Dennis – UL 24

It was a little hard to get a good shot of my next UFO Lottery finish, he wouldn’t hold still –


You may have noticed I’ve skipped projects #22 and #23 from the UFO Lottery. Those two were abandoned – a knitted doll and a textile art panel. I didn’t take any pictures before I frogged and un-sewed them.

So here’s #24 – Dennis. Another Günni doll finished at last.

And off he rides again, testing every surface in the place –

Meet the Günnis (2)

Here come the rest of the gang. I wish I had more time to knit everyone from my long list into life.

Pankratz and Öko-Günni (Green Günni)

Monsieur Maurice and Günther vom Poggendorpe (Gunther of Frogtown)

Karl-Heinz Günthersen and Jule (aka SuperKnitter 😉 )

And last but not least, pictured at the First International Günni Meeting,

Jonas and Zachariah Aqvataq and the Elk Family (Black Elk, White Deer and Little Elk)

Alas, I’ve got no picture of the original “Günter” and his girlfriend, they got lost along the way as well as Ali ibn Abu al-Arab who was last seen trying to cross the Arabian desert on camelback.

Meet the Günnis (1)

Many, many years ago, around the early 1980s, I knitted a little doll which my brother named ‘Günter’. The following little dolls were all known as ‘Günnis’ from then on. There were Red Indian Günnis, Eskimo Günnis, a Beduin Günni and some ordinary ones. Alas, some of them got lost.

The first one of the new Günnis was SuperSecretary, a chubby superhero secretary. She existed as a drawing on my computer and came to life by knitting, just for fun and because I wanted to use up my leftover yarns. The next one was an ordinary one made after the image of my favourite actor David Tennant (meet him and his colleagues on the Davey Dolls page).

In the meantime, I have been creating some more of these little guys I’d like to introduce in no particular order.

SuperSecretary (aka SuperSec) and Tresor-Günni (Günni the safecracker [or peterman])

Prof. Dr. Günther Brinkmann and Günter Graf Dracula (Count GünterDracula)

Sven the street sweeper and Neander

Monsieur Maurice

Mesdames et messieurs, say hello to Monsieur Maurice, who has just arrived here from France. He brought a little snack because he’s not too fond of German white bread. Let’s hope his new friends are not too fond of French baguette.

When I was making him I originally called him Pierre. But now that he’s finished I think he’s looking more like he’s called Maurice. 🙂

Knitting Dave – Pt. 2

It was a little tricky to get some of the accessories. But with the help of a certain ‘internet’ I could find almost everything I needed. Except for the green eyes. I had to change them to blue ones. There were green eyes available, but they were cat’s eyes. Too spooky even for a muse, we agreed.

From my stash:
some blue cotton yarn for the jeans
brown fancy knitting yarn for the hair

I bought:
two skeins of flesh-coloured sockwool (the last ones from the shop, already thinking of ‘plan B’ if I’d run out) and a white one (this would be ‘plan B’)
four skeins of black and three skeins of white yarn for the leather jacket and t-shirt (ample supply with some more projects in mind)
one skein of light yellow yarn for the baseball bat
a pair of red trainers (size 16 – 17 for babies, 0 – 3 months of age)
a pair of socks (for newborns)
a pair of blue glass eyes (14 mms)
a bag of stuffing material
a package of pipe cleaners

The internet sent me:
a pair of glasses

I did not have:
a plan

Neither did I have knitting instructions for a doll. But that didn’t stop me. Of course, there’s stuff on the internet. Alas, none of it looked like what I had in mind. Or rather, what we had. Never mind. Improvise.

I’m not an experienced knitter. OK, I can knit and purl and make little dolls, even a simple sweater if necessary. But I never did a project like this. I just picked up the needles and began knitting. That was the strange part of this project. It was almost like Dave knit himself. Very awkward.

As it turned out, I didn’t even need two skeins of skin-coloured wool. As I had no experience in knitting with sockwool, I overestimated the amount needed. I used up one skein with only a couple of meters left. – No, I’m not going to do a second one.

Notes to self DURING PROJECT:

Expedition to the craft shop. Buy eyes. Extend expedition to the toy shop. Buy trainers.

Make notes on knitting patterns. Take pictures for blog. Publish.

Make nose and ears. Mouth? Thinking of knitting a neck. Shall I?

Next would be the body. But I’m not quite sure if there’s enough skin-coloured yarn. It says on the label one skein will make a pair of socks size 46 (10). I hope they don’t refer to sneaker socks … Or should I choose white for the body? Like he’s in his undies?

Arms and legs. I’m thinking of hands with at least a thumb to make him able to hold things. Stuff them with pipe cleaners? I think I saw bendable hands on a manufacturer’s website. Size? And bendable metal strips for the legs. Hmm. Feet to fit the shoes. Need a sock pattern. Try out boomerang heel pattern. Buy socks?

A pair of jeans (easy) and a t-shirt (opening in the back to get head through neckhole?). The leather jacket. Problem: the zip fastener has to be separabel. Sold from 30 cm length upwards. But the internet has got a solution: accessories for doll clothing. Sold from 10 cm upwards. Make jacket first, then order zipper.

Crochet baseball bat. Stuff firmly. For the ‘bang’ factor.

Sew on hair. From hairline to inside?

Don’t forget scarf. Scarves are cool.

And don’t get intimidated by the fear of endless discussions with Dave. They will happen. Bet your granny.

So, there he is, sitting in ‘his’ corner of the sofa which he will inhabit from now on.

– (reproachful) You messed up knitting my feet! They’re way too small! –
I did, that’s true. Obviously I misread the pattern. But you’re not supposed to run around anyway.
– I, um … –
But you seem to enjoy your knitted version anyway. Are you going to come out of your new body again?
– No. –
But does The Guild allow this? What if they find out?
– You don’t have to tell them. –
Ah, so they don’t allow. Interesting.
– Weeeelllll, eh … –
I’ll keep that in mind. Just in case.

Knitting Dave – Pt. 1

Dave the Muse – never lets go of his beloved baseball bat

As you already know by now, Dave, my muse, had insisted on becoming visible. To avoid being hit with his baseball bat, I had no choice but to pick up the needles and knit him.

Making Dave, I started with the glasses. Yup. You see, he wanted a pair of glasses. For the cool look. There was only this one model for sale. So their size determined the size of my muse’s head. I even made a tension sample this time.

The body is simply knit in the round on dpns. I found a pattern for a pair of teddy bear trousers which I used for the lower part of the body as well as for the jeans. Then I knitted the feet according to a sock pattern I found. They had to fit the little pair of trainers, of course.

For the arms I used a provisional cast-on and knit from top down to the hands. Then I unpicked the provisional cast on and knit another heel from the sock pattern for the shoulders.

Have you ever knit a nose? Nor me. It knitted itself. Seriously. I was only holding the dpns.

Maybe the way I went to work is a little unusual, faithful reader. Decide for yourself.

Because of some limitations in the material available, I couldn’t knit Dave exactly like he first suggested. Of course, this led to some discussion. Here are a few examples.

Green eyes. I wanted green eyes. Not blue ones. –
They don’t sell them anymore. Only green cat eyes. These are a little spooky even for a doll, don’t you think?
– OK, I have to admit that. –

Eek, what kind of hair is this? I look like a squirrel. –
Wild hair, as requested. I couldn’t get some other fancy knitting yarn during the summer, so I had to take some from my stash. Or would you rather be bald?
– Nooo, but … –
Of course, I could make one of those silly base ball hats for you to cover it.
– Don’t. –

– Where’s the scruff? –
Well, I’ve got some matching yarn in my stash, but using this will make a proper beard. Are you sure you want one?
– Hm. I’ll think about that. Maybe later. –

I still need to finish his jacket and sew the cool scarf.

Read more in Knitting Dave – Pt. 2 soon.