I have been rubbish at posting things lately! I've had quite little time to craft due to unexpectedly getting a job (good at the best of times, but I'm starting an unpaid internship in September, so double-yay!). I'm also trying to purge my room of clutter, so my commute-crafting has mainly been crocheting squares for the Henry Bear Blanketeers. The bag of yarn I won't use is nearly empty, the bag of squares is nearly full, everyone's a winner!
So the completion of my secret project is exciting not just because it's amazing and I've wanted to make it since I first laid eyes on the pattern, oh wow, but also because it's the first big project I've finished in quite a while, and that's a nice fuzzy feeling.
Which is fitting, because Hobbes is also fuzzy.
This pattern (available here) is honestly just the best. It combines the joy of crafting with the unadulterated childish delight that was Calvin and Hobbes. I'm pretty sure that strip is the reason that a part of me will always want to be a child growing up in rural North America.
Another reason this pattern is wonderful is that I learned new techniques! I usually learn techniques by picking a project that incorporates them, so it's nice to have it go the other way around. Intarsia in the round is the biggest new skill I took away from this project (though I sometimes substituted my own sloppy version, as you can see on the right of his face), and the pattern also uses loop stitch, and toe-up cast on. None of them were daunting, but I wouldn't have gone out of my way to learn then just 'cause.
ALSO, if you are knitting stripes in the round, you should move in one stitch each time you start a new stripe for a more seamless jog. Never knew that, though it makes a lot of sense. (And, of course, I forgot to do it for the tail, because I'm just not that bright.)
I didn't follow the pattern exactly, though that was partly accidental. I was knitting four rows of orange rather than five in the torso stripes, so knit one less orange and black repeat so that he wouldn't look too long. I also knit seven stripes on the tail rather than nine, as it was starting to look a little bit long as it was.
I used James C. Brett Kool Kotton for the orange. I got about four skeins in a bargain bin, and only used about half of one. I don't know if it's a weirdly specific phase, but I really like working with cotton at the moment, so I have to decide something worthy of the other skeins. the black and white are Cygnet DK acrylic. I used 3mm needles as I didn't want to hold the yarn double, as the pattern suggest, so he might be a little short, but I'm delighted with how he turned out regardless.
Last night I was happy with having finished, but a little disappointed that it looked different to the pattern photos. It took me longer than I care to admit to put my finger on what was missing.
Not even joking. I wish I were.
I also posted some pictures on Twitter of him working up! (I can't use 'tweeted' as an internet-related verb yet. I'm a grumpy old man.)