Monday, April 23, 2012

Making do: Creating a Onesie Cutout Cookie

Last week I was making cookies for a baby shower at work.  My go-to place for cookie cutters (a small bulk food store close to home) had a cute elephant and I found a neat sun-burst cutter that I decided I would use for a lion to fit the shower's jungle theme.  But I really wanted a onesie cookie cutter.  Being the procrastinator I am, I was shopping 2-3 days before I wanted to make the cookies.  No time for online purchases and shipping (and the inevitable $20 I'd throw in the cart with it).  So I got creative.
Baby Shower cookies
I began with a gingerbread woman cutout (I didn't think a gingerbread man cutout would do as it wouldn't give the little middle piece between te legs). However, I found that using a ghost cutter also worked with a little more hand shaping it actually was less rounded.

To begin: roll your dough and cut out the pieces. You don't need to worry about making complete cookies as you'll be beheading them in addition to cutting off the hands and rounding them out to make the leg holes.
Lots of overlapping pieces to cut down on the amount of scraps to reroll.

Peel away the extra dough and move your cookies away from each other to keep from cutting the others.

Create the collar by rounding the neck with a round cutter.
If necessary, shape to make the onesie cookie straighter.  Then round the leg holes with a round cookie cutter.

Cut off the arms to make cap sleeves.
Bake. Decorate. Enjoy!

Yes, this is several somewhat tedious steps and produces lots of scraps, but for the procrastinator, it works.

Some other things I noticed while working:
Instead of a onesie make a dress! Less cutting. And still super cute. (and less messing up the leg holes).  You might want to trim off the feet in addition to rounding the head and cutting the arms into sleeves.  Have a straight-edged dress or make it riffled with a pastry wheel.

Use a fluted round for frilly neck lines and leg holes to make it a little more girly.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Hats off to you!: Knit Hat

So my first knitting project is a hat.  I looked around for a basic pattern just to let myself get comfortable knitting in the round and using double pointed needles.

I began with this pattern, but had no idea what size my double pointed needles were.  After comparing them to some other needles, I determined they were probably around a 6.  The pattern called for 4.5 mm (size 7), but I wasn't patient enough to wait until I could go get more needles, so I worked the pattern with a set of size 6 double pointed needles.

The pattern is quite simple, beginning with a basic knit 2, purl 2.

Once I got a few inches in, however, I realized that my hat looked like I got off somewhere.

After some thinking, I discovered the problem.  I would always quit at the end of a row.  When knitting in the round, a pearl stitch looks like a basic garter stitch and a knit stitch looks like a pearl stitch on a basic project.  So I put down my project and when I picked it up again, I looked at the stitches below, not where my flowing piece of yarn was telling me was the last stitch, and flipped the project. In the end it did give the hat a neat little edge.

Another alteration I made to the pattern was I did the initial k2,p2 for 18 cm instead of the called for 22 cm. She flips up the brim in this pattern, but I felt it was long enough and was really excited to begin the decrease and finish my hat, so I figured it would be fine without it.

All in all, the pattern was a nice pattern and turned out great.

However, I love the look of a fine yarn with small stitches, so look for a more refined hat in the future!

The pattern:
You will need:
Size 6 double pointed needles
Worsted weight yarn (this used less than half of a skein of your typical Red Heart).

Cast on 100 stitches amongst three of your four needles. Join, being careful not to twist stiches, and place marker (scrap of contrast yarn or a safety pin is fine).
Rib in “knit 2, purl 2” for 22cm
Then: *knit 2, purl 2-together** Repeat to end of round.
Next round: *knit 2, purl 1** Repeat to end of round
Next round: *knit 2-together, purl 1** Repeat to end of round
Next round: *knit 1, purl 1** Repeat to end of round
Next round: *knit 2-together** Repeat to end of round
Next round: knit
Next round: *knit 2-together** Repeat from until 1 stitch before end of round.
Knit 2-together (five times) – 8 stitches remaining
Cut a tail of about 15cm of yarn. Thread it through 8 remaining stiches and draw tight. Stitch inside hat to secure. Sew in loose ends.