Sunday, November 28, 2021

Trip to Japan

An amigurumi crocheted doll with the appearance of a kokeshi, traditional Japanese wooden doll. She has a red robe with blue border on the sleeves, and a blue and orange sash. Her hair is in a single bun with a red sash around its base.

Pattern: Hanako, le pequeña kokeshi by La Calle de la Abuela (link to English pattern page on blog, Le calle de la abuela🔗)

Started: November 22, 2021

Finished: November 28, 2021

Made for: Wampus House Challenge 2021

Yarn(s): Red Heart Super Saver (100% acrylic; 364yds/333m = 198g)
  • 24 g of "Cream" (started with 36g; ended with 12g) = 44.1 yds (skin/color A)
Bernat Premium (100% acrylic; 360yds/329 m = 198g)
  • 42g of "58507 Red" (started with 83g; ended with 41g) = 76.4 yds (kimono/color B) 
  • 6g of "58521 Royal Blue" (started with 59g; ended with 53g) = 10.9 yds (sash & accents/color C) 
  • 1g of "58510 Orange" (started with 63g; ended with 62g) = 1.8 yds (highlight on sash/color E)
Bernat Satin (100% acrylic; 200yds = 100g)
  • 10g of " 4040 Ebony" (started with 60g; ended with 50g) = 20 yds  (hair/ color D)         
Total yardage: 153.2 yds

Hook size: 4.0mm/ US 6-G

Notes & Photos:
October 26: Getting this page set up for this year's Wampus House Challenge. And we're going to Japan.

This doesn't really thrill me. I knew someone who was very over-the-top about their affection for Japanese everything; this was an extremely white girl in a house decorated and furnished like she was living in Japan several centuries ago. It was... odd, to put it kindly. It was extremely uncomfortable to me as it felt like she was trying to be something she really really wasn't.

It is My House's challenge, and I won't let them down.

Nov 7: I've been scrambling about trying to find something for this Challenge and I kept seeing the word "kokeshi". So I became a bit curious and found this description using a quick google search: 

"Kokeshi dolls are Japanese wooden dolls traditionally made for children. It is said that Kokeshi were originally sold to visitors to hot springs in the Tohoku region of Japan during the late Edo period (1600-1868), to supplement business and keep workers' hands busy during the winter months."

These are quite simple little dolls in kimonos and I must admit they're quite cute. An old-fashioned plaything much like corn dolls were on the North American prairies. I find these very interesting and so I'll look for a knit or crochet pattern of a Kokeshi...

later (8:21am): I've found a very cute pattern on a blog which I've linked above. Looking at other patterns though I like the wider sash; I believe that makes the outfit a kimono rather than the thin cord as it's written. I will have to check some terminology and/or photos to be sure I'm doing the right thing. I'm creating quite the collection of stuffed toys this Fall!

later (8:32am): More Kokeshi information!
"Kokeshi, are simple wooden Japanese dolls with no arms or legs that have been crafted for more than 150 years as a toy for children. Originally from the northeastern region of Japan, they are handmade from wood, having a simple trunk and head with a few thin, painted lines to define the face."

"In general, there are two types of Kokeshi: Traditional Kokeshi and Creative Kokeshi. Apart from this, based on regional areas Kokeshi comes in many other varieties such as Naruko, Yamagata, Nanbu, Tsugaru, Tsuchiyu, Yajiro, Zao-takayu and many more."

I've also found some photos of traditional and creative Kokeshi. And of course there are patterns for knitted and crocheted Kokeshi (like the one I linked above) in the amigurumi style, which is appropriate given that amigurumi were first popularly crocheted in Japan. Full circle project!

This first photo shows several Traditional Kokeshi and is labeled where each style originated:
Caption given above photo.

This next photo shows several Creative Kokeshi. Note the use of more colors and the extra details to show the outfits and the addition of pieces for the hair. You'll also notice the little girl in a modern sailor dress and pigtails in the front row:
This photo is captioned in the paragraph preceding it.

This Creative Kokeshi while dressed in a traditional kimono has additional pieces added to it to make it a truly three-dimensional piece, most notably the sleeves:
Kokeshi with added on black hair, wearing a pink kimono with a green sash. The sleeves are added on rounded wedge-shaped pieces which stick out on the sides of the body as if they were the doll's elbows.

Ok! I have a lot of info and a pattern :) After I settle on colors I can make my own Creative Kokeshi, hopefully before the deadline!

Nov 22: Right off, I'm making some changes. I want to add a sash, similar to the doll pictured right above this. Since the pattern already has shaped sleeves like this doll, I think that's a decent modification to make. This will lengthen the body which will necessitate longer and wider sleeves; I've already made written changes in my offline notebook about these.

Ok, let's see where I get tonight!

Nov 28 (3:53am): I finished her! It's been a rough few days between my surgery recovery and Sistwerp's continuing issues with her leg and sometimes back, but I finished my kokeshi. I did modify the pattern, which makes her look much more Traditional other than her bun and sleeves of her kimono. I think she turned out rather well :) Here are the extra photos of her:
The doll described in the first photo from the right hand side.

The doll from previous photos from alightly above to show the bun and bun wrap better.

The same doll as previous photos viewed from the left hand side.

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