The Sweatshop of Love Blog

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October, 2010

Happy Halloween FO: Alien Beanie

Last week I got a last minute custom knit request from a guy that really needed an alien hat for his costume. So much so that he was willing to pay me a lot of money to whip this hat out for him in 2 days time.

Crocheted Alien Beanie

I can’t say no to that! I used this pattern as a base, changing the eyes, eliminating the nose and mouth as instructed by my client, and making the antennae more solid against the base of the hat.

Looks Good on Teady

So if you saw a dude wearing this hat last night, I totally made that!

I’m driving with PT to Minnesota today so there won’t be much more Halloween-ing for us, unless someone is in costume at a rest stop in Wisconsin. And if someone is in costume at a rest stop in Wisconsin I will be running the other way. Talk about scary!

Pattern: Alien Hat

Yarn: Stitch Nation Alpaca Love in Fern

Caron Simply Soft in Gray

Hook: Size G

Ravelry Project Page

Where’s Waldo?

My goal for Halloween is always to be warm. Last year I wore a giant stuffed cupcake. This year I wanted simpler. And a costume involving knitwear.

Where's Waldo

So, obviously, Where’s Waldo came to mind! Though finding the shirt was more of a challenge then I thought it was going to be, so I had to make one.

Waldo Shirt in the Making!

I got a white tshirt and used masking tape to tape off the parts of the shirt that were going to be left white.

Fabric Spray Paint

The only red fabric paint left in JoAnn was this weird spray paint stuff that I’ve never used before, but I left my costume for the last minute so I was desperate.

Spray Paining Away!

So I just did it! If it didn’t work I would just figure something else.

Waldo Shirt Drying

I actually read the instructions on the bottle and let the shirt dry for four hours. I turned it around and did the back, pulled the tape off and voila!


It turned out pretty well for painting a shirt with a spray bottle and masking tape.

Fabric Spray Paint Issues

There were a couple issues with paint leakage under the tape, but overall the spray paint was easy to use, quick drying, and true to color.

Waldo is Ready to Go

Earlier in the week I grabbed some size 13 needles and heavy worsted yarn and punched out a quick K2P2 ribbed hat. I made a huge pompom for the top and called it a day.

So I’m all ready for Halloween! I’ll be partying hard in Pilsen, and if you are in the neighborhood you should party with us.

How did you work knitting into your Halloween costume?!

Christmas Present FO: Adamgurumi

I’m still getting use to my new camera, but what better to practice taking pictures of than a peoplegurumi FO?


My brother Adam, Baby Nolan‘s dad, has huge muscles and he likes to drink protein shakes. He is a security guard, so he wears an all black uniform.

Detroit Lions Hat

He also likes the Detroit Lions. Because he is awesome.


This is the first time I’ve changed the basic person pattern, because Adam has huge arms.

See? Huge Arms

See? And a really, really cute son. Yeah, that was gratuitous cute baby picture.

So first there was Jamiegurumi, then there was Taragurumi, and now there is Adamgurumi. And there are more to come!

Pattern: Basic Amigurumi Person Pattern

Yarn: Leftover worsted weight scraps

Hook: Size G


Me and My New Cannon T2i! Holla!

Holy shit guys! The Sweatshop of Love got a freaking UPGRADE! Look at this sweet camera PT and I bought!

First Picture - Pudgey Rodriguez

This is the first picture I took. Pudgey, yarn, my needle case. That is about right.

How sweet is that picture?!

So this blog is going to get a whole lot more beautiful, like, right now! Well, as soon as I figure out how to use the thing. So I’m off to take more pictures!

Minneapolis, Here I Come! Mostly.

This past March PT moved to New York City. We did not think that we were going to be able to stay together when we so clearly were not together. But we just never stopped talking, and then we started to plan visits. And then we accepted that we weren’t not together.

So we started making plans. He was finding work in New York, so I went to visit in August, and each day we were there together made it more clear that our lives don’t fit in New York City. I don’t make enough money to contribute to a life in New York, and PT doesn’t make enough money to make up for what I don’t make.

And I’ve come to far to go back to a high paying, sucky admin job that I hate and sacrifice my goals for The Sweatshop in the process.

So PT suggested Minneapolis. He grew up in St Paul and we’ve been to Minnesota together many times and I’ve always had a great time there.

But my business is in Chicago. My classes and my students and my life are all in Chicago, and I’m just not ready to give all that up.

So here is the plan: PT is leaving New York City this weekend. We are going to drive his stuff up to Minnesota, drop it, and come back to Chicago. We already found an apartment in Minneapolis for December 1st, so that weekend we are going to pack up a bunch of my stuff and move it to our new apartment. I’ll be back in Chicago for the rest of December, Christmas in Michigan with my family, and then LIVE IN MINNEAPOLIS in January and February.

Crazy, right?

I moved to Chicago in 2003, so I’ve been here for a while. I love Chicago. I love my life in Chicago. I’m keeping my apartment and I’ll be back in March to teach classes. But I’m ready for a change. Or, baby steps toward change. Because change is hard and scary.

Change is also really exciting! I’ve got a lot planned for those two winter months in Minnesota when I won’t be leaving my apartment, including knitting how-to videos, online classes, and a ton more knitting patterns.

2010 has been a roller-coaster. I’m excited about life: excited about where The Sweatshop is going, excited that my boyfriend will no longer be 1300 miles away, excited that I get to live in two of the greatest cities in the United States. I miss my grandpa, who died in January, every day, and it’s still really hard for me to do things. <- That is a terrible sentence, but it is still really hard for me to do things! Watching football is hard. Cooking is hard. The World Series will be hard. Calling my grandma is hard. Making life plans is hard.

But here I am, making life plans. I’ve got the next 6 months planned out! And the awesome level is getting higher and higher.