Friday, April 04, 2008

Twice As Nice

The good thing about knitting the same project back-to-back is you know exactly what to expect and how to improve upon your first attempt.


This time I was prepared to spend about half the total time on the finishing and because of that, I enjoyed the process much more. Expectation management is the key. That was what I was trying to express in my last post.

I don't want to scare anyone away from this project, because even though there are a lot of pieces to sew together, it's still a quick project to complete: 2-3 hours for knitting and 1-2 hours for finishing.


As for improvements, the second time around I used a woven stitch to graft the head to the body instead of a whip-stitch. It looks so much nicer this way that I went back and restitched the brown bear even though the ribbon hides the sloppiest of sewing.

I also changed the ears a bit. The instructions say to fold the ear in half and stitch. The direction of the fold is not specified. The first time I folded it in half to match a photo in the book. This time I folded it lengthwise which I think is a better shape. You just need to play around with it to find what you like best.


Teddy Bear
Source: Simple Knits for Cherished Babies by Erika Knight
Yarn: Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool
Color: 98 Natural
Needles: US 3
Size: About 8" tall from ear to toe

I think this bear would look great knitted from handspun and I have plenty of natural roving that would be perfect for it. So next time I need a baby gift, a spinning wheel may be involved.

19 comments:

  1. Thanks for posting your comments on this project. It sounds doable, even though the 1-2 hours of finishing is intimidating.

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  2. They are adorable. The finishing makes the project.

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  3. Just precious! I'm sure that the babies will love them! My kids love all the handmade toys that they have.

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  4. Cute!!! They look like they'd be a nice size for little ones to grab onto.

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  5. So cute! It is amazing how much easier something is the second time!

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  6. This is a cute project. I'd love to see it in handspun. Your pictures are great.

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  7. I'm glad to know it is a quick project, and can imagine how treasured those bears will be for years to come by the recipients.

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  8. Cute little bears! You did an excellent job of knitting them up. And thanks for sharing tips.

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  9. They're both so cute and look so soft and cuddly. Thanks for posting about the time it takes to make up. I look forward to seeing one in homespun:~D

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  10. I love the bears. They will make a lovely baby gift. I would think that knitting one right after the other is like socks one right after the other. The first one is good, but sometimes the second one is better (less mistakes-please know I am only talking about the socks I make). lol.

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  11. The bears are oh so adorable! Guess what I have been looking at on Ravelry? Yup, knitted toys! You have corrupted me! LOL! That's a good thing.

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  12. They're so cute. I know what you mean about finding projects to do now that it's starting to warm up. I love wool, but it's not so appealing when it's over 80 degrees outside.

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  13. raminthethicket9:44 AM

    Those are adorable!

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  14. Very cute bunnies! But, oh, so many pieces!

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  15. Very cute! Gosh, we need to go into the baby gift business!1

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  16. The bears are sweet. Very nice job.

    I love making toys and handle all the seaming by keeping the pieces together in a ziplock, and using small bits of time here and there to piece them. For me, they just don't seem as fiddly when I do them that way.

    The mattress stitch is often suggested for many of the seams.

    I always look forward to your projects. You knit such a nice variety and always with such taste.

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  17. Totally worth all the seaming! Very adorable.

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  18. I love your back to back project. I think it is a great way for me to succeed with knitting. THanks

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  19. Aww Tracy these bears are so adorable it looks like they should be used for the pattern photos in the book! Your finishing is impeccable (sp?). I'm always a harsh critic about the faces on knitted toys like this. People take such care to follow the pattern and sew the pieces together and then ruin the look of the whole thing with their bad eye/nose/mouth job. We need to all take lessons from you on this! :)

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Thank you for commenting!
~Tracy