Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Knitting for babies

Knitting for babies can be futile. If timed (and sized) poorly, the sweater gets tossed in a box and forgotten.

I've found that there's a delicate balance between when the baby is born and the sizing of the sweater. Make the sweater too soon, and the baby doesn't get maximum wear out of it. Make the sweater too big, and you risk the child having opinions about wardrobe selection.

Here's my formula:

[Months until winter]-[Baby Birth month]+ [a little room for growth] = Perfect sized sweater

I totally over think this stuff.

I am also uber-paranoid about babies/children pulling the awesome buttons off of the sweaters and choking on them. I usually have Mom secure them, but I know at least one child who was super-motivated to separate the buttons from the cardigans so that she could play with them. (I pick really fun, cute buttons for my kids' garments. A good set of buttons really make a sweater.)

I also am big on making cardigans- I've wrestled dogs into harnesses, and I can imagine that dressing a wiggly baby can't be much easier. Cardigans avoid the over-the-giant-head issue.

I've tried to keep baby stuff on hand for those occasions where I don't have the time (or the inspiration) to knit for babies. I've got a whole bag of sock yarn that I think I'm going to repurpose into baby sweaters. We'll see how that goes. So far, I want to start a Baby Surprise jacket to see how I like them.

Garter stitch is my Kryptonite, so I'll likely go back to my default- the top-down raglan baby cardigan. There's comfort in routine, and these look great in variegated yarns. I have a weakness for variegated yarns.

Also, despite the fact that I own all the books that the BSJ appears in, they're horrible for making photocopies [for personal use only]. I'll be looking through my back issues of Knitter's magazine for a more photocopy-friendly format. I just can't justify paying more for a leaflet of a pattern that I already own. In triplicate, it seems.

[For the copyright nazis out there, I agree with you 100%. Stealing is bad. So is destroying books that I've bought by hauling them all around this green earth. I will repeat: FOR PERSONAL USE ONLY. Thank you.]

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