‘Babes in the Wool’ is by Fiona McDonald, she of the Knitted Aliens, and is just as fun and quirky. These projects demand a little more time to complete but again work simply on plain knit and purl stitches and simple increase and decreases. There are patterns for nine ‘babes’ based on three basic body shapes. They vary slightly in complexity and in size. There are also a huge variety of outfits which will fit any of the dolls- to a more modest or racier degree! I knitted the medium sized doll for Anna’s birthday who came out very leggy, but with a very nicely shaped body, even if I do say so myself. These dolls have exaggerated features which mean they all come out different and with very distinct personalities. The eyes are painted with acrylic paint onto felt and I have to say I love this technique; honestly watch this space for more variations on this theme. I hooked the hair for my babe and am pleased with how sultry she looks, these dolls would certainly be suitable as gifts for older girls, and as exaggerated caricatures of friends- I really want to make a wild one with tattoos and piercings!
The body is strengthened with cardboard which means that you couldn’t throw dolly in the wash if she met with a messy disaster, so maybe not suitable for a very little girl. I have knitted two outfits so far and have found that the fit depends greatly on how well stuffed your babe is- I cast on some extra stitches for shoes as my doll has big feet! I also found that there aren’t quantity requirements for all garments and I started the coat with one 50g ball of wool and had to frog it as it was clearly going to take another. Also the pictures in the book show the dolls standing- which with long stuffed legs they don’t. I wonder if a child who chose a doll from the book would be disappointed by this? All in all babe is a success. I had great fun making her, and Anna has been carting her around by her leg, which is nice. I am handing the book on to Mum so she can post little outfits when she fancies a quick project to make a little treat for Anna. The book is £9.99 but the dolls wouldn’t cost more than a few pounds to make and with a small stash of wool possibly not even that. There would be time to make a babe and a whole fantastic wardrobe for a little girl before Christmas, and for those of you to whom, like me, these things matter, the babes do come with a pattern for bra and pants!
We have had such an exciting week, and I'll be posting an update in the next day or so- cake and all!