to do that here.

Having my own yarn holder was perfect!  It not only kept all my yarn from tangling, therefore saving me so much time and energy sorting them out. it also makes things very easy for transporting my projects.  All the yarn is already in the box, just throw in my pattern and needles then good to go!







Sunday, August 10, 2014

Bow ties are cool


You may remember that after Aubcon I started working on a pattern for bow ties.  Well that got put on the back burner for a few other projects.  Since then I've got a bunch of stuff done and have decided to go back to it.


In honor of all things Doctor Who (and generally being classy) I'm happy to announce that I've perfected a pattern for bow ties that I like.  You can find the finished item now available in my Etsy shop.

Pattern is knit in the round on two double pointed needles.  Uses Judy's magic cast on and Kitchener stitch for a seamless bow.  The collar is knit flat and the button loop is made with basic crochet chain stitches.


Materials
- Three double pointed needles size 4
-Tapestry needle
-One skein of your favourite colour yarn (medium weight)
-Crochet hook size 4

                                                     Abbreviations

Sts - Stitches
CO - Cast on
K - Knit
P - Purl
K2tog - Knit two stitches together
P2tog - Purl two stitches together
BO - Bind off
Ch - Chain one
Pattern

Gauge is 6 sts x 8 rows knit in 1".

Bow

CO 20 sts using Judy's magic cast on
Knit all rows until piece is 3" long or desired length
Set aside


Collar/Headband

CO 4 sts
K in garter stitch until piece measures 12" or desired length
K2tog, K2
K2tog, K1
BO 1
With last st ch5 then slip stitch back into the collar, creating a loop for the button

Take bow and attach to collar by pinching the rectangle of the bow and looping scrap yarn around it.




Finally weave in the ends and sew on a button.  Now you're all set for a night on the town!






I am so in love with these bow ties that I made up a whole bunch of mini ones using half the CO stitches.  The wifey and I then got all dressed up and put them out an about Halifax.  We figured there were quite a few statues that could go for  good bow tie!






Photography done with the assistance of Kaidáin Ivy’s Sanctuary for Magical Misfits








Thursday, July 17, 2014

5x5

Recently I have been putting a lot of work into my Etsy shop.  It seems like every day I'm doing something to work on it.  Sometimes it's as simple as reading the seller's handbook.  Other days the Wifey and I will go out adventuring and she'll be my hand model for new gloves.  (She's fantastic like that.  Got a manicure and everything!)

Another aspect I'm focusing on is my local business.  There are a few markets that I have done recently and as always my work can be found in among the wonderful items at the Cocoon Bout-ique.  The real exciting news though is about a new co-op store that my friends Raquel and Terra have opened up.  It is called 5 X 5 and they are located right on Esplanade st in Truro.  There is a great selection of items from local artists, comic books, video games, vintage clothing, and even movie rentals!

The two of them have been going around to local markets here in Halifax for some time now.  They had a table at Aubcon and at Quantum Frontier comics during free comic book day under the name 2 Hearts 2 Suns.  The two of them make such fabulous items ranging from soaps in all kinds of nerdy shapes, (my favorite is the Han Solo frozen in carbonite) to cross stitch art, and even some wicked jewelry.  Seriously, their studs are so good it's always the first thing I check out.





My friend James Parker accompanied me with some of his amazing clockwork jewelry.    Each item is very carefully handcrafted and takes hours of work.  And people say they don't have the patience for knitting!






There is even a whole wall dedicated to Andre Myette's prints.  You may remember him from the Spring Geekquinox.  He had the table right next to ours and I absolutely love his work! 







So if you're in the area be sure to pop on by.  Hope to see you there!







Thursday, July 10, 2014

Into the yarn bin

As many knitters do I get excited at the prospect of a beautiful pattern.  There are many moments were I start a pattern that I love, get my yarn and start knitting it, only to get interrupted by finding another really beautiful pattern that I just have to make!  I'm not the only one with a host of unfinished projects. (Though I have never succumb to the dreaded second sock syndrome)

We are going to take a quick peek into my unfinished pile.  I'm a huge fan of gloves!  The right pair of lacy/cabled glove just speaks to me.  You can tell by the amount of gloves I have started, but never finished for whatever reason.  I'll get around to it...soon.






This is the start of a pair of star trek fingerless gloves designed off my star trek drink cozy pattern.  Just the single glove, no pair for it yet.






These were actually really fun to work out and I still love the pattern. Seed stitch + short cuff = the cutest little gloves!  All it needs is two fingers, a thumb and a matching pair to be finished.  






This is the first is a pair of gloves.  The main body of the hand is knit in purl and the design is achieved by a very simple cable pattern.  The fingers are going to alternate between the blue and purple yarn with a blue edging around the cuff.  I fully plan to finish these one day.  Very happy with the pattern!






These are going to be some very long gloves.  As you can see the cuff is going to be just past the elbow.  Obviously there is still quite a bit of work left to do but it is going to make for some beautiful arm warmers.






One of the first pair of gloves I made for myself.  These are actually knit flat and sewn up the side, leaving space for the thumb hole.  The pair is fully knit, only needing to be sewn up and the ends weaved in.  Having to sew them up is actually what put them on the back burner.  I now knit my gloves in the round because I don't have to sew nearly as much. 




Monday, June 30, 2014

Island business


This weekend I had a glorious time in the sun.  Me and the Wifey ended up going to Boland's island out in East Chezzetcook, Nova Scotia.  It was a great deal of fun in the sun.  We were put to work (you've got to earn your meals somehow) and torn up an old dock.  We burned all the terrible rotten parts

in the most massive campfire I've ever made.  There were some salvageable bits though and we re-did the walkway out to the island.  It was a lot of hard work but so completely worth it.  It was great to be outside, getting some real work done.

It was also a fabulous opportunity to take some new product shots.  I'm working really hard to improve my Etsy shop and have been reading through the seller's handbook as well as doing some Etsy seminars.  One of the first things they suggest working on is photography, as it's usually the first thing that attracts someone to your store.  I spent some time playing around with my camera and ended up with some really amazing shots for my Star Trek drink cozy.  You can see them all here on my Etsy store.









I've also just recently moved into a new apartment and there is yarn everywhere!  On one hand it's really nice, being surrounded by all my beautiful fabrics.  On the other hand it is so frustrating not having an organization system.  Almost every box I look into is stuffed with yarn.  I have bags and bags full.  There is stuff that I don't even remember how or when I got it.  Mostly my problem is that I don't have anywhere to store it all!  At the last apartment I had an (overflowing) shelf full.  One.  Shelf.  This is clearly one of my next big projects.  I've been checking out fantastic yarn storage ideas on pintrest but have yet to put any in action.

If you have any photos of your stash organization or messes I would love to see them.  Also if you have any storage ideas I would love to hear about them!  Feel free to leave a comment here or on my facebook page.



Thursday, May 29, 2014

PEI trip

Photography by Luckless Photography
Well it is officially the start of bout season!  On May 17th Anchor City Rollers loaded up a bus load of skaters and fans to play a double header in PEI.  The Halifax Black Rock Bandits faced off  against Charolettetown's Moonshine Maidens, and then the Halifax Dead Ringers played Summerside's Twisted Sisters.  It was quite the show!

The bus ride from Halifax to Charolettetown is about four hours long.  So you know I wasn't going to make the trip without my knitting!  Skatey was having a bit of trouble figuring out how to double-knit so I decided to hold a workshop on the bus.  There were are few girls that were interested in double-knitting but most were really into learning the basics.  So I ended up being quite the social butterfly of the bus, constantly bouncing from one seat to the next all over the bus.

Soon we had lured out most of the crafters.  It is alway so much fun checking out what some of the the other girls are working on.  It's always such a wide range of things.   The Hickster was working on some socks using double-pointed needles.  

Thunder the Radar and Are Too D2 were knitting with some t-shirt fabric. 


 Fifi La Flirte, one of our referees even took over my black and white double-knitting swatch. Most people that were learning the basics learned how to cast-on, and maybe knit a few stitches before getting bored with it.  

But Taxamiss Prime was so excited to learn how to knit that she did it almost the entire bus ride.  She learned how to cast-on, knit, purl and the differences between stockinette and garter stitch.  Looking pretty fabulous for a first project.  It even has the same amount of stitches each row!  (no joke, very hard to do the first time you knit)

Skatey also kept going most of the bus ride.  She even finished up her swatch at home after the game!  I'm so excited for her because it looked like she really understood it by the time we got to PEI.


The whole trip was such a great time.  Both  Halifax teams won.  It was fantastic to be able to sit on the sidelines, screaming my head off for the Black Rock Bandits, who won 246-231 against the Moonshine Maidens.  Then for the second game I got to jam with the Dead Ringers, who won 226-196 against the Twisted Sisters.  I must have done pretty well in the game because the Twisted Sisters even voted me MVP jammer.  

No knitting happened on the ride home.  Only pizza, excitement over the game, then eventually sleep.


Photography by Roy Crawford

 Anchor Citry Rollers: www.anchorcityrollers.ca

Red Rock'n Roller Derby: http://redrocknrollerderby.com/


Thursday, May 15, 2014

Aubcon

A few weeks ago I had a table at my second market, Aubcon.  I have to say, it was quite a lot of fun.


There were quite a few changes to my table since the Geekquinox.  I picked up a lot of tricks since then as I've been doing a bit of research on table design.  This time I had a suggestion box available for people to submit ideas for new projects.  There were quite a lot of ideas and I'm really excited to get started on some cool new projects.   After the con I went right home and started knitting some new stuff.  That's how inspired I was by you guys!


There were two new wristbands that I designed just for Aubcon.  I was very happy to unveil my Punisher and Deadpool wristbands.  









These items are now available in my Etsy store!


My notebook is now filled with so many new sketches.  So far I've got a few more Cunning Jayne hats started, working on a Harry Potter scarf and started making some bowties! 






Because bowties are cool!



Saturday, April 19, 2014

Aubcon prep

Goodness, the past few weeks have been crazy.  Last month I spend a lot of time getting ready for the Spring Geekquinox, which was a lot of fun and a huge success.  Things were slow at work and this gave me tons of time to prepare for the convention.  Now, this snow has melted and I'm back to working full-time and running around changing tires all day.  This leaves me with much less time to spend knitting. Yup, you can tell where my priorities are.

 Most of my free time is spent getting prepared for Aubcon.  It's about a week away now and it's crunch time to get things done. I have a few of my classic items all ready, Star Trek drink cozy, Cunning hats, pokeballs etc.  As well I have been working on a few new going to be a few new designs available. I have a wicked double-knit Superman wristband to add to the collection and am working

on a T.A.R.D.I.S clutch 
purse.  I am very excited!


Aubcon will be held in the gym of Auburn drive high school in Cole Harbor Nova Scotia, April 26th from 12-10pm.  It is going to be a really fun time with lots of vendors, video game tournaments, card games and door prizes.  Tickets are $10 and are available at Giant Robot comicsStrange Adventures or can be purchased at the door.  Hope to see you there!




Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Spring Geekquinox

In case you missed it, this past weekend was the Spring Geekquinox here in Halifax.  It was a blast!  This was my first time as a vendor at an expo and I have been knitting pretty ferociously this past month to get prepared.  It definitely paid off.

There were so many cool vendors there.  Which is great because my favorite part of conventions is always checking out the vendor tables and the artwork.  It was awesome seeing so many local artists gathered in one place.  The atmosphere there was so positive.  Everyone was excited to be there and sharing their geeky interests with other people.

My pokeballs and 'Cunning' hats definitely turned out to be the crowd favorite.  During the first day one of the other vendors had a special request for a blue and red Batman wristband.  Sounded a bit suspicious at first but it looked really awesome when it was completed.






It was a great experience and I have already got a lot of  ideas for next time.   Which, I`m happy to announce. will be Saturday, April 27th for Aubcon at Auburn High School in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.  I can`t wait!

There was so much cool stuff everywhere.  It was very common for one of the other vendors to talk a walk around and come back with handfuls of new swag.  Here are some of my favorite tables.



Ray Desjardins, the writer and creator of Shenanigans Tale and Teva One.  You can find his comics at Giant Robot Comics in Dartmouth, and Monster Comics Lounge in Halifax.




Andre Myette with his prints.  His table was busy all day and with good reason.  He had some fabulous art, including Doctor who, the Avengers, and a bunch of horror movie prints.  (I have about 3 copies of his Day of the Doctor!)




Kim and Marcy of Creative Creations by Marcy.  These lovely ladies shared the table to the right of me and were so much fun.  Marcy is a big Doctor Who fan (in case you can`t tell by all the wicked shirts) and Kim was new to the geeky scene.  We explained Doctor Who, Firefly and a few other fandoms to her and she was hooked by the time the weekend was over.






Alex Naugler of Sticks and/or Stones Jewlery.  She had so many beautiful necklaces and earrings.  There were a pair of robot earrings I was coveting for myself all weekend.  I ended up buying some key earrings and a mustache necklace for my derby wives instead.  Gotta spread the love!





Ashley Kuko of Kuko Creations.  She makes some fantastic geeky jewelry and accessories, not to mention costumes.  On the first day she was Storm from X-men and here you can see her in all steam-punk attire.  She was seriously rocking her booth!





Amy of Amy LaLoon Pottery.  I get something of hers just about every time she has a table.  Her work is beautiful and really good quality.  Last Christmas I picked up one of her Cthulhu mugs and this time I had to grab a Dalek mug for a friend.  I would highly recommend checking out her work!






Jessica and April of Perler Pixelations.  I was back and forth at this table a number of times trying to shop for a friend of mine.  These ladies were so much fun to talk to!  They have some really fantastic 8-bit art from all kinds of classic video games.  I ended up picking up a Yoshi set (Yoshi, baby Yoshi, and egg) from them.  Couldn't be happier!