Thursday, January 07, 2010

The Last Gift of Christmas

This is the last one. Really. Completely out of sync with all the other knitting I did this past Christmas, but so much fun. I saw these - a long time ago. Possible in Vogue Knitting. Maybe in Knit Simple. Either way, I felt an immediate and over-powering need to possess them. All four of them. I had no idea why. No one in mind to gift them to. Not the kind of toy I'd risk hanging in my house, not with a cat to endanger it.

Then came this Christmas and I was stumped for a gift. I remembered being roughly the same age as the giftee and finding a similar toy in the gift store of the Museum of Contemporary Art. It travelled with me to college, hanging in an easily accessible place in all my dorm rooms. I brought it along to California and hung it in married student housing at Stanford. It came back to Chicago and hung in our first real apartment and then in the condo. It was done in by our first cat (surprise), who loved to swipe at anything that dangled. I brought similar toys home for the boys when Clare and I went to London. I argued that this proved, not that I am odd, but that the toy had longevity of appeal. It was a classic, just like Jacob's Ladder and Pecking Hen's.

Besides it was quick to knit and I figured I could include an iTunes gift card. She's a teenager, after all.

I'm not sure that it made much of a hit. I'm pretty certain she didn't realize that she had a haute couture toy, what with the hand knit dress and hand-crocheted beret. Note to self, even in sock yarn at small widths, stripes mean lots of ends to weave in.

Details: Les Enfants - Sabine. Kit from Bagsmith (hit the link above).
Yarn - Sock yarn included in kit.
Needles - US 2/2.75 dpns. Not because it's knit in the round. It isn't. I have no circulars or straights that small.

Modifications. Just one. The instructions for the beret tell you to turn the work (which means it's crocheted flat). They also recommend a hook too small for the yarn (US 0/2 mm). I'm sure it would have been a sturdy fabric, but the hat is decorative, not functional. It is truly annoying to do minute crochet when the hook can't hold the yarn. To then have to try to sew the tiny thing up is just not worth it. After the first attempt, where I learned all these lessons, I used a US 2/2.75 hook, crocheted in the round and stopped when the hat looked big enough.

Oh. She's a climber. You hang them from a hook (or have someone slip their thumb through the top loop), pull the strings alternately, and she climbs to the top bar. All the pieces you need are included. The assembly was simple. Most importantly, it worked. Clare and I tested it. Several times.

1 comment:

Diane H said...

Ahh - I didn't quite understand your interest in these little dolls before. That ping was the penny dropping. Very cute. The teenager might eventually become knit-worthy and appreciate the gift.