Baby knitting roundup

Over the past six months or so, there have been a flurry of births in my circle of friends and in my midwestern family.   As you know, I’ve knitted many, many tiny hats lately, which I find to be an easy, quick, and a super useful gift.  My favorite is the Magic Coffee Baby Hat, partly because it was designed by a friend for/because of my boy (and another in our circle of knitters), and partly because it’s a great pattern and actually fits babies really well. And it’s free!  And over a thousand knitters have made it, so you know it must be good!   http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/magic-coffee-baby-hat

I’m actually not sure how many Magic Coffee Baby Hats I’ve knit myself.  I sometimes group them together into one Ravelry project if I’m knitting a bunch at once.  I’ve probably made more than a dozen of them.

Anyway….Here are four of the recently-born baby girls (all girls!!!!) in their hats, and one in a sweater.

Left to right and top to bottom, they’re 1) Ava, one of my college BFF’s daughter, 2) Caroline, my great-niece (nothing has made me feel old until writing or saying “great-niece.”), 3) Amayah, my cousin’s granddaughter, 4) Penny, my knitting friend’s daughter (with husband for goofy addition), and Caroline again– I need to knit her a new sweater ASAP, eh? She’s a beautiful, chunky baby!

It’s awfully nice that, although I can’t cuddle all these babies in person, I can send them some wooly love.  And I can’t express how happy I am that the parents have been sending me photos of the handknits in action.  You know what that means, don’t you?  They’ll get MORE handknits!

Back to normal?

Well, after a few days of frustration with WordPress, it looks like I can insert photos again.  We get so used to instant gratification these days that it is actually kind of nice to take a break from the constant digital connections sometimes.

However, I did want to show you the plethora of baby hats I’ve been working on.  In total, I whipped up 8 Magic Coffee Baby hats in 11 days, while the Rainbow Marley (from a previous post) took me 2 weeks, on and off, because I found it so boring.

2 of the Magic Coffee hats aren’t pictured because the mama-to-be had her baby shower last week and I wanted them to arrive in Minnesota on time (they did!).  I sent 2 more off today, but I plan to make a few more items for the last mom on my list before I send her hats to her.  I have two left over that I’ll probably donate.

There are some scraps left over, but I think instead of more hats right now, I’ll put them in my bear yarn stash.

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And….. in bigger news, last night at Knit Night I finished my French Toast sweater!  It fits great, although I wouldn’t mind if it relaxed slightly from blocking.  I soaked it in Eucalan and now it’s lying flat while I think about evaporation.  I’ll get a better photo when I can.

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Now that the sweater is done, I have wound the yarn for my husband’s requested socks, and I’m trying to figure out if I have the right yarn for a hat to squeeze into the last few days of Cablepalooza.  I have my eye on the pattern Hermione Hearts Ron.

On a roll

Having whipped up a Magic Coffee baby hat yesterday, I was inspired to power through the next one, and I finished it today. Here they are together.

 

the silky wool doea not make stretchy ribbing! no more silky wool ribbing!

 
Several family members and friends of mine are having girls in the next few months, and I found this hat so handy when the Wee Boy was a baby, so I’ll continue to knit these up for a while. 

I’m also super inspired to use up this pink  Elspeth Lavold Silky Wool from Stash Exchange 2014. At that stash exchange, I vowed to myself to use up my newly acquired yarn before the next exchange, and not let it become a repeat offender. I’d used some of it in a cowl, but I want to use it all up!

So to that end, I started another baby hat right away!

  
Because it’s stripes(less yarn used!) and baby hats (tiny!), this ball is getting smaller very slowly. It’ll be interesting to see how many hats I can eke out of it. I’m pairing it with different scraps in order to eventually have a good selection of hats to divvy up among the new baby girls. 👶

A hat, a sleeve, and Jack London 

Recently I found in my “Hiking in the Bay Area with Kids” book a short hike in the Jack London historic state park. I hadn’t known such a place existed! My husband was as interested as I was (we’d both read London books as children) so we decided to check it out at the next opportunity, which was today!

On the way there and back, I made a non-fussy Magic Coffee Baby hat. I cannot praise this pattern highly enough. If you need a quick, easy, great-fitting, free pattern for a baby hat, look no further!

  
Now, some pics of the park, the ruins of Jack London’s dream house, and the cottage where he lived and wrote books.

  
Wolf House burned down about a month before London and his wife were to move in.    
  

The cottage where London wrote novels and entertained guests.  
 

Apparently he tried raising cacti to feed cattle, unsuccessfully.
  

Back at home, I finished the first sleeve of my French Toast sweater.

  
It fits! I did the “continental purling” that a friend reminded me of. We went to a talk/book signing by Ysolda Teague a few years ago, where she’d mentioned it. Instead of wrapping the yarn as in a normal purl, you wrap it the opposite way. It worked! My purls are neater and much nicer. I’ll be reknitting the hem ribbing this way. 

  

Magic Marvin

We met baby Marvin yesterday- he’s the wee babe for whom I whipped up a Blue/Blue Magic Coffee Baby Hat last week! Ohhhh he’s cute! The kids and I were instantly in love and vying for his attention.

  

He was a willing hat model.     

What a sweetheart! At 8 months, the 9-18 month size is still roomy, but babies grow, of course. Maybe  it’ll be a perfect fit for next winter!

Magic coffee baby hat

This is the perfect project when you are going to meet a friend’s baby tomorrow and want to make something for them. The design is by teekay on Ravelry, and it’s simple, free, and fits babies really well.

 

nearly a baby hat!


I should be able to finish it in time, and hopefully I’ll have a cute baby to show you tomorrow!

In other news, I was covered in hand knits today but was still cold. San Francisco summers, y’all…. Cold stuff.

i am not impressed.

This ‘n’ that

I hope you had a relaxing New Year’s Day! It was fine here, (but cold!!)and we had a nice day visiting with a good friend.

Craft-wise, I have some updates!  Having kept the heat on my drying handspun, all day yesterday, it dried pretty quickly. Before washing:

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And after:

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It’s very squishy and soft, and looks nicer after washing, although it’s still very thick/thin. I wonder if it would be nice knit up in a simple garter cowl, after dyeing.

My trio of Magic Coffee Baby Hats is done!  http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/magic-coffee-baby-hat (Pssst, the Wee Boy is the second baby pictured!  He was a sweet little hat model….)

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The rainbow one is my favorite, but weaving in all those ends was no treat.

With gift/deadline knitting done, I’ve picked up my neglected Monkey socks and took my Pop Blanket out of hibernation.  I’m determined to finish these two languishing projects soon.   But there is a big distraction looming!  My sock KAL group is knitting a hat this time around, so I’ve been poking around in my stash for appropriate yarns. The pattern is called “Breaking the Waves,” so I thought grays and blues would be appropriate.   http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/breaking-the-waves So far I have this:

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But I likely have more possibilities in my stash– this was pretty much just yarns I had  readily available. Apparently I have a thing for blue. Seriously, if you ever catch me looking at blue yarn, jab me with a knitting needle!!