Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Mini Erlenmeyer Flask and Water Drop

I was challenged to design a mini Erlenmeyer Flask that could be used as a pin in the March for Science. I think I rose to the challenge and designed this super fun and fast knit. I also designed a water drop that symbolizes the need for safe drinking water. 

These could be attached to a safety pin and used as a pin. They also could be sewn onto any simple knit hat or headband for Project Thinking Cap.

Would you like to see more science minis? Let me know what you would like in the comments.

Click here for the pattern.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Resistor Armband/cup cozy Pattern

I have extended my line of Resistor knit items for the March for Science (see also my Resistor Hat and my Resistor Headband). I now have Resistor armbands and mug cozies! I have included an easy option with single color knitting and double knitting the pattern as well as a colorwork pattern.

A printer-friendly version of the pattern is available here.

If you would like a "Resist" bracelet with a real resistor, please check out my Etsy page here. I am selling these as a fundraiser for the ACLU.




Sunday, March 12, 2017

Laboratory Glassware Headband (with option for hat)

Has anyone else ever seen the Corning glassware logo and thought "That would make a swell knit hat design." Just me? 

Anyway, I used this logo as inspiration for my latest March for Science knit hat. This headband features laboratory glassware and a bunsen burner.

The pattern will be available HERE for free until the March for Science on April 22.

If you'd like to learn more about the 3 scientists organizing the effort to get hats to DC, check it out HERE.
If you'd like to contribute to the effort to donate hats to marchers in DC,  check out ProjectThinkingCap.org

Also, join our Facebook group (HERE) and Ravelry group (HERE).

Friday, March 10, 2017

Fabric Resistor Headbands - Make your own for the March for Science

These Resistor Headbands are perfect for working out. They are made of a quick-dry polyester knit fabric and are very light-weight and comfortable.

Purchase the fabric here via Spoonflower! If you order today, March 10th, Spoonflower is offering free shipping! The printing/shipping process usually takes about 3 weeks, so order now to have these ready to go by the March for Science.

Make sure to choose "Performance Knit" as your fabric. 1 yard will make 20 seamed headbands and 3 tie-in-the-back headbands. Contact me if you would like to see other designs!


The instructions are in the image below. Click here for a printer-friendly pdf. :)

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Beginner armband/cup cozy and headband pattern - March for Science

Hi everyone! After several requests, I made a beginner pattern suitable for newbie knitters who want to make a headband for the March for Science. I have a video tutorial in the works and I will post it here tomorrow. I want to go live so that you can have early access to the pdf.

The pattern for all 3 options (headband, armband, and mug cozy) is here. I rushed it out just a bit - let me know if there is anything unclear (or typos, I hate typos) and I'll fix it.


If you were not aware, together with two other postdoctoral researchers (scientists who have obtained their PhD's and are doing semi-independent research), I am helping organize the effort to get blue and green knit items to DC for the March for Science. If you would like to get involved, please join "March for Science - official knitting/crocheting/sewing/crafting group." Hope to see you and your projects there! Feel free to ask for help or advice there or in the comments below.

Also, use #ProjectThinkingCap when sharing items on social media! To see more about crafting items for the march, check out projectthinkingcap.org!

Follow me on Facebook and Instagram (Craftimism) and Twitter (hidkid85) for a closer look at my creative process and designs. 

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Resistor Headbands (with option for DNA double helix) - March for Science

Last week I posted a photo of myself wearing the Resistor Knit Hat that I designed in the  March for Science's Facebook group. (Click here to see the hat pattern as well as a little bit about resistors, my science, and why I will march in the March for Science on April 22.) Anyway, that post took off and has 13,258 "likes", "loves", and "wows" and 600 comments in the week since posting, most pouring in that very afternoon. This was my first experience going viral and I was thrilled to see the responses from everyone and I was sitting in my local coffee shop with a huge grin on my face watching them come in and trying to respond to the comments. I could hardly sleep that night I was so excited! So if you liked or commented on that photo, Thank You! You really made my day!

To celebrate, I made several variations on the resistor hat - and I even made a "Show and Tell" video with my designs:

Family Photo- 1st generation
The activation energy I gained from all of the comments was amazing! I spent pretty much all of my free time this past week knitting and designing new variations of the hat. I had several requests for a Resistor Headband pattern and for a DNA double helix pattern. While there is already a great set of DNA patterned hats here, I decided to make my own version. I made the pattern to accommodate my larger gauge and it has an option with base pairs and without. The option with just the double helix backbone is pictured above while the option with base pairs is pictured in the "family photo."

The pattern for the headbands is FREE here. If you are new to knitting and don't want to tackle the colorwork, I included an option to make a simple headband and embroider the Resistor or DNA pattern on after it is finished. Remember to use #ResistorHat to tag your projects on social media so I can see what you make. :)

For hot locations, the headband fits on a straw hat

Please contact me at my Etsy shop (https://www.etsy.com/shop/Craftimism) if you are interested in purchasing any of these hats. I am taking orders in the order I receive requests and hopefully will be able to accommodate everyone. A portion of the sale of these Resistor/DNA hats and accessories will be donated to the March for Science.  

Sunday, February 12, 2017

DNA double helix knit hat

Hi everyone! This is a super short post that will be filled in at a later date. I wanted to share my pattern for the DNA double helix pattern. It is pretty much identical to the Resistor Hat pattern with a different colorwork pattern. Enjoy!

The link to the knitting pattern is here.

I hope to have a real knit hat to share with you within a day or so. :)

Update 2/12/17 in the evening - working on this now and not super happy with the base pairing - it makes the pattern look messy - I'd recommend leaving the base pairs out and just going with the backbone in the pattern.

Update 2/18/17 - the double helix pattern with base pairs is growing on me. I think I like it better than the double helix without basepairs. Waiting for a sunny day to get some better photos.
My prototype double helix hat and a double helix headband (without base pairs)

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Resistor Knit Hat - March for Science

Posing in the Resistor Hat at my lab bench at Stanford University
I designed this to wear in the March for Science on April 22, 2017. This hat pattern features a circuit with a battery and 3 resistors in series (to increase the resistance). Resistors are commonly used in electronics to slow down the electric current - the 4 vertical lines on the hat represent the battery while the zig-zag represents resistors.

The bacterium Bacillus subtilis growing as individual cells (left)
and as a multicellular biofilm (right) (my photos)
I am a scientist in the Department of Bioengineering and Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Stanford University. I study bacteria - in particular, I study bacteria that grow and interact in together in communities called biofilms. In particular, I am studying how life in a community can serve as a niche for genetic diversity. I love scientific research and the scientific process. In particular, I enjoy designing the experiments to answer a specific question, performing the experiments, and analyzing the data. As a scientist, I have to be very open minded about the data - often, experiments give results that are not predicted and I have to objectively view the data and the facts and make conclusions based on all the evidence at hand. 

I have rarely used my political voice, but the current administration's disregard for scientific facts is troubling and, quite frankly, very frightening. In particular, I am continuously astounded by both the disregard for the overwhelming evidence that climate change is real and humans are causing it and the undisputed evidence that vaccines are safe and the best way to protect our communities from diseases and that they DO NOT cause autism (the one study that claimed this has long been revoked and the paper's author fully discredited). 

I would like to share a personal vignette. I was chatting with a college-educated family member who is extremely smart about antibiotic resistance and how we may very well be living in a post-antibiotic world within the next few decades. The family member responded (and I paraphrase), we live in America, we should be able to make new antibiotics. I was a flabbergasted by this argument, because science knows no boundaries and antibiotic resistant bacteria do not discriminate who they infect. For more on this topic by reputable sources, see this 2015 BBC article, this news article from the Journal Nature, and this 2005 review article from the archives of medical research

Scientists need to stand up and demand evidence-based policy and facts. Science is not partisan. Protecting our world and the people in it is not a partisan issue. This is why I will march on April 22nd. I hope you join in the cause!

Check out this "show and tell" video about the Resistor hat and the designs that were inspired by it. :)

Here is an example of catching long floats on the wrong side .

Click here for a FREE pdf of the pattern. I hope you enjoy knitting this nerdy hat! If you are new to Fair-isle stranded colorwork, there are some good tutorials here and a good video tutorial here. I personally don't use either of those fancy techniques and I simply wrap the non-worked color around the working color before knitting the working color every few stitches during the long floats as shown in the photo above. :)

Since originally posting this, I have designed a DNA helix colorwork option (here) and headband/hatband options (here). 

Update at 7:30 pm PT 2/12/17 - found an error in the original pattern - at the end there should only be 6 stitches on the needles and I wrote 9. I've uploaded a revised pattern (linked above).

The vertical lines represent the battery which provides the current and the zig-zag pattern represents the resistors.
I am working on a series of Resistor Hats (pun intended) and other resistor knit items. Please see my Etsy shop, Craftimism on Etsy for some of the smaller items and contact me on Etsy for custom made to order knit items. Follow my Facebook page to stay up-to-date on my knitting designs. 

Thanks to Andrés Aranda Diaz for taking the photos and Dave Gutekunst for the conversation that inspired this hat.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Christmas Cowls

Christmas 2016 was the year of the cowl. My eldest niece Taryn, a budding fashionista, requested a red knit cowl and, once I make one cowl, momentum took hold and I made all the nieces their own cowl.

I even made my mom a cowl (Pictured below). I liked Taryn's red cowl so much that I made one for myself. I didn't write detailed patterns for the scarves, but I have included my notes below for reference.

Red Cowl for Taryn
Yarn used: Bernat Satin Yarn in Crimson
I used the yarn doubled (two strands worked as one) with size 10.5 circular needles.
I cast on 61 stitches and knit in seed stitch until the cowl was ~8 inches tall and cast off.
 I would have made it an inch or two taller, but, alas, I ran out of yarn.

Teal Cowl for Carleigh
Yarn used: Deborah Norville Everyday Soft Worsted Solid Yarn in Peacock
I used the yarn doubled (two strands worked as one) with size 10.5 circular needles.
I cast on 66 stitches and knit in seed stitch until the cowl was ~9-10 inches tall and cast off.

Plum Cowl for Audra
Yarn used: I can't remember exact brand. Similar weight to the Bernat Satin.
I didn't take any notes on this one, I am guessing it was the same as the red cowl.

Bulky Blue Cowl for Quinn
Yarn used: Loops and Threads Charisma yarn in Electric blue
Cast on 61 stitches with size 10.5 needles.
Knit in seed stitch until ~9-10 inches tall and cast off.

Mustard yellow Cowl for Meleah (and I made one for my sister Holly too!)
Yarn used: Caron one pound yarn in Sunflower
Cast on 51 stitches with size 11 needles (yarn doubled, two strands worked as one)
Knit in seed stitch until ~9-10 inches tall and cast off.

Orange cowl for Lyza
Yarn used: I think Red Heart Super Saver in Carrot...
Directions: same as Mustard cowl for Meleah

Light turquoise yarn for Mombo (aka, my mother)
This was a super fine acrylic yarn from a local yarn store. I used the yarn doubled and smaller needles. I forgot to take notes on this one...

Mustard scarf made to support Iowa Hawkeyes in Rose Bowl in 2016
Wanted to include some notes on this cowl I made in January 2016 to support the Iowa Hawkeyes during their Rose Bowl game (too bad they got trounced by Stanford...). I used the yarn doubled and size 15 needles. I can't remember how may stitches, but made it so it could be worn open or wrapped around once. This one was a super quick knit that only took ~2-3 hours.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Snail patterned knit hat

I have always had a thing for snails and snail designs. I think it has to do with the beauty of the spiral shell. One day I sat down with my graph pad and designed a snail pattern to knit. About a year later, I finally got that pattern onto my knitting needles made the hat. I love how it turned out with the overlapping snails gliding around the brim.

The pattern for this hat can be found here on Ravelry, here on Craftsy, or purchased directly here

If you'd like to purchase this hat or commission a custom knit hat design, please leave a comment below or contact me at my Etsy shop.

A big thank you to Jillian Buchan for taking the photos!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Phage Patterned Knit Hat

This image shows a cross section of phage infecting an E. coli cell.
 Credit: Lee Simon. Source
My latest #ScienceKnit is this bacteriophage hat. Bacteriophage are viruses that attack bacteria. They generally consist of a head containing the genetic material and a tail where they attach to bacteria and insert their DNA into the cytoplasm of bacteria. Once the DNA is inside the bacterium, it uses the bacterial cell as a factory to replicate and assemble many copies of itself. After new phage have been assembled, the bacterium will break apart and release viruses to the environment. Bacteriophage therapy is a promising alternative to antibiotics as these phage specifically target bacteria and do not adversely affect humans. For more information about bacteriophage and phage therapy, see this Wikipedia article and this documentary about phage therapy.

The pattern for this hat can be found here on Ravelry, here on Craftsy, or purchased directly here

Thanks to Kat Ng for taking the pictures of me (and indulging my whim for a picture in the leaves).