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June 2013

French Poodle

FrenchPoodle.jpg

How very 1950s! How very French!.
How could I resist?
At first glance I assumed this was the more usual toilet roll cover (because nobody wants their spare toilet rolls exposed to the world do they?) - but no! It is a "bottle" cover. How much better to have a knitted poodle gracing the dining table rather than leaving your Castle Lafite Rothschild labels tastelessly speaking for themselves. [Actually I think it looks like it's designed for the sherry bottle - perhaps to hide the little nip you need to get through the housework.]

Alternatively you can wimp out and knit it as a toy - provided your child is also into retro 1950s toys, (did I mention that as a kid my favourite toy was a poodle ? ... he wasn't knitted though ..... Pom Pom .... ‹closes eyes in reminiscence ›)

[Please note: This has not been knitted up to test the pattern but is provided as per the original. The shapes are very simple and the main effort is in the making up.]

Instructions.

The poodle is knitted mainly in garter stitch with some eyelet rows to carry elastic and drawstring. I think the two methods of assembly have not been quite thought through in the original pattern, so you need to use your common sense and refer to the picture when sewing it together.

Body

With No 8 needles cast on 49 stitches, and knit 2 rows.

Next row: * k1, wf, k2tog; repeat from * to last stitch, k1.

Continue in garter stitch (every row knit) until work measures 7½ inches from the beginning.

Next row: * k5, k2tog; repeat from * to end. [42 sts]
Knit 3 rows.

Next row: * k4, k2tog; repeat from * to end. [35 sts]
Knit 3 rows.

Next row: * k3, k2tog; repeat from * to end. [28 sts]
Knit 3 rows.

Next row: * k2, k2tog; repeat from * to end. [21 sts]
Knit 1 rows.

Next row: K1; * k2tog; repeat from * to end. [11 sts]

Thread wool through remaining stitches, draw up and fasten off securely. [Editor's note: I think there is a bit of an implied error here - this is the neck, so only draw up to the degree that the neck of the bottle will fit...]

Head

Cast on 49 stitches, and knit 3 rows.

Next row: * k5, k2tog; repeat from * to end. [42 sts]
Knit 3 rows.
Next row: * k4, k2tog; repeat from * to end. [35 sts]
Knit 3 rows.
Next row: * k3, k2tog; repeat from * to end. [28 sts]

Next row: * k1, wf, k2tog; repeat from * to last stitch, k1.

Continue without any shaping for 3 inches.

Next row: * k2tog; repeat from * to end. [14 sts]
Next row: Knit.
Next row: * k2tog; repeat from * to end. [7 sts]

Thread wool through remaining stitches, draw up and fasten off securely.

Nose

Cast on 12 stitches, and work 1½ inches in garter stitch.

Next row: * k1, k2tog; repeat from * to end. [8 sts]
Next row: Knit.
Next row: * k2tog; repeat from * to end. [4 sts]

Thread wool through remaining stitches, draw up and fasten off securely.

Pom-Poms

Make 8 pom-poms, 2½ inches in diameter.
Make 2 pom-poms, 1¾ inches in diameter.

Cut 2 pieces of cardboard the diameter of the finished pom-pom; cut a ½ inch diameter hole in the centre. Wind wool over the rings until the centre hole is filled. With a sharp pair of scissors, cut through the wool at the outer edge. With double wool, bind round the centre of the pom-pom between the two pieces of cardboard; tie a knot and fasten off securely. Remove the cardboard. Fluff out and trim.

To Make Up

Join back seam.
Thread elastic through the holes in the bottle cover base and join securely.
Sew one large pom-pom to the back seam at the bottom edge (tail), and sew 4 large pom-poms on the front to represent the legs.
Using small pieces of cotton wool, stuff the nose and sew securely to the front of the head, ½ inch from the holes.
[Editor's note: I think there is a bit of nose-sewing here that is not fully described; so extemporise.]
Embroider the mouth and sew on the 2 buttons to represent the eyes.
Sew a large pom-pom to each side of the face, and on on top of the head. Sew the 2 smaller pom-poms between these (see photo).

Take 4 strands of light coloured wool and thread through holes at neck and secure with a small knot. Tie in a bow.
[Editor's note: This seems to be pictured as being covered with a ribbon tied in a bow - so again I am guessing a little something missing where you need to extemporise. When you draw up the neck remember it has to be able to fit round the neck of the bottle. The head is not stuffed - it is tubular and filled by the neck of the bottle.]

To Make Up the Poodle as a Toy

Follow the instructions for the Bottle Cover.

[Editor's note: After this there are a few inconsistencies which you need to work out as you go.]

Assemble as the bottle cover.

Insert a circle of cardboard 3 inches in diameter into the bottom of the body.
[Editor's note: As far as I can tell, the cardboard will be exposed at the bottom of the toy; you might want to knit a piece of use fabric to cover it before putting in place.]

Make a roll of stuffing 13 inches long and insert this into the base firmly, leaving excess sticking out for the head to fit over.
Run a strong thread through the top edge of the body (neck) and pull up tightly around the excess stuffing, and tie off.

Fluff out the stuffing slightly and fit head over it; pull down and stitch over body.
[Editor's note: As far as I can tell, this excess stuffing sticking out of the neck is pushed up into the head, where the neck of the bottle would have been in the bottle-cover version.]

Materials

4 ozs. Bri-Nylon Double Knitting, plus a short length of contrast wool.

6 inches (15cm) of narrow elastic.

A pair each of No
8 (4mm) "Aero" needles.

2 buttons.

For the toy: cardboard for the base and toy stuffing.

Tension

No tension is given but a normal tension for standard DK on No 8 needles is 22sts x 30 rows to 4 inches over stocking stitch.

Size matters

No size is given but presumably it fits "a bottle".

Abbreviations

wf: "wool forward": make a stitch by bringing the wool to the front of the work and then passing the yarn over the needle when you make the next stitch.

k2tog: (decrease) knit 2 sts together.

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any pattern it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.


How to make pom-poms.



This is a different method which I ran across while looking for the simple tutorial above. It's less relevent for making our Poodle maybe but good if you want to make a load of these for a scarf or a necklace (ok - bit dated perhaps - think of your own project!)

November 2010

Outfit for a saucy sailor

SailorDoll.jpg

A cute little 1940's outfit for sailor doll. Sized to fit a 16 inch doll and shown on a felt doll, (Lenci I think), with the characteristically modest expression. Quite delightful.

Instructions.

Patterns for the outfit as shown, plus the option of a skirt instead of trousers if preferred.

Beret:

With blue wool and crochet hook, make 4 ch, and join into ring with slip-stitch, then work 8 double crochet into ring.

1st Round: 2 ch, then 2 dc on each stitch (join with slip stitch to top of 2 ch at end of each round).
2nd Round: 2 ch, * 2 dc on first stitch, 1 dc on next, repeat from * to end.
3rd Round: 2 ch, * 2 dc on first stitch, 1 dc on each of next 2 stitches, repeat from * to end.
4th Round: 2 ch, * 2 dc on first stitch, 1 dc on each of next 3 stitches, repeat from * to end.
5th Round: 2 ch, * 2 dc on first ch, 1 dc on each of the next 4 stitches, repeat from * to end.

Continue in this manner, working an extra stitch between increasings each time until work measures 5½ inches across at widest part (17 rounds). Now decrease thus:-

1st Round: 2 ch, * miss 1 stitch, 17 dc, repeat from * to end.
2nd Round: 2 ch, * miss 1 stitch, 16 dc, repeat from * to end.
3rd Round: 2 ch, * miss 1 stitch, 15 dc, repeat from * to end. Continue thus, decreasing 1 stitch in each section in every row, until 7 stitches remain.
Next Round: 1 dc on each stitch all round. Fasten off.

Jumper:

FRONT: With white wool and No 12 needles, cast on 36 stitches and work ½ inch in k1, p1 rib. Change to No 10 needles and continue in stocking-stitch until work measures 2 inches. Shape armholes by casting off 2 stitches at beginning of next 2 rows, then k2tog at each end of the next 2 rows.
Work straight until piece measures 3½ inches, then shape neck.
Next Row: k11, cast off 6 loosely, knit to end. Continue on last 11 stitches only, decreasing at neck edge on every row until 7 remain.
Work 4 rows straight, then cast off.
Work the other 11 stitches to correspond reversing the shaping.

BACK: Work exactly as for front to completion of armhole shapings, then continue straight until length equals that of front to shoulders. Cast off straight across.

SLEEVES: With blue wool and No 12 needles, cast on 22 stitches and work ½ inch in k1, p1 rib. Change to No 10 needles and white wool, and continue in stocking stitch, increasing at each end of 5th and every following 6th row until there are 30 stitches on the needle. Work straight until sleeve measures 3½ inches, then shape the top by casting off 3 at the beginning of the next 2 rows, then k2tog at each end of every row until 16 remain. Cast off loosely.

COLLAR: With No 10 needles and blue wool, cast on 38 stitches and knit 8 rows garter stitch, (every row knit), slipping the first stitch of each row.
Now continue in stocking stitch with a border of 4 garter stitches at each side until work measures 2 inches.
Next Row: k12, cast off 14 stitches loosely, knit to end.
Work on the last 12 sts only, keeping the garter stitch border at the outer edge, and decreasing at the inside (neck) edge on every alternate row until 9 sts remain; now decrease on every 3rd row until 4sts remain. Continue in garter stitch for ½ inch, then cast off.

Work the remaining 12 stitches to correspond reversing the shaping.

Skirt

With No 10 needles and blue wool, cast on 183 stitches.

1st Row: k3, * p8, k5, repeat from * to last 11 stitches, p. 8, k. 3.
2nd Row: In rib, as set out in row 1, working k8, p5.

Repeat these 2 rows for 1 inch, then decrease as follows:-

Next Row: (right side facing): k3, * p2tog, p4, p2tog, k5, repeat from *, ending k3.
Next Row: Rib.
Continue in p6, k5 rib until work measures 2 inches from start, then decrease again.

Next Row: k3, * p2tog, p2, p2tog, k5, repeat from *, ending k3.
Next Row: Rib. Continue in p4, k5 rib until work measures 2¾ inches, then decrease again.

Next Row: k. 3, * (p2tog) twice, k5, repeat from *, ending k3.
Next Row:
Rib. Continue in p2, k5 rib until work measures 3½ inches.

Next Row: k. 3, * p2tog, k5, repeat from *, ending k3.
Next Row:
Rib. Work 3 more rows in p1, k5 rib.
Next Row:
p3, * p2tog, p4, repeat from *, ending p2.

Change to No 12 needles and work in k1, p1 rib until work measures 4½ inches, then cast off in rib.

Trousers (front and back alike)

With No 10 needles and blue wool, cast on 23 stitches for right leg, and work 6 rows garter stitch. Change to stocking stitch and decrease at beginning of every following 8th row (outside edge) until 18 stitches remain.
Work straight until piece measures 6 inches from start, ending with a purl row, then leave on a spare needle.
Make another piece to correspond for left leg, reversing shapings, then join the legs together by putting both sets of sts on one needle and working across all 36 stitches.

[ Editor's note: Make sure you have right side facing you for both legs and that they are arranged so that the shapings are on the outside edges.]

Continue in stocking stitch for another 2½ inches, then change to No 12 needles and work 3 rows in k1, p1 rib.

Next Row: (make holes for elastic): rib 2, * wfwd, k2tog, repeat from * to last 2 stitches, rib 2.
Rib 2 more rows, then cast off in rib.

Work a second piece in the same way.

To make up

Press all pieces lightly with a damp cloth.
Jumper: Catch shoulder seams together at armhole edges, then insert sleeves flat; join side and sleeve seams in one. Fasten each shoulder with a press-stud, then stitch centre of collar along back of neck. Make a blue crochet chain of 8 loops and stitch to front, then slip ends of collar through it.
Skirt: Join seam, then run 3 rounds of shirring elastic or similar through inside of waist ribbing.
Trousers: Join leg and side seams, then thread elastic through holes at waist.
Beret: Make a white pom-pom and stitch to centre of crown.

Sew in all ends.

Materials

Original yarn requirements:
3ozs Patons Rose, or White Heather, fingering 3 ply.
[2ozs bright blue and 1oz white shade, makes both skirt and trousers - if only one is required then 1 oz blue is sufficient.]

A pair each of No 10 (3¼mm) and No 12 (2¾mm) needles.
A No 13 (2¼mm) crochet hook.
Two press-studs.
Fine thread elastic for skirt, and narrow flat elastic for trousers.

Tension

30 sts to 4 inches on No 10 needles.

Size matters

Designed to fit a 16-inch doll.
Jumper
: Width all round, 9½ inches.
Skirt:
Length 4½ inches.
Trousers
:
Length, 9 inches.
Beret: All round inside edge, 11 inches.

Abbreviations

ch: chain
dc: double crochet remembering that this is UK notation, and in the US this stitch is referred to as single crochet.

k2tog: knit 2 sts together
p2tog: purl 2 sts together
wfwd: wool forward to making an extra stitch

A Word
on the Wool.

The pattern is sized for a 16 inch doll and needs a fine yarn that knits to a tension of 30 sts to 4 inches on 3¼mm needles.

You will have difficulty finding these fine yarns in a good range of colours. Some possibilities might be: you might look at machine knitting yarns on cones though these are usually sold in larger quantities; you might consider knitting in a crochet cotton to obtain the required gauge; you might consider trying a fine 4 ply and experimenting with finer needles to obtain the right gauge - or accept the outfit to fit a larger doll.

Be wary of the original quantities suggested - you will almost always need more than stated.

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any pattern it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

March 2009

Easter Bunny

EasterBunny.jpg

"Who could resist this adorable dressed bunny?"
Well, I for one can resist the dressed part. I am not very fond of dressed animals (even stuffed ones). However, the dress is very pretty, and it would tone down the effect of the rather strong pink colour I have chosen for the rabbit. The Phildar yarn makes for a really soft effect; the pink is discontinued but there is a white, which I think would be very cute.
"So cuddly, a small child would love her at once. Very easily and quickly knitted in garter stitch throughout."

Instructions:

Bunny is worked throughout on No 8 needles and garter stitch (ever row knit). When making up, all seams are joined on the right side.

Body (work two pieces alike):
Cast on 11 sts using No 8 needles and chunky yarn.

1st row: Knit
2nd row: Knit twice in first stitch; knit to last st, and knit twice in last st [13 sts]
3rd row: Knit
4th row: as second row [15 sts]
Knit the next 6 rows.
11th row: as second row [17 sts]
Knit the next 11 rows.
23rd row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [15 sts]
Knit the next 3 rows.
27th-29th rows: Decrease 1 st at each end of the next 3 rows [9 sts]
Cast off 9 sts. The cast off edge is the neck edge.

Base:
Cast on 5 sts.

1st row: Knit
2nd row: Knit twice in first stitch; knit to last st, and knit twice in last st [7 sts]
3rd row: Knit
4th row: as second row [9 sts]
Knit the next 2 rows.
7th row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [7 sts]
8th row: Knit
9th row: as 7th row. [5 sts]
10th row: Knit
Cast off 5 sts.

Making up the body:
Join the sides of the body, then insert the base, sewing it onto the cast on edges of the two body pieces.
Stuff firmly and gather up neck opening. (Try and stuff the body more firmly than the head so it has more weight, to give the toy more stability).

Front Legs (work four pieces alike):
**
Cast on 11 sts. Knit the next 2 rows.

3rd row: Knit twice in first stitch; knit to last st, and knit twice in last st [13 sts]
Knit the next 4 rows.
8th row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [11 sts]
Knit the next 7 rows.
**
16th-17th rows: Decrease 1 st at each end of the next 2 rows [7 sts]
Cast off 7sts. The cast off edge is where the leg joins the body.

Making up the front legs:
Join each pair, leaving the cast off edges open.
Stuff firmly and sew up opening, then join this end to the body.
Run a gathering thread around the wrists, and mark claws with black straight stitches.

Back Legs (work four pieces alike):
Work as for front legs from ** to **.
Knit 5 more rows.
21st-22nd rows: Decrease 1 st at each end of the next 2 rows [7 sts]
Cast off 7sts. The cast off edge is where the leg joins the body.

Making up the back legs:
Stuff and make up as for the front legs and sew to body.

Tail (work 2 pieces alike):
[Editor's note: I did not use this tail. I made a tail with a white woollen pom-pom (see the picture) - why wouldn't you? I thought that, in the fable that is childhood, rabbits were renowned for their powder-puff tails. However, I think my tail turned out a wee bit large].
Cast on 5 sts.
Knit one row.
Increase 1 st at each end of the next 3 rows.
Knit 6 rows.
Decrease 1 st at each end of the next 3 rows.
Cast off 5 sts.

Making up the tail:
Join the two halves together, leaving an opening for stuffing.
Stuff and sew up opening. Join to body.

Head (work 2 pieces alike):
Cast on 11 sts. Knit the next 6 rows.
[Editor's note: The head pieces are not symmetrical. Mark the side (just use a safety pin, a stitch marker or a piece of coloured thread) where most of the increasing and decreasing happens - this is the nose and will help you match it up when you join the pieces. Also check that you are doing this shaping all on the same side of the piece].

*
7th row: Knit twice in first stitch; knit to end [12 sts]
8th row: Knit to last st, and knit twice in last st [13 sts]
9th row: Knit twice in first stitch; knit to last st, and knit twice in last st [15 sts]
10th row: Knit to last st, and knit twice in last st [16 sts]
*
Repeat from from * to * once more.

Knit the next 8 rows.
23rd row: K2tog; knit to end [15 sts]
24th row: Knit to last 2 sts; k2tog [14 sts]
25th row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [12 sts]
26th row: Knit to last 2 sts; k2tog [11 sts]
27th row: K2tog; knit to end [10 sts]
28th row: Knit to last 2 sts; k2tog [9 sts]
29th row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [7 sts]
30th row: Knit to last 2 sts; k2tog [6 sts]
31st row: K2tog; knit to end [5 sts]
32nd row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [3 sts]

Cast off 3 sts.

Making up the head:
Join the two halves together, leaving the cast on edges open.
Stuff firmly, shaping the dome of the head to look like a bunny.

Features (embroidered):
Nose: black satin stitch.
Mouth: black vertical and horizontal straight stitches.
Whiskers: long black straight stitches.
Eyes: White, blue, and black satin stitch, and outlined in black straight stitches.
Lashes: Four vertical straight stitches in black.
Eyebrows: black straight stitches.

Ears (work 2 alike):
[Editor's note: I worked both ears at once using two balls of wool (as I did for the head). This was because I found it easy to lose track of how many rows I had knitted with this fluffy yarn. A row here or there makes little difference to a toy, but you want the ears etc to be the same size.]
Cast on 3 sts in main colour on No 8 needles.
1st-3rd rows: Knit
4th row: Knit twice in first stitch; knit to last st, and knit twice in last st [5 sts].

Repeat these 4 rows 5 times more until there are 15 sts.

Knit the next 12 rows.

37th row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [13 sts]
38th row: Knit
39th row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [11 sts]

Cast off 11 (this is the edge sewn to the head).

Ears Linings (work 2 alike):
Cast on 4 sts in finer yarn contrast for ears on No 11 needles.
1st-3rd rows: Knit
4th row: Knit twice in first stitch; knit to last st, and knit twice in last st [6 sts].

Repeat these 4 rows 7 times more until there are 20 sts.
Knit the next 20 rows.
[Editor's note: As I worked the linings I kept comparing them to the ears to make sure they were coming out the right size. The result was that for the wool I had chosen I increased to 20 sts but then knitted 25 rows to match the length of the ears. You may note the ears are pretty large - but the head is also proportionally large, so I thought they looked right.]

53rd row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [18 sts]
Knit 3 rows.
54th row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [16 sts]
Knit 3 rows.
55th row: K2 tog; knit to last 2 sts, and k2tog. [14 sts]
Cast off tightly.

Making up the ears:
Join ears and linings together. Fold wide end of ears in half, with lining inside, and sew to the head.

Materials

Original: 3 x 2oz hanks of Big Ben Knitting in Oystershell (main colour);
2ozs turquoise, and 1oz pink double knitting.
Scraps of black, royal blue, and white for features.

Example shown is knitted in 2 x 50g ball Phildar "Neige" (65 yds/60m per 50g ball), colour Oeillet (0013 discontinued).
Ear linings and tail in 25g ball of baby quick-knit (a fine double knitting).

One pair each of No. 8 (4mm) and No 11 (3 mm) needles.

Tension

Big Ben was a chunky wool and worked to a tension of approx. 14sts and 18rows to 4 inches on No 3 (6½mm) needles in stocking stitch.

The Phildar Neige tension is 11sts and 18 rows to 4 inches on No 5 (5½mm) needles in stocking stitch.

Size matters

Original instructions and yarn made a 12½ inch rabbit (including ears).

A word on the wool

Big Ben is a chunky wool similar in gauge to the Phildar I used but knits up very differently on the smaller needles.
The Phildar is rather like eyelash but softer and fluffier - and entirely acrylic. I can strongly recommend using a fluffy yarn like this as it is so forgiving in hiding the sewing up on a toy.
The ear linings are worked in a finer yarn.

I used a lurid pink for the rabbit - but wouldn't she be nice in white with pink ear linings?

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any pattern it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

Bunny Clothes

I chose just to put a ribbon on the bunny. You could make the knitted tie instead or go for the whole dressed bunny look. The dress is pretty and allows you to see the cute little tail.
Clothes and tie are knitted in the finer (DK) yarn on No 11 (3mm) needles.

Neck tie:
Cast on 6 sts on No 11 needles.
Knit 19 inches (or as much as you need) and cast off.
Tie around neck with a bow at the front.

Dress:
Cast on 112 sts [Editor's note: Perhaps you can see now why I was less keen to make the little dress...].
on No 11 needles.
Knit 24 rows.
Next row: Cast off 47; knit 18 sts; cast off remaining 47.
Break yarn.

Rejoin yarn to centre 18 sts, and knit 14 rows.
[Editor's note: This is the pinafore part of the dress].

Next row: Knit 4; cast off 10; knit last 4 sts.
[Editor's note: The two sets of 4 sts are the beginnings of the straps].

Continue to work on the last 4 sts and knit 25 rows.
Next row: K2tog twice and fasten off
Work remaining 4 sts into a strap to match.
Sew up back seam on the skirt.

Dress Frills:
With No 11 needles and same yarn as dress, cast on 6 sts, and knit 1 row.
*Next row: K4, then turn and knit back.
Knit 2 rows across all 6 sts.*
Repeat from * to * until frill fits all around hem of dress.
Join short ends and sew to dress.

Make another frill the same and sew in place half an inch above the first frill.

Put dress on bunny and gather up waist edge to fit.
Sew straps into position on back of dress using French Knots.

September 2007

Friendly Tortoise

tortoise.jpg

I do enjoy unusual knitted toys - and I had a succession of pet tortoises as a child (when it was legal...) - so this seems a natural choice. I am very pleased with the way he worked out, and he was not as fiddly to make as I had expected; probably about 2 evenings work in all.

Instructions

The tortoise is knitted in garter stitch (every row knit) throughout.

Shell

Cast on 11 stitches, and knit 1 row.
Then increase 1 st (work into the front and back of the stitch) at each end of the next and every alternate row until there are 23 sts.

[Editor's note: To increase, I work into the front and back of the first st, knit to the last two sts, then work into the front and back of the next st, then knit the last st. This avoids a stepped effect at the end of the row. If you increase in a different way - for example, picking up the loop between sts - then you may not have this problem. Make sure you know how the pattern instuctions intend you to work an increase by looking at the abbreviations. There is usually an implied difference between "increase in the next st" and "make 1".]

Knit 32 rows straight, then decrease 1 st at each end of the next and every alternate row until there are 11 sts remaining.
Cast off.

Make another piece the same.

[Editor's note: I embroidered the top half of the shell before sewing up. The tension of the embroidery encouraged the shell-shape of the piece.]

Join the two halves together leaving an opening for stuffing. Stuff firmly and sew up opening.

Embroidery on top half: outer circles in light brown chain-stitch with smaller dark brown circles inside.
See photograph.

[Editor's note: I am not very good at free-form embroidery, so was a bit worried about this - but it worked out OK. You can see that what I did was very lop-sided, but despite that it looks fine I think...]

Head

Start at neck edge and cast on 10 sts.
Knit 3 rows.
Next row: K2tog., knit to end.

Next row: Knit to the last 2 sts; inc in next st, k1.
Next row: Knit.
Repeat the last 2 rows 3 times more.

Next row: Inc in the first st; knit to the last 2 sts; inc in next st, k1. [15 sts].

Knit 5 rows.

Next row: K2tog; knit to the last 2 sts; k2tog.
Next row: Knit.
Repeat the last 2 rows twice more. [9 sts].

Next row: K2tog.; knit to the last 2 sts; k2tog.
Cast off 7 sts.

Make another piece the same. Sew halves together leaving neck end open for stuffing.
Stuff firmly to shape with seam at centre of head and face. Sew open end of neck to one end of shell.

Features: Eyes - black and white straight stitches; mouth - long black straight stitch.

Front feet

Cast on 4 sts.
Knit 3 rows.
Next row: Inc in the first st; knit to the last 2 sts; inc in next st, k1.
Repeat the last 4 rows once more. [8 sts].
Knit 3 rows.

Shape thus: Next row: k2, turn, k back;
Next row: k3, turn, k back; Next row: k4, turn, k back;
Next row: k5, turn, k back; Next row: k6, turn, k back.
Knit 2 rows over all sts.

Next row: Inc in the first st; knit to the last 2 sts; inc in next st, k1.
Knit 4 rows.
Next row: Inc in the first st; knit to the last 2 sts; inc in next st, k1. [12 sts]
Knit 3 rows.

Now dec. 1st at each end of the next 3 rows.
Cast off remaining 6 sts.

Make 3 more pieces the same. Sew each pair together, leaving cast off edges open for stuffing.
Stuff firmly, and sew open end to underside of shell on either side of the neck.
[Editor's note: Since the feet are shaped, make sure you sew the feet on pointing in the same direction (see photo for guidance). Needless to say, I made this error and had to correct it.

Back feet

Cast on 16 sts, and knit 7 rows.

Next row: Inc in the first st; (k4; inc in the next st.) 3 times. [20 sts].
Knit 2 rows; cast off.

Sew the short sides together to form a cylinder shape.

Make another piece the same.

Pads: Cast on 3 sts.
Next row: Knit.
Next row: Inc in the next 2 sts, k1.
Next row: Knit.
Next row: Inc in the next st, k2, inc in the next st, k1. [7 sts].
Knit 3 rows.

Dec 1 st at each end of the next and following alternate row.
Cast off 3 sts.

Make another pad piece in the same way. Sew pads to cast off ends of back feet. Stuff firmly; sew open ends to back on underside of shell about 1 inch apart.
[Editor's note: I misread this - or was not careful enough - and sewed the pads to the smaller cast-on edge - so take note here. I did not correct this error and it looks OK - but toys are more flexible like that....]

Mark claws with 4 black straight stitches on each foot.

Tail

Cast on 17 sts.
Knit 2 rows.
Next row: K2;k2tog, k2tog; k5; k2tog, k2tog; k2. [13 sts]
Knit 3 rows.
Next row: K1;k2tog, k2tog; k3; k2tog, k2tog; k1. [11 sts]
Knit 3 rows.
Next row: K2tog, k2tog; k1; k2tog, k2tog.[5 sts]
Knit 2 rows.
Next row: K2tog, k2tog; k1.
Draw thread through 3 sts and pull up.

Sew together along edges to make a cone shape; flatten slightly into a traingle, along line of increases; stuff lightly and sew the wider, open end to the shell at the back, (in line with the head), and so that the seam is underneath.

Edging around shell

Cast on 7 sts.

* Knit 2 rows.
Next row: K5, turn, knit back.
Next row: K5, turn, knit back.
Next row: K2 tog, k5.
Next row: Knit to the last st, inc in last st.
Repeat from * 28 times more.
Cast off.

[Editor's note: Again I altered the pattern here omitting one of the 5 st short rows, making the shell edge less frilly - this is what I did:
* Knit 2 rows.
Next row: K5, turn, knit back.
Next row: K2 tog, k5.
Next row: Knit to the last st, inc in last st.
Repeat from * about 32 times more, or to fit round shell..]

Sew straight edge around the seam of the shell, finishing on either side of the head. Work a line of light brown chain stitch over the join, then a second line in dark brown 2 sts away.

Using an oddment of bright coloured wool, cut into 3 strands and tie round neck. [Editor's note: ...or use a ribbon...]

Materials

Original pattern calls for 2oz of DK in French Mustard.
Small quantities of light and dark brown wools for markings on the back; scraps of black and white.

One pair of number 11 needles.

Toy stuffing.

Tension

Not given - but DK wool usually knits to approximately 22st to 4 inches (10cm) on No. 8 (4mm) needles over st. st.

Size matters

Tortoise measures 8 inches in length and 6 inches across width of shell.

A word on the wool.

I had some difficulty in finding what I thought a satisfactory colour. Eventually I bought some 4ply from eBay and used it knitted double. I use 4ply oddments for the embroidery.

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any pattern it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

© Christina Coutts 2007

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