Toy Patterns (maintenance page)

“As it’s not always easy to buy my patterns in certain parts of the world, I am delighted to now be able to offer them quickly and at little cost through this website as downloadable PDF files. Once paid for, these patterns can then be downloaded and printed out at home.

I do not enter discussion forums or sell through other online sites, so this is the only place where you can buy my patterns directly from me.

The pattern shop is not available currently while we carry out some routine maintenance. The shop will be available again shortly, in the mean time we thank you for your patience.

All the patterns in the Patterns Shop are available as PDF downloads. They range from 5 to 28 pages each. Each pattern includes photograph(s) of the finished toy, and the size of these have been kept small so as not to use too much of your ink. The number of photographs will vary from pattern to pattern, depending upon how many are available, as most were only taken as a reference before the toy was sent off to the magazine. However, in future more photographs will be taken to include close-up views of important details, and all new designs will include these. They cost from £3.00 each, which is payable through PayPal.

Once downloaded, the patterns can be printed out on ordinary copy paper. There is at least one photograph on each pattern, so these pages could be printed on photo paper, if desired, to give a clearer image for reference.

Patterns marked with an asterisk* are a version exclusive to the website, and those marked with a double asterisk** are new designs that have been created exclusively for this site, and only available here.

Please note that patterns of licensed characters won’t be available for downloading. For legal reasons, these could either only appear once in a magazine feature or as a pattern leaflet, all of which are now out of print, so the only way you will now be able to obtain these licensed character patterns is if you can find original leaflets or magazine tear sheets being offered for sale. Please do not buy duplicated versions of these patterns because this is illegal, and they not only infringe my copyright but also that of the creators of the characters in question.

Some of the fancy yarns which were originally used for these designs have now been discontinued, but the majority are knitted to a standard double knitting tension, so provided you use a D.K. equivalent yarn you can substitute as you wish, with confidence in the knowledge that the pattern will still work. Look at the equivalents listed in Simply Knitting’s conversion charts should you be unable to source double knitting yarn where you live. If you are unsure about the suitability of the yarn you have chosen, simply knit up a tension square and check the number of stitches and rows against those quoted in the pattern, adjusting if necessary by using smaller needles to increase the numbers or larger needles to decrease them. CPU Enterprises carry most of the yarns that were used for these designs, along with Alan’s remaining Sirdar leaflets. The same company has a craft website called CraftBits, where you can find the safety toy eyes used for my dogs, cats, and teddy bears. There is no minimum order, and they are happy to ship anywhere in the world. US knitters can find the Sirdar and Hayfield yarns they need, as well as many of the toy making tools used for Alan’s patterns, by visiting Knitting, Beads & Other Things. There is a section entirely devoted to Alan’s work, and you can locate this by clicking on ‘Alan Dart’ in the left-hand menu. Here you will find yarn kits in a bag for most of Alan’s designs, some of his out-of-print leaflets, together with current and back issues of Simply Knitting. This company also ships internationally, with no minimum order restriction..

The amounts of yarn quoted in the patterns are approximate, and are given as a guide only, because different qualities of yarn vary in weight – for example, wool weighs heavier than acrylic. Similarly, the amount of stuffing quoted is based on using Superfill high loft polyester stuffing from Dainty Supplies. Inferior stuffings weigh much heavier and you will therefore end up needing more to stuff the toy.

Please do not be tempted to substitute dried peas or lentils for the PVC beanbag granules, which are available from Fred Aldous, as these can harbour mites and become unpleasant should the toy get damp.