Monday, 19 December 2011

Christmas Bear & Cat Baubles.

Christmas Bear & Cat Baubles

An amendment ....4/11/2013
For all the beginner knitters who find knitting charts "vague" or hard to read, I have included at the end of this pattern an explanation that I sent to a lovely knitter a while ago, who emailed me for some help reading charts. 
It is not complete written instructions, this is a simple one piece pattern, plus ears, the explanation should be able to help you follow and knit by this very easy method.
So feel free to refer to it if you need help reading charts. 
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The last silly little pattern of the year, I promise! A bit close to Christmas I know, but I've been busy finishing gifts & all the other "mum" stuff one needs to do before Christmas.

I used to make these in fabric as a smaller version of my  Message Bears.The bears I would make from flanelette, reindeers from homespun, but these are so much easier to knit. No turning seams & you can use a furry yarn for the bears if you wish.
At 10cm tall they are a large decoration for the tree, but a good size if you want to write a name in glitter on the bauble. You can make them smaller by using smaller needles & finer yarn.
Of course you don't have to glue them to a bauble, you can make tiny ones for the tree, or put two together for a friend like the message bears.
To save time writing the pattern, the body is in chart form HERE.
* I may have solved the problem with seeing the chart, if you still can't see it, go to the link in pink and it will take you to the PDF and you can print it from there ...hopefully.

Errata : rows in hat instructions with * have been altered - 19/12/2011.
Materials :
50gm 8ply / DK for the body.
Small amount 8ply / DK in 2 colours for hat.
3.25mm knitting needles for body
4.00mm knitting needles for hat.
fibre filling
black embroidery cotton & black, pink yarn for features.
2 beads for bear eyes
Christmas Bauble - the ones I used were aprox 19cm circumference.
Hot Glue gun.

 Instructions.
For Bear Body
Make a front & back.
Using 3.25mm needles & bear colour cast on 38sts.
Working in garter stitch, follow chart  below, or if you can't see it (as some people can't, don't know why but it's happening) you can view the chart  HERE.  in pdf form.
                   
Starting at the bottom right hand corner, read from right to left, first row, then back left to right for second row etc.
Stitch the bear pieces together on the outside (don't do a seam then turn right side out)  leaving a gap at the bottom for stuffing.
Stuff the head fairly firmly, but only stuff the body, arms & legs very very lightly & sew up open seam. Because the bear wraps around the bauble & is hot glued, you only need a small amount of stuffing.
Even here in this photo, I've stuffed the body too much & had to squish it flat a bit, so stuff less.

                                                      
Sew a gathering thread around the neck & tighten to define the head from the body a bit more.
Ears - With 3.25mm needles cast on 8sts.
Garter St 4 rows.
Decrease each end of every row until 4 sts remain.
Cast Off.
 Hat - The hat is quite large & slouchy to go over one ear.
With 4mm needles & brim colour cast on 24sts.
Garter st 3 rows.
Change to hat colour & St st 8 rows.
Next row - K2, (k2 tog, k4) to last 2 sts, k2.
St st 3 rows.
*Next row - K2, (k2tog, k3) to last 3sts, k2tog, k1.
St st 3 rows.
Next row - (K2 k2tog) to end.
St st 3 rows.
Next row - (K2, k2tog) to end.
St st 3 rows.
Next row - (K1, k2 tog) to end.
P 1 row.
*Next row -K2 tog to end.
*P2 tog, P1.
Cast off.
Join seam.

Make up
Gather in the base of the ears a little then sew to bear head.
Sew hat on at an angle over ear & then down around back of head, add a bell.
Using 3 strands of black embroidery cotton sew in paws. Sew on beads for eyes & sew on nose & mouth.

To glue to bauble
I use gold thread through the top of the head to hang them, instead of  using the hanger on the bauble. If you want to hang it from the bauble make sure you glue the hanger on the bauble as close to the bear body as you can, or else the weight of the bear will make them hang "back heavy" (if that makes sense).
Check first the bear is not over stuffed. You need to be able to bend it around & glue the paws in place without much resistance. See photo, glue bauble on an angle so the hanger is to the side of the face. Put glue on the bear, not the bauble. Start by putting a little on the tummy to hold the bauble in place. Glue the paws into place, but make sure you put the glue at least 1cm back from the edge of the paw as it will spread when pressed. Hold each paw a few moments while the glue sets, before doing the next one.

Cat
Same as the bear but with the whole back done in 4row stripes. The front is striped until you get to the head, then all white from there.
Ears
With 3.25mm needles & orange cast on 8sts.
Garter st 2 rows.
Decrease each end of every row until 2 stitches remain
K2 tog fasten off.
All done.                                
                                                       © Jennifer Stacey 2011

                                            For personal use, not to be sold for profit.

As always please let me know of any mistakes, hope you enjoy making them,
love Jen.

OK Here is an explanation I've sent to a few knitters who have emailed me, thanked me for the pattern (it's so nice to thank the designer)  and weren't sure how to read and knit from the charts.
It should help if you haven't read a knitting chart before :-).

Here it is….. ,
Glad to help you, working from charts is easy.
Yes you do 2 bodies the same. The pattern is fairly symmetrical, and you’re knitting in garter st, so no right or wrong side.
If you print the chart out it helps to number the rows on the right hand side to make it easier to follow. I used to put the numbers in on the patterns, but it’s very time consuming doing it through word graphs.
It’s 38sts you cast on. Look at the chart as you’re reading this, it’ll help you understand charts. Cast on your stitches. For row 1 you read the first row from the bottom right across to the left, then the second row from left to right, and continue that way.
For the feet there are a couple of ways you can do them, neither is wrong.
This is how I do them, k 12 rows of the graph, then you’re ready for the feet.
Because the feet are only 7 sts and a few rows, I don’t worry about stitch holders, you should be able to knit comfortably without having to transfer stitches off your needles
Row 13 - K across 7sts for the first foot - turn - now work on these 7 sts follow the decreases on the chart for the foot for the next 3 rows then cast off.
That’s one foot over & done with.
Now go back to row 13 on the chart, attach the yarn to the stitches on the needle, next to where you’ve just done the foot, and cast off the next 5 sts, K across 14sts for the body, cast off the next 5sts and then across the last 7sts.
You’re now in position to work on the last 7sts for the other foot. Continue with these 7 sts and finish the other foot - cast off.
Now refasten your yarn (to the stitches adjacent to the last foot) knit across the remaining 14 sts - the body - you’ve just worked row 14.
Now continue following the chart.
When you come to the arms - row 19 - cast on the 9 sts at the beginning of this row for one arm, then cast on 9sts at the beginning of the next row for the 2nd arm, and similarly decrease the same way.
Hope this helps you out
Regards
Jenny

14 comments:

  1. Hi Jen Your cat and bear are really cute cant wait to make them. Hope you and your family have a great Christmas and New Year!

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  2. Hi Jen. This is such a cute pattern. Thank you for sharing. I hope I can make at least one in time for Christmas.

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  3. Thank you Nenna & Typstatting hope you get at least one done this year - Jen.

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  4. I absolutely love this pattern - is the body directions written out anywhere at all - I am really struggling with the chart - i would appreciate your assistance.

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  5. I absolutely love this pattern but i am struggling with the chart for the body - is there a written version anywhere that i can have. Id love to make these for Christmas for a couple of special needs children - i know they will love them. Thanks.

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  6. I absolutely love this pattern - is the body directions written out anywhere at all - I am really struggling with the chart - i would appreciate your assistance.

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  7. Hi Kathy, if you can send me your email address to mine - sewcrazejen@yahoo.com.au
    I'll send you an explanation of how to read the charts. I've had a couple of people who weren't sure about reading charted instructions but the explanation helped them out, so hopefully it will make it easy for you. Or if you're on Ravelry you can contact me there - Justjen3. xx

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  8. Thank you for the free pattern! I LOVE THEM! Am adding to my collection of...."must do" LOL

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    1. Oh you're welcome Justine, thank you so much for the "Thank You"

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  9. Thank you, going make them to give to friends

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    1. That's great Nina, I hope your friends like them ;-).

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  10. Thank you for sharing your patterns. I am always looking for something new and special for my fund raising projects. This is perfect.

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  11. Hello i only know how to knit purl would i need to know more to do this pattern?

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    1. Ok you will need to know how to read a knitting chart, I've included quite a detailed explanation how to follow a chart at the end of the pattern. You will also need to know how to increase and decrease stitches at the beginning and end of rows, but that is not hard. You need some sewing experience to sew him all together as well. But give him a try. If you attempt patterns which are each a little harder and with more skills every time, you will soon be calling yourself an experienced knitter. :-)

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I love reading your comments, and I'm very happy to help you with any questions about my patterns. The comments are moderated only to stop spam mail coming through, so your comment will be published as soon as I get a chance to check them - thanks Jen.