Sunday, March 31, 2013

#2- all finished except for legs!

I worked SO HARD yesterday on Lollo #2, trying to finish it before Easter. I managed to get farther than I thought, but she sadly remains with no legs. Instead of struggling and failing, I did all I could and decided that I would pause on the hexagons and decorate the bear. I rather she be missing a leg or two than to have the whole bear crocheted but with no eyes or pretty decorations.

She now has her arms (the hands are praying/holding flowers and are connected by a button), she has a bouquet, two butterflies, a cross on her chest, big glitter wings with fuzzy yarn outlining it, a bow that I won in a contest (Katie wore the second one today on Easter), wing earrings, eyes, and a glittery bow with a large wing on the flower stems. I love how she's shaping up. I brought her along today to do the Elizabeth stuff and to my surprise, even my dad and grandfather said how great it looked (these are not men that typically glance at any craft or teddy bear, so it was nice to hear.)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Lollo Update

Good news - Lollo now has a head and ears.
Bad news - Lollo now has a head and ears and Katie LOVES her. She took one look at Lollo with her head and ears attached to that egg shape body and she went crazy. It was so adorable that I had to hand her over and pray that it would be a quick cuddle. No such luck. Twenty minutes later, she's still over there hugging the limbless teddy bear. I just don't have it in me to take Elizabeth's bear away from her, so meanwhile I'm skipping forming the face and just working ahead on the limbs.

I would love to get this done before Easter so that we can take it with us when we visit Elizabeth. So far this Lollo has gone by faster than the last one and with less problems, but I don't know how fast I can prepare baked goods and food for Easter AND also crochet limbs all day, plus the white glitter wings. We'll see, my fingers are crossed.

The two Lollos:

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Lollo #2 day 4 - Body Finished

#2's body is now done! 

It's coming along nicely, and the perfect size. Just cuddling this easter egg shaped body is fun! It's drastically smaller than #1, which I was pleased with as I wanted this to be pretty small. I have no idea if this is closer to the size of the pattern or maybe even a bit smaller, but it'll be the perfect size for what it's intended for. Pictures below show #2 against #1 to compare sizes.

Was hoping to get the head done today, but it's been so busy that I only managed to do one hexagon of the head! Hopefully tomorrow will see many more motifs. I'm eager to experiment with this Lollo's eyes, since it doesn't have to be childproof.

Yep - this body is just a little bit bigger than #1's FOOT!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Lollo #2 - Day 3

So far, my experimentations with Lollo #2 have been successful. I'm currently working with my larger hook (3.50) and made the first two rounds of the body. The 5th round of the motifs have been changed from a double crochet to a single, and I'm sewing them together from the inside. This bear is definitely much smaller! I'd say it's probably half the size, which is great. I'm really liking how to looks so far, I can't wait until this petite bear starts to shape up more!

As I type, Katie has grabbed her Lollo, pulled it in her chair with her and began to cuddle. She drags him around everywhere and gives him big hugs. I love that she still enjoys him so much, she usually doesn't cuddle much with any of her stuffed animals (and she has a lot!).  I tried to steal him away to make a comparison shot of him and #2's size, but her little hands grabbed onto him and pulled him in close! Oh well, I'll have to do it when #2 is more built up!

Here's how #2 is doing:

Friday, March 22, 2013

Thinking Over Lollo #2

I have two major projects I need to get started one. One is a Mother's Day gift that will surely take quite a bit of time and the other is Lollo #2. Lollo #2 is in memory of my Elizabeth, my little angel. This bear is to sit on her memory box as a glittery winged guardian, so I don't want him to be quite the size of Katie's Lollo. However, I want to use the same thickness of yarn, which means I can't use much smaller of hooks. Here's what I'll be changing:

I'll only be using TWO hooks this time, instead of 4-5. Two is really only necessary, one for the bottom part of the body and the head, and one for the parts that taper off.

I'm not going to do double thick yarn on hands and feet. It makes them a bit too big and since this bear won't be played with roughly, there's no real need to double up both sides. Not to mention, the bear will have flowers in it's hands, so you won't see much of them.

I'm doing the hexagon/pentagon pattern differently by doing round 5 as either a single crochet or a half crochet. Right now I'm thinking of doing a single and then sewing them together.

If I don't sew these motifs together, this time I'm going to crochet the patterns inside out to get a smoother joining.

I may take out a round in the body and arms. I'm not sure about this yet as it may turn out a bit strange, but I may use the smaller hook on the head to shrink it a bit, then skip round three in the body and take one round off the arms to make them not look too long. I think I'll leave the legs go though, as they look a little short on Lollo #1.

I'm not sure what size hooks I'll be using yet, but probably the two smallest ones I've used last time if that's possible. This should be a true experiment, to see if Lollo#2 comes out looking alright!

I also need to find a pattern on how to make large angel wings with fingerling yarn. But, that's something to worry about much later!

EDIT: after much deliberation, and reading through other people's reviews (the ones who didn't use 6 tiny itty bitty hooks) I decided to use size 3.25 and 3.50. The most common variant is 3.25 and 3.75, but I want to make this as small as it'll go with these larger hooks, so I want the larger pieces just barely larger. We'll see how this goes! Starting now!

Oh, and these are the colors I chose (the small yarn is white and glittery, I'm going to use it for the wings and possible the eye motifs.)

and a rough draft of how I'm going to decorate Elizabeth's Lollo. The necklace will be a handbeaded string of rubies with a cross at the bottom, the rose at the ear will be crocheted and with the soft pink yarn that's leftover from Katie's bear to add a give a little sisterly addition, the wings will be crocheted out of the glitter yarn above, the earrings will be little wings on each side, and she'll hold a bouquet of beautiful flowers in her hand. I can't decide between which one I want yet though, there's three at Walmart that just jump out at me, so I'm going to wait until Lollo is more finished to decide...hopefully they'll all still be there!)


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Lollo bear - COMPLETED!!

Lollo is finished!

I'm so proud that I stuck with it and got it done. There were tempting moments were it was taking so long and parts were frustrating that I just wanted to put it aside. There's only so many hexagons and pentagons you can make before you start going a little crazy! (I was up at 3 AM last night working on hexagons. I started timing myself - thought I was doing well until I saw that it took almost exactly 9 minutes for each one at top speed. Seeing how many I had to make plus all the putting together time...MANY hours went into this bear!)

I was so excited last night to get the bear done that I nearly stayed awake to keep going. Instead, I stopped around 3 AM after the very last hexagons had to be made. I stuffed them inside the feet pockets that I had already put together and then headed for bed.

The legs really were quite easy. The double yarn feet killed my fingers and were slow going, but beside that the legs were the easiest to put together, I think. The feet looked huge to me when putting them together but they look perfect now that they're on the bear.

I decided to do something different with the legs than what I did with the arms. With the arms, I sewed together half of the two hexagons (one on the shoulder and one on the under arm). With the legs, I did what I would have done with the button method, but without the buttons. It really doesn't seem like the buttons do too much more than what the string alone does. Now Lollo bear can both stand up and sit (though his leg joints aren't strong enough to stand him up by himself, he needs to lean. However, he can sit up by himself.)

I think my favorite thing is that Lollo bear is the same size as Katie. I think she may be about two inches taller, if that. How exciting later on, that I'll get to tell her how I made her that bear when she was the size of it.

Speaking of Katie, she LOVES it. As soon as she saw me carrying it around to take pictures, she started wailing her arms and asking for him. I stopped taking pictures, moved them down to the nursery and let her at him. She walked over, studied him for a moment, then gave him a big hug and giggled. How adorable! She likes walking back and forth to him and then cuddling up for a few moments. He definitely makes her happy, so it was well worth the time I put into him!

She wanted to be in all of the Lollo pictures once she got ahold of him, so some part of her managed to get into most of the nursery pictures!

Now that he's finished, all we have to do is decide on a gender for the bear (keep calling him he even though its so pink and for a girl and was meant to be girly) and decide on a cute name.

And one last one - me and my labor of love!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Lollo Progress and a tiny Easter Basket

Lollo now has eyes! I decided to go with felt eyes, as I thought they'd fair better than embroidered and safer than plastic. I also have started on Lollo's feet. I decided after the difficulty with the hands, that I'd do both feet at the same time. Which means this is going really slow! Double yarned hexagons take me forever with tiny needles. Once the feet are together, the legs will go much quicker.

Here's pictures of the last day or two's progress:
(the hexagons/pentagons are the toes, heels and one top foot)

And I did another project - great timing as well, as every part of it was on sale! Glitter tulles for 1.99 each and the basket for .99. I made a tutu with embroidery floss stringing them together and then glued them all to the rim of the basket. I added little white roses and a heart/wings pendant that were leftover from the Calvin's Hats. Whole thing took me about fifteen minutes, but I do love how it looks! This little one is for our Elizabeth.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Lollo - days 8-10

Being sick, I've been forced to go slow with Lollo (yes, that's right - I'm STILL sick! Over a week of sneezing, coughing yuckiness.) but, I've finally gotten both of his arms on and attached to the rest of his body.

The arms went ary , I'll admit. I'm not sure why. Both arms had a weird top hexagon attachment (the last one just wouldn't go on correctly both times, even though counting the stitches and doing it slowly says it should have went fine.) Then the paw of the second arm turned out noticeably bigger than the first arm - something I didn't notice until the arm was completely sewn up and stuffed. I managed to rig it pretty successfully, by just working with the method of how you do the eye indents. I also didn't notice until the arm was done and stuffed that second arm was wavy. I have NO idea why this could be, but the inner arm at the wrist actually seemed smaller than the outer, which should be impossible because each hexagon (double checked before sewing together) matched perfectly and were all the same size. Luckily, once it was attached to the bear, you couldn't really tell. I figure once it's played with, it'll probably look normal. It just was a bit odd while the whole body is stiff from not getting played with yet.

So, I did run into a few problems, but nothing major. I had to retry a few things and sometimes I just had to rig it, but Lollo looks great still and you can't tell where things went wrong (at least I can't.)

I bought the buttons to make Lollos arms jointed, but decided at the last minute not to. I decided against plastic eyes because of choking hazards, then realized I might as well stick to the "choking hazard free" bear and skip the buttons. Turns out, they aren't really needed, at least with how I did the arms. I took the inner top arm's hexagon and matched it the the shoulder's hexagon, then sewed with double yarn half way around the hexagon. I also sewed the under arm half way across the hexagon. This gives the arm security but mobility. I can still lift the arms and move them around without any buttons attached. Sewing around the full hexagon, as I had done with the head, I think would have made the arms too stiff and unmoving.

And last but not least, here's Lollo pictures! I put the bear on a glider to get a better idea about the size: