Baby Baby Knitting Crochet Family Finished Handmade Handmade for Baby Knitting Work in Progress

Instant Gratification


I couldn’t say for certain whether it’s the effect of finishing Little Bump’s blanket or more an end of pregnancy urge to make all of the things all of the right now, but there has been one definite consequence of completing the latest wooly magnum opus; I’m craving a palette cleanser.

Or two (*cough* three) ((OK, four)).

It started with the partial packing of the hospital bag (you see where attempts at organisation will lead you) and the realisation that although the Little Bump has a cardigan to wear in the balmy confines of an August maternity ward, he or she was lacking a hat.  Half a day’s careful thought and a big of rummaging in one of the boxes in the disarray of the studio unearthed the rest of the You are My Sunshine yarn, and with the girls happily engaged in actually playing with Moon Dough (for some reason it’s just not as tasty as Playdoh, even if it is a bazillion times messier and thereby relegated to outdoors only) I cast on, and knit, and purled and knit and purled and knit some more.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

And it turned into a hat before my very eyes.  I didn’t even have to do the thinking or the maths, I just followed this very sweet and simple pattern from If Nona Knits.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

Unless you’ve worked monogamously on a really big project for weeks and months on end it’s hard to explain just how satisfying it is to turn out a little project really quickly. But I can show you:

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

I made another hat. Because maybe that first hat won’t be the right size for the baby’s head, or maybe it will be too hot or too cold, or maybe that the baby just needs more hats (that could totally be what it’s waiting for couldn’t it?).

This one is from Rowan Baby Merino Silk DK leftover from a Baby Surprise Jacket that I made for a colleague that I unearthed in the studio rearranging and thought would be perfect as a little soft stripy hat.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

And so it is (the pattern is Grow With Me Baby from Hither and Yarn, 66sts on 3.75mm needles).

So perfect that I think it might need a little jacket to match.  That would be project 3 then, which is in no way shape or form responsible for a trip up to Solihull yesterday to claim the last two balls of Snowdrop that appear to exist at all anywhere.

You may place your bets now as to whether the baby will beat the knitting.  Personally, my money’s on the yarn, even with distraction from housecleaning number 4, which I think should properly be titled “The Giving into Temptation Ripple”.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

You see I found this bag, stuffed full of almost full balls of Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino or similar, and mostly leftover from when I turned myself into a human sweatshop churning out tiny hand knitted elephants for Kitty’s NCT baby friends’ first birthdays.  There isn’t really enough of any one colour to make something for either of the girls, and any attempt at fairisle could go drastically wrong if I ran out of a colour.  And yet I didn’t want to hand it over to the girls for craft projects, it’s too nice a yarn for that.

But what I have wanted to make for ages and ages is an Attic 24 Ripple Crochet Blanket, and while there isn’t enough yarn to make a blanket, there might be enough for a little something, a cushion cover perhaps for when we merge the girls’ rooms and give them a little makeover in the months to come.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

Well that was all it took.  The swatch looked rather pretty, and the girls love the colours (particularly if I get them to pick the next one out of the bag), and there’s something a little Cath Kidston in the combination, and before I knew where I was I’d cast on, or crocheted on or whatever the right verb is in crochet.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

And now I know three things.

1. This is a great pattern.  Lucy’s instructions are really clear, I’d got the pattern memorised after I finished the swatch, and it’s easy enough to read what you’ve done before to see if you’ve got lost or not.

2. It’s not possible to crochet and look away in the same way that I can knit without seeing what I’m doing (yes, I can and do knit while reading books and knit in the dark/low light) but now that I know what I’m doing with this pattern there’s that lovely familiar repetitive rhythm, the one that I find in knitting that soothes my soul and is at least part of the reason why this house is full of yarn.

3. One is never going to be enough.  I’m going to have to make a full size blanket. One day.

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  • Caroline 13/08/2014 at 1:59 pm

    I love this Carie and yay for using up yarn so you can buy more:) I knitted a ripple blanket for my niece and loved the way it came out so am tempted to try this.

    • Carie 13/08/2014 at 8:08 pm

      Oh you should – you know it would make the perfect new baby blanket for a Scottish winter!!!! And you’ve got time to make it too!

  • Vickie Rich 13/08/2014 at 3:26 pm

    Awww such pretty little hats! 🙂

    Like you I’ve longed to do a Lucy Ripple but for the moment I’m contenting myself with her Granny Stripe blanket instead. I love the colour combination you’re using!

    • Carie 13/08/2014 at 8:09 pm

      The Granny Stripe is next on the list! I’ve got to work out some sort of quilt and blanket storage solution first though – at the moment they all end up in a big pile on the floor and I’m sure there must be a better way!

  • Camille 13/08/2014 at 5:24 pm

    Adorable little hats! I wish I could get the hang of knitting. I think it’s so sweet that your baby will wear things you handmade.

    • Carie 13/08/2014 at 8:10 pm

      It’s a lot easier than you think I promise – if you’re struggling try holding the needles in different ways, everyone knits slightly differently and it makes the world of difference to find the way that feels comfortable for you

  • Jenny 13/08/2014 at 7:13 pm

    Congrats on finishing and looks amazing I can say I know all too well about the instant gratification. I am learning to sew and just did my first two stuffed animals (although I did them for presents so i can’t share yet) but I was instantly so proud and felt so great when I had finally finished. Love these you have done too and the colors. Thanks for linking up to Share With Me and for the continual blog support. #sharewithme

    • Carie 13/08/2014 at 8:11 pm

      Thank you 🙂 and you’re welcome – I’m looking forward to seeing your sewing projects in due course, I’ll bet they’re incredibly cute!

  • Sara (@mumturnedmom) 13/08/2014 at 8:01 pm

    I can feel the relaxation and enjoyment in your words, this post had me smiling from start to finish, and I don’t knit 🙂 Lovely post, and lovely things. It must be so wonderful to look at them and know you made them. #ShareWithMe

    • Carie 13/08/2014 at 8:12 pm

      Aww thank you – I really do love making things and making for the children is right up there at the top of the list!

  • Rachel @ The Ordinary Lovely 13/08/2014 at 8:34 pm

    My goodness, Carie, your fingers have been on fire lately. Can I play guess the birth yet? I’m going for boy … born on August 18 … a healthy 8lbs 4oz … who will be forever loved (and dressed in dresses) by his adoring sisters. Seriously though, the very best of luck if I don’t get to tweet you beforehand. I’ll be watching out for an announcement x

    • Carie 17/08/2014 at 12:24 pm

      You’re more than welcome to guess but I’d put my money a little later in the month – much as I’d dearly love you to be right!!

  • sally 16/08/2014 at 9:39 pm

    I know exactly what you mean with the quick make after a long make – I don’t knit but quilts can do that to a person too! Adorable hats and I love that combination of gorgeous colours in your basket, that cushion is going to be amazing.

    • Carie 17/08/2014 at 12:32 pm

      I think the different stages of quilts help to break them up in my mind; the piecing is the long haul for me but as I usually do very simple quilting that doesn’t take too long, and the binding is only usually a few evenings – perhaps that’s their charm, you get the magnum opus and the instant hit all in one project!

  • Brandi 18/08/2014 at 2:15 pm

    Oh my gosh, these are adorable. I just took a knitting class a few months ago and made a sort of nursing shawl (at least attempted, it’s just a big wide scarf) and I wanted to try my hand at a hat…I’m just not that good. Plus, our hospital gives out homemade knit hats to the babes, so instead I started trying to convert a cowhide rug into a chair cover. Not much better at leather working than I am at knitting!

    • Carie 18/08/2014 at 8:58 pm

      That’s so sweet that your hospital gives the babies hats! I always think babies should be welcomed with knitting and it’s lovely that everyone gets one.