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Archive for the ‘Baby Things’ Category

Worth Knitting For

“It’s always obvious which people are most worth knitting for…”

That is what my other dear knitting friend said when I thanked her (briefly via email) for the sweater she sent CJ.  She also said a few other things that brought me to tears!  I’m starting to think the real goal here is to make me cry…

Here’s gift #2…

imageShe had me just with the yarn color and those leaves.

imageThe best sweater pattern ever…

imageA Baby Surprise Jacket (by Elizabeth Zimmermann) with a brilliant unvention, to use EZ’s phrase, rib-cuffed long sleeves!  Brilliant!!!

imagePerfect!!!  Now here’s the best part… I dare you to read on and not need a tissue…

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Told you you’d need a tissue.  I know this is meant to be worn and loved but I just want to frame it.  I want those messages of love to be daily reminders for my boy.  Sarah also hoped for a son for me.   I’ve chosen my friends very wisely!  Our sons even share the same name, spelled differently (Julian & Jolyon) yet equal in beauty.

Thank you Sarah for the jacket, your love and ever-present support.

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Knitter to Knitter

When someone gives you a gift there is clearly love and thought and well wishes behind it!  When a knitter gives you a gift there is also the element of time!  Yes the other gifts took time to purchase, wrap, etc but a hand knitted gift takes hours and hours!  Those hours could have been spent doing tons of other things but the knitter spent those hours on you… On making a gift for you!

This post is one of two, to show off gifts made for my son.  My friend Carolyn’s gift is up first…

imageWhen she handed this to me, I just held it and looked at it for the longest time.  I couldn’t say a word.  I couldn’t believe how beautiful it was!  And the work involved…the time involved, the time spent, left me speechless.  My dear friend knit this on #2 needles with sock yarn.  For you non-knitters, that’s a lot of stitches,  effort and there it is again, time!

imageWhen this was made my baby’s gender was unknown.  She was secretly praying for a boy and chose red, still gender neutral but would look gorgeous either way!   I would come to know later that many people wanted a boy for me, we’ll talk more about that later.  Let’s admire some more.

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My favorite part is the “attached” socked feet!  Does it get any cuter? Um, no!  I wish I had an “action” shot for you but it is way to big and really doesn’t show the beauty.  In the meantime lets see those feet again.

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A perfect little baby sock! I can’t stand it, really I can’t!  This should be just the right size when the weather really gets cold.  Actually at the rate my boy is growing he’ll be in  it even sooner.

To my friend Carolyn, I’ve said thank you in person, via written note and now online!  Can you tell how happy you’ve made me!  You are one of my dearest friends and I love you.

From one knitter to another… Knit on!!! And I get it, on all levels!!

 

 

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Let’s Talk Baby Stuff

When I was pregnant with my daughter Kira, my one and only hobby (reason for living) was knitting.  I had grand plans to my new baby lots of warm goodies to keep warm and snug.  But as fate would have it I developed carpal tunnel syndrome which caused non-stop pain in the last two fingers of both hands.  I tried to knit through the pain but eventually I lost the battle and was only able to complete a few items.

Now everyone says each pregnancy is different so when I learned of my new pending arrival I grabbed the needles and got to work.  All the while praying it wouldn’t happen again.  No such luck.  It has happened again and  it’s even worse this time around.  I was stuck the first time having had only one trick in bag but not this time.  In the five years since Kira was born I’ve learned a thing or two.  And all I can say is thank heaven for my machine and hand sewing skills.

All that said, here’s my little babe’s first toy.  I’d like you to meet Basil the Softie Bear (pattern by Nana Company)

I wish you could feel how soft and sweet this little guy is.

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I followed the instructions to the letter, using linen, wool felt, hand sewed the details, etc.  I really love how it turned out!!!

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I stuck with a polka dot fabric theme, even found dot grosgrain ribbon in my stash.

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And here’s the back…

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I slipped stitched the back closed…I highly recommend acquiring that skill.

Can you stand all those adorable dots? I can barely.

There is supposed to be a little patch on the back that reads, “This bear belongs to (then you fill in the baby’s name)”.  I’m going to have to wait to add that a bit later.

Thank God I can sew because even though I can still knit albeit very slowly. I think I would go insane and take everyone with me if I couldn’t make something, anything at all.

And if you’re wondering what I have been knitting here’s a little peek.

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I think this little bear will go quite nicely with the hand knits.  Don’t you think!

 

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Sewn vs. Knitted

I can’t even tell you how touched I was by all the wonderful comments both here and on Facebook over my baby news.  Thank you all SO much!!!  I honestly have the best family, friends and readers ever!!!

So now that the cat is out of the bag I can start posting again!  I do have one big project going on right now for a dear friend but in between working on that and living life my babe’s wardrobe is starting to grow.

Baby D is due the first week of October and will need lots and lots of warm goodies!  For the longest time I’ve wanted to sew booties.  I’ve knit them before but there is something beyond adorable about a pair of sewn ones.  The booties below are my first attempt.  Not to bad but not great either.

I decided to combine two patterns.  This one and this YouTube tutorial.  As you can see the heels are different.  The heel on the one on the right (sewn first) is way to small.  The elastic kept slipping on me as I tried to sew it.  And the toe is also a bit smaller because the batting kept shifting too.  I pinned and pinned but it was still tricky.  I followed the written pattern on that one.  For the other one I used the written pattern AND the technique instructions from the YouTube video…and as you can see much better.

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Another view….

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The written pattern is designed to have all enclosed seams.  While I love that idea I found it darn near impossible to sew without using my own fingers as pin cushions…endless pins.  If these booties were going to walked in then by all means I would make it happen but they are for warmth and I don’t really think the baby with notice or mind.  So I used my beloved pinking shears and voila….

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I always tried to make the inside of my work as neat and attractive as the outside.  I have knitting camp to thank for that!!!

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I took this picture with the booties on my hand to give you some perspective but I don’t think you can really see how small they are…they are so precious!

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Again, not a bad first try but you know me…perfection please (or as close as I can get)!!  Let’s see what happens with my next try!

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Happy Mother’s Day everyone!!! I hope you are all having a wonderful day with those you love.  My day has honestly been pretty close to perfect!!  I awoke to breakfast in bed made by my darlings, hubby and baby girl.  Then as if God himself sent me a personal gift, Kira put herself down for a 2 1/2 hour nap.  During that precious time I finally got to finish a quilt!  And tonight, hubby is making my favorite for dinner, stuffed calamari!!!  HEAVEN!!  There is also one more thing that made today so special…

If any of you have been following my Facebook page you’ve seen the rainbow quilt I’ve been working on.  It has been a joy since the first stitch and I love everything about it!!

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It is bright, colorful and so full of life.  Very different from all the other quilts I’ve made.

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Just look at…I can’t stop!!

Here’s the back, which my dear friend Teri picked out for me.  I wanted something yellow to represent the sun and this jumped out at her.  It’s perfect!!

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Close up…

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A sun burst batik, could it be better…I’m thinking no!!!

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The binding fabric was also chosen for me and is the exact color of many a sunset in our back yard.

In order to really show off the fabrics I decided on simple line quilting (in the ditch).

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This quilt perfectly expresses all the joy, happiness and excitement I’m feeling these days.  And I can’t wait to give it to the owner but I’m going to have to wait about 4 1/2 more months…

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Yes, that’s me and yes that’s Kira kissing my belly which is currently filled with her baby brother/sister.

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The rainbow quilt wrapped around my almost 2 children!!  Happy Mother’s Day to me!!!

I’ve waited and waited to share this news and I couldn’t be happier to share it with you today.

Maybe now that the cat is out of the bag I can get back to posting.  All I’ve been working on is baby stuff.

Again Happy Mother’s Day!!!!

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Baby Blue

Do or teach?  That was my dilemma this week.  So I choose to do.  That was the only way I was going to get this baby quilt done in a week.  And what fun I had!!

Here’s the recap in pictures.  These were posted daily on my Facebook page, so I do apologize to those of you not on Facebook who missed it in the moment…

Here’s where thing stood on Monday.

Wednesday…Quilt top is done!

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All three layers basted and ready for quilting.  I realized that I didn’t have a generous amount of backing fabric so I just decided to use what I had and not worry so much about the rules.  Rule being…have at least 2 extra inches of fabric and batting on all sides of the quilt top.  Want to know something.  It all worked out and the quilting police didn’t show up!!

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Friday…All the quilting was done.  I decided to go with simple straight line quilt, where I outlined each block.  I love the way that looks, it serves it purpose to hold the quilt together and it’s fast.

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Friday night at 11:53pm.  Binding was completed!! A baby Irish chain quilt in 7 days.

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I went to bed right after taking this picture!!! I was honestly beat!!!

And here it is being held by my mum and Kira right before I left for the baby shower Saturday morning.

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I didn’t get to wash or label it but I told the moms-to-be not to wash it yet.  Let me add the finishing touches.  They more than got it!!

This much effort is more than worth it when the recipient really appreciates, respects and admires what you do.

And now the real truth behind this quilt.  I don’t know if you remember me mentioning that I’m making a queen size Irish chain quilt for a friend.  This was a practice run.  Practice my cutting (multiple layers of fabric), chain piecing, nesting seams…etc.  I have a lot more time to make that one but it’s a very big investment on many levels for both of us and of course near-perfection is my goal!  I loved making this quilt for so many reasons.

Can’t wait to start the next one!!!!

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Challenge

On Saturday I posted on Facebook that I was feeling overwhelmed.  All of a suddenly I have a baby quilt to finish by next Saturday, I’m taking a hand quilting class and have to prep materials by Thursday and $200 worth of fabric is arriving on my door step tomorrow to make an Irish Chain quilt for a very dear friend.  The last project is not a rush but know the fabric being here does at a measure of pressure.

That said, the challenge is can I accomplish the first two tasks on time while blogging and posting (on Facebook) about them.  I’m thinking yes!!!

All posts will be brief but will still document my progress, so here goes…

I started the cutting and piecing for this on Friday, posted the first block on Saturday and here is progress as of Sunday night.

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6 more blocks done.

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The rest of the fabric is prepped and ready to sew.

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My cheat sheet and “can’t live without them” rulers are at the ready.

Stay tuned!!  Class homework by Thursday and an Irish Chain Baby Quilt by Saturday…I can do this!!!

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