Saturday, 29 November 2014

Looking Through the Wardrobe for Knitwear Design

Today is C.S. Lewis's 116th birthday, so I thought I'd do a post of Narnia-related projects. There weren't too many Narnia-themed knitting patterns out there. For that matter there aren't too many commercially made Narnia products out there, period. When a former co-worker of mine hosted a birthday party for her Narnia-obsessed nephew some years back, she ended up creating all the decorations and games herself. And she did an amazing job of it. She wheeled a garment rack full of coats in front of the entrance to her living room, so that the birthday boy and his guests had to walk "through the wardrobe" to get to the party. She made cute invitations, party favours, and decorations using images downloaded off the net. She had the children decorate their own crowns. She dressed up as Jadis the White Witch and played a game with them in which they had to dance to music and "turn to stone" every time the music stopped, and each time the Witch paused the CD, the last child to stop moving was eliminated from the game. When I remember seeing the pictures of all this and the obviously thrilled birthday boy, I think perhaps after all it's better that there isn't much mass produced Narnia paraphernalia. Some things are so much better for being homemade. That party was much more memorable and charming (not to mention less expensive) than any party with overpriced Aladdin stuff from the Disney Store could ever have been. I will say though that a book or magazine of Narnia-themed knitting patterns would be a nice-to-have. Maybe Interweave Press will do one sometime...?

But to get to the Narnia patterns I did find. Some knitters have replicated Lucy's 1940s-style sweater from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, as shown above, as well as other knitwear from the Narnia movies, but I was looking for patterns that more directly referenced the original text.

These are the Lantern Waste Mittens, designed by Kjerstin Gjengedal, and it's exactly the kind of Narnia-themed design I'd like to see more of. This pattern is available for €4.00(EUR).

If you like picture knits and Narnia, the Dégel à Narnia (or "Thawing Narnia") vest, designed by Isabelle Allard, may be right up your alley. This pattern is available for C$3.00(CAD).

I always picture Mr. Tumnus as being a more elegant, graceful creature than this Mr. Tumnus doll, designed by Neil James, but the doll is certainly adorable and cuddly and probably much more appealing to a child, which is much more to the point. This pattern is available for £1.99(GBP).

This is the Edmund Crown/Hat, designed by Nikol Lohr, and it will be a nice way to keep your little pretender to the Narnian throne warm and happy this winter. The pattern was published in Literary Knits: 30 Patterns Inspired by Favorite Books, which I've written about previously.

I found this photo of Narnia Chronicles stitch markers on Pinterest. They were listed on Etsy and have been sold, and I wasn't even able to figure out which Etsy vendor made them. However, I just had to include them because they're such a perfect fetish notions for the Narnia-loving knitter, and some of you may have the skills to make use of the idea.

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