I learned to spin in June last year, and on July 2nd 2011 I wrote this post about spinning the above spiral of loveliness into yarn.  You might remember that post if you have been visiting Raymond and me for a long time now!


Having a look at old photos is giving my low spinning-self-esteem a good boost I must tell you, I’ve been a bit down about my spinning lately and quite uninspired to do any because I stopped getting the results I want and started spinning breaky horrible yarn that made me cry and get quite pissed off at my spinning wheel.  But seeing photos of my very first few skeins I can see that in fact my spinning is not getting worse which is a relief!  Adjusting to a new wheel is like adjusting to a new partner and getting to know all their quirks and learning to live with the little things that bug you, yes, the relationship between spinster and wheel is most important and needs time to develop and to be nurtured like any good relationship.

This yarn has been sitting in my stash for seven months now, ‘maturing’ as my Mum says, waiting for the perfect project to come along.  The other night I found said perfect project, rolled it into a ball and found what I hoped were the right sized needles. (they were, luckily)

I am in love with the book I showed you the other day, totally besotted with it.  After knitting a few more Mischievous Mice, I decided it was time to try one of the Three Hungry Bears and wanted to make it in handspun.  It took me the whole week, can you believe that I still haven’t cast on my February socks after all the sock hype of late?  I’ve been finishing Mummy Bear, and today I sat outside with my knitting and far too many cups of coffee and finished her off.

I’ve never constructed a toy before, so this was quite a new experience!  Mummy Bear is a ‘sitting bear’ which means that I sewed her legs on a bit funny, so she looks a bit wonky standing up.  For my very first attempt I am quite pleased with her and KB thinks she is quite wonderful.

My favourite thing about knitting Mummy Bear was experiencing the joy that comes with knitting your very own yarn.  I heart the colour variation and the way it stripes.  She is a Slow Yarn Bear.  Made from hand dyed fibre (not mine) spun with love and born from the knitting needles.  Love it.

Raymond sends his love, he is too busy to appear in tonight’s post as he is outside kicking some poor cat out of the backyard.  Thank you so much for popping in so regularly and sending some love and appreciation our way, it means a lot to us to hear from you.

Hope you’re happy!


About Crochet with Raymond

I'm a crochet obsessed, reiki master, crystal healing, yoga junkie, counselling student, in a happy long term relationship... and Raymond's mum!
This entry was posted in Knitting!, Slow Yarn Movement, Spinning. Bookmark the permalink.

75 Responses to Slow

  1. Jeannette Lazet says:

    Oh she is just so precious – I think a mummy bear is on the horizon for me – as the mama of 4 sons, a sitting bit of loveliness like that would just make my heart soar!!! Think of you often and all your sock posts had me buy a small ball of on-sale sock wool and make a nice new pair for Mr 3 and he is quite delighted with them!!! Love to you from slightly soggy Karori! xxxx

  2. meredithjean says:

    I LOVE Mummy Bear!!!!!!!

  3. Fiona says:

    Mummy Bear is adorable!

  4. Nagasri says:

    Wonderful Mummy Bear – so cuddly looking. And your very own spun wool looks perfect for this. So want to cuddle Mummy Bear. I hope your relationship with Wheel develops sweetly. Thanks for sharing so much of your life here in blogland. Nagasri in England

  5. Teje says:

    Dear Alice, your knitty bear is beautiful and so cute!
    Have a wonderful weekend! x Teje

  6. Jay says:

    Alice she is gorgeous!! You are so clever – I look forward to meeting her tomorrow and your KB and Raymond (of course)🙂

  7. I adore Mummy bear!!! She is beautiful!😀

  8. Love the Mummy Bear! Only crafters would appreciate that totally ‘made by hand’ tag! I love knitting and crocheting bears as well and must actually post my sporty bear picture for all to see. She will be sitting most of the time anyway, so the legs are ok!! Give Raymond a big hug from me. Love that cheeky cat!

  9. Planet Penny says:

    Oh, she’s lovely, and the colours are gorgeous! I’m still in love with my knitted rabbit, there’s something about that shaded wool that makes them extra cuddly, isn’t there? Although I’m feeling a rainbow one coming on!
    Have a lovely weekend,
    lots of love Penny and Higgins xxx
    Oh and Henry is shouting greetings as I type!

  10. Jo says:

    Oh she is just lovely- proving that any project can be pulled out of the bag with the right yarn. I have made many a toy out of horrible bits only to be disappointed with the result but when I do it with nice yarn…. I get the same feelingas you. keep spinning xx

  11. Jacquelyn says:

    Hi from northern Alberta, Canada !!
    Alice my wonderful lady you have done it again!!! She is beautiful. The colors are fabulous. Isn’t it fun to let wool “mature” till just the right project comes along!! I love your blog (only one of two I follow) and I appreciate all of your time and effort that you put into sharing your world with us cyber friends. I get such a thrill when I see a new post! Right now I have a caravan afghan on the go and I am enjoying all of the colors immensely. Probably won’t do a queen size but I am definitely keeping that one for myself. Please tell KB how amazing I think her paintings are and tell Raymond to keep up the cheekiness, it suits him!

  12. Rachel says:

    There is something about her that is just so intangibly beautiful and cosy looking, Maybe its all the home grownness of the whole project, but looking at her just touches a warm place in my heart, er colours, her overall cuteness, she’s just beautiful!!!

  13. Fay Hughes says:

    Dear Alice, your bear is beautiful and reading about you and Raymond makes me happy. Thank you, Fay

  14. Nikki Mommen says:

    Hi Alice
    Life is about up and downs! It the downs that makes the ups so wonderfull. I love the wool you have spun. And the teddy? LOVE IT!
    Love to Raymond

  15. Zjizjipke says:

    She’s beautiful! And the fact you made her from handspun wool and all makes her even more precious🙂 Say hi to Raymond for me from my cat, she’s a fan😉

  16. LornaPT says:

    Hi Alice, can’t believe how beautiful your spinning is, the yarn you made is beautiful. Got my spinning course at the end of feb for my lovely Ashton Traveller spinning wheel, can’t wait! Made a tea cosy, superb.
    Happy hooking and thanks xxxxxxxx

  17. Jaynicknitknacks says:

    Ahhhhhhhhhhh I LOVE her.
    Is she going to get the rest of her family to keep her company?!?!? She is great. The colous have worked out amazingly.
    Sometimes knitted bears faces are a little odd but not her. Will have to hunt out that book too.

  18. gaia says:

    I wish I could knit a teddy like yours for my son! Sooooo cute! And the yarn is just lovely; I loved the colour variation. You are such an inspiration!

  19. twinkletoes2day says:

    Ah, the sheer hugginess look of her makes me want to make one and hug hug hug :0) She is simply gorgeous😀

  20. Deco Cat says:

    What an amazing feeling to have made such a gorgeous toy for wool you have spun yourself! She looks snuggly and wonderful.

  21. Juanita says:

    Mummy bear is gorgeous! Let’s hope Raymond doesn’t mind the new addition! I’ve knitted a few bears in my time and my daughter used to request a matching blanket every time! Love your blog🙂

  22. Awesome and inspiring blog xx

  23. Heather says:

    I think she is wonderful too!❤

  24. Kate says:

    I love Mummy Bear, more so because of the tale behind her creation. Lovely!

  25. delphine says:

    You almost make me feel like trying spinning….. By the way, isn’t spinster also a word to talk about an unmarried woman? I ‘ve just the connection, reading your post….

  26. Penelope says:

    She is too sweet for words Alice, I love her tummy it looks like it’s full of honey! Your yarn turned out beautiful, it must make the knitting so pleasurable knowing that you have spun your very own yarn. I hope you and your spinning wheel continue to get to know each other and all your quirks and find the right groove for making many more miles of yarn. Alice has just commented on mummy bear and she loves her sweet ears and thinks she would make a very cuddly companion. Enjoy the rest of your weekend dearest Alice xox Pxxx

  27. baamekniits says:

    I used to have such trouble spinning with my old Ashford wheel and I got just as frustrated and cranky as you. Why couldn’t I spin? I could use a spindle so drafting was not the problem? I replaced everything that could be replaced on that wheel and sometimes she would spin like a dream and other times just CRAP….then I got my new Majacraft Aura and BLISS, I could spin and very nicely too I might say. So get the wheel checked Alice because I have seen that you can spin and I believe you have a natural talent learned thru osmosis from you mum. Not all wheels work well xx

  28. Mummy bear is beautiful! I loved it!
    I have to learn to knit! =)

  29. Dorothy says:

    Mummy beat is absolutely gorgeous and the colours worked out beautifully. Hope Raymond chased that predator away !!🙂

  30. How cute is that?!?

    O, she is so wonderful … I love this.

    Please, don’t be down about your spinning – it will get better again, I’m so sure of that!
    Many, many greetings from icecold Germany …

  31. mary i says:

    Mum Bear is verybeary cute!! Great work for your first time!!! I heart the color-way… Feel sorry for the kitty that dared to enter The Great Ones yard……

  32. penny says:

    Gosh that is brilliant. Made from your own handspun wool as well. I bet she will be treasured for a very loonngg time.

  33. nanaofnc says:

    Alice, so precious! Love the chubby tummy and everything about her. Makes me want to at least attempt a mouse or two. Tell Raymond we missed him! P.S. Have you ever noticed the “very first” item you make of a project is the best? I happens to me all the time. It’s like it’s my test project, but because I’m relaxed and don’t expect too much from myself, it turns out the best of all.🙂

  34. janie says:

    I think she turned out GREAT!! I can hardly wait to see the rest of the “family”. The yarn is beautiful. Keep up the good work!!

  35. Monita Olive says:

    That little bear is just adorable. I love the colors you chose for the yarn. Think I’ll have to give it a try and knit one of my own.

  36. Lyn Zalk says:

    D-I-V-I-N-E!!!! The whole enchilada ~ that is to say the fiber as it began, dye though yet un-spun, then the whole spinning thing has my heart in an uproar..(Would so love to learn) I am puzzled by much of the terminology , thought I do understand the reason for spinning int he opposite direction…) I learned to knit as a child but within the last 3 yrs lost my Mom and as she had a king sized afghan with but 7 stitches to complete it – I made it my business to figure out what was what and did so just 3 days before her passing…. It was intended for my younger sister and her partner of at that time 25 yrs…. But I digress – the point I was trying to make was that since learning to crochet I’ve had NO interest in knitting as the response time in crochet offers a far more instantaneous reward!!! That said your Bear is so adorable and delicious!!! Very inspiring!
    I too have often pondered the time distance piece, first when I traveled to Hawaii from my East Coast Island in New York, and again when I met and made a friend in Australia while attending a painting workshop….. having the Internet makes our communications easier more cost affective and un-intrusive with regard to time🙂
    Thanx for sharing and inspiring in the many ways you do! A Beloved new fan!

  37. SusanD1408 says:

    I love mummy bear! I love the colours! and it must feel fantastic that you know he is completely made by you!

  38. D'Ann Gayler says:

    I tried spinning once, and beleive me it is not easy. You did a beautiful job, even when you first started. I love you Mummy Bear. She is perfectly beautiful. I don’t knit often. I know it must be a labor of love to do the beautiful art you do. Thanks for showing us what can be done. Give Raymond a pet for me. Love.

  39. Pam says:

    Super-cute! Love the colors!

  40. Zooperson says:

    Now that is one cool mamma Teddy! Created by you from start to finish. Is getting a lamb or two next? Keep those varmints at bay, Raymond.

  41. Karen says:

    As ever I love your mummy bear, the yarn is gorgeous as are the colours, and I love her soooo much I’m inspired to make a bear this weekend too, must dash going to grab a pattern from somewhere and KNIT A BEAR! xxxxx

  42. Lisa says:

    Mummy Bear is lovely🙂

  43. Yarn and bear together were meant to be!🙂

  44. jenn w says:

    homespun yarn question Alice… when using your own yarn, have you measured it already so you know how many y/m you have before starting a project? I seem to be queen of starting a project only to run out of yarn 3/4 of the way through! help?

  45. Pam says:

    so adorable!! I’ve been trying to work up the courage to make a bear for 2 years now, I just know I’ll do it wrong but you have inspired me!

  46. That is quite a lovely bear! I think she needs some flowers … and a name!

  47. Michelle says:

    Your bear is lovely. I laughed when you said the yarn was not yours. I have to admit, I have been getting very jealous of the beautiful hanks of yarn that you have been spinning and dyeing! I wish I were so talented.🙂

  48. I love your bear and the yarn you’ve knitted her in.

  49. Carmen says:

    Wow!! You are so talented! It’s a pretty bear!

  50. Sarah says:

    Mummy Bear is so cute and I love the yarn!

  51. minaandme says:

    That yarn you spun up looks lovely🙂 I’m sorry to hear you’ve been in a slump lately. It seems as though your pretty bears are the perfect thing to make you happy again! Momma bear looks beautiful especially seeing as she’s your first toy! My first attempts never look they good… Enjoy your new found zeal!

  52. Julie says:

    Mummy bear is wonderful, she’s adorable, well one on such a super project

  53. Jess says:

    The process is beautiful… as is your little bear.🙂

  54. juniperjune says:

    oh my goodness, she is lovely! that’s why we let yarn “mature”– eventually, that perfect project WILL come along.🙂

  55. Leah Morcom says:

    I’ve only just started following your blog, Alice, and I’m enjoying your daily posts immensely. Your beautiful Mummy Bear was worth waiting for. It just goes to show us that there is a project awaiting us for any yarn in our stash – we just have to have patience, and it will happen when it is meant to. A beautiful job hun.

  56. One of the great things about blogs, as well as scrapbooks, is that helps give us perspective on things and that’s exactly what you’ve described with your spinning. Keep at it – your yarn always looks lovely!

  57. penelope10 says:

    Sounds like Raymond has adjusted rather well! Raymond you big boy, you show ’em!

  58. Pati from london says:

    You are so talented Alice!!!! Mummy bear is very cute and it is only your first one!!!! I can see you knitting many more. I love the frog from the knitting book you bought, whenever I see it, it makes me smile. I am accessing your posts through my mobile’s email now and It’s great but can’t always reply to them (sorry). Have a lovely weekend. London is covered with snow tonight and it feels quite calming and wintery…., love, Pati x

  59. Annemiek says:

    I love love love the colours!! And isn’t that KB’s chair she’s sitting in? She’s so pretty with the pinkish red of the chair in the background! I wish I could knit like that but I’m even less adventurous then you.
    Pretty yarny goodness!!

  60. Sarah says:

    “Raymond is kicking some poor cat out of the backyard”, that’s why I love your blog so much!

    Sarah from Texas

  61. Alyson says:

    The bear is adorable! She’s beautiful in your handspun yarn. I finally used mine last month on a cowl. Even though it’s not perfect, there’s still something soooo satisfying working with something I made myself. Don’t be so hard on yourself; I think it looks lovely.🙂 Love & hugs from the States.

  62. marieange says:

    One day I hope to learn how to spin!
    Your yarn is absolutely beautiful! I hope the day I learn to spin that my attempts look as good as yours and I can understand the pride of saying that you spun the yarn that made that lovely mummy bear!
    I can just imagine Raymond cuddling up to Mummy Bear on a cold evening. She looks cuddly and lovely and warm.
    As for Raymond, Gooooo Raymond! That’s what my Gambit is saying LOL He’d be right there with him kicking that poor cat out of the back yard. My Gambit doesn’t share his humans or his home with other kitties, dogs, birds, other humans… Ok so maybe he wouldn’t standing next to Raymond, but I’m sure he’d be cheering him on from his own backyard! LOL
    Enjoy the fruits of your work, give Raymond a cuddle when he’s done teaching lessons in property ownership🙂

  63. Dotson says:

    Mummy Bear is beautiful. Your spun yarn is beautiful. Your blog is wonderful and brings so much joy to all of we readers in cyberspace.

    I too, have a cupboard full of ‘maturing’ wool. I have will have to knit for three life times to get through it all. I definitely don’t need any more yarn. So, last Friday I drove from Canberra to Melbourne. It would have been a terrible shame not to call into the knitting mills at Wangarratta – just for a look, you understand. How could I walk out without just a few balls of sock yarn – grey/red mix and also a very bright red. You’ve inspired me, Alice. Is it possible for me to move out of my comfort zone and knit bright red socks? Yes it is! Enough wool.

    Except, now that I’m in Melbourne I found myself in Sunspun yarn shop. The most wonderful yarn shop that I’ve ever been in. I only planned to have a quick look to see what was there. What was there was the most beautiful 4 ply alpaca yarn in a beige/grey fleck. Wouldn’t that make a perfect vest for my dad’s 90th birthday in August. And hang the cost – it’s my dad’s 90th for heaven’s sake.

    Of course, these yarns will be knitted up immediately and not have time to mature…..

    Keep on knitting, crocheting, spinning and blogging. We love you and Raymond.


  64. Jane says:

    Wow mummy bear is ace!!!!

    Luv Jane XX

  65. Robin says:

    Alice, I just love your mummy bear! She is so well done and what a special bonus to know it is your own spun yarn. Congratulations on a first beautifully knit toy!! I can see more in your future from my crystal ball!
    Happy day to you, KB and Raymond

  66. Wendy says:

    That yarn is just gorgeous, I’m not usually a fan of variegated yarn but that is beautiful and the bear is so sweet!

  67. Jewel says:

    Mama Bear is soooooooo cute..

  68. lorna says:

    Hello cherub! It always cheers me up when your posts land in my inbox… Ma Bear is fantastic, all that lovey colour – almost makes me want to knit! I can only crochet, me and knitting just don’t get along, although I will master it one day, I’m sure. Don’t be down about the spinning – looks like it’s coming along very well to me. Toodleoo petal, have a lovely day.

  69. Tickety-boo says:

    Gorgeous colourway! He has a lovely plump tummy, just how Teds are supposed to be. Have you tried jointing him? The crochet ted I made had limbs that were jointed with detal floss! I thought that was genius (not my clever idea I must add) and it works really well.
    Love to you KB and His Nibbs
    Tickety-boo xxxxxxx

  70. stocki says:

    Hi again Alice.. well it looks like SusanD1408 beat me to it…I can’t see any awards on your blog, so not sure if you accept them, but if you would like one… and you know you deserve it.. pop over to my blog to pick up the Versatile Blogger Award.. hugs, Jill x

  71. awwww…..quite lovely your bear is and great job on the spinning….I want to learn to spin as well…need to find a class that will teach me…..looking forward to it!

  72. Jane says:

    The colour blends are lovely & the bear is fab! Perhaps the wheel needs some adjustments? You are very talented!

  73. Patz says:

    Love, LOve, LOVE!!!!! Is there ANYthing, girl, that you touch and doesn’t go straight to gorgeous??? **envy sigh** XOX

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