Recently in Tulips Baby Sweater Category

Zosia Finally Wears Tulip

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How is it possible that my tiny baby has gotten to the point where she can wear all of her 6-12 month old sized clothes?  Didn't we just bring her home? Where does the time go?  How do I convince my baby to slow down?

20080208_ZosiaInTulip.jpgWell, I probably won't get answers to those questions, but I can still have fun capturing some of that time on film.  To my eye, that little Tulip baby sweater that I made before she arrived looks even more adorable when being worn by the baby it was intended for.  I've been putting her in it as often as I can, knowing that not only will she out grow it, but in only a couple of months it could be too warm to need a sweater.

I realize I haven't really posted about what is going on with Z these days.   Gosh, where to start.  She's eating all sorts of solid foods and is an incredibly good eater.  She figured things out around 5 months and loves to eat like the big people do.  Her favorite is probably her Daddy's hand smashed bananas with oatmeal, but we still haven't found a fruit she doesn't like.  She's a hair's breadth away from sitting up completely unassisted and can get herself up on all fours but hasn't quite figured out how to make the arms and legs move to crawl.  Her pediatrician thinks she might be reading ahead a little bit in the baby development book (bear in mind that while she is 6.5 months old, she was three weeks early).  She is an absolute hoot most of the time.  And it's so much fun for John and I to watch her really beginning to figure out her environment and what she wants to do in it. 

Oh, and she's back to not getting up in the middle of the night again.  Must have been a growth spurt or just some serious brain development going on.  Apparently both can mess with infant sleep patterns.

Today's lovely picture is courtesy of our good friends in Madison, WI.  Thanks Aunt Judy!

Tulips Baby Cardigan

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Tulips Baby Cardigan

What is it about small things that makes them so magickal? All the while I was working on this little sweater I kept stopping to look at it and to imagine wrapping a small person into it. My small person. As I worked on it, it seemed as if the baby would get more active. Telling me she approved, maybe? Or just that my knitting position wasn't as comfortable for her as she would have liked it to be? Either way, watching this sweet little project work up on my needles was a very happy thing. It will be much too large for a newborn, but should do nicely for her when the Chicago winter rolls around.

This project is from Dream in Color Designs -- the people who make Dream in Color Yarn. As far as I can tell, it pretty much uses all the mostly solid colorways that they have available in their "Classy" yarn. Classy is approximately worsted weight. I was surprised though, that to get gauge (4.5 stitches/inch) I had to go up to a size 9 (5.5 mm) needle. No matter, even on needles that seemed too huge to be used for a baby garment, everything came out to the sizes described in the pattern.

This project has several nice features beyond stimulating one's color sense. It's knit all in one piece with no seams. It has no buttons or button holes to fuss with. And it has very lovely instructions for making the applied I-cord edging work out well. Perhaps the only drawback to this pattern is that the color changing means that there is a good deal of weaving in of ends at the end.

I used to be very skeptical of the whole idea of knitting for babies. Now that I've watched this little sweater come together, it's much easier for me to understand the allure of baby garments. Not only do they come together so quickly they are practically instant gratification, but it is hard to think unhappy thoughts with something so tiny and sweet in your hands.

When I first got pregnant, I didn't think there was any chance that I would be making sweaters for Miss Z. After all, why make something by hand for someone who will not really know about it or appreciate it and who will grow out of it after a couple of wearings? Having finished this little sweater, I now know that while on the surface I am knitting this garment for my baby, when I look underneath the surface, I am clearly knitting this garment for me, and for all the happy memories, now and in the future, that this garment will give me. Every time I pull it out, even long after she has outgrown it, it will help me remember the process of becoming a mother, and what it was like to hold a small person in my arms.

Flowers

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Thank you to everyone who is helping me de-stash. Last night I got a lot of yarn, fiber and tools on it's way to new homes. Even my husband was impressed by the number of things heading out the door in such a short period of time. I'm just happy that some of this stuff will get to have a new life in someone else's stash!

A lot (and I mean a lot) of people asked after the Blue Moon Fiber Arts Merino/Tencel blend. While I only had one batch to sell, I wanted to let everyone know that Toni Neil at the Fold sells handpainted Blue Moon rovings. I didn't discount that roving at all, so if you wanted that fiber or fiber like it, I'd suggest giving Toni a call or dropping her an email. She's very helpful and I know she will take orders over the phone.

I have updated yesterday's post so that items that I no longer have are no longer shown. When something says "SALE PENDING" it means that someone has committed to the item, but I have not received payment for it yet. If I do not receive payment for something in a reasonable time (reasonable depending on the payment method) then I will offer it to the the next person in my inbox.

In the meantime, it's not all de-stashing around my house. There are definitely some new entrants into the stash as well. The most recent batch of stash enhancements came from Lettuce Knit in Toronto.

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Tulips Sweater Kit and A Bit of Silk & Cashmere

Right after I got to Lettuce Knit, Rachel H (a most excellent enabler) made sure I had the Tulips Baby Sweater kit in my hand. Tulips is a pattern designed by the folks at Dream in Color Yarn and uses their beautiful handpainted worsted weight superwash wool, Classy. This isn't normally offered as a kit -- Megan at Lettuce Knit has decided to help make this project more available to knitters everywhere by putting together the small amounts of each color that you need to complete the project. It's a very sweet, colorful little sweater. And if you've been watching the Yarn Harlot's blog, you know it knits up fast. I decided that this would be the first sweater I would knit for the Z Baby -- it will be much too large for her for a while, but it should be about perfect for her when it's coldest here in Chicago. And it's about the size project I can actually tackle right now and have some hope of completion.

The other little treat in that basket is some Handmaiden 2 Ply Silk Cashmere in a colorway that iis just so much purply radiant fabulousness I couldn't say no. 300 meters is enough for something nice in either the scarf or small shawl category, I think. Perhaps a nice treat for myself during my maternity leave... assuming, of course, that I can focus on knitting anything during that time.

I thought I'd close with one of my favorite signs of summer -- the first peony bloom of the new year.

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My First Peony Blossom of 2007

Peonies are probably one of my favorite summer flowers. I love how big and bold and colorful and flamboyant they are. I love watching them rise from the ground every year, sometimes so fast that you think you can see them grow. These flowers aren't afraid to be beautiful and they can even grow happily in an urban environment just as long as you give them a little sun. If "bloom where you're planted" applies to any flower, it's my peonies -- putting on a show under less than completely ideal conditions. Whenever I walk out my front door and see them, they make me happy.

Welcome summer!

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