Tim's Monsters by Joyce Brose

Tim's Monsters

Worsted (9 wpi) ?
9 stitches and 11 rows = 1 inch
US 2 - 2.75 mm
50 - 75 yards (46 - 69 m)
one size
This pattern is available as a free Ravelry download

This is a pattern I invented in an attempt to translate into knitting an original drawing by artist and children’s book author,Timothy Bush, with the artist’s permission, of course. (He’s the author and illustrator of James in the House of Aunt Prudence, among other books). Tim’s drawing brings to my mind what my lawn must be doing when I’m not looking at it - you know, the way the toys in the Toy Story movie come to life when no one is looking at them. A flower pot filled with these little monsters, situated to overlook my lawn, should let my lawn know that I’m on to it so it had better behave when I’m not looking:)

Since this is a decorative item, yarn weight, needle size and gauge are not important. I like a nice nubby yarn, but you can experiment with any yarn you like. Just remember to drop down several needle sizes from what is recommended for your yarn so you end up with a nice firm fabric.

Knit as many or as few of the monsters and leaves as you like. I like to put them in a terracotta pot filled with little pebbles. I used floral wire and pipe-cleaners to support the monsters and leaves and to make them pose-able so they have personality.

Here is what Timothy Bush says about his monsters:
In the summer of2009, monsters arrived in my artwork and took up what appears to be permanent residence. I hadn’t expected them, although in retrospect I should have. I’d been making a perfect habitat for them, working long hours over many months on illustration jobs with no creative component. Bent over my desk, I felt cranky and constrained, hidebound and as cheerful as potholed asphalt.

When I finally declared an afternoon of free time, I headed out to a cool-kid café. There, safely certain of being ignored, I opened up a sketchbook. Freedom.

And that, of course, is where the monsters found me. Because freedom is what monsters are. Toothy little ambassadors from Don’t-Give-A-Damn-istan, they seized on my first hesitant lines. They pulled themselves up from somewhere deep inside the paper,flaunting their lawless asymmetry.

The monsters followed me home that day and I decided to keep them. They growl and pace in the cracks between projects: in warm-up doodles and in sketchbook-filler drawn while I’m stuck on airplanes. They stare at me with too many eyes per face, and remind me to keep a window open. They remind me that even when drawing is your job, that’s never the only thing it is.