Saturday, January 15, 2011

Totoro Knitalong Two

We left off with 22 rows knit.  After that there are a few rows just knit straight.

Then we begin decreasing.

And the knitting begins to look like a fat, round body.  Row 37 to 52 is where Rududu left out 8 rows.  From looking at the pictures of my first totoro, I think I may have left out all these rows.  On this version, I left out ten of these straight knitting rows.  

After the straight knitting, we begin decrease rows again.  I like to stuff the body every so often to see if the shaping is coming along the way I want it to.  If not, I can rip a few rows and change it but if you don't stuff it, it's difficult to tell.

Cheif Knitting and Yarn Management Assistant being ever helpful.

I forgot that you need white felt to put behind the eyes.  I didn't have any in the house so I decided to knit a swatch of white wool and felt it.  I didn't have any the last time I made one of these either so that time I needle felted a couple of little circles to go behind the eyes.

I start testing eye placement before I get too far up in the knitting because it can be hard to click those washers on if the opening isn't large enough.  This placement is wrong, the eyes should be farther apart.

I'm not sure why the eyes look crooked in this picture because they aren't in real life.  I'm also not happy with the top of the head - it's just too pointy.  I may take out the last two rows and finish the top without them.
Edit: I went back and unknit the top few rows.  I knit through round 61 and then broke the string and ran it through the 12 stitches left on my needles.  That made for a much more pleasing top of the head.  Pictures with the next post.

On to the belly.  I knit this little oval to sew on the belly.  Stockinette curls so it just wouldn't lay flat - it will be fine once it's sewed on - but for the picture's sake, I flattened it with knitting needles.  Here is the pattern I used, but you can make up your own, depending on how much of the belly you want to cover with white.

Cast on 7 using the long tail cast on (because it gives you the first knit row).
Row 1 and all odd rows thru Row 23:  Purl
Row 2:  K1, M1, K5, M1, K1   - 9 sts
Row 4:  K1, M1, K7, M1, K1   - 11 sts
Row 6:  K1, M1, K9, M1, K1   - 13 sts
Row 8:  K1, M1, K11, M1, K1   - 15 sts
Row 10:  K1, M1, K13, M1, K1   - 17 sts
Row 12:  K17
Row 14:  K1, M1, K15, M1, K1   -19 sts
Row 16:  SSK, K15, K2tog   - 17 sts
Row 18:  SSK, K13, K2tog   - 15 sts
Row 20:  SSK, K11, K2tog   - 13 sts
Row 22:  SSK, K9, K2tog   - 11 sts
Row 24:  SSK, K7, K2tog   - 9 sts
Row 25:  P2tog, P5, P2togTBL  - 7 sts
Row 26:  Bind off as you SSK, K3, K2tog

Stay Tuned:  More in a few days . . . .


Susan said...

I LOVE IT......THANKS. Happy to become a follower of your blog. Susan

VA said...

Wow! So adorable and expertly knitted! I'm late getting started but will cast on tomorrow. I'm going to try Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Cotton in color 616 and size 5 double-pointed needles. I have the yarn in my stash, and it looks like a good color for a blue Totoro. I'm looking forward to seeing what DMR's Totoro looks like in the Cascade 220 as that is easy for me to get. Thanks for this great knitalong! Virginia

VA said...

Busy with a newborn but have been able to squeeze in a little knitting. I'm only at row 22 but here's what I've learned so far: Susan B. Anderson suggests size 5 needles with the yarn I'm using for toys in her book, "Itty Bitty Toys." I started with 5's and soon abandoned--too tight! Size 6 needles have been much more comfortable. I'm a newbie knitter and don't quite have the hang of m1. Mostly because I was going so slowly, I started over after 5 rows and used the "kfb" per the Knitty pattern. Hopefully on my next Totoro I'll be able to follow Teresa's pattern more closely!