Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Post-Holiday Projects - Doll Clothes

   Sasha's Pants (rear: pockets)

So the holidays have come and gone, and I'm still working on my holiday knits - kinda. I received a request for some doll clothes for my niece's vintage Cabbage Patch Kids, but I didn't really make the deadline for either holiday. Fitting the dolls has turned out to be harder than anticipated. I figure dressing the girls is a worthwhile pursuit, Lucy will probably play with them for years. I also feel a little responsible for the kids, as they used to be mine - every time I see them semi-dressed I cringe and feel guilty, like I'm neglecting them.

   Cornelia's Pants (rear: pockets)

So the plan is to make each kid a full get-up, or at least fill in the gaps. Sasha, the big sister, gets pants, a pullover and socks. I made Cornelia, the preemie, a dress last summer, so she gets pants, socks, and if I have time or inclination a pullover. Both will be clad entirely in stripes, when I'm done I want them to look like an art installation. Also, it's really boring knitting normal doll clothes. 

Although, I came across a cool pattern in a vintage Vogue Knitting magazine from the hight of the cabbage craze, an Aran sweater & tam! Isn't it too cute?!  I might have to make one. 
And of course this project has launched me into an exploration of vintage knitting patterns for vintage Cabbage Patch Kids.

Sorry I haven't been able to take pics on the dolls: fittings have to take place after dark because Lucy is pushing 2 and well into the 'mine' phase. The funny silhouette has a function - I wanted the pants to fit snugly on the hips & waist, but have room in the legs to make it easy to pull on. I've been using Cascade 220 Superwash Sport - its soft, washable, isn't too thick, comes in small skeins, and won't break the bank. 

Anyway, wish me luck!  

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Slipper Season

Helloooo!  I think the desire to blog is a good sign that I'm starting to recover from my Holiday exhaustion.  I even have a project worth chatting about - I made Chris felted slippers for x-mas this year!  

I used the Fiber Trends Felt Clogs pattern, it is tried-and-true, and the author, Bev Galekas, is a felting master.  The pattern calls for 2 strands of worsted weight yarn held together, but I wasn't inclined to take the rest of the Lamb's Pride Worsted grey yarn off the shelf right before Christmas, so I used Cascade Eco+. The Eco is a bit thicker, but other people on Ravelry had used it, so I figured it would be fine.  Yeah ... not quite. They felted a size too big. If you use Eco, I suggest going up to a 10mm needle and making a size smaller in the pattern. I had to felt the shit out of the slippers to get the size down. I went over to my parents house (their washer has lots of controls) and kept the agitator going for about an hour.  One good thing about the super felting is that the slippers are really nice and dense, I love the texture. 

So, the lesson is that thicker yarns do not felt in the same way as thinner yarns. If you want to do research online, there is an older version of the pattern that has many more projects. Some people have used a single strand of Lamb's Pride Bulky, but I don't know if it felts larger or smaller. janwise seems to knit them larger and then super-felt them, so does cadrake

To finish them off I cleaned off all the fuzzy woofies with a sweater stone (first time I've been happy with the sweater stone) and sewed on some suede slipper bottoms from Fiber Trends (12") with matching yarn (I use the sock reinforcing yarn from Regia, it comes in small packs so I didn't have to open a whole skein). 

I got lucky with the final fit, but they look great, and now I kind of want a pair too. Which colour do you think?  I could use Lamb's Pride Bulky (in Violet Fields maybe?), or Lanaloft Bulky (less mohair means less fuzz, and Twist of Lime looks fun), or I could just make them the way the pattern suggests and hold 2 strands of Nature Spun Worsted together. Maybe a turquoise or a violet? Top of the Lamb Worsted in Peacock would also be nice.

Addenda Jan 2, 2012
I think I am going to make my slippers using 3 skeins of Brown Sheep Co. Shepherd's Shades in SS572 Celery