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Sunday, 30 October 2011

D is for Damson, Dahlia, and a Delicious Dilemma

I was woken up in the middle of the night on Friday by a scratching sound by my bedside.  Since our lovely cat Sakura's death a fortnight ago I have heard the mice dancing a jig in our attic so I was a little fearful of what I might find when I opened a weary eye.  I need not have feared for I found Dahlia The Rabbit  standing on the tip of her long toes and shivering.
"What ever is the matter?" I managed to mumble.
"I'm cold", she replied. "These trousers you made last week are fine and dandy for prancing about on stage but I would be grateful for something warmer now the nights are so frosty".

I nodded sagely and went back to sleep until Angélique woke me up a little while later.  It was still dark but my conscience geared me into making a little something warmer for Dahlia and I smiled as I knitted for I reminded myself of the Elves and the Shoemaker although much bigger in size of course.

Dahlia is delighted with her overalls and she happily declared them damson in colour.
"Why not?" I smiled for they do remind me a little of the damson's shining black-purple coats with matt blue overlay.
Dahlia urged me to write down the very simple pattern I concocted in the dead of night so should any of you wish to make this adorable Helen Philipps' rabbit you too might be able to dress it warmly.

So for those who are interested you will find my Dahlia's Overalls pattern at the end of this post.

And now for the delicious dilemma!

For the first time in years my dearest husband will have a week off between Christmas and the New Year.  Can you imagine our excitement?  After our weekly family meeting we decided we would like to head off in search of snow somewhere in the mountains.  The Alps seemed the obvious destination.  My mother's family is from Savoie and whilst I spent all my childhood holidays there I have lived by the sea for many years in Normandy and have not so much as glimpsed a mountain for far too long.

It is time to return.
We have searched for a gîte and it was my husband who came up with the following idea:

"Why don't we look for a roulotte (gypsy caravan) on a mountain top?"
   He knows me well.  You see, dear readers, one of my dreams when we finally buy a house and garden of our own in the Loire Valley is to also own a gipsy caravan, decorated by ourselves, which would serve to house visiting friends, host birthday parties for the children, and maybe even serve as an extra B&B room.

So this is what we found.  Please take a peep and tell me honestly what you think.  Bear in mind that at Christmas there will be snow on the ground as it is located between Chamonix and Geneva.  Do you think, as a family of five, we would be nuts to sejourn there for a week?  We generally get on pretty well although we are not perfect, of course.  For those who read French you will see there is a farm nearby which would be wonderful for the children.

 I am waiting for your thoughts on this delightful dilemma.
   
Until then I shall leave you with a picture of my newest acquisition:
 
My fabulous Fairysteps shoes!

Despite my deceptively large legs displayed here I feel like a fairy when wearing these for they fit like a kid glove and make me feel as if I am walking on air.


Have a heavenly week walking on air and welcome to my new followers!  I should have some good news to share with you in my next post!

A bientôt,


Stephanie


And here as promised is my humble pattern:

Dahlia's Overalls
I used Rowan Felted Tweed (so very soft) and a pair of US 4 (3.5mm) needles.

Legs
make 2
Cast on 34 stitches
Knit 2 rows
Starting with a K row knit 24 rows in stocking stitch (or more should you wish for longer trousers)
Cast off 2 stitches at the beginning of the next 2 rows to shape the crotch
Knit a further 22 rows in stocking stitch
Next rowm *K6 K2 tog* repeat ** 3 times, K6 (27 stitches)
Purl 1 row
Knit 2 rows
Cast off. 

Bib
make 1
Cast on 20 stitches
Row 1: Knit 1 row
Row 1: K2, P to last 2 stitches, K2
Row 3: Knit
Row 4: K2, P2 tog, P to last 4 sts, P2 tog, K2
Repeat the last 4 rows 3 times (12 stitches)
Knit 3 rows
Cast off

Straps
make 2
Cast on 4 stitches
Working in Garter stitch, knit 24 rows.
Cast off.

To sew up overalls.

With right sides together, fold each leg in half lengthways and sew up leg seam.
Turn one leg right way out and fit this one insdie the other.  Sew up crotch seam and turn right side out.
Sew bib to front of trousers.  
Sew one edge of each strap to the back of the overalls, about 1 cm either side of the centre seam, cross straps over at the back and sew the other end to the top of the bib at the front, overlapping 1cm.  Sew a button ont he end of each strap although these will not undo.

Finished!
 

43 comments:

  1. Mais c'est adorable, la roulotte! Is it well heated and insulated? You would be the best judge of whether you can all stand to be that close for that period of time. But it looks like a lot of fun. Une cuisine équipée - what more could you ask? I like the part about the rêves doux.

    Dahlia looks extremely comfy and warm in her new overalls. I love the relaxed reclining shot.

    Your beautiful shoes! That incredible website! My jaw dropped and I'm sure I must have started drooling when I opened up that tab. I'll take Sprite, and Queenie, and Moth...and one of every bag.

    Have a wonderful week as you flit fairy-like through the days.

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  2. That caravan looks great.it will be sooo cosy.Love your shoes.i don't think you would buy those over here.

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  3. I cast my vote in favor of the caravan, because it will arm you with knowledge for your own someday caravan.
    I don't know where you are going to put the skis , though -)
    darling overalls and shoes!
    xx
    julie

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  4. Oh I would go for it Stephanie, what a wonderful caravan. Take plenty of blankets, woolly sweaters and hot water bottles and you'll be fine and ready for an adventure!
    Make sure Dahlia wears her dungarees too, to keep her warm (thanks for sharing your pattern).
    Vivienne x
    P.S. Great shoes. :)

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  5. No wonder Miss Dahlia is smiling - what a cozy looking outfit she is sporting! And in a beautiful color too.

    We have camped in cold climates & it can be quite fun if you are prepared...

    Your shoes would make anyone happy - absolutely adorable!

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  6. What an adventure! Cold and snow can be a whole lot of fun with proper preparation. Dahlia will certainly be ready, her knitted overalls look so cozy :D

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  7. STEPHANIE!!! It's official, we are going to be Very Good Friends. I am obsessed with gypsy caravans. OBSESSED. I want one for my backyard. My husband thinks I am crazy. Look at my Pinterest board! http://pinterest.com/juliabookbag/the-gypsy-carnival-circus/
    YOU MUST STAY IN THE ROULOTTE!!! It looks divine. Your family will have such a lovely time, I'm sure!! Oh how lucky you are!

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  8. BONJOUR MON AMIE!

    Oh my friend, you always manage to make fairy magic, EVERY TIME I come to see you, and it is so good to see you up and running....IN YOUR FAIRY SHOES!!!!!!

    I must run off to work...thank you for this sweet visit here! BISOUS, Anita

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  9. Blushing profusely at being included in such a wonderful post... with the bestest dressed rabbit on earth!!! Wishing you many magical miles together, and once again, thank you xxxxx Ren xxxx

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  10. Oh Stephanie,

    SO NICE to see your comment before I leave for work!!!! AND THANK YOU for your enthusiasm. I have only been open a week and I have sold enough to keep me very busy!!!!!!! THANK YOU and enjoy a beautiful French, autumn day!!! Anita

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  11. it looks like it would be a fun vacation in a (cozy) caravan!

    love the shoes-and very sweet bunny and overalls :)

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  12. I love Dahlia's new outfit, and am reassured to know that she won't suffer from the cold anymore! :-)
    What a truly delightful dilemma you have!!! I'd definitely go for the gypsy caravan - it looks beautiful and very special!!!
    You should NOT have showed your new shoes! I just HAD to check out that site - and now I'm going to HAVE to get some for myself!!! They are AMAZING!!!
    Carly
    x

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  13. You have a pair of Ren's shoes!!! Colour me green!! And Dahlia has plum trews, which are just gorgeous. You're having a very well dressed week at Millefeuilles :D
    The holiday. How splendid. If you are sure you could all cope with being squashed into that glorious little caravan for a week even if all it does is rain, then yes, go for it!

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  14. Those shoes are beyond splendid!!!
    I'm off to click on the link... I feel drawn to those shoes ;-)

    Celia

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  15. I think you will all be very cosy and lovely in that caravan. It looks gorgeous!

    Dahlia looks as pretty as ever in her Damson ensemble.

    Stephanie, your shoes are magnificent ... and those tights - wow!

    Have a lovely autumnal week.

    Jeanne
    x

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  16. This post is just brimming over with fun and creativity and imaginative ideas!

    Every single bit of it.

    Ski trip...caravan, damson overalls knit for a princess with long ears, and those shoes. Those shoes!

    Best wishes. xo

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  17. Such a lot to read in this interesting post, I had to save it for later in my work day to pay proper attention! I love the woolly dungarees you have made for Dahlia, and I'm sure she will appreciate them. (And thank you for linking to me about the bunny design, it is much appreciated too!) The caravan looks really delightful, and perfectly cosy inside...I think you would have a lovely time there. And the shoes....so soft and such delightful colours!! Enjoy your week.
    Helen x

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  18. Upon my word, I am absolutely over the moon for the caravan! It is simply magical!
    LOVE the fairy shoes...you shall softly glide upon gauzy wings from now forward.

    Happy day to you...

    Warmly,
    Judy

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  19. Nuts! of course not...wild, wonderful and lots of fun, that is what it would be.
    I have always wanted a gypsy caravan and even though I was born in Lincolnshire (a very flat county) I love mountains. They seem to renew my spirit and I feel free.
    You would have a wonderful time there (wrapped up warm) I am sure.
    Love the overalls dear Stephanie. They are adorable.
    The squash soup recipe sounds delicious...thank you. I do love soup!
    Much love to you.

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  20. Dahlia is a very well dressed bunny. Your shoes are totally cute, and I say go for the caravan! It sounds magical.

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  21. What a lovely family memory making holiday you will have..entirely perfect location & lodgings. Dahlia will certainly need her damson delights up there! Yes, hot water bottles sound like the story. Please do keep blogging won't you!!..because I desparately want to come with you when you move to the Loire Valley & have a gypsy caravan of your own. I so love your shoes..the colour!!! with the tights is divine. Ren is just so clever isn't she. Much love my friend.
    Catherine xoxo

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  22. I think Dahlia should have climbed in to bed with you, wouldn't that have been sweet! A little shivering bunny rabbit curled up beside you! Her new outfit is truly splendid, and a wonderful colour too. What a bout a scarf? Does she need a scarf? And some sleeved garment too?!
    Yes, yes, yes, you have to go and stay in the gypsy caravan! I find that it's best to sometimes jump straight in to situations! Take lots of board and card games with you. And tobogganing tackle, tire the children out, so they will be like sleepy bunnies at the end of the day, then you'll be all cosy and warm in your burrow of a caravan! Sounds idyllic!
    Vanessa xxx

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  23. I forgot to say, marvellous shoes! And marvellous stockings too! Vanessa xxx

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  24. The roulotte looks adorable. Plenty of warm clothes and games and books and it looks like a magical place to be at Christmas. And those shoes :)

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  25. I am in love with those shoes! And as for the caravan, go for it, I have fallen in love with it.

    Lou xxx

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  26. Hello and Happy All Saints Day to you!~ Hope all is well with you in France!
    What a sweet little bunny you've made...they love to get all fluffed up and cuddly, dont they?
    That gypsy caravan looks so beautiful and so much fun to stay in! I think you'll be in for a magical holiday no doubt!~

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  27. ooh book it, book it, it looks lovely! It would be nice and cozy and as it is off the floor that should help it keep warmer too I would think. Loving Dahlia's new clothes and those shoes are so gorgeous, I am off to see if I can afford some now as I have an urge to buy them - very strange as I am not normally a shoe person!

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  28. I'm actually trying to imagine a dearest husband. It is a long time since I had one of those. Divorced for 21 years now and I no longer can conceive what one might look like, nevermind the possibility of having one. Does everyone in blogland have one? it seems such a rare thing to find a blogger who does not.

    I do however, know what it is like not to be able to take holidays like Christmas for granted as most people can. Both with my father's job and that of my ex husband. So I can imagine how delighted you must be to know that this Christmas will be all yours. I do hope you all enjoy it.

    All little rabbits should have warm clothes so I am sure Dahlia is very appreciative of hers, as will all the other cosy rabbits be following this pattern.

    Caravan adventures sound marvellous!

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  29. Summer, yes - midwinter, hmm! You're a braver woman than I, but that's not saying much. Is there a hotel nearby that you could decamp to if (a) it is freezing or (b) it is too cosy, in the sense of 5 in close proximity playing endless games of Pelmanism, and bickering over the Scrabble board?

    But as you know, I hate the cold, and want to stay close to my own cosy fireside in winter. Now summertime, that's quite another matter - I'd come and stay in one next door!

    Pomona x

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  30. the Gypsy caravan looks like it will be a delightful place to stay! I love all the hand carved touches. Your fairy shoes are the most beautiful color! And the little Dahlia rabbit looks adorable in her new warm pants!

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  31. Oh my goodness, you have to stay in the caravan it looks beautiful and would be a christmas to remember.
    your shoes are delightful x
    Well i am so glad poor miss Dahlia is now warm and cosy
    love jooles x

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  32. love those wolly dungarees...

    (in my humble experience, skiing/fresh air/dark winter nights make people tired. While I think it's a fabulous/beautiful caravan for a summer holiday... in winter - with gazillions coats/sky wear/boots/gloves etc. etc.... it might feel a bit small)

    (And is it well insulated?)

    (I am a bit of a creature comfort though!)

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  33. I think it would be unfair to deprive shoes such as those of a sojourn in a gipsy caravan. What if the family of five squabbles; ultimately all that matters is living up to the shoes.

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  34. Ooooo gorgeous caravan!!! Never mind a week I could live in that, lol!

    Love Dahlia's new snazzy overalls, they look much warmer for her :-)

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  35. D is also for delightful!
    I always love visiting your blog, you always have tons to tell us!
    xo sandra

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  36. Dahlia looks very fetching in her new trouser ensemble. I have a teddy called Harrison who sports a similar pair in green, with a little knitted bobble hat in damson! I love your gypsy caravan idea, and the one you have found looks and sounds beautiful. Your shoes are just like fairy shoes, the ones that the elves made for the cobbler in the middle of the night, do you remember that fairy tale? I love your shoes and coloured tights. Beautiful. (Your earrings will be sent out tomorrow, thank you for your understanding. I hope you love them and get lots of pleasure wearing them.) Em x

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  37. Wow, Dahlia is a lucky little rabbit. The caravan looks so lovely - and between geneva and chamonix would be so beautiful at that time of year. Juliex

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  38. Hello Stephanie...I hope you are having a wonderful Saturday morning!...Doesn't Dahlia look beautiful and autumnal in her warm, damson dugarees?...Just lovely...as are your beautiful fairy shoes....and oh yes...I really love the little gypsy caravan too...everything magical as always....
    Susan x

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  39. This sweet little bunny reminds me that YES, we are all made of Stardust, LOVE DUST, fairy dust...the particles of beauty that make us want to play and share, hope and live forever....thank you dearest friend, for coming to visit me and share your week with me...let us carry on with one task in mind, no matter how messy the day may be:

    LOVE EACH OTHER.

    Oh, may I live and die in that mode....Anita

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  40. Ah Dahlia, your outfit positively sparkles. You are the sweetest little poppet. Stay warm my lovely. x

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  41. I am with Pomona - beautiful caravan but only if its warm! At least with five of you there is plenty of body heat. Love the trousers for Dahlia. Maybe you can make it into a family pattern for all of you!

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  42. Dear Stephanie,

    First let me say how wonderful the caravan is and would be the perfect place to stay on holiday and after, for so many great uses.
    Dahlia looks warm and cozy in her new outfit and many thanks for sharing the pattern.
    Your new shoes are perfect and look so comfortable.
    Hope you are enjoying your weekend and have some time to dance in your new shoes.

    Hugs
    Carolyn

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  43. Oh how lovely Dahlia's Overalls
    are!! You are a talented knitter indeed... and the Damson colour is just beautiful!!
    I must say... the way you photograph your makes is stunning... so colourful, a feast for the eyes!!
    I am also IN LOVE with your new shoes!!!!

    Louise xx

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