Friday, April 10, 2009

My first knitted bunny


Knitting is one of those activities that I would love to be better at. Because I do it so irregularly and never got beyond making scarves using simple variations of knit and purl, I still consider myself a beginner. And this can make it challenging to start a new knitting project. Another scarf? No thanks? Am I ready to move on to knitting in the round? Yikes! Wouldn't it be great to make a pair of knitted socks? You have got to be kidding!

So when I was scouting around for ideas on what to make for a friend's new baby, I flitted with the notion of making a baby blanket, searching for patterns on the internet, and came up uninspired. 

That was until I switched gears to the realm of knitted animals. And that's when I found this amazingly simple pattern! I could simply knit a square, do a little stitching and stuffing, and end up with an adorable bunny rabbit? 

It almost seemed too good to be true. 

I got right at it. 

Being that I was newly an expat living in Sicily, it took me some time to figure out where to buy some yarn and needles. Catania is a big city, but knitting shops here are nothing like the specialty shops you can find in the States. That is a whole subject of its own, but let's just say I found something decent and also a pair of metal needles to go with it. I re-found my favorite free video tutorial and managed to cast on, get my gauge figured out, and then get my knitted square going.

It went pretty well, but I did find it less enjoyable knitting with metal needles rather than bamboo and using the small metal needles were tricky. The needles were slippery. My stitches were too tight making it hard to get the needles through the loops. The baby was born and now I really had a motivator to finish that square!

I found the stitching and stuffing to be really fun, and even learned how to decrease in order to make the cute little ears. Once again, thanks to the free google tutorials. 

My only personal adaptation to the pattern was making a pompom tail which I separately stitched on rather than a tuft of fluff pulled out from the stuffing (that seemed too much like a baby hazard!)

All the little struggles were worth the while to see the final result! I really love this little bunny and hope little Saphia will as well. 

5 comments:

  1. why don't you look around some of the UK knitting sites and see if you can order what you need from the UK? THere's knittingthings.co.uk or angelyarns.co.uk for starters..

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  2. Only yesterday I was in Lidl in Giarra they had some great offers on knitting wool, I know what you mean about trying to fnd stuff in Catania, there is a small haberdashery shop in Acicastello, I was looking for 'Wunderweb' is't a kind of tape when heated with an iron bonds fabric, well I don't know what the lady gave me but it certainly wasn't Wunderweb. All it was, was a peice of scrap fabric! I paid the lady 50cents and walked out of the shop bewildered, me an my husband where doubled over with laughter wondering what the heck it was. it was worth the 50cents for the laugh....

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  3. Haha, that is a great story! Sorry you didn't get your wonderweb! I think I know the place you are talking about in Acicastello..I took a peak in there and left empty handed. But I did find something better in Acireale with a real selection of yarns. And they may have sewing supplies too if I am not mistaken. I'll have to look it up and see if I can figure out where it is for you.

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  4. That would be great if you could let me know if that shop in Acireale stocks Wonder Web. (or something simalar) Just wondering if you know of any place that sells Dylon fabric dyes.
    By the way I'm from Liverpool (England) and I guess we're neighbors, I'm living in acicastello too.......

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  5. Hey Sandra, great to meet you and know that we are neighbors! We should meet in the piazza sometime. I think it would be easier to show you on the map where the shop is than to try and find the address (actually, I need my husband's help even for that, I am terrible with directions!)

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