Thursday, 13 August 2015

The Trials and Tribulations of Regia Teddy

Anyone that follows me on Instagram will have seen this Teddy taking shape over the last 6 weeks or so. But it hasn't been a smooth ride, in fact near the end it got decidedly bumpy and I wondered whether Teddy would actually appear at all! 

So let me tell you a little story, all about Teddy's traumatic birth...

It all started when one of the lovely people at Coats sent me a couple of balls of new Arne and Carlos Regia sock wool and a pattern leaflet. I saw that photo of Teddy above and just fell in love - I had to make Teddy!

I decided to swap the lovely turquoise coloured yarn they had sent for this amazing Kristin Nicholas design, also Regia, which I had in stock in the shop.

I made one leg , just like a mini sock, with my 5 DPN's (double pointed needles), and then the next. Everything was going well.

The legs were joined at the body, two arms followed (even minier socks) and all joined up together on 6 needles! Yes I was using 7 needles to knit for a while - proper ninja knitting!!

Everyone was very impressed but actually it is no harder to knit with 6 needles than 2 .

By the time I hit the neck I was back to 5 needles and it looks like the weather had improved !

So everything had been going well and I was pleased and excited, just the head to do now.

Things did get a little trickier here and it's also looking quite painful for Teddy as his face is created in a slightly Frankensteinish way!

At last his snout was finished! This happened quite late at night when my sister, my cousin and my husband were all in attendance. Delightedly I turned Ted around to greet them...

And they just laughed and laughed!!

They became quite hysterical laughing at Teddy. I tried to cover his ears (but he didn't have any yet so it wasn't a problem) and massaged his head to look more 'teddylike'. But still they laughed - I must have done something wrong they said, he looked more like a badger than a teddy!

I was heartbroken, poor teddy... he didn't deserve this! I had been planning on making him for my husband's birthday as he had been quite taken by the photo on the pattern. But Jonathan was particularly cruel, calling Teddy a mutant. I told him I wouldn't give Teddy to him now! He would go to the shop to advertise the wool instead!

Over the next few days I stared at Teddy and at the pattern - what had I done wrong?! Maybe his head did look a bit weird...

I couldn't bring myself to finish him. I kept him safe in my bedroom and left the pattern, remaining wool and needles on my sewing room table. The next day I woke up determined to tackle Teddy.

But something terrible greeted me in the sewing room!

One of my cats (I strongly suspect Simon) had been sick all over the Teddy pattern! So much so that it had dissolved in cat sick and was unreadable! And another cat (I strongly suspect Hector) had chewed the ends off 3 out of 5 of my DPN's!! Were the cats trying to tell me something? Did they hate Teddy too?!

In desperation I took Teddy into my shop to show my colleague Jane. Jane is a much better knitter than me, maybe she could help me rescue Teddy.

And she did! She took one look at him and said he was absolutely fine as he was, he just needed his ears and his face. To illustrate she cut out some paper ears and pinned them to his head and pinned on some button eyes and a nose too. And he looked exactly like the pattern!!

Teddy was saved!

I did then take me another few weeks to knit the ears and then another few days to build up the courage to sew them on, I was so worried I would ruin him!

Luckily the pattern is available online - here.

And just look at him now - a really cute Teddy!! He does have a bit of a floppy neck (I am thinking a scarf might help), and there is no way a child is ever going to get it's hands on him, but other than that he is perfect and I love him!

Teddy is now embarking on a new life living at the shop, wearing a tiny placard and helping to sell the Regia wool!
(Actually I lied about the tiny placard).


  1. Jo, I am sitting here proper laughing. First at "the mutant", then the vomit and THEN the chewed pins!! Poor Teddy! *g* He is just lovely and full of character. Hooray for Jane's words of wisdom. Bet Jonathan's laughing on the other side of his face now, eh? Heh heh.

  2. Oh tell Jonathan I'm surprised at him!:) Silly guy....I for the life of me couldn't see anything wrong with teddy!:) He is amazing...vomit directions and all!:)

    Funny too as I was just watching my Craftsy class to learn HOW to knit!!:) I feel this is a slippery slope and I'm going to be sucked in!!

  3. You made me laugh so hard, it was funny and then the cats, well my cats do things like that. I am glad that you ended up finishing him as he is sweet.

  4. your perseverance certainly paid off he is a wonderful teddy loved reading about his birth! Had no idea that people knit with so many needles 4 is the most I have heard of. Looks a mighty big challenge to me

  5. We'd all look a bit odd without ears and eyes! He's a lovely ted and will have a fine life in the shop!

  6. He's so cute--I can't wait to see him in the shop :)

  7. Oh my, what a fascinating story of persistence and success!
    First Frankenstein Teddy, then Blankface Teddy, then the opinion of the cat(s).
    And Teddies hate to be laughed at.
    But Teddy is fabulous now, and will be admired by everyone who visits the shop.
    And he is a working teddy (teddies like to have something to do).
    Great blogpost, Jo.

  8. I'm so pleased you finished him. It would have been cruel to leave him faceless for the rest of his life.

  9. Poor Teddy, he's had a rough introduction to the world! I really think he'd suit a tiny sandwich board...