Merry Knitmas!

Yesterday was a bit of a cliffhanger, but I feel like it was obvious enough. We’ve got new patterns!

I decided to make a line of Dress Up Dolls patterns. Say you are a knitter and love our items, but they just aren’t in the budget. Well now, you can make one for yourself! They are a more simplified version of my shrunken wool rabbits that I’ve been creating lately, but they still have hips and feet and shoulders and beautiful heads! Another bonus: they are knitted in the round! Makes knitting a breeze. No mountain of body parts waiting for their seams to be sewn up and attached. They look beautiful dressed and undressed.

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The pattern is a standard deer: one color, no muss no fuss. So if you’re still a kind-of new knitter, you can do this! If you would like to venture out, you can change colors like I did. I simply knitted the muzzle a different color (tip included in pattern), added antlers (also included in pattern), embroidered on some spots and ‘hairs’ in the ears and voila! Rudolph! My daughter went nuts over him.

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I also bought a skein of a mohair lace weight and knitted it together with my wool to create a fuzzier doe:

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ALSO, You can see they have little sweaters on–that is also available as a pattern! It was so easy to make; I foresee a boatload of beautifully detailed sweaters in the future! The pattern is for a simple, single-colored sweater. However, as you can see, it makes a great base for being creative. I double-knit in a nordic design on one. I embroidered little holly cluster polka dots onto another. I made Rudolph’s sweater striped! Details for the stripes  included in pattern. I can’t wait to see all of the different finishes!

***Please note, I created this pattern as just to be knitted, not shrunken as well. If you do decide to shrink it, it will look completely different than this! I do not use these designs for my shrunken wool dolls. I merely created a pattern to look similar to those. ***

I wasn’t really sure of when I was going to offer these patterns, but I figured no better time than the present! It may be a little bit like offering in the eleventh hour, but they don’t need to be holiday deer. There’s always New Year’s, Valentine’s Day, Easter, birthdays, nightly toy knitting, or just ’cause! So grab these patterns at our Etsy shop; more are already in the works!

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Some kind of segue

You know, it’s been a while. This year, for us, has been a period of  trying to ‘figure ourselves out’ in a business-focused aspect. For me, I previously wasn’t as drawn to shrinking up my dolls after knitting them because I saw the incredible amount of tedious work it took for my mom to perfect the technique. However, the finished product is unlike any other doll I’ve ever held.  To me, it is the highest form of doll making that aims at the longevity of the life of the doll, also allowing for daily use, and holding up to even the most brutal play my young daughter has had to offer. This year, I was drawn to work in that avenue of art. I mean, look at the finished product! No seams, no loose stitches, no misshaping.

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For those who are new here, this technique requires that you create the entire doll out of wool yarn by crocheting or knitting, then agitate it with water and soap and pressure over and over until it shrinks and is thick and firm but fluffy and springy.  This incredible form of art takes a lot of time, as I’ve stated over and over previously. So here’s the deal. I worked tirelessly with my mom’s guidance and I was able to create many dolls this year. Here’s a few:

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Yes, those are knitted-then-shrunken dolls wearing tiny skirts and tiny knitted cabled and fair isle sweaters, wearing hand-stitched boots and Maryjanes. I loved holding each one in my hands when I was finished with them. Each unique in their own way! So I decided, I would like to switch gears and offer something that allows other knitters to become creative and make their own unique items using a sort-of template. I’ll just leave it at that and share more very soon! Thanks for checking in!

XO, Rhonda

What the fuzz?

Felting? Fulling? What is it?!? We decided to put together a little ‘infomercial’ on what sets our products apart and what it is that we actually do.

I believe it should also be noted that that some folks may have been attempting to confuse what we do with wet felting. Wet felting is basically using the raw, unspun wool and turning it into a felt sheet. This is nothing like our process. If it does not say fulled or seamless shrunken wool then it is not created the same.

Fleeting Moments

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img_6246img_6382img_6402img_6501img_6563img_6963img_7145img_7230img_7249-800x533img_7252-800x533I feel it–the summer season is beginning to fade. Masses of flowers are staying bloomed a bit longer, now that they aren’t so quickly baked in the sun. There’s a cool morning breeze that teases us, only making way to warm midday temps. The occasional wind gusts whip through and scatter petals all over like confetti. This is when I begin to beckon the sweater weather by baking everything with pumpkin and cloves and leaving an apple cider candle lit all day. This is when I eat entirely too much bread. And yes, I break a sweat waiting for a pie to finish baking. Completely worth it.

In spite of my baked-sweets Fall summoning, it comes in it’s own slow-as-molasses timing. As soon as it’s here, it’s gone. The seemingly shortest, most beautiful season. As soon as it passes I feel like I spend the whole year waiting for next fall.  Here in the Southwest, I feel like the Dog Days of Summer last soooo much longer than in other regions.

Though the trees have yet to turn golden, I’ll take my time and enjoy the rest of what the warm sunshine has to offer in this last week of summer–no matter that it feels like an eternity. Besides, as the seasons grow and change, so do my kids. And I’d be okay if that would slow down.

Here’s a few things we’ve been working on, eaten, or enjoyed looking at while the weather hasn’t complied with our desires. If you’d like to see some more of those adorable rattles, view them here.

Thanks for following.

Hugs, Rhonda

 

 

 

Whimsical!

As you may have seen sneak peeks on our Etsy and Instagram–we will now be incorporating some more kid-friendly items! The new Out of the Thistle® Whimsicals include rattles and dolls! These items are still 100% handmade, crocheted from 100% wool.  They are created with the intent of being passed down for many generations. Their unique design allow for young children to easily hold and play with the new dolls and rattles. These toys have heirloom-quality, yet they are durable enough for everyday play. they are also visually appealing to fit perfectly into any child bedroom décor.

These dolls and rattles were put through a vigorous washing technique to shrink them, making them firm and durable. Their soft exterior makes them safer to play with, as well!

You may view all new items in our Etsy shop while our website is under construction. Be on the lookout for more whimsical designs!

 

A tisket, a tasket, bunnies in a basket!

Out of the Thistle friends of fall, knitted bunnies

These three little cuties are now available on our website! They are the perfect size for being toted around by your little one. I hand-knit them with 100% American wool (from Quince & Co), then I put them through a process to shrink ’em up! The result: a more durable, fuzzy knit that holds its shape. I can’t even fully explain how much of a difference there is in just the feel of shrunken (felted) knitted dolls compared to regularly knitted ones. They just feel more substantial, yet… light-weight.

They are jointed (buttons are decorative) so they can sit on a shelf with ease.

Knitted wool jointed bunnies Out of the Thistle®

They have shapely features such as curved paws and feet and a perfectly puckered nose. Each little bunny is wearing a hand knitted alpaca, flutter-sleeve vest that ties in the front, and each one has a coordinating 100% cotton skirt (made from Liberty of London fabric). The outfits are completely removable for ease of cleaning. Standing at about 12.5″ tall, they are the perfect size for squeezing. xx

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Keep an eye out for more of these one-of-a-kind softies on our website! Thanks for looking!

–Rhonda Potteet