Abe Sapien Work In Progress – DOUBLE YARN!

Now that I’m making some decent progress on Abe, I figured this would be a good time to share some of my work so far. I’m going to be using some interesting techniques for this one – plus this cosplay is super important to me – so I’ll probably be doing a couple of write ups on this one over the next few months, just so I can share all the cool stuff I’m working on.


For this particular blog post I’ll be showing off the technique I’m currently using on the arms  – knitting with 2 different types of yarn at the same time!  The yarns and colours I am using for this part of the cosplay are:

  • Yarnspirations Caron Big Cakes: Blue Macaron
    • This yarn is fairly thin compared to the kinds I usually buy and if I was using it on it’s own I’m not entirely sure it would work for something like my full body yarn cosplays, but as a “highlight” within the piece it works really well.  It is easy to use and the colours are fun.  It can be a little pricey though, so I waited until it was on sale.
  • Red Heart Soft Essentials: Seafoam
    • This yarn is super soft and has the perfect kind of texture for a full body yarn cosplay.  This is definitely something I will feel comfortable having around my face and it shouldn’t give me any problems as far as construction is concerned.  Plus the colour works really well for this cosplay and it is a reasonable price.

abeselfI first tried this out for one of my props for my Chimera cosplay at Anime North 2016 and although this trick didn’t work too well for that particular cosplay, I found it worked out a lot better for my Jar Jar cosplay for Heroes and Villains 2017. Since Abe has some stripes and a lot of different shades of blue in his skin I figured this would help add some dimension to the cosplay so that he doesn’t turn out to be just a uniform shade of blue.

So here’s how I do it:

My “base” colour is the Seafoam so that there is a unifying colour throughout Abe’s skin.  My “highlight” is the Blue Macaron as it is made up of multiple shades of blue, beige, and teal and can provide a kind of changing stripy look throughout the base.

First, because of the way I’m putting the arms together, I knit 10 rows on a circular loom that fits my arm.  I use both colours simultaneously.  I then fold the rows over and knit the fist and last row into one another to make a brim.

From then on, I knit the arm (85 rows after the rim) and that’s when things get a little more complicated.  The Seafom “base” continues counter-clockwise around the loom as per usual – nothing crazy there.  My Blue Macaron “highlight”, however, never completes the full circle.  Because the inner part of Abe’s arm doesn’t really have stripes, and so that I can give the appearance that the underarm skin is lighter, there is a portion of the arm that does not have the highlight colour.  There are 24 pegs on the loom I am using for the arms and for something like my Jar Jar cosplay – where there are two clearly defined colours that each take up about half of his arm – I use the highlight on 12 pegs.  For Abe, however, the stripes cover more of his arm so instead I weave the highlight into 18 pegs.  The highlight colour goes back and forth, clockwise and counterclockwise, while the base continues counterclockwise.  The complication here is trying not to get the two different balls of yarn tangled as you’re doing it.  And, of course, I have an added level of difficulty when one of the cats shows up wanting to play.


Now, I know that as I continue to use the Blue Macaron, the colours won’t necessarily be consistent – for example, the arm you see in the picture here has more of the beige and teal, while the one I am currently working on ended up with a bit more of the dark blue.  This is fine by me cause I kind of like when my cosplays have a bit of a rag doll look, plus Abe can be seen as an outsider (especially in Del Torro’s take on the Hellboy universe), so I really don’t mind if he ends up looking a bit mismatched in some parts.  Plus, I’ll be knitting some of the more prominent stripes (like the ones on his shoulder) separately and stitching them onto the body so that will help make the whole thing a bit more cohesive in the end.

So far, I think the arms and the legs are the only part of the body where I will use this exact technique, but I will implement variations of this for the rest of the body (especially since I’ll be using different shaped looms for the torso).  I’m super excited to see how everything ends up turning out.  Stay tuned for more!

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