I have been obsessed with elephants ever since I found out they are vegan, just like me. My boyfriend got me a lovely shirt for my birthday that reads “I’m vegan and I <heart> you!” next to a picture of an elephant. So, being the crafty person that I am, I decided I wanted to crochet an elephant. There are a million, well at least it seems like it, amigurumi books available now. Amigurumi is the Japanese art of knitting or crocheting stuffed animals. They usually have exaggeratedly large heads and eyes, and sometimes they are not even animals at all, but anthropomorphic objects.
I came across Tiny Yarn Animals by Tamie Snow and decided these small characters, all are approximately 3 to 5 inches when completed, would be a good place to start. When I showed my partner the adorable pink elephant in the book that I was going to make for myself, he demanded that I make one for him first… in blue… and that his name would be Mister Trunkers. Who could fight with that? So I followed the super-easy instructions in the book and made Mr. Trunkers over my two days off. He is now sitting on my partner’s desk at his office.
I hope to make Mrs. Trunkers very soon, in gray.
Back in the spring of 2008, my mother and I went on a knitting cruise together. I know what you are thinking, but it was not a boat full of women. There were 30 to 40 of us who paid an extra fee to take classes while we were at sea from two prominent authors: Shannon Okey (Alt Fiber) and Debbie Stoller (Stitch ‘n Bitch). The trip was amazing and I learned so much more about the craft and formed a new appreciation for yarn. I even learned to crochet in the Bermuda Triangle–from Debbie Stoller of all people!
Anyway, one of the things us nerdy knitters did was something called a Yarn Tasting. That is where you have a bunch of different yarns and practice knitting with just a few yards to see how it feels to work with different fibers. All yarns are not created equal and some of the yarn that is very beautiful is actually very difficult to knit with. So, I had just a few yards of a ton of different yarns, plus a few skeins of free samples. I saved it all because… well, it’s yarn.
I knew about the book AwareKnits by Vickie Howell and Adrienne Armstrong long before it came out and had been eagerly awaiting its release for months. When the book was finally published last October I bought it right away. I could not resist the cute patterns and variety of great earth-friendly yarn, and it became one of my favorite knitting books of the year. When I saw the Circumpolar Scarf pattern in AwareKnits I knew it would be the perfect project to use up my plethora of minuscule amounts of yarn from the cruise. I thought this would be a great memento from my trip. I loved the finished product so much that I asked my mom for her scraps from the same event so that I could make her one as well. I know they will be scarves we will cherish forever and remind us of the great bonding experience we had. That, and the worst seasickness I have ever experienced. But that is another story.
The finished product
Isn't it awesome?
Yet another close up