Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Knitting and Felting - A Christmas Bunny for Cassidy



Every few Christmases there's one gift that I get totally psyched about and can't wait to give. This year this is the one.

I had my doubts about this little guy as I was knitting him. At one point there were at least ten stitch holders hanging off his body and innumerable loose ends. The knitting, which involves increasing, decreasing and picking up stitches, was actually not that difficult and for the most part went quickly. Where I got bogged down were the places where I had to graft stitches (I'm still not sure I do that right), sewing the ears (I FINALLY figured out how to do an invisible vertical seam - yay!), and weaving in those dozens of ends. When I was done with the knitting and sewing he was looking kind of sad...



and kind of big...



But a wash cycle later he emerged completely transformed. I didn't take a photo at this stage, but all the little bumps and holes disappeared, he was a cute bunny size, and best of all he had perfect curves everywhere. It took a couple days for him to dry out, then I added the eyes and nose, stuffed him, sewed up the remaining opening, and tied on a bow.

And in a few days I'll be introducing him to my dear niece Cassidy...



I should add that the pattern is by Mary Martin and is available on her site or Patternworks.

13 comments:

Santos said...

verrry cute--cassidy will love it. i am quite intrigued in the "deflated" non-felted version, that would be an interesting toy....

Leigh said...

Oh, Cathy! It's absolutely adorable! I
love it! In fact I clicked right over to Patternworks an ordered one. (I used to get their catalogs before I moved and have really wanted to get back on their mailing list.) I'm envisioning doing one in some of my handspun angora.

About weighting your warp to wind on -- I too, was taught to tension by hand, the way you describe. Some weavers do well with this method, but after several frustrating years of tension problems, I decided to try some sort of weighting system. The milk jugs were my first idea (though perhaps I should try something else :). For me, I get much better tension using weights, and therefore a much more enjoyable weaving experience.

mari said...

That bunny is so cute. I'm impressed and envious of your talent. I am learning to knit. I think about all I know how to do is a scarf. With a lot of mistakes.

Cathy said...

Hi Santos - thanks! Hmmm... well, I'd agree it was intriguing in some ways (I was amazed that it was knit as a single piece), but that unfelted version looks like a big rat to me!

Hi Leigh! Thanks, I can't wait to see yours! I bet it will be gorgeous in your handspun. I'm definitely going to try out weighting the warp. I'm so glad to have your blog and other weaving blogs for tips like this!

Hi Mari! Thank you - good luck with your knitting! The amazing thing about felting is that it hides nearly all your mistakes, or I should say - it hid all of mine. It seems that there are felted bags everywhere and I'm tempted to try that next. I imagine that is something you could try since it requires little if any shaping.

Zarah Maria said...

He's adorable! (Or anerable, as they would say over at www.cuteoverload.com!) Cassidy will surely love him!

Brilynn said...

I'm thoroughly impressed!
I'm working on a felted bag right now, much, much simpler that your bunny!

Kristen said...

That little bunny is just so cute. I am so impressed with your talent!

rowena said...

He is ADORABLE!! And it makes me smile to see any type of crafting that you do. Your niece will surely be delighted.

The "worst" is over for me. Now I just need to pick up the pieces, or should I say piece together myself in time to have a wonderful New Year's celebration. Mele Kalikimaka e Hauoli Makahiki Hou!!

Cathy said...

Zarah, Brilynn, Kristen, and Rowena - thanks all so much! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all!

Nupur said...

soooo sweetttt! The most adorable bunny ever. I love those big eyes and the pouty mouth :) You are so incredible, Cathy. After seeing all your creations, I really really want to learn to knit.

Cathy said...

Hi Nupur - thanks! I am so lucky I learned to knit as a kid, though I learned just the basics and have struggled since then with some of the finer points. Now that you'll have all that free time, you should give it a try! :)

Alice said...

That is too cute!! What was Cassidy's reaction? I'm sure she loved it!

Cathy said...

Hi Alice! - Well... she had just gotten up from a nap and wasn't quite with it yet, so there wasn't much of a reaction. I haven't been over to her house since then so I don't know if they've bonded yet. :)

Hope you had a wonderful Christmas Alice and that the coming year is good to you!