Sunday, November 21, 2010

Nancy and Liesel Learn to Knit

Do you remember the little wooden doll from your childhood that helped you learn to knit? You would loop a string of yarn around four posts on the top and then use your fingers or a wooden pin to loop the yarn around and over the posts to make stitches. From the base of the doll a long rope of knitting would appear. We always made them into floor rugs for our doll houses by coiling the loop and sewing the edges together to make a thick flat coaster shape. I think other people were more creative!

But I have very fond memories of these Knitting Nancys, as we called them. When I recently mentioned to my friend Nad in Germany that I couldn't find a nice wooden Knitting Nancy she said, "Oh! A Knitting Liesel! I've seen them over here - let me look for one for you!" Now, something you should know about my friend Nad is that she doesn't let anything stop her! If she has a problem to solve, she just goes to it and finds a solution - so, before the day was over, we had organized a great swap and she had located not one, but several vintage and new Knitting Liesels for me!

Here is my new and wonderful collection (in no particular order because I love them all so much!):

Here are the Knitting Toadstools -

a new one, with it's nifty knitting pin included (you can see the little round red top of the pin), a beautiful vintage one - it's stump is painted white, just like a real Amanita Muscaria, and the large one lying on its side is a handmade darning egg made by an 86-year-old elder who makes things for Nad's local farm fair!!!

another picture of the lovely Toadstools:

And here is the Knitting Angel - her wings are really intact, one is just a little off-center in the photo but it is really there! She also has her original knitting pin.

Next up is something amazing - a complete vintage kit! This company offered three versions, all pictured on the cover: a jaunty mushroom-man, a cheeky ladybug, and a traditional knitting doll - this time a man doll. I was so lucky because Nad found the Ladybug which is much sought-after and hard to find! I do love him! and the direction booklet is in German and English and other languages, so I am able to refresh my


Here is a closeup of my lovely bug:


and lastly, this most marvelous find - a very vintage Strickliesel from the GDR!:



Such lovelies!! Aren't I lucky to have such friends who send me treasures from around the world? I really am and I love my friends so dearly! They are greater treasures than anything they could send me.

In other news, I am about to adopt two feral kittens, whom I will name Holmes and Watson, and so I warn you that there will be kitten picspam on this blog in the future!


Ghislaine said...

So lovely!

Mette said...

I must start looking for Liesels, myself. Yours are so lovely. In Danish they are called Strikkeliser.

crazyhaberdasher said...

I have just found your blog and I am very happy to have found another knitting spool collector. I am an Aussie - I currently manage Yahoo Spoolknitter and Flickr Spool Knitter and I also have a blog - - which is entirely devoted to these charming knitting nancies/spoolknitters (I will be posting on it again soon, it has been a little neglected due to looking after the Yahoo group). I hope you will stop by and check them out. On Yahoo you can find lots of links, ideas, etc. and we even have competitions. ... Happy Spooling, cheers, Maz