I was incredibly fortunate to get to study again with Julie Arkell in Denmark. The course was very similar to the one I did in France two years ago. That time, Julie Arkell showed me how to knit dolls’ clothes – not with a pattern, but by knitting a little, holding it up to the doll, and then making adjustments. With this approach you can knit any garment for any weird-sized-and-shaped doll. Since then, I’ve tried knitting for my dolls with rather mixed results. Although I understood the principle, it hasn’t worked very well for me. So this course was a good opportunity to really try and nail it.
However, you should have seen Julie’s face when I asked for her suggestions on how to knit a cardigan for Siamese twins.
Luckily, she did eventually come up with an idea, and it worked out beautifully.
She showed me a new way she knits hoods for her dolls. I was inspired by her recent crows to make this Scavenger figure. Inside its belly is a bottle that washed up on the beach in Thailand, found by my excellent-scavenger-girlfriend Paula, and a little frozen Charlotte doll I’d made.
I made this cat too. No knitted garments for her, as it turned out.
On the second day of the workshop I realised that if I really wanted to nail the knitting thing, I’d have to knit a onesie. So I quickly added a fourth doll to my collection, inspired by one of Julie’s very sweet figures who wears a onesie. This added a fair bit of pressure to my schedule as I raced to finish everything before the course was over. I JUST made it – except for the actual onesie! In the last hour, Julie gave me instructions for how to go it alone.
And then I did, by myself, and I was astonished to see it turned out fantastically.
My four little creatures then travelled with me right across Norway. At every destination, I’d take them out of my case to avoid them getting squashed, and so create a small art display. It felt very charming and companionable, having them there, watching over me day after day.