If any of you are regular readers, you may have noticed that I haven't been posting quite as often, and perhaps you've wondered why. Well, I'm studying full time to be a librarian, and it is taking up quite a bit of my time, so I haven't had as many opportunities for crafting or blogging.
As you can imagine, there's an awful lot of reading involved, and I get the fidgets...so the other day, it suddenly occurred to me that I could knit while I study! What a brain wave! Last week, I knitted 3 baby hats! That's more than I would normally knit in a month when I wasn't studying. In fact, I knitted so many hats, that I thought I'd better think of something else to knit...
...so I started knitting teddies!
Now, let me tell you a little bit about these teddies. I first knitted some of these way back in my primary school days, when I was, probably about 9 or 10, I think. One of the girls in my class told me the pattern. I even made little outfits, and bibs and nappies for my two teddies.
|This is Clara. I'm not sure where her twin brother is.|
Then the other girls in the class wanted teddies too, so I started knitting teddies for anyone who wanted them...the deal was, they had to provide the wool, and pay me 50c per teddy! Big business! Then when I was in my teens, my step mum had a market stall, and she suggested I could try selling something at her stall, so again I knitted teddies. They didn't all sell though, and I ended up with a sack of little teddies in need of good homes. Some years later, when I joined my craft co-op, I sold every last one of those teddies...and then I didn't bother making more, I was too busy with painting and quilting and other things. But now that I've discovered how neatly reading and knitting goes together I'm knitting teddies again! Also, it is a fantastic way to use up little bits of wool that are too small for just about anything else.
So then I thought I'll bet there are people out there in the blogosphere who would just love to knit teddies too, so here is how you do it...
This is what you will need:
Wool (of course ^_^) I used DK, knitting needles (4.5mm or the correct size for your wool), a wool needle (that's one with a big eye, and a rounded point), some stuffing, embroidery thread and an embroidery needle, a bit of ribbon, and scissors. (I ended up using a different colour of ribbon than the one in this picture, sorry)
And here's how to make the teddy:
Begin with the legs. First, cast on 10 stitches.
Knit 10 rows in stocking stitch. (Actually, if you're a beginner and haven't yet learnt stocking stitch, then regular old garter stitch will work just fine. Clara was knitted in garter stitch, but since I knitted this teddy in stocking stitch, I'll just say stocking stitch for these instructions.) Don't cast off, just push towards the end of your needle.
Cast on another 10 stitches.
Knit 10 rows in stocking stitch, just like before. You will now have two legs side by side on your needle. For the next row, push the first leg back towards the point of your needle so that it is right next to your second leg and knit right across BOTH legs.
Continue knitting in stocking stitch, knitting 20 rows from where you joined the two legs together. Cast off.
Now knit the arms, you will need to make two of them, of course. Cast on 10 stitches, just like you did for the legs.
Knit 10 rows in stocking stitch. Cast off. Make another arm, just like the first one.
Now you need to stitch all the pieces together. Use the tail ends to do this, or if they aren't long enough, use a bit of wool. Fold the legs right sides together and stitch the bottom edge and inner leg seam. Then stitch the centre back seam. Leave the top open for now. For the arms, stitch the lower edge (the cast on edge) and the underarm seam, leaving the top open.
Turn all three pieces to the right side, and stuff gently with your stuffing.
Now stitch the seam at the top of the head, and make the ears. To make the ears, bring your wool out at the top seam, a little way from the corner, then make a little stitch a little way down the side from the corner, like this:
Stitch again at the top seam where your wool comes out, pull tight, then wind wool round the bottom of the ear and knot off. Repeat for the other ear.
Wrap a piece of wool round a couple of time where you think the neck should be, knot off and stitch your ends in.
Slip a bit of ribbon under the wool at the centre front...
...and tie in a bow. If you don't knot it first, it will sit the right way round. If your teddy will be played with, you might want to stitch this in place. If it is just going to be for decoration, you wont need to worry about this. Using your embroidery thread, make a few stitches for eyes, you can hide the knots of your thread at the back under the wool round teddies neck.
And there you have it! Cute knitted teddies! I've made a whole family already ^_^
If you want to make bigger or smaller teddies, that's easy as to do...either use a finer wool for a littler teddy, or a thicker wool for a bigger teddy. Or you can re-size the pattern. This is very easy, just remember that the arms and legs have the same number of rows as stitches, and the body has twice as many stitches and rows as the arms and legs. I made the little teddy with 8 stitches and 8 rows for the arms and legs, and 16 stitches and 16 rows for the body.
I hope you have just as much fun knitting teddies as I do!