Friday, May 30, 2014

FO Friday: Summer Fun

Well, I had the itch to try something new over Memorial Day weekend. I'd come across  a pattern for crocheted flip flops and knew they'd be the perfect experiment. So here they are:
I used the Flip Flops pattern by Tara Murray of Mamachee. She is a new designer to me and she has such cute designs! Since this was meant to be an experiment, I just fished in my stash of cheap cotton yarn (that I never use!) and chose the two colors that looked the best together. The soles are made from Peaches & Cream Twists in the Limerick colorway and the tops are Lily Sugar's & Cream in the Kiwi colorway. The greens aren't the same (the Limerick is a bit more olive), but I think they look good together. I'm glad I had several skeins on hand of the Limerick though because no joke this took all by 5% worth of 2 skeins just for the bottoms! The yarn is held in double, so it disappears really fast.
I made the size 9-10 and I used one hook larger than the pattern called for since I crochet very tightly. The soles are actually 2 pieces that are sewn together as one. They do fit, but they're just barely long enough. If I was making them for an actual size 10, I think I would need to go up another hook size for the bases (but again, that's just because of my tight stitching, not the pattern). These only took a couple hours to make and the pattern was really well written. It had great pictures to explain everything.
I've just been using them as house shoes since I doubt they're last very long in the real world, and they do their job fairly well :) My only regret is that I went the lazy route and didn't stabilize the soles. The pattern includes instructions on how to attach them to cheapy rubber flip flop soles or to make them cushier/more stable, but those options all required extra materials that I just didn't feel like going upstairs to grab, lol. The problem with not doing anything to stabilize them is that as you're walking they can fold up under themselves. So they kind of drive me nuts, lol,  and I have to pay attention to how I walk in them. I may cut the soles apart and add some foam or some cardboard eventually. 

And I realized that in my crazy month of illness/hectic work schedule, I only just realized that I never fully posted about my pattern testing! I was lucky enough to be asked to test the new Bethany the Butterfly pattern from Adrialys Designs. 
For my Bethany, I decided to make a bi-colored butterfly. I used Red Heart With Love in Violet and Jade for the wings and some old Patons Canadiana in Gray for the body. I also chose to embroider a mouth on mine to make it a little happier :)
I just love these colors together!
I really liked how the wings are made - it's done with a combination of double crochet and single crochet so you get that great shape. One thing I will say is you definitely need to make sure you count out the first 2 rows correctly. I was watching a movie while making my wings and I had to start over 3 times because I'd get to round 3 or 4 and the numbers weren't right. This was totally user error, lol, I just wasn't paying close enough attention. Eventually I realized my mistake and gave it my uninterrupted attention for a few minutes while I started off and they came out great.
Back view
So my own personal butterfly was made with a size H hook, but again that's because I crochet so tight. I would definitely recommend going with the G if you make this to keep everything tight enough to hold in the stuffing. Also, be careful not to over stuff the wings because this can cause the dc section of the wings to separate and show the stuffing. I had to play with it a bit to get the amount just right.
Closer look at wing shaping
I had a few random ideas while making this. I think this pattern would double great as a throw pillow on a girl's bed - imagine a butterfly themed room! And you could make it in any colors you want :) I also think you could easily make your butterfly look more realistic by adding black felt outlines to the wings. I could see that working for a monarch or blue morpho or swallowtail - you name it!

I had a lot of fun making this/testing this pattern and I would highly recommend it for any butterfly lover. Also, my nephew really likes that you can flap the wings :) Incidentally, Adrialys is having a Spring Crochet Along and this pattern is included in the selection. You can get the pattern here and join in the fun.
That's all I've got finished for this week :) Head over to Tami's Amis' Blog to see what lovely things others have made!

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