Tag Archives: monster


22 Aug

Today, Ottis came.

He is a BeSpoke Long Monster made by the spectacular Michelene. He was purchased in the midst of my attack of stress, and I spent a long time talking to his creator determining the best monster for me. Between the two of us, we absolutely got it right–Ottis is the most perfectest monster I could ever have asked for. This is the description of BeSpoke Long Monsters:

“Just like all the BeSpoke Monsters, Long Monsters are gently beguiled out of the fantastic.
Each one fights other monsters, be they ‘under the bed’, ‘under the stairs’ or just ‘eat up all creativity’ monsters.
As loyal champions of those who adopt them, BeSpoke Monsters frighten them all away.
They will protect you from your biggest fears, magically inspire, encourage and comfort you.”

He and I are the best of friends, and he even accompanied me on a post office/lunch/yarn outing today. He did stay in my purse the whole time, because the neighborhood we went to was a little posh for walking around with a monster, but he didn’t mind. Purse or no purse, it was a bonding experience. And he did successfully protect me from any potential monsters I might have run into along the way!

Ottis likes to sit in my lap, like above, just to make extra certain no monsters can get near me. In fact, as I’m typing, his legs are sandwiched between my laptop and my legs, and his arms are draped over my hands. It makes it a little hard to type, but it is absolutely worth it. Plus, every now and then, he’ll look up at me with that expression, and it is the cutest thing ever.

This is Ottis’s description from his page on Etsy (and from his certificate that came with him but isn’t photographed because it’s currently being flattened beneath a ginormous book):

“Ottis is one of the most easygoing of all BeSpoke Monsters. Doesn’t seem to have a care in the world, but be careful…he gets irritable and growly if he hears certain commercials on the television – he is not a fan of jingles AT ALL. It would be best for everyone if you would turn the mute on for commercials if he’s around. Oh and try not to mention the off-white spot on his belly…he’s sensitive about it.
Ottis is about 1ft from head to foot and weights about 0.6 lbs. Ottis loves yams, anyway he can get them and a lot of them! You’ll probably have to buy those big potato sack bags full of yams, I’d say one a day at least. He will also eat bbq chips, cabbage and green apples. Ottis loves to play scrabble, but is wary of any words with the letters Y, Q, and W in them – so it can be frustrating.”

Ottis and my other Etsy monster, Charles (made by dkoss2), get along splendidly. They’re both so easy going and laid back and I wasn’t too worried about it, but I’m glad to see they’re becoming the best of friends.

Today I also got some lovely Noro Taiyo Sock from Mind’s Eye Yarns in Cambridge, which is one of my favorite yarn shops. I nearly got a bunch of different things, including a ridiculous yarn by Regia that I can neither remember what it’s called, nor find online, but it does crazy things and I think I’ll go back for it next week. It does crazy things. Like. Crazy. But the Taiyo I did get is gorgeous and while I don’t have a specific project in mind, I think it’ll be what I use next. I officially despise the yarn I bought from Iron Horse because it refuses to turn into socks and instead sits on my table looking beautiful and mocking me have had some trouble picking a pattern for the yarn I bought last week, so hopefully inspiration will hit for the Taiyo.

Not actually a LYS Roundup but still talking about a LYS in an important, LYS-type way:

I’d also just like to take a quick minute to talk about Wild and Wooly in Lexington. I’ve talked to a lot of knitters about it, and the general consensus is that they’re rude and snotty, and I’d like to say that I have never, ever had that problem, and I’ve been in about a hundred times. But. But they are so incredibly overpriced, it’s a little offensive. I’ve been thinking a lot about getting myself some Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock to try out, and I was super excited when I discovered they sell it, since it’s hard to come by in my area. But when I asked how much it cost, it was $20 a skein. Um. What? I know it’s hand-painted and so costs more than non hand-painted yarns, but I have never, ever seen anyone charge that much for it. A Good Yarn in Brookline has it for $12.50-ish a skein, as does Jimmy Beans, and you can generally get two skeins on Ravelry for about $18, though I’ve seen them as cheap as $16. So when I see people charging that much for it, it really gets to me.

Anyways. Enough grousing.

Er, wait. One more bout of grousing. This is what I have to do to my water in order to keep my kitten from drinking it:

Yes, that is a tissue box on top of my mug and yes, it is the only thing that works. Otherwise I get fur and paws that walk in kitty litter in my water, and those are things I do not want in my water. *sigh*


Today Is A Good Day

15 Aug

After a succession of truly awful days, today was a good day. No, wait. Today was a great day. ACTUALLY. Today was an absolutely fantastic day that’s just going to keep on getting better and better. Have some photographic evidence:

Completed Socks

To be fair, these are actually from a few days ago. But still! I finished my first pair of socks. I am even wearing them right now, because it’s cold and grey and rainy out which means it is the perfect time to wear hand knit wool socks. I have every intention of knitting more of these because they are deliciously easy without being mind-numbingly boring, but I think next time I’ll take out a pattern repeat or two; apparently I have skinny ankles. They are absolutely wearable and I will never, ever take them off, but they are a little loose.

The heels are stripey and it makes my life.

The yarn, Fleece Artist Trail Socks, is so incredibly comfy and cosy and soft, and the colors are spectacular. I have since washed (but not dryer-dried yet) them, and they are still as beautiful as always. I love the variation from one sock to the other; the first is much more straight up purple and grey, but the second has some bluer sections, and just more light-and-dark than the first. Stunning. This might be my favorite yarn ever which would never ever mean I went out and bought a ton more today. *ahem*

Obligatory artsy sock picture.

Pattern: A Nice Ribbed Sock by Glenna C. (best blog ever, btw)
Time Span: 11 July to 12 August 2011 (all but the first two and a half inches of the first sock were knit in about four days)
Materials: 230.8 yards of Fleece Artist Trail Socks
Ravelry link: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/annanlove19/a-nice-ribbed-sock

And then, two days ago, I cast on these beauties:

Rainbow socks!!

I stayed up until four-thirty in the morning last night finishing it went to bed at a reasonable time last night and the sock magically finished itself. I really, really love the pattern (see below for the one exception) and the yarn (which is nowhere near as splitty as people like to say it is) is absolutely lovely. And, since it only took me two days to knit the first, I’m hoping to have these done by the end of the week. I should have plenty of knitting time tomorrow if not sooner, so hopefully I’ll get to have a FO post soon. And in the mean time, strpiey goodness! I really have to say, during the worst part of the drudgery of the foot that goes on foreverrrrrr, the stripes definitely help to make it less awful.

Pattern loveliness exception: for the leg of the sock, after each repeat of the spiral pattern, you move the beginning of the row one stitch over, which you accomplish by slipping the last stitch on each needle one needle over. There’s no problem with this, until you get to the foot, where you have 16 sts on the first and last needles for the bottom of the foot (stockinette) and 32 sts on the second needle, which you continue to work in the spiral pattern. However. It just says to continue with the pattern, and doesn’t mention the fact that you can’t move the beginning of the row anymore. I kind of fudged it, and I think it looks fine, but I have no idea if I did it “correctly”, and it would have been nice for the pattern to clarify.

But other than that, these guys have been smooth sailing, and are a good mix of not-so-hard-I-want-to-rip-my-eyes-out and not-so-easy-I-want-to-rip-my-eyes-out. Plus, the pattern compliments the yarn perfectly. A good decision.

So remember how I said up there that I would never, ever go out and stock up on Trail Socks? Well…

Fleece Artist Trail Socks in Berry

Fleece Artist Trail Socks in Nova Scotia

I’m aware that two skeins isn’t exactly stocking up, and I already know what I’m going to knit with the blue-grey one (Kalajoki), but I also got this guy:

Iron Horse Farm Hand Dyed Fingering/Sock Yarn in Black

This is a superwash merino, cashmere and nylon blend from Iron Horse in Natick (also where I got the Trail Socks). It’s from their very own farm, and kettle-dyed by the owner (I think?) of the shop, who is one of the nicest ladies ever, and explained the entirety of the kettle-dying process to me today. The yarn is sooooooooooooooooooooooooooo incredibly soft (more “oo”s necessary but restrained), it feels like butter, and the black isn’t solid at all, but more like soot. I’m thinking maybe Cinderella-inspired socks, or perhaps Spirited Away soot spirits will be my muse? I’ll have to see.

Then my mom and I went to the delicious bakery across the street for lunch (get the raspberry truffle and egg salad on croissant, trust me) while my yarn got wound, which they delivered to me in the cafe because they are absolutely ridiculous. So already a pretty good day, yeah? Then I got home and this was in the mail for me:

No stalking for you!

My package from the tiny owl knits Summer Swap! I had nearly forgotten about it was absolutely on the ball about it, but since packages aren’t due until the end of September and I have had such a rough couple weeks, I still haven’t gotten mine together yet (sometime in the next few days, I swear). But lo, here was mine, all the way from Vancouver! As you can see it has tons of goodies, plus a lovely letter from Paula (hi Paula! thank you!!!!). Here are the delicious (sometimes literally) details:

Another Coco to join my monster family! She’ll fit right in, I’m sure, as soon as I let go of her long enough to introduce her to the other monsters. This one’s a guy, and he always seems to be waving at me! He’s also much smaller than my other monsters, so this gives him an advantage in the cute department. Between the big smile and the wave, he is just about the sweetest monster ever. I’ll be sure to get a picture of him with his brothers and sisters soon.

Geocaching coins! I haven’t talked about it much here because I haven’t been in a while, but I’m actually quite the cache-r. I can’t wait to get it all registered and drop it off, I’m thinking in Concord. Coco just informed me that he’s invited himself on this trip, so I’m sure plenty of cute photo opportunities will arise. As soon as the weather clears up we’ll head out; as much as I love rain, I think my woolen friend is less fond of it 😛

This morning, as I was getting dressed, I thought to myself, “Man, I don’t have enough necklaces. And none of them go with this yellow-and-blue-and-turquoise outfit I’m wearing. *sigh*” And then! And then I got this super cute owl necklace. It’s on the back of a domino, and I cannot stress how absolutely adorable it is. And how well it goes with Jen, which I happen to be wearing today! Fate, I tell ya.

A picture frame for my cats, which I will fill and bring to college with me and keep nearby at all times. It’s hand-painted by a local artisan in Vancouver, which makes it extra special. Made in Vancouver, photograph from Massachusetts, and kept in Wisconsin. I’ve got myself quite the travelling frame!

Green tea KitKats from Japan. Need I say anything else? I haven’t tried them yet, but I will keep you updated.

And lastly, handspun, corespun yarn from Etsy. It’s so bright and colorful, I’m going to have to do something absolutely spectacular with it. I’m thinking maybe a hat, or maybe a monster? It might be a little thick-thin for the latter and I’m not sure I have enough for the former, but it will become something epic, I’m sure. How could it not?

And that, my friends, is how to stop a multiweek bout of terrible anxiety in its tracks!

And you will know me by the trail of monsters.

28 Jul

Monster fever; it has hit.

Coco the Canister Monster with a canister of coco.

Yesterday, I made Coco the Canister Monster. She is actually my second Coco, as the first has gone to live with my best friend Leah. This yarn (also from that first grab bag) was just so monster-y, and I only had enough of it to make Coco this phenomenon may or may not result in an army of Cocos. She came out much bigger than her predecessor, since she was knit on 10.5s with super bulky yarn, and has one smaller arm, but she says that if Nemo had a small fin and did everything that he did, she should be fine.

"Time for cookies!!"

Unlike my other monsters, Coco is an alien. She hasn’t told me what planet she comes from (she insists it’s a matter of interplanetary security), but she loves to regale us all with fantastic tales of her home planet. According to her, they have a planetary holiday called Cookie Day where everyone spends all day baking cookies, although since this holiday conveniently falls pretty much every day or two, there’s some speculation that she may have made it up, or at least exaggerated about its frequency.

Coco in her natural habitat.

Since this Coco is much bigger than other Cocos, she can’t fit into any of our canisters. So instead of nestling into the beans every night to sleep, she curls up in the corner between the canisters and the microwave, content to be a Canister Guarding monster, rather than a more traditional canister dweller. No mice or bugs will penetrate these canisters!!

Family portrait 7/28

Pattern: Coco the Canister Monster by Rebecca Danger
Time Span: 26 to 27 July 2011
Materials: 55.8 yards of Artful Yarns Circus
Ravelry link: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/annanlove19/coco-the-canister-monster-2

Monster Ahoy!

27 Jul

I spent about a week and a half being terribly ill (i.e. pneumonia, conjunctivitis, passing out and falling down the stairs and getting a concussion and being rushed to the ER), and clearly the best way to reintegrate myself into knitting (and blogging!) life is by knitting a Rebecca Danger monster.

In the sink.

Baldwin the Bathroom Monster, in his natural habitat.

And lo, Baldwin the Bathroom Monster was born. He is made out of Lorna’s Laces Swirl DK, which I got in my very first Webs grab bag about two years ago (I’ve almost knit my way through the whole thing I swear). Since it’s DK, and monsters like to be knit on needles smaller than called for, he ended up being made on size 2s. I made this decision with no whining or scariness or anything, I just cast on. I was very proud.

Peeking out from behind the medicine cabinet.


Baldwin is a nervous around new people, but once he determines you’re a friend, he’ll follow you around, hopping and hooting until you play with him.

In the toiletries bin.

"Hoo hoo!!"

He has a beak instead of a traditional monster mouth, because when I was making his face last night at five in the morning hush I was inspired that is what he told me he wants.

In the shower caddy.


He might follow you into the bathroom, but he promises to look away while you take care of business. And (despite above evidence) he will not join you in the shower, as he does not like water very much.

On the toilet paper, keeping an eye on my towel, and protecting the toilet paper from cats.


He fancies himself guarder of the toilet paper, keeping it safe from the cats. We don’t have the heart to tell him that our cats couldn’t be less interested in it.

On the floor.


He narrowly avoided a fall into the kitty litter, while trying to attain the following picture:

Posing for the camera :P

"Hoo hoo hooo!!!!"

And finally, Baldwin with his brothers and sisters:

Not pictured: Coco, who lives with my best friend Leah.

From top left: Lurleen, Kat, Harold, Charlena, Claude, Irving Q, Irving and Baldwin.

Pattern: Baldwin the Bathroom Monster by Rebecca Danger
Time Span: 26 to 27 July 2011
Materials: 108 yards of Lorna’s Laces Swirl DK
Ravelry link: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/annanlove19/baldwin-the-bathroom-monster