Saturday, June 21, 2014

Baby G's Woobie Bear

Pita like a California Bear, so this made the Woobie Bear the perfect gift for baby G, the first daughter of Indy's dog Godparents.

I used size 3 knitting needles and Shine Sport yarn in Cream (65 g, 143 yards), Mongoose (99 g, 218 yards) and Pistachio (11 g - 25 yards).  In addition to the brown, green and white yarn, I used a yard or so of Black Shine Sport to embroider on the eyes and mouth. 

I cast on using a 7 g scrap of cream yarn that I had in my stash, I figured that it was best to try to use up the small amounts of yarn first.  Hopefully I made my long tail long enough to cast on all 300 stitches the first time around this time.  Predictably, I got to 182 stitches and ran out of yarn, so I had to rip it out and start over again.  I swear, I'm jinxed with these projects! 

Once I had cast on and knit a few rows, I set this project aside for a bit.  I knew that casting on would be the most effort intensive part of this project, and once I had started it would be perfect to take with me to crochet club, waiting rooms etc.  Keith gave me some AWESOME project bags for Christmas, and I'm thrilled to have an excuse to try them out. 

Unlike the other woobies that I've created (a Tiger and a Zebra), this woobie isn't striped.  This will make it a little more difficult to keep track of the decreases as I go along with the project, but not impossible.  I just have to make sure I pay attention.  

Notes from construction
  • Since I did a long tail cast on, I did NOT knit 1 round with CC before starting the increases, I went straight into the increases. 
  • Cream Ball 1 weighed 7 g. Cream Ball 2 weighs 50 g and started at the end of round 1.  (Wow, that was a lot of yardage in just the CO and first round!) 
  •  For decrease rounds, I will s1, then follow odd round instructions.  This first stitch would become part of the last CDD.  
  • Ball 2 finished in the first quarter of round 20.  Cream Ball 3 weighs 50 g. 
  • For the bear woobie, the contrasting color stripe is 3 rounds rather than 2 for the Tiger and Zebra.  I looked at the picture on the Ravelry page to make sure that I was doing this correctly.  The pattern is correct!  (I only questioned it because of my two other woobies.) 
  • Round 25 - started Brown Ball 1 (weighs  52 g.)  I will keep sequential track of my rows from here on out so I know the total # of rows for the project.  
  • Round 48 (towards beginning) started Brown Ball 2 (weighs 48 g) 
  • After row 59, there are 37 stitches between each marker.   Wahoo!  There is no need to do any corrections as I prepare to start the second set of decreases.  
  • The extra decreases began on round 63. 
  • I hit 28 stitches on round 75.  I then knit one more round (76) without decreases before the "Next Rnd" (#77) to 16 sts.  At this point I stopped my counting of rounds and am ready to begin the head shaping. 
  • I keep thinking that I should go down a needle size for the head to make the stitching tighter... but I never have, and I didn't this time either.  Maybe one of these days I'll start listening to myself. 

I purchased 3 brown balls of yarn for this project, but I used all but 1 g of two balls.  While it is a bummer to have a bunch of left over yarn, it is MUCH better than stressing about running out of yarn.  (Which you know I do a LOT here at ChemKnits!)  Thankfully I have another project that will use this brown yarn, so it isn't increasing my stash (something I'm working hard to avoid doing... yet it keeps growing despite my best efforts.) 

I had some trouble securing the ears in a way I liked.   I finally pinned them to the head before stitching them down.  I used the green to whip stitch the front and then brown to whip stitch the backs. 

While knitting this woobie, all I could think about was mint chocolate chip ice cream.  (I mean, I was also thinking about Baby G and how much I love her already!)  Why was I thinking about ice cream?  Well from the KnitPicks color description when I was selecting my colors, "Pistachio is a mint green yarn that lets you create ice cream inspired combinations, pair with Mongoose for mint chocolate chip..." How could knitting with this color NOT be fun?

I finished the woobie on the evening of their baby shower.  We weren't able to be there, but the grandma-to-be video chatted us in so we could say hello as a surprise to the new parents.  Thankfully I finished just in time to bring with us to CA when we went to visit the next week (at the time of writing this post)!

Lucky's woobie already gets along well with Baby G's bear so I know that these little babies will be best Pals!