Death By Cute

Last week, while I was at work, I got a text message from my Mom. “At the hospital with Lara. Might be labour. Hope not.” I panicked briefly when I read this, for two good reasons. My sister Lara, as you may have guessed, is indeed pregnant, and her due date isn’t until November. My initial panic, therefore, was out of concern for her health and the health of her baby. But when I called and spoke to my Mom, who by then had heard from the doctor that things were going to be okay and that Lara was not in labour, I had another reason to freak out. This baby, I realized, could come at any time now, and I hadn’t yet done any knitting for him. 

Fortunately, and especially because I’m on vacation this week, it has taken me almost no time to remedy this. I knit this cute set in about 3 hours, starting last night. The mittens were finished first, started at about 11:30 PM and completed sometime after midnight. When I woke up this morning, I immediately cast on the hat and knit quietly by myself while Keith slept. The hat is one I’ve knit before, but instead of using my preferred magic loop, I knit this hat entirely with double pointed needles. As a result, I’ve avoided creating an unwanted seam down the middle front of the hat. I’m really, really pleased with how these have turned out in such a short span of time. Now all that’s left for me to do for this baby boy is to whip up an adorable little sweater…

Specs:

Pattern: Baby Mitts by Susan B. Anderson and Garter Ear Flap Hat by Purl Soho

Yarn: Knit Picks Capra in Wine

Modifications – Mitts: Used smaller needles, cast on 24 stitches and adjusted gauge accordingly, knit k1p1 ribbing for the cuffs

Modifications – hat: None

 

 

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Lil’ Sprout

It’s hard to believe that my niece, Khloe, will soon be a year old. It doesn’t seem that long ago when her moms were anxiously awaiting her arrival, though it did seem like the pregnancy took forever to get though (speaking as someone who’s never been pregnant, natch). However long the pregnancy was in actuality, when Khloe arrived, time seemed to speed up. Every day she changed in one way or another. I remember seeing lots of pictures of a bewildered and unsmiling little thing in the early weeks. She was only able to wear the little socks I made for a few short days, and then, suddenly, they were too small. As she got bigger, she became more alert, and soon she started to smile. When my sister figured out best ways to coax a smile out of her daughter, she inundated us with videos of the process. I used this intel to my own advantage when I met her for the first time this past Christmas, when she was about 5 months old and beginning to show her personality a bit more. Soon, she was laughing, dancing to music, crawling so fast and, now, standing up with the assistance of people and furniture. It won’t be long before she’s walking, and then, look out!

I love my niece, and I especially love making things for her. But here’s a little detail that I’m ashamed to share: I have a terrible track record of making things for Khloe that are way, way too small for her. This happens for two reasons: 1) We live half a country apart, so I don’t actually get to observe her physical growth on a regular basis; and 2) I have basically zero experience with babies and no idea of their dimensions. For Christmas, for example, I made her an Abate pullover with a neck hole that was too small (why are babies heads so huge? WHY?) and sleeves that were too long. As with the socks, she was really only able to wear her sweater for that one day, but not without making her cry as I attempted to stretch that too-small neck over her large baby head.

So, for her first birthday, I resolved to do it right and make her something she would be able to wear for longer than a day or two.

 

 

This here is my Sproutlette Dress, and I believe it to be an excellent choice for the gun shy baby knitter I’ve become of late. The pattern comes in 3 sizes and can be easily customized using simple math to make modifications to the pattern or by switching to a heavier yarn and larger needles. In this case, I opted to make the largest size, 12-24 months, and to use the suggested fingering weight yarn so that she can wear it on or around her July birthday without it being too hot for her. The short sleeves of the dress mean that I don’t need to worry that they’ll be too long for her little arms, either.

 

 

My favorite fit detail is the large keyhole and button closure in the back, which effectively solves the problem of accommodating her large baby head. With any luck, this closure (and, by the way, isn’t that button cute?) will mean that she can continue to wear the dress well beyond her first birthday. The keyhole will, I hope, keep her comfortable in the warm weather.

 

 

I’m also extremely pleased with how the leaf pattern and scalloped edging turned out. Many other versions of the dress have blocked the edging aggressively to better show off the lacy scalloping, but I actually prefer the ruffled look, so I left it alone.

Now, I don’t want to get too cocky, but I fee pretty confident that I’ve done good here. Not only does this dress fix a lot of the fit issues I’ve had with Khloe’s knits in the past, it seems possible that she might be able to wear this right up to her second birthday. Most of all, I hope she loves it, and one day, when she’s older still, I hope that she’ll look back at this dress and know just how much I love her.

Specs:

Pattern: Sproutlette Dress by Tanis Lavallee

Yarn: Knit Picks Stroll Sock Yarn in Peapod

Modifications: Wet blocked flat without pinning the edging

I Made That!

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Well, hello there! How are you? Me, I am just fine. Why? I finished a sweater!

Miette

Allow me to introduce you to Miette. This is the 5th sweater I’ve ever made (and my second cardigan), and I’m really, really happy with it. There is, as far as I know, only one big mistake: I forgot to make a button hole on the collar band. This isn’t such a big deal to me–I almost never do up the top button of any shirt or sweater–so I’m choosing to bask in the glory of having created a near-perfect cardigan. This pattern is, in a word, great. The instructions are very clear, written line by line, and are extremely easy to follow if you use a row counter. I did modify the original pattern by making mine longer in the body and the sleeves, though. Also, see those buttons? Yeah, those buttons are awesome.

If there’s a downside to my newest wardrobe addition, it’s that I won’t get to wear it for all that long. I know it seems like winter is never ending, but I have to believe that warm weather is coming soon, right? (right!?) So, with spring in mind, I’ve started knitting this pattern:

Vertex back

I love a bulky sweater as much as the next cold blooded person, but I can’t wait to wear this one. It’s knitting up quickly and I can tell already that it’s going to be lightweight and perfect for cool evenings and warm afternoons.

And, now, to get you up to speed on all that baby knitting I told you about a month ago. First up is the Baby Bunting cardigan:

baby bunting cardigan

I’m not really happy with the way this sweater is photographing, because, I can assure you, it looks much cuter in person than it has in any of the pictures I’ve taken. I’m holding out for some red buttons, and then it’ll be done. And, look, it’s got pockets! Pockets! What do babies need pockets for? For cuteness, that’s what.

Also cute are the hat and socks I’ve made to match:

Poppy 2

(Short rows! Oh yeah!)

baby sock 2

(Little socks!)

And, of course, there’s the blanket:

Garter stitch baby blanket finished

In addition to baby stuff, I’ve also finished a badass hat for Keith’s Dad:

Bullet proof hat

And, with that, I’m done for today. Have a great Sunday evening, everyone! I’ll be back with more words and pictures later this week.