Join me as I share my crafty journey with you. I continue to expand my repertoire of hobbies. I knit, sew, crochet, bead and probably most importantly am a lover of science fiction. Occasionally I even pick up a book. I play Nerd Wars for Team Stargate Command which consumes most of my time.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Melted the Cube Again and Other News...

     I'm going to be difficult and start with other news.  I finished the mittens!!!!!!  Those poor cursed Baby Llama Hermione Mittens.  I should have informed you all sooner as I finished them back on June 1st but Nerd Wars had just started and I had other things on my mind.  I need to block them yet, once I figure out how to do that, and then get some better pictures.  Here is the photographic proof that they're done.
     The eyelet section just rolls under the stockinette on both sides.  They are quite cute once on, I just cant wear them and get a decent picture at the same time.  I'm just very happy that they're finished and nestled together in my "needs blocking" pile.  I still have nearly a whole skein of the Baby Llama left over to do something fun with too.

     So I've melted the cube again.  My last project was Giving Geeks.  Heres the outline of the challenge:  In many parts of the world, Father’s Day will be celebrated in June or was recently celebrated in May. It is in honor of fathers and all men everywhere that we are challenging you this month to do something to make a positive difference in the life of a man or group of men. We would like to encourage you to think about those men who could REALLY use some kindness. This includes, but is not limited to men in shelters, men dealing with a serious health problem, and men in nursing homes.
We will not accept donations to a friend or family member just because you wanted to make something for one of them. You can craft something for a male friend or family member or do something for one of them IF he is seriously in need of some love from you. We also will not accept a submission made for a male pet or a child.
Giving Geeks challenges are focused on the donation, whether it be an object you have made, your time, or monetary or other resources. Your submission must include proof of your donation (in some form -- examples of acceptable proof are included in Post 3).

My Submission Post
     I made 6 washcloths for Warmth for Warriors.  In the summer months this organization requests washcloths to be sent to our armed forces.  I sent a seventh one with this batch, another blue one, that I made a while ago.  I just sent out the package today before work.  This was quite gratifying and I hope the guys who get these enjoy them as much as I enjoyed making them.      I have reached the halfway point with my dissertation too.  On the 21st I finished my first sock.  I am quite excited.  Turning a heel is way cooler than I thought it would be.  It was tricky, in that, I had to just trust the pattern and do what it said.  I've invisioned in my mind how heels on socks work but I was totally wrong.  I dont have accessable pictures of the finished sock yet.  (I took cell phone pictures...)  I will need to get good pictures next round when we get points for our half way check-in.  Today is the last day of R1.  I'm looking forward to R2, I have a few things I really want to get done.  Currently I'm not knitting as I have a pinched nerve or something in my shoulder, I've actually missed work because of it.  I really hate to live on pain meds but thats what I've had to do all week.  On the upside our mini-vacation is next week, I just have to get through tomorrow.  The upside of not knitting is that I'm almost done with the book I've been reading for the last two years.  (It was the book I was reading when I took up knitting.  I just sort of stopped completly.)  Funny thing actually, it's "A Singular Destiny"  by Keith R A DeCandido and I found a Stargate reference in it.  Its a Star Trek book, I nearly peed myself in the dentists office laughing so hard.  Yes, I got funny looks.  Happy Crafting!

Rope Stitch Dishcloth
Tricolour Dishcloth
Hermione Mittens

The patterns mentioned for your knitting pleasure!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Nerd Wars Explained

     I talk about Nerd Wars quite a bit, but I don't think I've ever really explained what it is and what we are asked to do.  So I'm going to walk you through one (or two) of this rounds challenges and what I submitted to answer said challenge.  Each round there are six challenges which fall into six standard categories:  Geek Pride, Scientific, Intellectual, Technical, Giving Geeks and Nerd Culture.  Each round the team must also come up with a team unity project.  It is optional to complete, but mandatory for each team to come up with.  It means extra points so many of us strive to complete it.  It must fit into one of the six categories.  So to demonstrate all this complicated stuff, I'll outline what I did for team unity this round.  Our team unity for this round was to make a project that would fit into the episode "200" (Season 10 of SG1).  That's the short version.  We were broken up into teams within our larger team and tasked with picking a name and jobs for our mini teams.  I was assigned to team four, which we decided to call SG4.  I took on the roll of "leader".  Think Cam Mitchell.  He never actually led SG1 since he was the same rank as Sam, Daniel was a civilian and Teal'c was an alien.  We decided to make fingerless mitts for the scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz pitch that Vala made.  Cameron played the scarecrow in her version.  This is what I made.
Then I had to fit these into one of the challenges.  I picked Nerd Culture:  Google Doodle.  The Google Doodle challenge was this:   
Google Doodles are the fun, surprising and sometimes spontaneous changes that are made to the Google logo to celebrate holidays, anniversaries and the lives of famous artists, pioneers and scientists.
Your challenge is to go to this site, find a Google Doodle that you like and craft something based upon that doodle. The website you are being sent to is an archive of all the Google Doodles since they started them in 1998 to present. Please include which Google Doodle you used and don’t forget to tell us how it inspired your project.

Begin and end this project within this month (Eastern Time).
When a competitor feels they have completed the challenge, they must post the following in this thread to be awarded points:
  • Rav handle
  • Team Name
  • A photo of the completed project
  • What craft was used? (Knitting, Crochet, Spinning, Weaving)
  • A written description of how your project answers the challenge
If the end of the round is approaching, and the competitor does not feel that they can complete the challenge, but they are at least half complete, the competitor is encouraged to post their incomplete project for partial points. (They will not, however, be eligible for team spirit points)
Base points for completion: 10
Team Spirit points: 3 (
read here on how to get team spirit points)

I picked this Google Doodle:
Here is my actual post from Nerd Wars:  Google Doodle Post

Since that included the TUP it was a bit more complicated than most of the challenges.  I'll outline the others I've done so far too.

Intellectual:  A Most Excellent Adventure Through History
Are you a neo-Victorian? Do you wish you could go back in time to visit the wild, wild West? Have you ever dreamt of life in Tudor England? Played in a re-enactment of the Civil War or WW2? Or, like Bill and Ted, do you just think history is “bodacious”!
We all have our favourite historical periods, don’t we? From the eras of Ancient Rome to the Edo period in Japan. From the Elizabethan to the Edwardian. The Ottomans, the Byzantines or the Moguls of India. Even the Roaring Twenties or the Swinging Sixties.
Your challenge is to craft an item that represents an historical era, be it one you are interested in or one which inspires you. This could be an item of fashion from the period, the depiction of an artifact that represents the times you have chosen, something that evokes the people and customs of that age, or even a famous figure of the time if amigurumi are your thing. Anything goes…
And, in case you don’t know it already, your team-tie in (optional) can be totally different from your challenge tie-in. For example: You create an elegant cloche hat, the design evokes the Roaring Twenties for your challenge tie-in; for your team tie-in you state that the blue is the exact color of the car in Psych, aka ‘The Blueberry’. Or, having an interest in medieval Japan, you craft a mini samurai figure. Being on team Space Alliance, for team tie-in you link this to the inspiration behind the design of Darth Vader’s helmet in Star Wars.
Please be sure to include which historical era your project represents. By historical we are looking for eras in recorded history, i.e., after the invention of writing (approximately 3300 BCE and onward). Also, as we’re talking history, contemporary times are just a bit too current.
My Submission

Technical:  Tips of the Trade
It’s a time-honored tradition to teach others the tricks of the trade that make things easier, more interesting, more beautiful, or just plain awesome. Now it’s your turn to pass on the good stuff!
Your challenge this month is to craft something that shows off the best tip you ever learned about your craft. Give us some good advice -- in design, execution, finishing, whatever -- that isn’t common knowledge (for example, it should be more complicated than, “read the pattern through first,” or, “count your stitches,” or, “swatch”). But don’t dismiss something you’ve found really useful as too basic; sometimes what seems to be the most obvious way to solve a problem just hasn’t occurred to everyone. If it works for you, we want to know about it. Then show us an example of your tip or trick at work in a finished project.
My Submission Post

Scientific:  The Transit of Venus
This month’s challenge comes to us courtesy of a suggestion from Stabthewool.
On the 5/6 of June this year Venus transits the sun. This means that Venus will pass between the Earth and the Sun in such a way that we can see Venus silhouetted against the solar disk! This does not happen often; it occurs in pairs separated by over 100 years (the last six dates were 2012, 2004, 1882 1874, 1769, and 1761). The next will be in 2117.
To celebrate this very rare astronomical phenomenon, your challenge this month is to use your crochet, knitting, spinning and weaving skills to represent planets and/or their movements through the solar system.
Your project can include the interactions that planets have with each other, with their natural (rather than man-made) satellites, with the sun, with the asteroid belt, and/or with other trans-neptunian objects that are included in our solar system.
My Submission Post

Geek Pride:  The Kids are Alright
Nerd Warriors, Your challenge this month is to craft an object that represents a child character, or an object that shows what that child character represents to your nerddom.
Before you panic, and think “but there aren’t any kids in my nerddom!”, remember: children often appear as secondary characters. Sometimes they’re one-offs, who move a plot point or story line along. Sometimes they help to reveal a character trait in a main player. Other times the child is a recurring role and serves to highlight such concepts as “innocence lost” or, more rarely, “innocence preserved.”
If this inspiration doesn’t help, you could also craft an object that gives insight into a character by offering a glimpse of what their childhood might have been like. Prove your geekhood by showing us some of the backstory that only a true fan would know! Remember, you don’t have to make “baby” or “children’s” clothes/toys/etc. to fulfill this challenge. Maybe those socks you’ve been meaning to make have a connection to a child character in your nerdery--like how socks are paired just like Sheldon and his twin sister? Or perhaps Rapunzel/Flora from Tangled would have played with an amigurumi knight while she was growing up in the tower?
Please note: the CDs for this challenge want you to flex your creativity! What we do not want to see is an entry that says “Character X and Character Y had a baby! This is a hat that baby Z would wear.”
Another note for Nerd Warriors! If you are using a character’s past as your inspiration, the project must have some basis in canon. This means that you can use flashback scenes, or “throw-away” lines that appear in your nerdery, but cannot invent backstory from wholecloth conjecture.
My Submission Post
If I've included all of them that should be five challenges so far.  I just have Giving Geeks to go.  For this I'm making some wash cloths that I will be sending to Warmth for Warriors.  I'll have more on that later.
The team tie ins are optional as well.  We get three extra points per project if we can tie it back to our team in some way.  I hope that gives everyone some insight into what I'm actually doing for this "knitting competition".  I find it fun, and I get to use all the useless info rattling around in my brain, concerning my nerdy shows.  Happy Crafting!