Welcome to the first A to Z Blogging Challenge for this second week. In case you haven't heard of this yet, the idea is to blog (almost) every day in April, taking one day for each letter of the alphabet.
K is for Kokeshi
If you haven't heard of these yet, Kokeshi are Japanese friendship dolls, traditionally made out of wood with no arms or legs. You can read more about them here.
Like the similiar Russian version, Matryoshka dolls, I've always had a liking for these Japanese dolls (perhaps because I like Geisha patterns so much). My favorite kokeshi pattern by far is this one, called Kokeshi Friends by Joan Elliott (see, told you she would pop up again during this month). This design was originally published in the 200th issue of World of Cross Stitching magazine (which is how it ended up in my stash), but the chartpack is now available directly for purchase from Joan's website, or from your favorite needlework retailer that carries Joan's patterns.
And as a bonus for you, here's how you can get your hands on a couple of free kokeshi cross stitch patterns. One of my previous DESIGN features, Corinne from the French blog Passion Broderie 77, has a whole page of free cross stitch patterns featuring Asian themed designs, along with many kokeshi patterns. My personal favorite is this one with a ladybug and daisy themed kimono.
And for those of you who are Disney nuts like myself, the French blog Grilles Point de Croiz et Cie has created several Disney themed cross stitch patterns of kokeshi dolls. I've linked to this page featuring Aurora and Tiana (because Aurora is one of my favorite Disney characters) but check out the blogs archives to see a lot more of the other Disney princesses, and even some of the villains as free cross stitch patterns.
Hmm, interesting that both blogs for the freebies happen to be French based. Wonder why that is? But thank you Google translate!
One of the other A to Z blogs I've been reading had the excellent idea of adding links to previous posts at the end of a particular day. So if you'd like to see my previous A to Z entries:
A is for Alphabet
B is for Britty Kitty
C is for Carousel
D is for Debbie Mumm
E is for Eat
F is for Frogs
G is for Garden Cat
H is for Hats
I is for Ice
J is for Joan Elliott