Happy Birthday to Sa, the turtle thief. I've finished Turtle for her, only a few hours late.
Turtle is from World of Knitted Toys by Kath Dalmeny. I made Turtle from Caron Simply Soft in Sage, Dark Sage, and Light Country Blue on size 3 needles.
I made a couple modifications to the pattern which I like. If I make it again, I would add a couple additional modifications - I would knit the 5 square parts of the shell as a single piece. I'm pretty picky about my seams and spend a lot of time on them, and this would reduce several. I would also knit the tail in a single piece. This was the part of the pattern that threw me. The head and flippers were all done in a single piece and are very similar to the tail, the back flippers are essentially only a slightly larger version of the tail.
The first modification I made was in sewing the appendages to the body. The way the pattern is written, the top and bottom shell are assembled into a single piece. Then the appendages are sewn to the bottom shell. I thought this would look weird, so I attached the appendages to the shell, to where they are coming out from between the top and bottom shell. I love the way this looks, but it significantly upped the construction time, as the sewing became much more fiddly.
The second modification I made was to single crochet around the outside of the top shell. I felt this gave it a more finished look and it concealed any seaming errors and makes the edges look a bit less raw.
While I did kink the flippers, I did not kink the head downward. I felt that the way the head was attached gave it enough of a downward bend.
All in all, I think I spent about 15 to 20 hours knitting Turtle and between 50 and 60 hours sewing Turtle. So, the other knitting went on the back burner.
I have worked some on the Candleflame Shawl. MJ gave me a matching skein of licorice twist yarn and I'm still increasing the size of the shawl. (In the picture, the second skein is started about 7 rows back.) The rows are getting ever longer and longer and taking me a lot longer to do now. I have to frog back about a row and a half due to accidentally making the equivalent of a triple yarn over rather than a double decrease. I wasn't able to shift the stitches enough to conceal the giant hole, so back I go!
I've also picked up the Irish Hiking Scarf variation again (the one that I started last Thanksgiving). I'm a little over half way done now. Yay for progress!
Also, I've started back up on Catherine (the bear), after putting her down in June after frogging a fairly large piece. School is ending soon, and I'll be able to concentrate on the counting required for her.
Finally, Boo has attempted to tell me why they call it an umbrella swift:
Whenever my swift is open and operational, Boo likes to sleep under it. Which I wouldn't mind, if she would just quit licking the yarn and breaking the plies (or in the case of this laceweight, the entire strand.)