2016 Geek-A-Long: Katamari Damacy

06 Katamari Damacy Prince 2

Katamari Damacy came out in what I would consider my personal golden age of gaming. 2004-2008 were my Purdue University years, and I’ve never gamed like I did then. Socially, it was not a great time for me and video games were the perfect escapism. I had heard about Katamari Damacy on Penny Arcade and splurged on the game.

Do you remember being a kid and rolling a snowball down a hill and how unbelievably satisfying it was to watch it grow? Katamari manages to perfectly capture that feeling, while simultaneously letting you work out a little bit of rage. The main character, the Prince, has to roll up bigger and bigger balls of earth stuff to rebuild the cosmos after his father destroyed it all while binge drinking. There is nothing better than working through your feelings about someone else’s screw ups by rolling up a cow into a giant ball of stuff.

06 Katamari Damacy Prince 3

If you decide to take my advice and play Katamari, I feel like I need to include the disclaimer that it is insanely addictive. So you’ve been warned.

Play it anyways though. ;)

I was so into it when it came out that I made Prince cosplay for my cat. Luckily I have a cat that likes to dress up.

catamari

#thegreatgambino

Kielrain nominated Katamari, and although it didn’t get enough votes to make it to the final leaderboards, it got several votes. That warmed the cockles of my heart. It’s always a little difficult to introduce folks to this game, since you’re selling them on playing a trash collector. Much like Psychonauts from last week, I get a real rise out of meeting folks that already love it. This week’s square features the tiny prince, and I just love how he looks on the blanket.

06 Katamari Damacy Prince 1

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Katamari Damacy pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @Doctor_Llama and Jac @jac_attacking or with the hashtag #geekalong!

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Megan-Anne
“Where the first rolls, the second follows. Roll, roll, roll.” 

* * * * *

If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small. Wanna make your donation go even further? Louet Yarn is donating 50 cents for every skein of Louet Gems Worsted purchased this year to make a Geek-A-Long blanket. You can get Gems at your Local Yarn Store or through Louet’s website. Just remember to mention the GAL at check out.

2016 Geek-A-Long: Psychonauts

05 Psychonauts 2

It’s been a heck of a week at Lattes & Llamas. A tiny nerd has joined our ranks, and one assumes that she will be knitting up a GAL blanket of her own soon. True story: my biggest fear as I enter motherhood is that she will not want to knit with me. That’s scarier than Kobolds, which of course, is my second greatest fear. I’ll blog more about her later and show off some of the awesome stuff Jac and I have been knitting up for her, but for now I would like to introduce Mabel, who is adjusting well to being the boss of all of us:

Nerdy Mabel

In slightly more on-topic news, we are all about Psychonauts this week. I freaking love this game. It came out when I was in college and I’m not ashamed to say I missed classes to play it. It had the same draw for me that reading X-Men comics did. The idea of a camp (or in X-men’s case, a school) that specifically catered to all the weird or freak kids of the world got me right in my warm nerdy place. Anyhow, I would have given anything to go to Whispering Rock Psychic Training Camp, even if it was government run and a teensy bit evil. The game didn’t get a lot of notice when it came out, but I’ve never met someone who has played it and didn’t love it. Just a few weeks ago Psychonauts 2 was funded on Kickstarter, so I’m finally going to get some more sweet psychic action.

05 Psychonauts 4

Psychonauts did not make it onto the leaderboards this year, but all that means is that I get to introduce the game to tons of new people! For just $10 on Steam you could be playing it right now (or, you know, later after you finish your square). Throughout the game you earn merit badges for each power you successfully master, and even though I wanted to plaster the square with Dogen’s Squirrels, Jac was on point when she insisted we choose our favorite badges for the square. This is one of my favorite squares of the year, and I hope it’s sweet design will convince you to try the game if you haven’t already.

05 Psychonauts 1

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Psychonauts pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @Doctor_Llama and Jac @jac_attacking or with the hashtag #geekalong!

05 Psychonauts 5

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Megan-Anne
Don’t listen to the squirrels. They always lie. 

* * * * *

If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small. Wanna make your donation go even further? Louet Yarn is donating 50 cents for every skein of Louet Gems Worsted purchased this year to make a Geek-A-Long blanket. You can get Gems at your Local Yarn Store or through Louet’s website. Just remember to mention the GAL at check out.

2016 Geek-A-Long: Sonic the Hedgehog

04 Sonic 2

Sonic the Hedgehog ran his way onto the top 25 leaderboards this year, and even though he didn’t make it into the top 15 games we think he more than deserves his spot on the blanket. Sonic 3 was nominated by BirdNerd-Knitter, who said:

Or any of his games really. I’m pretty sure that this was one of, if not the first video game that I ever played (aside from Super Mario Bros. on the Nintendo), and it probably takes the credit for the start to my wonderfully nerdy passions. (Sonic was also one of my first crushes as a nerdy youngster. Sigh…..young love.)

BirdNerd, I get you. I don’t think I bothered to crush on an actually real human person until late middle school/early high school. Before then it was me and Captain Nemo 4ever.

04 Sonic 4

This is technically our second tribute to Sonic the Hedgehog. Last year Dr. Eggman was honored for his contributions to mad science. Jac and I are really bad at the Sonic games. We grew up in an Nintendo house, and didn’t have many chances to log playtime on a Sega. It’s pretty normal to be a multi-console family these days, but way way back in the early 90’s it was really rare. The only person we knew that had a Sega was Aunt Lisa.

Her house was like our own special vacation spot. Disney movies as far as the eye could see. All the sweet snacks an adolescent could want. A Sega that was well stocked with games, and not held back by pesky screen-time limitations. We used to love going over there, and would jump at any opportunity to babysit, house-sit, or just hang out and get our butts kicked by Dr. Robotnick.

04 Sonic 1

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Sonic pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @Doctor_Llama and Jac @jac_attacking or with the hashtag #geekalong!

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Megan-Anne
The franchise was greatly improved for us by the addition of Tails who allowed the second player to actually do something useful. 

* * * * *

If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small. Wanna make your donation go even further? Louet Yarn is donating 50 cents for every skein of Louet Gems Worsted purchased this year to make a Geek-A-Long blanket. You can get Gems at your Local Yarn Store or through Louet’s website. Just remember to mention the GAL at check out.

2016 Geek-A-Long: Kirby

03 Kirby 2

Who would win in a hotdog eating contest, Yoshi or Pac-Man? Tick question. Neither. Kirby would inhale all of the hotdogs, the plates and table, Yoshi, Pac-Man, and the chairs they sat on all in one breath. Then, his health would replenish and he’d be like, “Gosh and gee willikers, that was a nice snack! I’ll have ten more of that please.” Because Kirby is cute and innocent and cheerful with a voracious appetite. Basically, he’s an animated version of me when I ran into the Girl Scouts at the mall the other day.

Hahaha, just kidding! I totally hunted down those Girl Scouts. Did you know they have an app for that now??? It’s changing my life for the awesomer. No more tears for me, waiting until I see my supplier (A.K.A. my adorable niece) until March.

03 Kirby 4

Even though Kirby didn’t make it into the top 25 video games on our Leaderboard, Megan-Anne and I still adore him. We didn’t have any of his video game growing up, but we did enjoy playing as him on Super Smash Bros. He was one of the starter characters, and I was a big fan of his super sweet flying skills and ability to copy enemy attacks.

BirdNerd-Knitter loved him too and nominated him:

How could I forget Kirby?!?! Although we love any Kirby game, the Amazing Mirror is one of our favorites.

 

03 Kirby 1

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Kirby pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @jac_attacking or Megan-Anne @Doctor_Llama with the hashtag #geekalong!

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Jac
“Stop eating me, Jacquline! It’s not fair. I’ll tell mom.” “How are you gonna tell her if you’re in my tummy!” ::WILD MANIACAL LAUGHTER:: 

* * * * *

If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small. Wanna make your donation go even further? Louet Yarn is donating 50 cents for every skien of Louet Gems Worsted purchased this year to make a Geek-A-Long blanket. You can get Gems at your Local Yarn Store or through Louet’s website. Just remember to mention the GAL at check out.

2016 Geek-A-Long: Tetris

02 Tetris 3

Basically, it’s like if organizing were an Olympic game. 

I figured there was no way Tetris wouldn’t make The Leaderboards. Props to bourbongirl, who nominated it:

I know, it’s old, but it made my high school and Navy years so much better, and I still love it.

I love it too. Frankly, I probably love it too much. I think most people in the nerd-o-sphere have experienced that one game you just can’t stop playing. Like, you know you really ought to be doing other things like working, cleaning, or generally adulting, but there it is on your phone just waiting to be played.

My Freshman year of college I worked at Science Central. Most of the time I did demonstrations. They even rented me out to schools and corporate events, I wore a decorated lab coat and hammed it up to the crowd while playing with liquid nitrogen. The rest of the time I sat at interactive exhibits telling kids when it was their turn. Overall, it was a pretty cool job. At the time, I didn’t really appreciate the amount of down time I had there. I would moan and complain like any self-respecting 19-year-old about how bored I was. It was all an act. I think I clocked three to four sweet Tetris filled hours a day.

02 Tetris 4

This was before smart phones were a thing. They were just beginning to exist and I had a silly little flip phone. I could use it to make calls, send very rudimentary texts (that would take foreeeeeeever to type since there was no keyboard aside from the number pad), and play Tetris. I burned through its battery every single day playing Tetris. I would volunteer for the most boring posts at Science Central just so I could play while waving kids onto the giant slide.

This year’s blanket makes me so nostalgic. Truthfully, that was not a great time in my life. I was in a toxic relationship and very unhappy. But I still get a smile and a fuzzy sort of feeling when I think about all the hours I spent sitting at the top of that giant slide playing Tetris.

02 Tetris 1

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Tetris pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @Doctor_Llama  or Jac @jac_attacking with the hashtag #geekalong!

Here's your sneak peek at the second video game of the year: Tetris! #geekalong #knitting #louetgems #lattesandllamas #videogames #tetris

A photo posted by Jacquline "Cappuccino" Rivera (@jac_attacking) on

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Megan-Anne
There is no better feeling in life than getting that Tetris piece right where you need it. 

* * * * *

If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small. Wanna make your donation go even further? Louet Yarn is donating 50 cents for every skien of Louet Gems Worsted purchased this year to make a Geek-A-Long blanket. You can get Gems at your Local Yarn Store or through Louet’s website. Just remember to mention the GAL at check out.

2016 Geek-A-Long: Mario Kart

01 Mario Kart 2

I wish I had a blue shell of death for my morning commute. 

Welcome to the 2016 Geek-A-Long! 2015 was a wild ride, and this year is going to be even zanier. Before I get into the square for this week, let’s do a quick recap: We’re working with a new yarn this year, Louet Gems Worsted. The amazing people at Louet are donating 50 cents to Child’s Play Charity for every skein of Gems purchased to make a GAL blanket. If you missed the announcement, you can get all of the details here. And, if that weren’t exciting enough, instead of choosing all of the fandoms ourselves this year, we invited you to duke it out and nominate your favorite games to put on the blanket. You can see the full fight here and the summarized results here.

The theme for the 2016 GAL is video games and we are starting off with one of my all time favorites, Mario Kart. When we opened up the forum for voting, we knew there was a high likelihood that you guys would nominate games we had already chosen for the blanket. But, I was pretty excited to see my favorite game wind up in the top five on the leaderboards. Bragging rights go out to KDowny for nominating it:

My vote goes out to Mario Kart as it is the only game I was ever able to beat my older brother at growing up.

KDowny, may your older brother always feel the shame of his defeat.

I didn’t get into video games until my late teens, so I missed out on playing some of the older versions. Mario Kart for the Wii though, that is my JAM.

When I first met my husband at a Halloween party, I was oblivious to him coming onto me. He had identified me as a member of his nerdy species and talked to me about every fandom he could think of until one of them stuck, which was how I wound up over at his house on the pretense of playing Mario Kart. I guess it was the “Netflix and Chill” of 2o0o and late. We went out to a diner (one of the best things about dating a Jersey boy is all of the wonderful 24 hour diners that Jersey is blessed with) and then back to his place for some sweet Mario action. We turned on the game. We did not play it.

::ahem::

We made plans to play that game at least a dozen times before actually managing some game play. It’s eight years later now, we’ve been married for 4 years and will be joined by a daughter any day now. I still get all warm and fuzzy thinking about Mario Kart.

01 Mario Kart 1

Classic Mario also made the leaderboards. Props to Bourbongirl who nominated it saying:

Every Christmas we have a Classic Mario Bros competition, and I always wipe the floor with my husband and three teen boys. It makes me very happy.

It makes us happy too, Bourbongirl!

We will not be adding a Classic Mario square to this year’s blanket in addition to Mario Kart. But only because we’ve already got one! The 2014 blanket featured Classic Mario and you can get that chart here. This year we wanted to make sure everyone gets a chance to rock their fandom, so we made the 2016 squares the same size and gauge as the 2014 squares. Feel free to mix and match. If you are competing for prizes in the Ravelry group, your 24 square blanket WILL be prize eligible using any mix of L&L charts from 2014 or 2016.

Psst, the 2016 #geekalong starts in seven hours! Here's your sneak peek at the first video game of the year: #MarioKart. #knitting #louetgems

A photo posted by Jacquline "Cappuccino" Rivera (@jac_attacking) on

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Mario Kart pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @Doctor_Llama  or Jac @jac_attacking with the hashtag #geekalong!

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Megan-Anne
Kevin and I still have a sort of Pavlovian response to Mario Kart. 

* * * * *

If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small. Wanna make your donation go even further? Louet Yarn is donating 50 cents for every skien of Louet Gems Worsted purchased this year to make a Geek-A-Long blanket. You can get Gems at your Local Yarn Store or through Louet’s website. Just remember to mention the GAL at check out.

Leaderboards Part 2

week 48 Game Over (2)

147 video games entered the ring, but only eight of those were guaranteed to make it onto the 2016 Geek-A-Long blanket! Normally Megan-Anne and I bicker amongst ourselves to pair our list down to 48 fandoms, but this year we let you have a say. Members of our Ravelry group spent two weeks nominating and voting for their favorites, and now its time for the results!

::The Leaderboard::

  1. Tetris was nominated by bourbongirl and received 50 votes.
  2. Mario Kart was nominated by Kdowny and received 35 votes.
  3. Oregon Trail was nominated by Finie7 and received 35 votes.
  4. Classic Mario Bros was nominated by bourbongirl and received 34 votes.
  5. Portal was nominated by bourbongirl and received 31 votes.
  6. World of Warcraft was nominated by stacy78 and received 28 votes.
  7. The Sims were nominated by Skeeling and received 27 votes.
  8. Donkey Kong was nominated by nuttyknitter and received 27 votes.
  9. Duck Hunt was nominated by RobinWknits and received 25 votes.
  10. Kingdom Hearts was nominated by rin-tastic and received 24 votes.
  11. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim was nominated by nickyscreations and received 24 votes.
  12. Where in Time is Carmen San Diego was nominated by KnitWit9410 and received 24 votes.
  13. Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time was nominated by haleshmale and received 24 votes.
  14. Plants Vs Zombies was nominated by fromthehightower1 and received 24 votes.

I had a blast refereeing Fight For Your Fandom 2016. There were a couple video games I had completely forgotten about and felt like such an idiot for not remembering. I won’t tell you which games those were, but one of them made it onto the Leaderboard. Luckily, and with only a couple of exceptions, people voted for squares Megan-Anne and I had already picked so there was room for them in the eight slots we had reserved.

So the real question is, are you ready to start knitting the 2016 Geek-A-Long blanket in less than seven days? Are you waiting to purchase your first skeins of Gems worsted yarn or did you get excited about Louet donating 50 cents to Child’s Play Charity every time you buy a skein for the GAL and already placed an order at your local yarn store? Either way, you’ll be excited to know that the 2016 blanket corresponds with the 2014 gauge. So if there were a few video games we already covered that you need on your blanket (like the Triforce, Aperture Science, Pac-Man, Atari, or Pong), you can start knitting those now!

~Jac
May I also suggest the Game Over and the Child’s Play Charity square.

Merry Knitmas!

Merry Christmas! 🎅 🎄 My centerpiece / Christmas morning breakfast is ready. #gingerbread #gingerbreadtree

A photo posted by Jacquline "Cappuccino" Rivera (@jac_attacking) on

Merry Christmas, my fantastic fiber loving friends! I hope Santa brought you lots of squishy yarn and gorgeous knitting needles or crochet hooks. Or both if your multi-craftual like us.

If you’re “awesome” like me, you didn’t finish all of your holiday knitting on time and are secretly happy that your in-laws went to Puerto Rico over the holidays to visit family. Now you have an extra six days to finish that elaborate blanket you’re still crocheting. You know, the one that was supposed to be quick and simple, but you got bored with the design and made things over complicated. But it’s a gorgeous sort of over-complicated and part of you is sad that you have to give it to them.

Is it too late to buy them something in its place and keep it for yourself?

No, you probably shouldn’t do that. Your husband will give you that disapproving look over his glasses again — the same one he gave you when you “accidentally” bought yourself unicorn slippers instead of picking up gifts for your nieces. Oops!

Besides, the colors in this afghan aren’t really you anyway. You picked them out to match their living room, not yours. If this was your blanket, there would be bold colors instead of beachy blues and sandy browns.

Now, all you have to do is crochet 52 more rounds, add a border, and weave in all those ends between now and next Saturday. No sweat, right?

Right?

::insert nervous laughter here::

~Jac
Merry Knitmas to one and all!

This is what happens when drunk people bring home souvenirs. #1armedrobotsanta

A video posted by Jacquline "Cappuccino" Rivera (@jac_attacking) on

The Leaderboards: Part 1

ARE YOU READY TO RUUUUUUMBLE?

If you’re new to the Geek-A-Long, you might not know that usually Megan-Anne and I make a long list of our favorite fandoms and then bicker amongst ourselves until we get the number down to 48. Sometimes we’d let friends and family settle our resulting blood feuds, but this year we’re doing things a bit different. Megan-Anne, Alena, and I picked out our top 40 video games and now it’s up to you to fill in the last eight slots!

Here’s how this works:

  1. Go to the Geek-A-Long Ravelry group to nominate or vote for your favorite video games.
  2. If your fandom wins, we’ll give you bragging rights by quoting you when we release the square.
  3. Inevitably, you will nominate and vote for video games that we already picked. We will quote some of these nomainations as well, but we recommend that you go for your beloved and maybe more obscure favorites.
  4. Voting ends December 26, 2015.
  5. Vote often and have fun!

::The Leaderboard::

Out of 100 nominations, here are the top 24!

  • Paper Boy – 10 Votes
  • Sonic the Hedgehog – 10 Votes
  • Animal Crossing – 10 Votes
  • Final Fantasy VII – 11 Votes
  • Myst/Riven – 11 Votes
  • Tomb Raider – 11 Votes
  • Yoshi’s Wooly World – 12 Votes
  • Little Big Planet – 12 Votes
  • Minecraft – 14 Votes
  • Where in Time is Carmen San Diego – 15 Votes
  • Diablo – 15 Votes
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – 16 Votes
  • Plants vs. Zombies – 16 Votes
  • Donkey Kong – 16 Votes
  • The Lego video games – 17 Votes
  • World of Warcraft – 18 Votes
  • Kingdom Hearts – 18 Votes
  • The Sims – 18 Votes
  • Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time – 20 Votes
  • Portal – 21 Votes
  • Classic Mario Bros. – 22 Votes
  • Oregon Trail – 23 Votes
  • Mario Kart – 23 Votes
  • Tetris – 28 Votes

There’s still plenty of time to fight for your fandom. Head over to the Ravelry group now to cast your votes! If you’re looking for more info on the 2016 Geek-A-Long, you can find that here. And more details will be revealed this week.

~Jac “The Referee”
Bathe in the blood of your enemies! Wait, no. Sorry. DrLlama says that at the most you’re allowed to salt your food with their tears. #fightforyourfandom2016

Double Sided Join

I love this time of year. That magical time that I break out Christmas Chewbacca, pop my yule log DVD* in the the Playstation, and kick back with a nice cup of nog. Wait, no, that doesn’t sound right. Replace that last bit with “join together geek-a-long squares until I hate all finishing work with a fiery passion.” Yep. That sounds more like me. ;)

Geek-A-Long 2015 Snuggled

Actually our blankets have already been auctioned off to some lucky new homes to benefit Child’s Play Charity, but now it’s time for you to join me in suffering through finishing work and put yours together too! Of course, you may join your blankets in any way you would like. The join you choose will not affect your eligibility for the prize basket raffle. But if you want to do one just like ours, we’ve got a shiny new tutorial for you!

The video below will take you through the steps, but I HIGHLY recommend you read the written instructions first. I think this is a pretty easy way to join double sided squares and it was also fairly quick. You will need:

  • 2 long pairs of circular needles in the same size that you used to knit your squares. I used 60″ circulars for my joins, and since I knit my blanket on size US5 I did the joins on US5 as well.
  • 1 crochet hook. The size isn’t particularly important, you aren’t using it to make actual stitches. As long as it’s not huge or tiny you’ll be fine.
  • 1 Double pointed needle. Again, size is not especially important, but if you have one that’s within 1 US size of the circulars you’re using, that will be easiest for you.
  • Yarn for knitting your joins (duh). We used approximately 1000 yards to join the 24 squares.

The Double Sided Join

Set Up: Choose 2 squares to join. In the video below, I made some mini squares and I recommend you do the same when practicing the join so you can get a feel for it on a small scale before attacking the whole blanket. We will first do a vertical join. You will work from bottom to top up the left edge of the first square. Then you will leave those live stitches on the needles and using your second pair of circular needles work top to bottom down the right edge of the second square. Once you have joined 2 full rows of squares, you will use the same method to join the bottom of the first row to the top of the second. This is not demonstrated in the video, but nothing changes except for how many stitches get picked up. Just treat the 2 strips like very tall squares. When you come to a join between squares, treat these rows as if they are square stitches (even though they face the other way). Pick up one stitch for each row of your join.

1. We will join squares from right to left. Beginning with the square that will be at the far right end of your strip and with the right side facing you, insert your crochet hook at the bottom left hand corner from front to back between the 1st and 2nd stitches. The crochet hook should go all the way through the square coming out the wrong side between the same bottom stitches.

2. Grab your working yarn with the head of the hook, and pull it through the square from back to front. Tie the yarn in a knot to secure it and don’t worry about the end, you can tuck it into your square when you are done. Insert the hook once again between the exact same stitches and grab the working yarn again pulling it through to make a loop. Insert the tip of your circular needle through the loop and pull the working yarn so the loop is now the first stitch on you needle. Don’t make your stitches too tight. 

3. Make a 2nd stitch by yarn over: Bring your working yarn from back to front underneath the needle. Bring it up over the needle and return it to the back of work. 1 stitch created.

4. Working up the edge of the square skip the next row and insert your hook between the 1st and second stitches of the following row, just like you did when picking up your first stitch. Catch the working yarn and pull it through to make a loop. Insert the tip of your needle through the loop and pull the working yarn to make a stitch on the needle.

5. Repeat step 3.

6. Continue repeating steps 4 and 5 up the length side of the square. I picked up 1 stitch plus one yarn over for every other row. If you have a tighter gauge you might want to pick up 2 out of every 3 rows. This is where making the mini squares is a great way to play with it and see which gives you the cleanest effect. When you reach the end of the square and there are no more rows to insert your hook into, cast on 1 last stitch (this is instead of the last yarn over, because putting a yarn over at the end of the row is tough to work with).

7. Turn and work a row of double sided knitting. Choose how thick you want your joins to be. I did 2 rows of double sided knitting on each square of vertical joins, and 1 row on my horizontal joins. Work the number of rows that you want to work.

8. Knit 2 together (K2tog) across. This will decrease your total number of stitches by 1/2. Break the yarn, but leave the live stitches on the needle.

9. Repeat steps 1-8 down the right edge of the second square, being careful to pick up the same number of stitches that you picked up on the first square. On step 8 do not break the yarn.

10. Use your DPN to work a 3 needle bind off (demonstrated in the video). Break yarn and pull the tail through the loop of your final stitch and pull it tight. Yay! You’ve joined your squares. Repeat these steps until you have made a complete strip of squares, then make a second. Joining the strips is exactly the same as joining squares, except you will pick up one stitch for every stitch on your square (since now you are working in the same direction as the stitches on your square).

Happy Knitting!

~Megan-Anne

True story. This time of year I play this on a loop. I LOVE my Yule log DVD. It actually does have a never ending loop option, in case you were wondering.