Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Vintage Yarntini Mousie

Hi Knitters,
I was recently reading through Lucinda Guy's wonderful book Handknits for Kids and ran across this adorable mouse pattern. I started thinking about all of that left over sock yarn I have. I don't like a super long cuff on my socks, usually about 5-6 inches, so I end up with a lot of yarn left at the end.
The Yarntini along with this sweet pattern make a perfect union. Here is the result of that combination. I quickly knit this up yesterday morning and it took no time at all. Really any sock yarn would work because your gauge doesn't have to be perfect when you are knitting toys because no one has to wear anything at the end.
I used the fabulous Vintage Yarntini self-striping sock yarn to create the pattern called Mousie Mousie (loving the pattern name).
I used US size 3 dpns and changed the pattern slightly to work in the round. It seems that a lot of English designers knit the pieces to toys flat and then seam the pieces together. This works just fine and I know that a lot of knitters don't enjoy dpns but I am not one of them!
I'll say it again, I love my dpns and will use them as much as possible. I would much rather knit in the round and get that smooth seamless finish for a toy wherever it can possibly apply.
You can see my decreases running smoothly up the back of the mousie. The ears are knit flat in four separate pieces and then sewn together.
The fun thing is that I let the striping yarn do all of the work. I just let it flow any which way except for the inner ears, I purposely made those from the pink stripe in the yarn. Even the tail turned out great by chance with that rosie red tip.
I knit the bottom piece as is from the pattern. Then I picked up the required number of stitches around the bottom edge onto 3 dpns, using the fourth to knit onto, and knitted the rest in the round. You could easily do this too.
Lucinda Guy's Handknits for Kids is a terrific book filled with children's patterns. These are some of the best toy and children's wear designs I have ever seen. You should give this book a look if you haven't as of yet.
Mousie, Mousie is just one of the many creatively fresh ideas in this book. The sweaters, scarves, socks, toys, blankets are beautifully crafted. Her attention to detail is what draws me the most. She does lots of embellishing which I adore. Also, if you are looking for great boy sweaters and accessories this is your place to go! Her boy designs are clever and wearable.
I, of course, own all of her books. The first book, Handknits for Kids, is my personal favorite so I would recommend it if you can only get one book. And So to Bed... is fun as well, but there is just something about that first book. I would knit every pattern in Handknits for Kids. I rarely say that. Her partner, Francoise Hall, does all of the illustrations which are intertwined with the knits throughout the book. The illustrations are delightful and add a new and pleasant dimension to this knitting collection. I read an article about these two in a recent Rowan Magazine which was interesting. She uses all Rowan yarns for her designs. The books are published by Trafalgar Square Publishing.
Fairies are all of the rage over here this summer. I snapped this while I was out shooting Mousie this morning. This is my daughter's enchanted fairy garden which she painted and planted from a kit a couple of weeks ago. So sweet.
Now go and knit some Mousies!
best,
susie

12 comments:

Anya said...

Oh My Goodness! It's SO cute! I want the book now. I'm such a sucker for knit toys. I think I'm going to go and buy it now - my husband would say: "another knitting book!?" :D

Kerry said...

I totally agree with you on Lucinda's books. I was hesitant about the illustrations when I read the description on Amazon, but when I received my book(s) they went together so perfectly. They are some of my most favorite pattern books to just look through they never cease to inspire me with their brilliance.

peaknits said...

What a sweet little mousie! I love how the tip of the tail is red! Darling!

esh said...

oh that is adorable. I just checked my library website and put a request on that book! Thanks so much for sharing this cute knit and the book it came from. I've seen And So To Bed and love some of those patterns (the owl?!!! love it! and the roost blanket is so cute!) I'm a huge fan of knitted stuffed animals and other toys, right now I'm working on a stuffed monkey ^.^

Adrienne said...

That is SOOOOOOO very cute!!!!

AndreaLea said...

Hi Susan-
Just wanted to share with you a hat I made from Itty Bitty Baby Hats. It's such a great pattern I had to let you know!
http://andrealovesfuzz.blogspot.com/2007/07/football-helmet.html
Love the mouse!
Andrea

Knitterella said...

How cute! The books look great.

Knitted toys are so fun, thanks for sharing!
Jill

ScrapHappy said...

It's been so long since I commented! LOVE the VEspers socks and the watermelon socks (or should I say sock, singular?) ;)

The mousy is cute, the fruit is cute, the bags are cute, cute is the word du jour!

Nice to see what you are up to.

yarnophiliac said...

LOVE. THAT. MOUSE!!

KrisSuthe said...

That's adorable, but I have to ask...

Just how big is Mousie Mousie? My one and only kid is actually my cat (me and my husband plan on getting in a few wedding anniversaries before expanding the family). She might like a bigger Mousie, but I don't know how big...

Susan said...

Hi krissuthe!
The mousie is about 3 inches wide across the bottom and about 5 inches tall. Hope that helps.
susan

Betz White said...

You are too funny! When I was on vacation I told my sis-in-law about yarntini and we went to your site as I know you have done projects with it. And there it was, front and center, made up in a sweet mousie! I love that mouse, the dot bag you did (very marimekko) AND thank you so so much for your sweet comments and shout out for my new bookiness! You rock! :)