Sunday, 24 April 2016

Goodbye Bears

So before the teddy bears went off to their new owners I decided that they needed scarves. And even the original large-armed bear (who is staying with me) got a scarf, and has not been left out of the photos this time.

And as you can see this teddy has already found someone to have a lot of fun with.

Friday, 22 April 2016

Tate Modern

We went recently on a trip into London to the Tate Modern. Here is just a small selection of the art we saw - some probably very familiar, and other less so. 

The thing with seeing art in a gallery for me, is that sometimes you realize that you have until then completely misunderstood a piece. Perhaps the scale of a painting makes you reassess it. I hadn't realized quite how enormous Lichtenstein's Whaam! is.

One of our favourite pieces was the Tower of Babel by Clido Meireles. Only understandable when you are in front of this enormous tower of vintage radios, which are all tuned to different stations and playing at minimum volume, so the sound merges into a cacophony that you can't interpret.

Friday, 15 April 2016

Edith 2CV

I have really enjoyed making this version of my knitting pattern for a 2CV, which is on its way to Norway. If you follow my blog, you probably know that I enjoy embroidery with wool, so making this car was the perfect job for me.

Here are some photos of the real Edith. 

I hope the knitted version is loved just as much as the full size one clearly is.

I slightly altered my pattern to get the white doors, and boot and bonnet sections, and the striped roof. Normally I knit the windows in white, but I thought this would mean that there was just too much white, so I used light grey, which I think has worked.

If you would like me to make you a knitted version of your own 2CV then please send me a message through my Etsy shop. The pattern is also for sale if you want to make your own.

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

"If You Go Down to the Woods Today ..."

I have at last completed my knitting pattern for a traditional teddy bear, and it is for sale on Etsy, ravelry and Loveknitting. These are two new bears (not the original one), and if you look carefully I have made the slight amendments that I talked about. The muzzle is more pronounced and arms a bit thinner. 

I felt a bit mean leaving the original bear at home when we went off for our photoshoot picnic. I have a plan to give these two away as gifts, but will probably keep the first bear as I have grown rather fond of him despite the imperfections.

I had to beg my daughter to come to the park with me this morning to help photograph the bears. Somehow a middle-aged women on her own photographing bears having a picnic looks a bit bonkers. 

These bears are not a difficult knit. All the sections are knitted flat, so there are seams to sew. I know some knitters hate sewing up, but I wanted to get curves in certain places, and short rows is my favourite method for this. He also has a small hump at the back, and curved bottom. The head (apart from the ears) is knitted in one piece, and the lines you can see from the eyes going up, are not seams but a line of increase stitches. 

Teddy can be knitted in any doubleknit wool, and is constructed with toymakers joints. The best place I found to buy the joints in the UK was online at, mainly because the postage was very reasonable. Joints and eyes are not expensive or heavy, so it is bit annoying to be paying more for postage than for the joints. These eyes are child safe, and when I put them on one of the bears a bit too high, I had to use cutting pliers to remove them, so I think your average baby would find it very hard to get them off. But if you were making the bear for a very young child or baby and were worried you could embroider the eyes.

Writing this pattern has been a huge learning curve for me. Though it has put in my mind some other toy animals that I think would be fun to knit. I might also make a smaller version of teddy using the same techniques, that would be a much quicker knit.