Knit Monkey

Happy Saturday everyone!

Today I’m sharing with you my first project from the book Knitted Wild Animals by Sarah Keen I posted about a while ago. It’s an adorable monkey for my 3-month-old nephew who has monkey everything; in fact, we even call him monkey.

Knit Monkey 003

The monkey is made by knitting everything flat and then sewing all the pieces together. It’s pretty simple to knit the individual pieces and doesn’t take much time (unless of course you take a month-long break half-way through….). Sewing all those pieces together, on the other hand, may actually have taken more hours than knitting the pieces to begin with. I don’t know, maybe I’m just horrible at sewing knit pieces together, but I found it tedious and at times frustrating (mostly getting the muzzle attached correctly). I would have preferred to knit in the round and stuff as I go, like you do for the knit elephant, especially for the arms and legs, which are just tubes – it would have saved a lot of time to knit them in the round to begin with. But, I know there are those who don’t like knitting in the round, so to each his own, I guess.

All that aside, it really is a great pattern and makes an adorable monkey. Perfect gift for our little monkey!

Knit Monkey 002

I think I will be trying to adapt this pattern to knit at least parts of it (arms, legs, body, tail) in the round, if not all of it. It will be interesting since the only times I’ve made anything like this has been following a pattern – I have a feeling I will be learning a lot about shaping! If I’m successful, that is! And if I am, you will be the first to know!

Doctor Who Canvas Art

So I know I promised to try to keep my nerdy side contained to my Pinterest and Tubmlr accounts, but as I don’t have a finished knitting project to show you just yet (I’m working on the monkey from the knitting book I mentioned in a previous post), you get a small glimpse of my fandom life.

I’m on “vacation” this week – i.e. I have vacation days to use before the end of the month but no plans to go anywhere, so I’m trying to find ways occupy myself for 10 days – so I had my 12-year-old niece come over for a couple days. Monday, we went to Frankenmuth, MI with my mom (and of course had the famous chicken dinner), but yesterday was pretty rainy and thus the trip to the zoo was nixed. What to do with a bored 12-year-old to keep her from sitting around on her new smart phone all day? (Yes, my pre-teen niece has a more advanced phone than I do *sigh*).

Thankfully, I have turned her into my little minion as far as TV shows go, and she is as much of a Whovian (Doctor Who fan, for those of you who are uninitiated) as I am. After a quick trip to the craft store, and armed with a picture of our inspiration piece from a friend of mine, we were ready to make some Doctor Who art, one for each of us.

Doctor Who Art

Now, I’m not the best at drawing and sometimes you might think I was an MD based on my handwriting (ok, maybe not quite that bad, but you get the idea). Since we didn’t want to ruin this project with bad writing or uneven drawing (for an example check out the free-hand boxes on the doors of the TARDIS), I printed off a picture of the TARDIS and created the quote in Word and used the good-old technique of scribbling over the back of the paper, taping the paper onto the canvas, then tracing (really hard!) the lines I wanted transferred. The transferred lines were pretty light, so I darkened them up with pencil before I started painting.

If you aren’t a perfectionist like me, or if you’re just better at drawing/painting free-hand and you can skip the tedious transfer process, you could turn this project out fairly quickly. As it was, it took us a good part of the afternoon and early evening, which is perfect because it kept my niece busy and (hopefully) not bored and off her phone (mostly).

This was fairly inexpensive (only $8 for a 2-pack of canvases, plus some acrylic paint and brushes that you might already have lying around). The other great thing about this project is that it can be adapted to pretty much any favorite show, movie, or even book. I’m already brainstorming for my next one…