There’s something satisfying with making a toy . . . maybe it’s the cuteness of the size, everything in miniature, or maybe it’s the fact that you have the finished project quite quickly.
My sister made this beautiful rag doll for Mila (notice it has Mila’s hazel eyes and notice how loved it is – the hair was perfect when it was new but all the hugging and love has taken its toll on her hair)! When Mila went to a new school in Year 3 (aged about 7) I decided to make the doll a new outfit so I made a replica blue pinafore dress striped shirt and cardigan for the doll complete with the elasticated money belt – it even had Mila’s white ‘house’ badge on it. I was quite pleased with the end result especially as I hadn’t used a pattern!
This is Mila on her first day at the Perse Girls School
The following year I managed to find a selection of shoes and socks to fit . . .
I saw this Nativity Scene in a yarn shop in Ely, which has unfortunately now closed, but I loved the details included for each character. The photo below must have been taken mid-project as I can’t see the Angel Gabriel or the donkey!
Here’s the whole set . . .
A few lights make it all look Christmassy . . . .
This year (2018) I’ve made some Christmas Bunting using Fair isle and beads.
Little Cotton Rabbits is a gorgeous website and Julie Williams has some incredibly cute designs – I love them all, but probably the rabbits are my favourite . . . as you can see!
I love these dungarees and dungaree dress, I made them this Christmas (2018) – I’ve also made some other clothes which I really must photograph and add to this page.
Which is cuter?
The first bunnies I knitted . . .
We have absolutely fabulous neighbours and in 2009 when Mila six years old Jane and Jeremy bought Mila a delightful, ‘scruffy’ looking dog – absolutely perfect for Mila, not quite a real dog but the next best thing! Mila called it Buster after Just William’s dog – it seems like the perfect name. This photo was taken the following year and Buster now had a couple of new sets of clothes. Here he is in his rather dashing Santa outfit. Buster waiting for Mila to wake up on Christmas morning.
. . . And of course all dogs need a comfy bed to sleep in . . . ‘B’ for Buster!
I also made a rather silly looking dinosaur costume in fleecy purple fabric and a little neckerchief and eye patch in case Buster decided that he wanted to become a pirate the following Christmas!
Mila’s quite keen on pirates so I made her slide and climbing frame into a pirate den complete with pirate bunting for her birthday one year!
I made some useful pockets for storing important equipment . . .
Lots of fun – here’s Mila and cousin Ishveer . . .
I like these clever toys . . . they’re designed to be able to turn inside out to produce another toy! Here the Dog turns into a Kennel – perfect for the dog to go when he’s feeling shy!
Or this Christmassy design where the Snowman turns into a Christmas Tree . . .
I’ve not really done much crocheting but I do love these designs by Lalylala, you can download some gorgeous patterns for all sorts of themed dolls from her page on Ravelry. Here I’ve made ‘Dirk the Dragon’
This is the first of Lalylala’s designs that I crocheted. This is Kira the Kangaroo – in rather untraditional colours!
‘Mila Monkey’ – ‘M. M.’ I made a little outfit and bed for this little monkey!
I later adapted the outfit when Mila went to a Book Day at school as ‘Pippi Longstocking’
Pippi Longstocking (according to Wikipedia) (full name Pippllptta Delicatessen Windowshade Mackrelmint Ephraim’s Daughter Longstocking) is the character in a series of Swedish children’s storybooks written by Astrid Lindgren (which first came out in 1945) about a wonderfully strong and independent girl. Pippi is red-haired, freckled, unconventional and superhumanly strong – able to lift her horse one-handed. Like Mila (my daughter) she doesn’t want to grow up. Her four best friends are her horse and monkey (called Mr. Nillson but I mistakenly embroidered Nelson – I should have checked in the book rather relying on my poor memory) and the neighbours’ children, Tommy and Annika. Anyway I think she’s an incredible role model for girls – even more so when you think that it was written in the 1940s!
Below is a photograph I made for a neighbour’s mum who is suffering from dementia with Alzheimer’s. The idea of a ‘Twiddlemuff’ is that it’s a knitted or crocheted (or even fabric) tube with accessories such as ribbons and buttons sewn on the inside and outside of the muff. This allows the person’s hands to stay warm while they are able to twiddle with the bits and pieces. The idea is to ease the agitation many dementia patients suffer from, keeping their hands and minds occupied.
I made the inside with an almost fleecy texture of yarn so that it would be really soft and cozy inside.
I used a variety of different yarns to knit it with different textures and attached various ribbons, buttons and tassels (all detachable) to the outside.
The puppy has woken up . . . time to come out and play!
As I know my friend’s mum loves dogs and really misses her’s I found a gorgeous small ‘Beanie’ dog on the internet which would fit snuggly inside the muff with enough space left for her mum’s hands, so she could ‘play’ with the dog inside its little ‘bed’ but could also easily be detached as necessary. I hope it was helpful.