This past August, family celebrations were in place. One of my first cousins returned from the US to Greece for the summer to baptize her son. For knitters and crocheters such occasions can mean only one thing: knitted gifts!
That’s why it was not long before I sat down trying to figure out what would make a good, and also practical gift for a young boy. This was my first time dealing with a situation like this. After browsing a bit on Ravelry, I stumbled again upon the popular Amineko crochet cat pattern between other designs. I settled on using that particular pattern, because I really liked the Japanese aesthetic it had, and also, it looked like a toy any child would enjoy to play with and carry around.
Next challenge was picking the colors! Usually I don’t have a problem with picking the colors I would use for a project for myself, but when it comes to gifts, things are a little different. People have different styles/views on colors, and especially when it comes to young boys & girls (sadly). I would hate to make something that people would set aside, or even worse, throw away because of it’s color. Luckily, I was able to find a colorway that was “gender-neutral”.
The main yarn I used was Schachenmayr SMC’s Punto, which is a wonderful cotton/acrylic blend. The details on the cat’s face were made with small yarn quantities from my stash. Embroidering the eyes, eyebrows and mouth were a little bit of a pain, as my initial stitchwork was quite ugly. It took me a couple of hours of retries to get something I liked.
Construction-wise, I made two modifications. I started working with the head, and then, without breaking yarn, continued to make the body in one piece. This meant that I had to look at the instructions for the body in reverse, but since the shape was pretty basic, that was not difficult to do. The second mod appears in the hands and feet. After working the paws, I didn’t change to the main color in one round, but rather worked a kind of transition section, were the white ‘gets lost’ in the blue-green yarn. This is basically a bit of colorwork.
It does make a good gift, (my cousin was thrilled!), and I would definitely use it again in the future. 🙂
While I was working on this, my mother became so infatuated, that asked for similar-looking version, again to be given as a gift at another baptism event. That request resulted in this cute little toy:
This time, I decided to be a little bit adventurous. I took Lucy Collin’s Totoro Amigirumi pattern and started working on it with needles instead of a hook. My initial idea was to create a proper Totoro toy by knitting it instead. Things were going fine, but when I reached the smaller details that were to be sewn on the body, I realised that knitting wouldn’t do the trick anymore. I gave up on most of the details (I was also running out of time), and made something simpler instead. In the end, I quite like it. It looks like a small weird cat, but it’s cute!
Do you have any experience with making toys/gifts for others? How did it go? 🙂