Whenever my knitting friend Linda makes dinosaurs, people smile. She does, too -- it's one of the reasons making them is a pleasure for her. "It's creative and it goes quickly," she says. "You put it together and you end up with something that makes you smile." There are other reasons: she loves working with the beautiful saturated colours in the Kureyon yarn, made by Noro, a Japanese company, that she uses to make the toys. "It's wonderful to hold these colours in your hand." And because the yarn is multi-coloured, the end result is always something of a surprise. "It's endlessly fascinating; you don't know how it's going to come out." As well, knitting is meditative. And making small objects that people enjoy creates a sense of accomplishment in a crazy world.
One of the reasons people notice the dinosaurs so much is that they are unusual, with their odd shapes and angles. No wonder; dinosaurs themselves are unusual, with their strange appendages -- triangular plates along the spine, a bony frill around the neck, three horns, and a gigantic bone-crushing jaw. I've always been curious about how Linda incorporates these features into her toys, so when she made four dinosaurs for a relative recently, I asked if she'd document the process for me.
Here are her photographs from her creation of two stegosauruses, one triceratops and a Tyrannosaurus Rex:
|In the beginning, there's the Fibre Fill for stuffing, the yarn, and the needles making a start on the body.|
|The triceratops in pieces, before assembly. Body to the left, tail at the bottom, neck frill in centre, legs at right.|
|All assembled. Notice the three horns added to the head.|
|Front view of the completed triceratops.|
|The pre-assembled parts of a stegosaurus. Body at left, tail at bottom, legs in the middle, triangular spine plates at right.|
|T. Rex with his white grin.|
|The two stegosauruses, one green, one blue.|
|The four dinosaurs all together..|
|A frontal view of the herd.|
|The back view: the herd says goodbye.|