Mo’ babies, mo’ knits

Hand knit baby cardigan

The impending pitter patter of baby feet inevitably sends me straight for my knitting needles.

True to form, in late pregnancy, I started on a baby blanket for the littlest. But, in rather typical third baby syndrome, I haven’t actually managed to finish that yet. (Ahem, she is nearly four months old now, so I really need to get cracking.)

When I was a week or so overdue, I became convinced that she wasn’t coming out because she was indignant at my inability to have completed a knit for her, so I put the blanket aside for a bit, and knit a quick grey cardie, that she could wear home from the hospital.

baby cardigan

I followed a pattern I’d not tried out before, the bug warmer, by Tagia Hillard designs. It was a great knit, raglan style, and the end result was a perfect fit for a newborn and super easy to put on for a little winter baby.

I used a light grey Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, which is super soft, lovely to knit, but also machine washable (an absolute essential, as far as I’m concerned, for baby clothes. It’s not just me who always has vomiting babies, right?!) All details, as ever, on Ravelry here: baby bug warmer.

I was so pleased with the result that I knit a second one for my sister-in-law’s new baby, who arrived a month later, in the same type of yarn but this time in dark grey.

I fully intended to pick up the blanket again and finish it, but, erm, that’s still to happen, and instead I moved onto another cardie once the grey one was outgrown. I’d spotted a lovely mustard yellow garter stitch cardigan in John Lewis and was convinced I could knit my own version, but then I struggled to find a decent pattern. In the end, I went for the Iceling cardigan by Carol Feller. It’s not garter stitch throughout, but has a huge garter front and turn ups at the sleeves.

Hand knit baby jumper

Hand knit baby cardigan

My usual sewing-on-a-button-inertia struck once I’d finished the knit, so it sat about for nearly a month while I dithered over button selection, yarn selection (for a button. Yes, I know) and threw in some bog standard procrastination.

Eventually, though, I bit the bullet and sewed the little blighters on, and she has been wearing the cardie non-stop ever since. (That would be a better endorsement, of course, if she was actually old enough to choose her own clothes, ha ha.)

Once again, I went for the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, this time in a glorious mustard yellow. I love the slightly vintage look to the colour, matched with more modern big white chunky buttons.

I went for the six month size, which is a pretty good fit on her at nearly four months, but should have enough stretch in it to keep going for a while. Full details of the knit over on Ravelry: Iceling cardigan.

Hand knit baby cardiganHand knit baby cardigan

And finally, yes, isn’t this is a ridiculous amount of photos to show you one tiny little cardie, but, oh she’s too cute, I couldn’t resist – just look at those squidgy legs! Long-term readers might remember that I never usually share pictures of the kids here, but I’ve realised that they grow out of the baby stage so ridiculously quickly that she’ll probably be completely unrecognisable from these photos in a month or so…

And now, back to the blanket! I am determined to get it finished before winter is officially over…

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The joy of knitting

Now that my exams are over, I am itching to tackle my gigantically long to do list. And the very first thing at the top of the list is to knit a blanket for the impending arrival of sproglet number two…

Knitted blanket beginnings
Fresh on the needles. Ahhh, the relaxation of some good knitting…

What with one thing and another* I’ve hardly done any knitting for almost a year. I managed to whip up a bobble hat for my sister for Christmas, but, I have to confess, really disliked the whole process. I used cheap wool (we had a fixed budget for presents last year, I’m not just a total stinge-bag) that was horrible to knit with, on needles that were too small and from about the second round in already knew I wasn’t happy with how the end result was going to look, but had no time to frog and start again on a better pattern.

So it was, I had rather forgotten about the absolute joy of knitting.

This new project is made from some really nice Sublime yarn in a merino cashmere silk mix with a mellow taupey-mushroomy-grey colour. The wool is stretchy and soft and feels lovely, so I’m enjoying knitting every single stitch.

Sublime wool
Sublime in name, sublime in knitability

The pattern, Heirloom by Madeline Tosh, is one I have knitted before and that I know will look good when finished. It’s complicated enough to keep me interested, but not so difficult I worry about going wrong or checking the pattern all the time.

Knitting a blanket
Three repeats down, 24 to go…

But most of all, there is a huge pleasure in being able to quickly get my needles out and knit a few rows here and there when the sproglet is napping or temporarily distracted by Rastamouse. I had forgotten the enjoyment of a craft you can easily pick up and put down without having to get endless supplies out (or clear them away at the end).  One where the pleasure isn’t just in hurrying up and getting to the end result (being impatient, I tend to feel that way about most things) but in just slowly enjoying the making process.

Knitting a blanket
It’s going to be lovely when it’s finished.

So, knitting, welcome back to my life. It’s good to see you again…

As ever, project details for this are over on Ravelry if you want to see more: Blanket for the bump.

*Things = the exhaustion of pregnancy combined with looking after a toddler, revising for exams, not living in our house and trying to oversee a building renovation from far too far away…

Related articles:

  • I was more on the ball with knitting this time last year. Take a look at some knitted goods I made for Christmas presents or this rather nice lace scarf
  • If you’re after more inspiration for baby knitting, or baby presents in general, I put together a nice little homemade gift box for my nephew in the summer. Which, of course, also included a knitted blanket.