Monday, November 29, 2010

History told in turtles

Hi there! Long time no see, yes? I have been, and still am, completely swamped with applications and schoolwork, so work on the blog suffered, unfortunately. Some crafting has taken place and I hope that soon I will be able to get some photos taken and proper entries written about them.

That, though, will have to wait for another time! For now, I'd like to share with you what probably really sucked me into crocheting: the famous Tiny Striped Turtle by KristieMN of Crochetville. This pattern has been bouncing around the interwebz for nearly 4 years now, and it is a great pattern, in my opinion, for beginners at amigurumi. I mean, everything is round, how can it go wrong???

So like I said, this is pattern is probably responsible for my obsession now. In order to master it, I spent days learning how to crochet in the round (you have no idea how hard it was for me to figure out how to count stitches >_>). Switching colors was another experiment that the turtle dared me to try. So with my first H hook and my grandmother's eight-year-old baby yarn, I crocheted my very first turtle!, Turtle Number One, I guess he doesn't have a name. I used all yellow WW yarn and two gold beads I found in my stash as his eyes. When I went to show it off to my mom, she totally fell in love and asked to have it! So now Number One lives in her office, tending to the paper roses I gave her for Mother's Day. He's done a great job so far!

Next is Mr. T. I crocheted this little guy for my boyfriend, who suggested all the crazy color changing in the first place. Although I don't think I'd do it again (for turtles, at least) the half and half pattern on the head left a very interesting stitching-like pattern. He's especially tiny (see Chapstick for reference) because I hadn't learned to stuff the bejeezus out of these guys yet.

Then, I wanted to experiment with crocheting with embroidery floss. Unfortunately, I attempted this with an E hook which was waaaaaaay to big. As such, Tiny Tim here is quite holey and can only hold a certain amount of stuffing without showing off his insides. This means he's a bit sad and floppy, and certainly too delicate to be the keychain I'd intended him to be. Hence the name.

Enough with the altruism! I wanted a turtle for myself! After the slight fiasco with the super thin embroidery floss, I went the opposite direction and used some of the Homespun yarn left over from my first and only hand-knit scarf. This is Misty. By the time I made her, I had learned two very important things about the Tiny Striped Turtle species. One, they need to be stuffed. The cuteness factor is directly proportional to the amount of stuffing that can feasibly fit inside these guys. And two, if you add weights to the shell portion, the hugeness of the head won't cause your turtle to topple forward (which is why Number One is always gazing up at Mom's flowers, not scanning the perimeter as a good guard should do).

I decided to do something a little more ambitious. You may remember my Japan-ophile friend Katherine who received this (if I do say so myself) adorable sakura purse from me for her birthday. Well, she was just as much of a Japan-ophile back then (about one and a half years ago), so I decided to make her a Japanese flag turtle! She totally loved it, and even tells me that she gave it a little flag made from a toothpick and paper saying, "Ganbatte!" or "Do your best!" >_< SO FREAKING CUTE

Since she is half-Greek, I was actually hoping to do a Greek flag turtle for her, too. Then, after exhausting my vocabulary of curses on the red dot on Japan's behind, I gave up on Greece. Serious props to anyone with the nerve to even try it.

This here turtle was for my friend, Daniel. I feel like I rushed the process a bit...looking back on it I wish I had paid more attention to the stuffing. Still, I think he really liked it, as he spent a great deal of that day thrusting Turtle Number Six in people's faces with a silly grin on his.

Meet Enrique. Enrique is a cross-dresser who patrols my roommate Bing's desk. It kind of hurts that my own creation won't let me take just a leeeeeetle peek at Bing's super-secret world-domination plans. Or maybe she's hiding chocolate in there? I'll never know, because old Enrique is more than a match for me. T_T

After learning about my mad crochet skillz (HAHAHAHAHAHA), two of my friends asked for turtles of their own. This is the first completed one. As described by the recipient, Margie, "It's a he/she named Charlie." Hmm...have my turtles suddenly become genderbenders or something? Anyways, you can't really tell in the picture, but Charlie is actually crocheted from Simply Soft Persimmon and Sunshine yarn, very bright colors that sadly washed out in the webcam. You can see the Persimmon in my infinity scarf, and just picture a very bright, warm yellow for the Sunshine. The other turtle (fully crocheted, just needs to be stuffed and assembled) is in Sunshine and Chocolate, and should be finished...soon... <_<  >_>

Well, that's all for today, folks! The history of nine turtles (or maybe eight and a half). If you haven't tried this pattern, DO IT. It's so easy and quick, and it is seriously one of the most adorable things I have ever seen. Their turtle tushies are especially cute with the big round butt and stubby legs and tail. I hope you enjoyed!


  1. hi ,
    how are you doing ,
    your turtle is really cute specially the girlie one with the little pink bow , lovely .
    happy days

  2. There's a turtle missing! Specifically, the lovely one you made me, which has traveled to New York and back about a bajillion times. He wants to visit you at med school and be a real doctor, too.