I have learnt from experience there are a few things a knitter should take into account when making things for babies.
- They grow really, really fast. If you want them to get good use out of a garment knit it big.
- They are messy. Pick a wool that is easily washable, preferably by a machine.
- They can’t tell you if something is itchy, they will just scream, so for the wellbeing of all involved you should try and use the softest wool you can possibly find.
- It’s a good idea to keep the due date in mind. Even when you’re knitting big it really turns up the pressure when the tiny human being arrives sooner than you expected….which I learnt…the hard way…last week.
I’ve been working on the Vivid Blanket from Tin Can Knits for a cousin’s new arrival. It’s a great pattern and I was really excited to cast on. I was confident my cousin’s due date was in May so I had ages to kick back and enjoy the knit. Except her due wasn’t May, she was due last week…and (hurrah!) her daughter has arrived. Now fortunately a blanket isn’t something particularly time sensitive but when you’re two squares in to a twelve square baby blanket and you find out the baby is already here you do feel a little bit surprised.
With the long Easter weekend and a couple of nights in I’ve actually got nine squares ready to go now and I think I’m going to leave it at that – it’s already a decent sized play/cot blanket. I used 5mm needles so it’s knitted up fairly big and frankly I’m too excited to make it up to knit any more.
It’s a great pattern which I’ve loved making, even better, it knits really quickly. I used all white yarn (well ‘Champagne white’ if you will) which is maybe a little ironic given the pattern name is Vivid but it looks lovely. Haven’t sewn them up yet, I read the Tin Can Knits blog about the pattern and it’s made me think that blocking is probably the way to go so, reluctantly, I shall do that this evening. Patience is a virtue and all. So next week when they’re all blocked I shall spend an evening sewing them together and hopefully it will be excellent.
Cast off – I used K2tog, slip stitch to left needle K2tog. On reflection a simpler cast off might have given me neater join (and is actually recommended in the Tin Can Knits blog – oh hindsight you beautiful thing!) but it said in the pattern to use a stretchy cast off and that’s my go to stretchy one.
I used two circulars for the first couple of rounds as that’s what I am most confident with and it was a bit fiddly but then I moved to 15cm and later 20cm DPNs. When the squares outgrew these I finished off on a circular again. I found the DPNs helped me keep track of the repeats more easily and it was easier to see where I was in the pattern.
Needles – all mine were Addi, circular turbos and then bamboo and metal DPNs, pick your favourite!
2 x 5mm circular needles (or one long one to do magic loop)
5mm DPNs in 15cm and/or 20cm
Painbox Yarns, Simply Aran in colour 202. Knits on 5mm needles, is machine washable at 40 on a wool cycle and is nice and soft. I’d read slightly mixed reviews of Paintbox Yarns and had never used them before but I have no compaints.