May 7, 2010

Knitted Gifts For Babes

Over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing some posts from my personal blog, A Devine Life. This is one of them, originally published on August 26, 2009.

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With all the friends and loved ones around me having babies right now (five at last count, with several more *hopefully* being added to the list soon), I’ve been knitting baby-related items each night until my husband makes me turn off the lights – or gets so tired he just goes ahead and turns them off, mid-row be damned!

I’ve gotten the baby knitting down to some sort of a system. With a few new pieces thrown in here or there, the majority of what I knit for each of these babes is relatively similar. I rotate through ten or so patterns, changing up the color of the yarn and the fiber content depending on the mama and the sex of the babe. This makes it all so much easier, because I can just have a little binder with my patterns in it, and flip from page to page, grabbing yarn out of my stash as I go – no need to pick through the hundreds of other patterns I have queued up (yes, I know I just said that – don’t worry, I pick through them plenty!)!

**a note about Ravelry – I know that some of you readers don’t have Ravelry accounts. And I meant for this post to be a big happy link-fest to all the patterns I use and where they’re housed outside of Ravelry. The problem is, most of these are patterns I found via Ravelry, and seem to only be offered via the Ravlery download/purchase system. There are many things that can be said about not making your patterns available to the larger, non-Ravelry public, but I’ll leave that for another day. I just the other day finally got all my patterns their own pages here on the blog so that non-Ravelers can access them as well. Unfortunately, some of my favorites are only available through the Ravel-verse. Maybe it’s time for us all to jump on board?

Here then, are a few of my go-to patterns.

One. Baby Boy 5-Hour Sweater – I use this one for boys and girls alike, I love the pattern so much. I’ve gifted it already to five or six babes, have two already wrapped to give as gifts, and have three more in process for winter/spring presents. The pattern is truly a 5-8 hour pattern, depending on how fast you knit, and I’ve been known to complete them in two evenings of bad television.

Two. Kanoko Pants - I’ve only knit these once so far, but have them queued up three more times already. The pattern calls for cotton, which makes them a great spring/summer/fall transition piece, but I think the next few pairs I make will be wool-blends or even the dreaded acrylic – much more suited to the fall/winter months, those fibers will help keep little legs all the warmer in these FANTASTIC pants. Seriously. The perfect construction, addictively simple to knit, with just enough pattern to keep you excited and engaged while not feeling overwhelmed. Swoon and love.

Three. Baby Booties - these tiny booties are my favorites to knit. Worked up super fast, this free pattern is available through Bernat and has become my go-to bootie pattern for new babes. I love how they have just enough elf-ish quality without being over-kill cutsie.

Four. Project Linus Security Blanket - (this one is a Ravelry link) This pattern comes out of the Knit for Peace book, and is quickly becoming my go-to blanket pattern. I’ve been working on one for a December babe, and once that’s done will cast on a big-person sized version for a housewarming/holiday present. I love that it’s a simple three-row repeat, can be knit in the virtual dark, and yet looks like it took years to complete!

Five. Baby Cobblestone Vest - I love, love, love this vest! I’ve made them to donate to the hospital many times before, and now that I’ve got a few friends having babes of their own, this is one of the items that’s queued up for gifts. Made with DK yarn for smaller babes, I’ve read other bloggers who have sized it up by using worsted weight, which is what I plan to do in the near future as well.

Six. Cap-Sleeved Spring Shirt - this one is perfect for all the one to two-year olds you know – made with a bit bulkier yarn, little girls could wear it a bit longer. And it’s not just for spring-time, either! This shirt can be worn with long-sleeves underneath for all-weather fun. I’ve loved knitting it in the past, and am sure to knit it again soon! (could only find a Ravelry link for this one!)

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