April 17, 2010

Bidding On a Berry

Berry Baby Hat by Michelle Sabatier
Project Specs:
Knitted in Sirdar Snuggly Baby Bamboo; Cherry Lips for main color and Willow for leaves.
Knit on size US 5 circulars.

Fleegles Seamless Saartje Booties, original pattern by Saartje de Bruijn,
and modifications by Susan Glinert Stevens.*
Project Specs:
Knit on size US 1 square dpns by Kollage Yarns.
*My modifications found below italicized.

Long time no see!  I can't believe it's been three months since I last posted. I had such grand plans for 2010.  You can see it in the umpteen sweaters I have queued on Rav, tagged "sweater 2010" and "10shawls2010."  But I'm not giving up, yet!  I have been knitting, just not finishing and posting.

Every year my children's school hosts an art auction aptly named "Artapooloza;" a fundraiser designed to raise money for the various art programs at our school.  Last year they asked me to knit something, and I was happy to oblige and opted for a pair of Mitered Mittens that were a hit!  This year when they asked I wanted to do something bright and cheery, and since there seems to be so many friends having babies I decided for baby gear! 

I perused patterns for a few days and finally decided on the Baby Berry Hat by Michelle Sabatier and Saartje de Bruijn's classic Baby Booties.  I have knit more than five pairs of Saartje's adorable booties (some photographed, some not!) Most have reached their adorable owners... one pair had the buttons chewed off by a hungry puppy before delivery.  But as much as I love this pattern I have never (!) loved the seaming.  There are seams everywhere... so many seams that weaving in ends takes nearly as long as knitting the shoe itself!  So I was thankful to find a modification of the pattern by Susan Glinert Stevens adapting the pattern to be knit in the round.  (I'm sure this is something we have all thought about doing at some point!)  Susan did a fantastic job adapting the pattern.  It's simply written and easy to follow.  I made a modification for the buttonholes, but only because I'm not the best with a crochet hook.   


Button Hole Modification: 

Instead of making a chain, I opted for casting off the first stitch of the row then made 3 stitches using the backward loop method.  After making the stitches I transferred the stitches back to the left needle and then knit and cast them off in succession with the other stitches. I then repeated these three stitches and instructions before the last stitch to be bound off.  This method works great for me, and you can adapt the number of stitches you cast on for the size button you'll be using. 


I find it fits perfectly into the cast off edge as well.

Saartje's Booties, [ jenleigh ]'s version.
The Baby Berry Hat was a breeze to knit, and the only modification I made was in casting on 72 stitches instead of the recommended 64 stitches, and only because I was using a dk weight yarn on US size 5 needles.  The original pattern calls for worsted weight on size US 7 and 8s.

This hat is so adorable in person and I really hope to get an "action photo" from whomever buys the set at the auction tonight!  I blocked it on a butter bell and it fit just right!  The knob atop the bell worked perfectly for blocking the leaves and stem of the hat.  

I also tried out a new yarn I haven't used before and that is Sirdar's Snuggly Baby Bamboo.  It's fiber content is 80% bamboo and 20% wool, and is machine washable (baby bonus points!)  At $7 per 50g it's not too expensive, but for such a small project you really get a lot of bang for your buck.  I have plenty of yarn left to knit another set!  The yarn was so yummy to knit with and because of the wool it does have some memory.  I read on Ravelry where several people had knit the booties using this yarn on US 2.5's and were not pleased with the results.  I opted instead for US size 1's and was very pleased.  The booties have a nice tight stitch that holds up well, and the size is just right for 0-3 months.

Wow!  That's a long post for me!  But it's been so long since I've talked knitting I just got caught up in the moment... =)  I have some more FO's to photograph and post about.  One a pretty little baby bonnet in Mal that Alice's version inspired me to sit and knit the very day she posted about it!  I hadn't knit anything in a few weeks and that was a great kick in the pants for me to pick my sticks back up.  

I hope everyone is well!  It's so nice to be back.  I've enjoyed checking out all the great FO's in my friend's link in Ravelry! 

Have a great weekend, and happy knitting!

 ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: Ivana DATE: 04/17/2010 03:05:16 PM You might want to look at Ysolda Teague's Tiny Shoes: http://ysolda.com/store/accessories/tiny-shoes/ Just as adorable, but with very little seaming (basically just grafting some stitches at the end and weaving in ends). I just finished my first pair and the whole thing took maybe a total of 3hrs... 
----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: Jennifer DATE: 04/17/2010 05:17:53 PM Thanks! I will check those out... 3 hours for the pair? Wow! 
----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: Alice DATE: 04/17/2010 08:35:46 PM This set is too cute! I love your mods on the booties! The buttonholes are the worst part for me and always end up looking sloppy. Yours look so much better :) 
----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: sue  DATE: 04/17/2010 09:09:59 PM So adorable and I love the red too! 
----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: Jennifer  DATE: 04/19/2010 08:12:14 AM I remember seeing EZ use a similar button hole to this for a cast off edge... but it's been a while so it may be slightly different. It's the general idea tho... I think! =S 
----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: del DATE: 04/22/2010 07:10:29 AM Thank goodness you are back. I was starting to worry! I've been checking your blog often, to no avail. Love the new post. 
----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: Jennifer  Thanks Del! It's good to be back! =) 
----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: Fia DATE: 08/03/2010 02:31:24 PM very cute;) 
----- COMMENT: AUTHOR: Dianne  DATE: 09/16/2010 01:15:27 PM BEAUTIFUL baby cap! I wish I could knit like this~!

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