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A slightly larger partner in crime to my smaller mantis from a few months ago.  A co-worker saw my little mantis, and the large one from longer ago (both have made it to work somehow, on different desks).  She asked if I might make one for her daughter who had a spring birthday and is also graduating from high school, and, more importantly, had been working on a final art project, a watercolor of a mantis.  I had been itching for the chance to make another mini-mantis/work any Hansi pattern small, with no real justification for doing so, and I liked the serendipity of the whole thing. 
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When I was at Stitches South in April, I made a special point of visiting the Miss Babs booth.  I had gotten overwhelmed there at Stitches West and wanted another crack at it.  Not only did I purchase many beautiful skeins of yarn for socks that you will hopefully see here before too long, but I was also able to get two little half balls of sock yarn for the mantis.  The beautiful depth of the Miss Babs yarn makes you never want to buy machine dyed yarn again, until you remember how much it costs.  For the special toy though, I think it is totally worth it.  And this guy is special from the tops of his antennae down to the tips of his tarsi. 
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This is actually what it looks like while it is being knit, too cool not to share.
The other lovely thing about this Miss Babs yarn is that they use very poetic names.  Sometimes I resent poetic naming on yarns because I feel like I'm just being tricked into yearning for a yarn that isn't available,  that I don't really need* because of some deep emotional attachment to some movie.  The yarns for this project though, are so thoroughly beautiful, and I had to buy the yarn for a project, so the names are just icing on the cake: Violets in the Grass and Ghost Ship.  Beautiful and evocative.

*as though there is such a thing, but I can still aspire to be practical.
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Check out that nifty Ghost Ship abdomen!
Because this yarn is a little fuller than the yarn I used to make the tiny mantis, I went up a needle size to 00 needles.  I also made sure to amend my earlier mistake and not trim off the tops of the wires inside the legs.  This time I left them long and bent them so they fitted nicely into the body.  The result was a much more stable mantis who can actually stand with his abdomen off the ground completely if he so chooses.
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Well, I had fun making the mantis, and I thought that was that.  I feel pretty strongly that I can't take money for making something from a pattern that I didn't design, so I just said don't worry about it, and my co-worker was very appreciative.  And then she and her daughter spoiled me rotten.  I got two beautiful cards, one with a charming paper cut, and one of them hand painted by the recipient herself of a little parrot, a gift certificate to a local yarn store, and the most beautiful bouquet of flowers, which really match the mantis quite well.  I love trading a craft for a craft, and I certainly don't mind working for flowers when the project itself was intriguing anyway. 
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Fabulous Flowers!