Knittin’ & Crochetin’! All Systems GO! (Also, Games)

As I had mentioned before, my craftiness had come to somewhat of an impasse. The koala didn’t get any more work – which no one seems to mind cuz it turns out heaps of other people hate koalas too; so pleased! – and my socks just had dribs and drabs here and there whilst on transport. I started a crochet sock; pulled it out. I started a beanie; pulled it out. I just wasn’t feeling it.

You wanna what I was doing though? Video games. I was definitely feeling that.

Sakura! Street Fighter IV for the win!

In the last month or so, I’ve finished Dante’s Inferno, Fable II, Mirror’s Edge, Bayonetta, and Devil May Cry 4. I wasn’t really sure what else to play, so I hooked up the Wii and started Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. Which was garbage. I mean, it might have been alright a few years ago, but on a pretty vast HD LCD screen, the graphics looked like dookie, the controls were clunky, and it was just. so. BORING. So, I was like “I’ma trade in some games, y’all!” And I did! I now have Street Fighter IV and Alan Wake for Xbox to get through. I’m so obsessed with SFIV; the art direction is so yummy, it’s totally seducing my eyeballs. The picture above is Sakura, one of my favorite characters! Sure, she’s a little Japanese school girl in a sailor-style uniform, but she’s not overtly sexualized like other game characters, and her personality is so happy and fun.

I know, I know, I’m bad. The thing is, when I finish a video game, I get the same sort of satisfaction as when I finish a crochet project, so I feel like I haven’t wasted my time. And in that sense I suppose I haven’t, I just don’t have anything to show for it. But there is good news for all of y’all who don’t care what I’m yammering about unless it’s something yarn-y. Cuz I’m back in the zone, y’all! First of all, I had earmarked some patterns on Rav to get my inspiration going, and I found these gorgeous Totoro mittens by Brella.

Totoro Mittens!

I cast them on with some Lincraft brand DK acrylic and another nameless acrylic that I had lying about. I’m not the most confident knitter yet, and stranded knitting might be a little ambitions, so I figured I’d start with some acrylic and if all goes well by the halfway point, I’ll start a proper pair in nice yarn

Kooky. Indeed.

Then, while I was at work on Monday, I was flipping through a book called Kooky Crochet by Linda Kopp. I use the word kooky all the time, partially because it’s so versatile, and, well, this book does use the term faaaairly liberally. However, a lot of the items are quite fun, and it’s just refreshing to find a crochet book that isn’t all blankets and tacky singlet tops. I might review it later, but I won’t go too much into it now. Anyhow, I asked my manager if I could make the Lucha Libre you can see on the cover for the section in our store we like to call “Manland”, and the chicks for Easter, as well as some cool felted fortune cookies; the answer was yes! I’m pretty excited. I’ve started the mask, but I won’t show you pics of that yet; it’s just a blue disc. I would definitely make some changes if I were making it for my own benefit, but since it’s a sample, I’ll just to the pattern to the letter for now.

Peaks Island Hood by Ysolda Teague ❤

And finally! I had made my Ma a beret for her birthday, but I was really unhappy with how it turned out. It was too late to make her something else in time, so I just gave it to her anyway. She said she loved it, but I guarantee she’ll never wear it. In fact, I hope she doesn’t. I’ve been determined to find something else to make her anyway, and I found this beautiful pattern from Ysolda Teague, who I absolutely adore. It’s called the Peaks Island Hood, and it’s a scarf that converts into a hood as well. I was umming and ahhing about it for a ages, but I finally bought it and today I bought some new needles and yarn and cast it on. I’m up to about row six I think, and I’m loving it so far.

I can already see a few mistakes I’ve made with twisted stitches and a few weird things, but nothing I’m concerned enough about to rip back. It’s a learning experience, and I’m just trying to accept that. It’s definitely making me think a lot more about the architecture of stitches and patterns, and that’s really great. I’m just frustrated that it’s not as easy for me as crochet, but I’ve been doing that for years, and I’m just picking up knitting for the first time since primary school. Just breathe, Raynor… chillax!


Finished Object! Okay, I’m Cheating…

So, I *have* made progress on my socks, both the green one on a circ and the Noro one on DPNs, *and* I started the amigurumi koala for the store sample, but I’ve finished none of those. So, I don’t have any craft FOs.

BUT, I did finish Mirror’s Edge on the Xbox today!

Now, Mirror’s Edge isn’t really a new game at all, but I had fallen in love with it from the trailers after it came out, and then the reviews were really varied, so I ummed and ahhed for ages. I finally bought it and started it, and fell in -proper- love with it. But, for all my love, it’s one seriously frustrating game, and I put it on ice for a while.

I’d been playing Resident Evil 5 recently, until I could go no further due to a scratched disc (heartbroken!), so I gave it another bash. If you’re not familiar with Mirror’s Edge, storyline aside, your character is a parkour dynamo; you run across rooftops, finding jumps and sliding through gaps and you build up your speed. And that’s the game’s charm. Once you’ve figured your course, it’s incredibly exhilarating to execute each jump and roll and flying fox in one smooth sequence. And to me, that’s reason enough to play this game.

It’s actually really short all told, I finished it in two days or so. If you should pick this game up and play it; you will die. A lot. In same cases, you almost have to sacrifice yourself in order to finish it; by which I mean, to find the way through the level you’ll either have to die from trial and error until you figure out the right order of things, or you’ll have to be gunned down a few times while you explore so you can make your escape on the final try. This is one of the reasons I put it down the first time, but if you can stick with you’ll be rewarded. It’s an incredibly original, visually stunning game, and there’s really nothing else like it. And the exhilaration of nailing a path makes all the frustration worth it.

Now… back to the socks…