Cloud blanket with Panda

This blanket was for a friend that liked the cloud blankets I made before. So I took the opportunity to stretch my cloud pattern design skills and designed a new cloud pattern. This time the blanket is based more on stratus clouds than the cartoony cumulus cloud blanket I made before.

Green cloud baby blanket with panda
To go with the blanket I made a green panda from Super Cute: 25 Amigurumi Animals by Annie Obaachan, but used my own personal style of using embroidery thread for the face, since buttons are bad for babies young enough to try and suck them off.

Main Info

Green cloud baby blanket pattern

Thoughts from the process

Cloud baby blanket

My first cloud blanket was the very first blanket I ever tried changing yarn to make a design. This was before I designed the pattern first, like I do now, so I literally made it up as I went. My second cloud blanket was designed in advance and I used a cloud icon I got from Microsoft Paint, yes I was that old school then. This new one I designed by hand, without using icons nor templates.

Overall I like how the blanket came out, especially considering how difficult clouds are to really capture nicely. I went with three large clouds, purposely having two not fully in the "picture" and a few smaller ones. My favorite big one is the bottom right, it looks the least contrived. The top one on the other hands looks too symmetrical. Then the left one just looks funny, especially with it's little bump on the bottom.

I think slowly, but surely I'm getting better at these clouds. And in some ways I can't wait until another friend requests a cloud baby blanket, it'll give me a chance to try again to figure out how to make them look right.

Panda

Without meaning to sound conceited, anyone that has ever seen my amigurumi tell me they are cute. And while I agree they are, I can't help being dissatisfied with many of them. The perfectionist in me just points out all those little flaws. And this panda has many of those little things I am dissatisfied with.

But let's start with what I like. I like how I stitched on the face. The mouth is a little off, but it gives him a bit of quirky character. I like the angle eyes, it makes him look like he's smiling. And finally the embroidery let's me not worry I'm handing my friend a choking hazard for their brand new baby.
Also not seen in the earlier photos, this particular pattern included a tail. And I love that cute little bum :)

Now for what I don't like. Many of the amigurumi I've made in this style, always look spread eagle! I mean look at him. Arms all the way out. Leg's sticking straight from his body. Nothing like the image I have of teddy bears in my head.

It's entirely possible I'm attaching the limbs on wrong, but no book I've ever seen really explains how to do it. They all say something along the lines of "attach A to B," no picture included nor explanation beyond that. I will admit that some books I've used are better at handling the design of the amigurumi itself so it looks fine, but still the spread eagle look annoys me.

I think the next amigurumi I make is going to get a lot of scrutiny and I should just plan to take forever to attach the limbs, as I attach and remove them several times until I'm satisfied.

A final aspect I dislike about this panda is the ears the pattern included. I should have gone with instinct and made different ones, but something in me doesn't like changing a pattern until I've tried it once. But for future reference, I do not plan to use these kinds of ears on a panda, they look like mouse ears.

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