Tuesday, February 26, 2008

My Pattern Was Tested ... and It Worked!

Christina's Sockless Sock Monkey!

Thanks very much to Christina, who knit my Sockless Sock Monkey pattern and was kind enough to send along his photo! She changed the mouth a bit and worked in a nose. How cute he turned out! Thank you, again, Christina!!! If anyone else has tried the pattern and would like to send the photos of their finished monkeys, I'd love to post them here.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Easter Stuff!

Here is my first attempt at a Panoramic Egg! I'm really thrilled! I had purchased a Wilton sugar-egg mold years ago and saved the little description. I have tried to recreate it here in a knitted/felted egg! I cut the bunny shape from the piece I cut out of the egg after felting. I am going to add pink "icing" around the egg hole and a few other felted creatures ... a chick ... a butterfly, etc. This is Lopi Lite white yarn and it felts WONDERFULLY!!! You can't really see it in the photo, but I finger-combed in some green flash into my green-dyed roving inside the egg. The flash looks incredible! I love it!!! It's so sparkly.
Here is my first attempt at a felted duck. I wet felted her bill and feet. I learned a lot while coming up with the pattern and will probably make her body a bit longer next time.
Here she is again, with the little felted hat I knit. I was thinking of wet-felting flowers to make it an Easter bonnet! I'd like to knit an entire duck family and put them on parade.
The duck is about 5 inches tall and the egg is about 4. Do you see how the duck's stitches are still showing??? AAACKKK! The egg is still damp, so I need to shape it a bit more before it's finished drying. I hope the shoe-button eyes arrive soon!

I have been so preoccupied with my little felted things! That's all I can think about! I have been browsing eBay (my favorite place, as you know already!) and looking hard at all the tiny, vintage Steiff animals. They are so wonderful. I am hoping to knit/felt similar-looking pieces. They are quite endearing. I love how full of character some of the smallest creatures can be! Next, I'll be working on a rabbit, a little lamb, etc.

I have to say that I was quite disappointed with my yellow Cascade 220 yarn. I used two strands (maybe I'll use just one next time) and I had to let it go through about four or five washes (in hot water, starting with prewash, no less!!!) in the washer ... it took about 2 hours or more!!! And it still didn't felt like boiled wool. So far, I have to say that Lopi (both regular and lite) is the best felting wool out there. I have heard that Universal is good and am going to buy a little (yes, just a wee little bit, honest!) to test out. It's disappointing to spend a great deal of time on designing a pattern only to have it semi-ruined by the wool! AACKK!

I am still waiting for my glass, shoe-button eyes to come in and then this little duck will be almost finished! The eBay seller I found for the eyes is terrific! Also, he has lots of other colored eyes, so when I work on the mice, I bet I can find pink! I saw some blue with pupils, just like the ones on the Steiff kitten!

I also purchased some glass glitter and I hope to add this to my roving when I'm wet felting. I would love to make a few glitter-speckled, felted disc-shapes, then stuff and sew them together for bases for things. Ah, I say, as I gleefully rub my hands together in anticipation!!!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Rebecca Is Finally Finished!

I have finally finished the Rebecca doll! She doesn't have clothing yet, but at least she has all her pieces and parts!

I also have to share a rare find! In all my eBay browsing, I came upon my favorite album that I had when I was little. Cuddly Teddy Bears has all the great stuff, including a wonderful rendition of Goldilocks and the Three Bears ... the little girl's voice who plays Goldilocks is just so annoying that I love it! It also has other great songs like Ozzie the Ostrich, Teddy Bears on Parade, Sweetie Bear, etc. And who could forget the story of Pancho the Circus Donkey!!! Wow! What memories this brings back when I play it on our old turntable!

I've come to the conclusion that I just love old things ... from old children's books to old toys! I've gotten some great ideas for little felted toys lately and am just about to start on some. I hope they will be as charming in real life as I envision them to be in my head! I am collecting small paper flowers, ribbons and little trims so that I can decorate them. I've been thinking of small things like duck families with paper parasols, little rabbits with flowers, little mice with strawberries, squirrels with acorns, etc.
The father of one of my childhood friends had purchased a whole zoo full of Steiff animals when he had been overseas. It was one of our favorite things to do when I visited to go in their living room and take all those animals off of the shelves. I don't think we were really supposed to play with them, but we knew their value (not in money, but certainly in looks) and we were always very careful to put them back "just so." I have always loved the look of Steiff! And also, I love little pom-pom animals, too.
One year, at Easter, a friend of mine gave me a decoupaged egg that opened up. Inside were TONS of little pom-pom chicks, ducks, and rabbits. Oh how I loved that egg! What a great gift! I happened to be in college at the time!
Take a look at the Jennifer Murphy website for incredibly cute toys!
I am thinking about wet felting little "broken" eggshells to put my tiny felted animals in ... I'm hoping to have them peek out of the top. Also, I think I will try to wet felt their legs ... not sure how I feel about using pipe cleaners, but I may use them and cover them with felt. I have so much roving that I dyed earlier ... I have about every color I will need! I'm so excited! But I've promised myself I won't start until after this last project. *sigh