Elephants

I’ve always loved elephants, but since I got together with Rod they have become even more important to me,. Rod grew up in Kenya so to him, elephants are a little piece of home. He even used to run a bar in Nairobi called The Pink Elephant. Not long after we got together I asked my friend Mel if she would knit me a pink Elijah if I bought the pattern for her, followed shortly by a request to knit another in grey. I wanted to surprise Rod with a pink elephant,  his own little mascot. I fell in love with Elijah and wanted one of my own too. This was all before I had the ability to knit, and in exchange I sent Mel a box of goodies,  including some lovely yarns. Mel did a fabulous job on our elephants and Pink and Elijah often join us on our travels, sometimes posing for photos along the way.

More recently my Aunt and Uncle, seeing our elephants, asked if I would knit them each an elephant. Of course, now I can knit, but at the time of asking was still a bit scared of anything that looked vaguely complicated so gave a non-committal shrug. I stored the request for elephants, promised myself I’d make the elephants when I was able.

At the start of the year I decided to match as much of my stash with patterns as possible.  This was difficult but enjoyable all the same and in the matching process I decided that a small skein of Yarn Yard’s Clan in a lovely mottled purple would become an Elijah.  I worked my way through a few progjects and soon Elijah could no longer be resisted … I was ready to tackle Elijah. 

I had to look at the instructions to start Elijah,  a lighter circular cast on, but couldn’t work it out so resorted to a YouTube video for help. Once I got the cast on out of the way I was soon flying. I worked on the head whilst watching a film
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And then before I knew it Elijah had formed a body
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Legs
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Arms
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And ears
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I even added a tail, even though the pattern doesn’t, by threading six 30cm strands of yarn at bottom level, plaiting them and tying in a knot.
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I loved knitting this little elephant, even if he was a bit fiddly in places. I love this flump so much I want to keep him, I was even encouraged to by friends, but I stayed strong. I named the elephant Tembo, Swahili for elephant,  and decided that he would become Uncle Geoff’s. I have a pale blue sparkly yarn coming over from Australia in August, thanks to a lovely friend, which will become Aunty Anne’s Elijah,  although I think this one will be a girl. Maybe she should be renamed Elle and have a little flower over her ear just to make sure everybody knows she is a girl. Hmmm … maybe Tembo should have a little bow tie.

I have now acquired another couple of skeins of Yarn Yard’s Clan, in pale green and peach, from a fellow knitter and Elijah fan and have already decided that the green skein is going to become a surprise Elijah for a friend living in Martha’s Vineyard who sponsors an elephant at the DSWT. Rod then said he needed another elephant,  one for his desk, so I think little Peaches will go to Rod.

Ive never knit any project more than once,  but I now have three more Elijah’s lined up and I can’t wait to get on with them. However,  in an attempt to not tire myself of the project I didn’t rush straight into knitting another elephant and instead went for some socks … but I’m dreaming of Elijah. This really is a great project.

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4 thoughts on “Elephants

  1. just discovered that I DO have this pattern, so you have inspired me to frog the donkey that doesn’t want to be made and turn it into a large Elijah! After all, a. Ysolda’s patterns are so well written, and b. more than one friend has made more than one Elijah too. what could go wrong?

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  2. I’ve been teaching myself to crochet and have crocheted some of the Toft animals – do you know those? I’ve made an elephant too – and I’ve given it away, but it was a real wrench, just as you describe! Isn’t it funny how characterful small handmade woolly creatures can be?! The crochet work is fiddly too, but the end result is great. hope you’ll post the future Elijahs for us to see, please!

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