So I know we just posted our supplies entry two months ago, but that picture was taken around early October. Once we took started stockpiling for our MAGfest lot, it quickly overran the storage we had set aside for the yarn. Today we found another set of cubes on clearance at Target and doubled our effective storage area. This is the result:

For those who’re interested, the rightmost upper cube contains Lion Brand Suede yarn in about 6 colors, the rightmost middle cube contains Lion Brand Microspun yarn, and the rightmost bottom cube contains all our multicolor yarn. The other nine cubes are separated by color, but not by brand. The yarn across the top is all Carron One Pound. I’m hoping we don’t out grow this, because the only place left to expand is across my dresser.

You know how in the classic 8-bit Mega Man games you just keep dieing over and over till you learn the right patterns? Creating the Mega Man hat was eerily like that. We worked on and off trying to develop something that looked even close to good. Pattern books were consulted. The Internet was researched. We even had a sheep and an old crone ready to read it’s entrails. And what we found was that nothing was quite right. Nothing had the right feel. Were we doing this right? Here’s just two of our early attempts

Mega Man Prototype 1

As you can see, we started with a base beanie and then continued the yarn down the back to simulate the curvature of the helmet. The theory was sound, but the effect when placed on a real human head left much to be desired. We stopped the project at that point.

Mega Man Prototype 2

The second attempt tried for a different effect. Since the first had warped so badly on the sides of the helmet we tried for a tie down strap under the chin. This is also the first time we tried the side orbs which we modified slightly for the final design. The triangle in the front between the eyes tried to compensate for the lack of curvature around the face that you see in drawings of Mega Man’s helmet. This wasn’t quite what we looking for either.

Mega Man Final

So we started from scratch. We tried to capture the essence of Mega Man without recreating him perfectly. Judging from the number of them sold, I say people like it.

One of the fun part about crafts is that you have practically unlimited options. You can choose to work with a medium; bending it’s form to fit your concept. You can choose a medium or two that works best for a single concept and move to a different one for the next project. The trouble with changing mediums often is that unless you’re the reincarnation of a renaissance master with a large purse to boot, you’ll end up with only a minor master of the medium and spend a fortune on the professional tools that are needed to get the most out of a given material. So once you’ve decided to hunker down and try to get the most out of your medium, you’ll begin to try different techniques to get a better result or simply speed things up. Sometimes these experiments work out; sometimes they don’t. But if you can apply what you’ve learned from your mistake to a later project, it’s a lesson well learned.

We got the basic ghost hat design down on the first try, but decided to try something different so that the eyes would be in the same layer as the base hat. The Tapestry method of crochet allows you to run multiple threads of yarn together, bringing one to the front while dropping the others behind. Depending on the colors used and the tightness of the stitch, the threads running in the background can be nearly invisible. Or not.

This Inky hat done in “Country Blue” (which I will forever consider the color of siding for seaside cottages) doesn’t really cut it. The eyes have the same number of stitches as the pieces sewn onto the normal hat, but end up distorted and awkward.

Not only is the black and white yarn visible behind the blue in front of the hat, but due to the nature of Tapestry crochet, it follows all the way around the hat.

In addition to being ugly, this hat doesn’t stretch quite like the others; the threads behind limit the size the hat will stretch out to. Well, live and learn. There are some great Tapestry crochet works out there, but this isn’t one of them.

You’d be amazed at what you collect when you’re never sure what you’re making. Some colors see constant use; others were bought on a whim or a sale. Most have some planned use for the future. But the stock pile just keeps growing; we may need to expand.

© 2011 Shadows In The Nyte Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha