A Monkey in the Forest

Hello! Last week, besides needing some quiet time to myself, I was too busy finishing a monkey to write a blog post. Before he was to move in with our grandson, I took him to the forest at the end of our street for a photo shoot. First we walked through the part with the big old beeches, where we got a good shot of the way his tail peeks out from his dungarees.

But on the whole it was too dark under the trees, so we walked on to a sunnier spot. It’s one of my favourite places in the whole wide world – a tiny, perfectly round pool.

It’s probably an ancient cattle watering-hole and it is surrounded by a small patch of heathland.

The heather is in bloom at the moment. It’s mainly ling, but there is also some bell heather.

So, here he is, the monkey I knit for our grandson:

He was knit entirely in one piece, starting from the top of his head. It isn’t an easy knit, but the pattern is very clear and has photo tutorials for literally every detail. The only part that gave me some problems was the ‘frown’ – the vertical line between his eyes that needed exactly the right increases to get a neat result. It’s a very clever construction and I particularly like the shaping of the monkey’s back and bum that allow him to sit up straight on every surface.

I knit the monkey a pair of dungarees with buttons on the back, that you’ve already seen from behind. This is the front:

And a jacket that also leaves the tail free.

Even though it’s the middle of the Summer Holiday Season and there are many, many tourists in the region, nobody comes up to me here, asking what on earth I am doing. It’s quiet. Dragon flies are flitting across the pond, too fast for me to capture. A viviparous lizard is also faster than my camera. Fortunately the carnivorous sundew stays in place, allowing me all the time I need to photograph its treacherous sticky droplets.

We enjoyed a lovely couple of hours in the forest, the monkey and I. He has now moved in with our grandson and they are getting along very well. The monkey has already been dressed and undressed countless times, and also been thrown about quite a bit, but he keeps smiling and doesn’t seem to mind.

For the knitters among you, here are a few details:

  • Yarn: Sandness ‘Tynn Merinoull’ (monkey, 20 MC, 8 g CC); Dalegarn ‘Baby Ull’ (jacket and dungarees 17 g each, mouth small remnant); I used a fingering-weight yarn, but the monkey can be knit in any yarn weight
  • Height of monkey: 18 cm/7” from top of head to bum; 27 cm/10½” including legs
  • Knitting needles: 2,25 mm/US 1 for monkey; 3,0 mm/US 2½ for clothes
  • The designer’s website (in Dutch) with patterns and supplies for this monkey and other softies can be found here

The Dutch paper pattern booklet includes the jacket. There is a separate booklet for the dungarees and some more clothes. Designer Anita mostly uses colourful yarns like Schoppel Zauberball for her creations.

The digital pattern for the monkey in Dutch, English, German and French can be found here on Ravelry; the dungarees in Dutch and English here; and a dress here.

Because I wanted the monkey to be washable, I’ve filled it with synthetic filling. For weighting the hands, feet and bum I used plastic pellets encased in cotton tubular bandage.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this visit to ‘our’ forest with the monkey and me. Thank you for joining us! xxx

14 thoughts on “A Monkey in the Forest”

    • Dat is een lief en leuk idee, om een aapje te breien voor je nichtje. Het is best een priegelwerkje, waar je de aandacht goed bij moet hebben, maar het resultaat is er ook naar.

    • Yes, he’s sweet, isn’t he? Such a friendly face. And I think the overalls are so cute. Knit in one piece, just like the monkey. The designer is a genius!

  1. So sweet. What a special gift for your very loved grandson. Nice that you and the monkey had some time together in those beautiful settings before you passed him along for his new life.

    I also love those clever designers who use brilliant technique to make a project work so well. A treat to discover as you knit.

    As always, I thank you for a lovely interlude in my day.

    • ‘A treat to discover as you knit’, yes, that is well said. It’s like that with this pattern – it’s a step-by-step voyage of discovery. I’ve had a great time composing this post and am glad that you’ve enjoyed it.

  2. The monkey is adorable!!! Clothing too!!! I am going to put those patterns on one of ravelry lists. That way I have the information. I am going to have to look and see if I already have the pattern.

    I am sure that your grandson loves the monkey.

  3. I thought the pattern looked familiar – I made it for my grandson in 2014 – I must not have had the clothing patterns since he is not dressed.

    • Over the years, the designer has made some changes to the patterns, so it may be worth getting a newer version (or maybe it is updated on Ravelry)? From what I understand there are several significant improvements. My paper pattern included the jacket, but that’s only available in Dutch. I’m not sure if the current digital pattern also has the jacket. I can’t find anything about it on Ravelry. If you ever want to make another one, I’d contact the designer about it. The overalls were in a separate pattern. The Dutch paper pattern booklet for that also includes a dress and a pair of pant to go with it. On Ravelry there are separate digital patterns for the overalls and the dress. There are links to those in the blog post, or you’ll find them entering Jacobus as a search term.

  4. A charming little monkey. Has he a name, or does your grandson simply call him “Monkey”?

    • He is now called Pippo, after a monkey in a magazine for young children that we read together. Very simple stories, very recognizable for children this age. I’ve made him and his clothes to look as closely as possible to the Pippo in the magazine.

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