Saturday, 11 August 2018

Bluebell dress for doll

Using the dress pattern I had, I knitted this dress with a frilled edging, a technique I've not used before.  I thought the end result made it look rather like a bluebell! 
The most difficult thing was accurately casting on the vast number of stitches!  However many stitches you need for the pattern, you have to start with FOUR TIMES the number!  So I needed 80 stitches for the dress, which meant I had to cast on 360 stitches!  That was a LOT of counting.  I used circular needles, needless to say!  
Once you've cast on your stitch number x 4, you knit the first row like this:
Row 1:  K2.  Lift first stitch over second and off the needle.  At the end, you have half the number of stitches.
Row 2:  P2tog.  At the end, you'll have the number of stitches you're meant to have for the pattern - and your frilly edge.
It's not difficult but it is laborious.  

Frilly edge


Complete dress



I also knitted (from the dress pattern) the matching jacket but wasn't hugely impressed with the result.  The arms don't fit very well.  But the wool I used was pretty:  King Cole Drifter for Baby DK.  
Either I need to find another jacket pattern or try and adapt this one.




Sunday, 1 July 2018

Anyone for tennis?

I knitted another cardigan for my doll, this time with matching shorts, headscarf and cute booties.  The cardigan is, once again, the Simply Knitting pattern (for a toy bunny).  The rest comes from a free pattern I found on the Let's Knit website.  The pattern is called Dolly Daydream and this link will take you there:  doll's clothes.
Here she is with the rabbit I knitted.  I think they make great pals!
I had a wee bit of bother with the collar.  I think next time I might knit it slightly differently to the pattern's requirements, perhaps making it bigger (it doesn't lie flat).  
I don't remember the yarn I used for this as they were all leftovers in my wool stash, but I can tell you they were all bamboo cotton, lovely to knit with in summer.  (And a very hot one we are having too.)



Friday, 30 March 2018

Doll's Cardigan

When I spotted this cardi on a toy rabbit in issue 170 of Simply Knitting (first time in years that I had bought a knitting mag), I had an inkling that it might fit my doll.
I worked out recently that this doll is at least 50 years old - possibly older as I think she may have been second hand.  She arrived one Christmas wearing a pink A-line dress (very 1960's) and had a blue pram, which I remember wheeling around the house for years.  My mother had crocheted her a blue granny square blanket, which I've also still got.
The doll came back to England with me as I thought my daughter would be interested in playing with her.  She wasn't, needless to say.  When my mother died 10 years ago, I wasn't capable of doing anything except knitting and sewing clothes for this doll.  I worked without patterns and - since my knitting wasn't very good in those days - the results were sweetly amateurish to say the least.
But at last my doll (and she is mine again) has a cardigan knitted properly from a pattern.  I used an entire ball of Rico Baby Dream DK to make it, including the headscarf.  The latter was a bit small so I've joined the ends (under her hair) with elastic.
The poor doll never had a good head of hair.  Half her eyelashes have gone and she's got a gammy leg .... and this was the state of her when I got her!  But I love knitting tiny things so may get more inventive.  Lucky dolly.



Sunday, 28 February 2016

Giant Cream Cushion

I can't believe it's an entire year since I last posted anything!  This doesn't mean I haven't been knitting, though - I NEVER stop knitting!  It's just possible that My Other Life (the one that doesn't have knitting in it) has been intruding a bit much.  Anyway, I'm back and will make an effort to catch up, starting with my Giant Cushion.  This cushion actually started life as one of those neck cushions – you know:  designed to support your neck while you sleep.  I've been through several of these and have come to the conclusion that only angels can support my neck while I sleep as none of them work.
Now imagine a jumper knitted by someone who couldn’t read a pattern, using thick, cheap, nasty acrylic yarn, back in the days when jumpers were basically vast tunics.  Horrors!  But the colour of the yarn was lovely – a rich, buttery cream.  I don’t recall ever actually wearing this jumper and as it was knitted in my pre-knitting days, it’s been at the bottom of a box for decades.  I had already taken it apart before it occurred to me to take a photo of it – never mind.  Just think HUGE.  The yarn might be cheap and nasty but perfect for furnishing.  It was lovely to knit with too – about the best thing you can say about cheap acrylics.  I used my lace rib pattern for this which I got to know so well that I could knit it in the dark.  It took a LONG time to knit but it’s done and the cushion is now used mostly as a rest for my sore foot......but that’s another story!

Lace Rib
Closer view of rib

I knitted four "scarves" to fit the cushion, two shorter, two longer.  The longer ones fold over the end of the cushion to button closed.


The pattern stood out more clearly once it was on the cushion


Not exactly a work of art (those end bits are a bit untidy) but I like it


I used pretty buttons I'd been saving for a worthwhile project - buttonholes already provided!



Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Really Terrible Erika Knight Hat

Isn't this hat lovely?  (See Below)
Not when I tried to knit it.  I used the same yarn, the right needles, concentrated on my cabling......pulled it all out again when I discovered there was an error in the pattern.....worked out the correct pattern......but it just got worse and worse.  It wasn't the pattern error that made it bad - THAT at least I managed to work out and NO thanks to Knit-Today despite posting on their FaceBook page and emailing them.  You'd think if a knitting magazine got a pattern wrong, they'd want to do something about it.  The pattern chart was correct and I managed to work out the pattern from there, fortunately.  However, the pattern asked for 16 repeats of the cable pattern.  If I had done that, the hat would have ended up as a long bizarre scarf thing.  It was also blatantly obvious when I compared my knitting to the picture that everything was wrong:  in the picture, the cabling looking very crisp and, well, quite small.  The hat I made is ENORMOUS and that's with only 10 cable pattern repeats.  Everything indicates different wool and different needles.  The colour isn't even the same - it looks like a fresh pink in the picture but is in fact quite dull.
You can't imagine my disappointment.  Erika Knight yarn is hardly cheap.  Two balls of wool cost me £16 - I don't think I've ever bought anything that expensive.  I wanted to make a super-soft, gorgeous hat for my daughter as her skin is very sensitive.  I thought this yarn would be ideal.  I couldn't have been more wrong.
My faith in Knit-Today has hit rock bottom.  I don't want ever to knit anything from their pages again.  It's bad enough that I'm a bad knitter but to be bad because the pattern doesn't work or the yarn is wrong or the needles were wrong..........hah.
Oh and even the pompoms were terrible!  I followed the instructions PERFECTLY and ended up with a weird oval shaped pompom.  Needless to say, the whole lot has been shoved in a box, never to be looked at again.  When my daughter tried it on, by the way, it looked like a HUGE tea cosy, but made but a square tea pot (do you get square tea pots?!)
This is what it's supposed to look like
Note the different in colour

.....and this is what it really looks like:  notice how the cabling isn't nearly as compact as it is in the photo above - and I was knitting tightly to try and get that effect.....in vain.


Friday, 26 December 2014

Happy birthday to me...!

Making a new year's resolution on my birthday seems like a good idea!  I fancy knitting a pouffe this year (don't you just love that word?!  ~ POUFFE ~ )(makes me think of a dragon blowing a feather away...) and have been investigating patterns.  This seems like the easiest one so far.  I love the mis-translation of the word duvet:  "we tried to make a ball of duves before we stuffed it" and "stuff the duves into the stool."  Erm, yes, quite.  Actually, that's a brilliant idea:  buying cheap duvets to use as stuffing for the giant floor cushion (which is probably a better description of what I'm trying to make rather than ......pouffe.......)  I had thought to use old pillows but they might end up an odd shape.
Another interesting suggestion is multi-stranding wool to make it thick enough to use 15mm needles, rather than buying Very Fat Wool.  2000g of wool would be required to make a decent sized stool that you can put you feet on, though I'm not confident it would be strong enough to sit on.  
I saw a fantastic one at John Lewis but at a rather fantastic price as well.  I wish you could buy that industrial strength wool they use.....unless of course, it isn't knitted but manufactured.  Mmmm, cheating....
Anyway, check out this Norwegian website (it's very possible that Google mistranslated that "duves".....)
...and here's someone who tried it out:
This blog looks like a good one to follow:  http://www.homeecflunkee.com/
Hope you've all had a lovely Christmas!  I managed not to knit a stitch....!


Sunday, 21 December 2014

Comic cardie

Some time ago, I knitted the most disastrous cardigan in the history of knitting.  Worse, I had struggled with the awful wool for about two years since buying it, so it was a double disaster.  Recently, while clearing out and rearranging my wooden box, I came across the remnants of this yarn and starting knitting a jumper I really fancied in a very old knitting magazine.  I had enough to complete the back and since it seems to be turning out all right, I think it's time to pull out the comic cardie and start reknitting.  Before I do that, I got my daughter to take a picture of me wearing the cardie - sorry, it turned out rather dark and blurred, but then it is the winter's solstice today with no light in the sky at all - very gloomy and dull (though the gloom does seem to have turned a strange shade of pink now that it's 4pm and time for tea...)
What you can't see in the picture are the sleeves which hang about a six inches below my fingertips and the fact that the cardie as about three times wider than I am.  Also, the hood is somehow too short in front.  The knitting itself is crap beyond belief - honestly, I followed the pattern down to the letter.  I used the correct needles and tension, followed the sizing and THIS is what I ended up with - a gigantic saggy brown monstrosity.  
If it wasn't so funny, I might cry....though I think I might have cried at the time and then shoved it at the back of the Disaster Drawer for two years.  Since then, I've concentrated on knitting things well, using lovely yarn in lovely colours and feel much more confident.  But this really knocked me for six at the time....
Oh, look, it's a brown penguin

Previous posts about this cardigan can be found here:
The yarn used is Sirdar Tweedy Chunky, thankfully discontinued (as far as I know)

Other people seem to have had success with this awful yarn - have a look at these gorgeous sweaters at Ravelry:

Obviously it's just my bad knitting.