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Whimsical Knitted Gifts

Dec 10, 2012

When I saw the Annelli Doll, pictured below, I immediately thought, "I'm going to knit her and name her Estelle." She can sit on my bookshelf and watch over my knitting library. I just love her!!

Annelli Doll, Estonia   
Annelli is the creation of designer Lucinda Guy, from her wonderful book, Northern Knits Gifts. Lucinda wrote this book to celebrate the handknitting traditions of Shetland Islands, Iceland, Sweden, Norway, Estonia, Faroe Islands, Finland, and Denmark. Annelli is inspired by the traditional folk costumes of Estonia.

Here's what Lucinda says about Annelli:

"Traditional folk costumes of Estonia are exceptionally varied and beautiful, and they can range from simple gray felted jackets and long coats from Hargla, to elaborately patterned and ribboned headdresses from Kadrina, to astonishingly brightly colored and embroidered knitted festive stockings from Muhu Island.

However, it is the traditional summer costume for a young girl from Hargla that was the particular inspiration for this little toy doll. A summer costume would consist of a blue, red, and white striped skirt, an embroidered belt, a simple embroidered blouse, and a garland of summer flowers to decorate her hair. Annelli is knitted in two flat pieces, with separate arms and legs that are stitched to the body.

The details on her blouse, skirt, and boots as well as her eyes, cheeks, and mouth are simple embroidery stitches. Annelli also has little knitted flowers stitched onto her hair. I would recommend using a fine pure wool yarn that will felt slightly once washed, creating a nice firm fabric ideal for toys, and a pure wool fleece toy filler."

Another project that I can't keep my eyes off of is the Oluffa Doorstop. Here's what inspired Lucina to design this darling, unique doorstop:

"Oluffa will make a wonderful gift at any time of the year, but perhaps especially so in the early months as we look forward to the lengthening, lighter days.

Chickens and cockerels were considered to be symbols of protection and good luck; in folklore, they were particularly associated with the sunrise, daylight, and spring. Consequently, they were considered potent protection against the dangers that came with darkness and winter.


Oluffa Doorstop, Faroe Islands

Oluffa is knitted in the round using a selection of traditional Faroese patterns and Nordic eight-point stars that are highlighted with simple French knots. I would recommend filling it with natural sheep's fleece and a strategically placed rock or other weighty object in the base."

I actually do need a doorstop, but even if you don't, the Oluffa is a wonderful addition to any decor. Picture it in a child's room, or in your craft room. I love it.

Each of these projects would make a wonderful gift, right? And giving knitting gifts is so special. Lucinda says, "When knitting these projects you are effectively creating gifts that encapsulate traditions and heritage. Gifts connect us with our past and our ancestors, and gifts celebrate the here and now."

I couldn't agree more.

Get your self a copy of Northern Knits Gifts today and start knitting these fabulous, whimsical projects.


P.S. What's the most special gift you've ever knitted? Let us know in the comments!

Featured Product

Northern Knits Gifts Thoughtful Projects Inspired by Folk Traditions

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Revisit the rich landscapes of knitting traditions of Iceland, Shetland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia, and Finland with this new collection of 20 folk-inspired knit accessories and small projects.


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on Dec 15, 2012 10:50 PM

I live abroad. Don't you have this edition in PDF format? It would be fantastic.

All the best,

Mary Jo Zilveti

on Dec 11, 2012 11:37 AM

from my knitting journal last year: "I had never actually knitted anything for these two wonderful people who came into my life over 31 years agom my in-laws.  I've always meant to.  They have a new love seat and sofa in a dark, rich chocolate color with accent pillows with dark teal and different shades of brown that cry out for this pattern.  I received the new KnitPicks catalog on Thursday, showed this shawl pattern to my DH and told him the plan.  Normally he balks when I mention buying new yarn, but being this will be for his parents, he agreed it is a good plan! :)

August 29, 2011 I have the yarn, I have wound the ball from hanks into cakes, I have the needles and the charted pattern.  As soon as I finish the Iris KAL Shawl, I cast on!  Whoop!

I bought two of these kits to make a throw, and I plan on modifying the pattern, use the lace but just not short row the pattern.  Hopefully I can knit it up between next week and the first weekend in November as I plan on another gift for my dear mother by marriage (or stepmother, but that really has negative connotations), the Eiffel Tower Shawl that I want to begin while on the way to our annual pilgrimage/vacation in the mountains of New Mexico. Wish me luck!"

I did finish the blanket in November of last year and gifted this to Mom and Dad.  Little did I know that before this Christmas he would have left us.  I am so glad I did put off other projects and knit this when I did.  My MIL still uses the blanket as it had become Dad's favorite before he died. You never know what will happen to those you love.  When you think of doing something for them, do it! It may be the last gift you ever give them.

annekaelber wrote
on Dec 11, 2012 6:25 AM

My most special project ever knitted was for my son. I blogged about it here, back in 2007:


cheriinmn wrote
on Dec 10, 2012 10:13 AM

The most special gift I have ever knitted was Fiber Trends "The Peace Shawl" for my grandmother's 90th birthday.  A close second was Fiber Trends "The Landscape Shawl" for my husband's grandmother when she was 96.  Both of them are still enjoying their gifts, and that makes me so happy!

carlie wrote
on Dec 10, 2012 9:53 AM

the doll is so adorable.  I think she needs to sit on my shelf in the sewing room.  My new grandbaby needs one too, for her book shelf.  The doorstop is a great gift idea too.  

carlie wrote
on Dec 10, 2012 9:52 AM

the doll is so adorable.  I think she needs to sit on my shelf in the sewing room.  My new grandbaby needs one too, for her book shelf.  The doorstop is a great gift idea too.  

on Dec 10, 2012 9:11 AM

Doorstops are seriously handy for just about any household...I'm perpetually walking into my bathroom door, which hangs off-kilter. And one this cute??? Gosh, I think just about anyone would appreciate it...but it's heavy and the recipient is going to think this wrapped present is some ultra-expensive piece of kitchen gadgetry. Watch the surprise on this person's face when he unwraps to find a doorstop!