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Entries in Babies (73)

Sunday
Aug122012

Whit's Knits: Lines + Squares Baby Blanket

One of my favorite books growing up was When We Were Very Young by A.A. Milne, a little collection of children's poems. The one I always loved best was called "Lines and Squares". It's about a kid who carefully avoids the lines of the sidewalk, stepping just in the squares while taunting a pair of bears "Who wait at the corner all ready to eat/ The sillies who tread on the lines of the street".  I loved the terror and the bravado of that poem!

As I knit this blanket with its red lines crissing and crossing, the verses of that poem replayed in my head, keeping time with my needles and sending me into reveries of times and places where nurseries, rice pudding and knickers were the norm. I think now that the Lines + Squares Baby Blanket with its timeless colors and classic simplicity would have been right at home there!

Although a grid to non-knitters may look like the easiest thing in the world, experienced knitters have to wonder, "How did you do that?" Luckily, there's a trick. The vertical lines aren't actually knitted into the pattern; they're crocheted on top of the knitting, nestling right into the design as if they were born there and making lines and squares a snap!

For this special project I chose one of our most special yarns, Anzula's Cricket. Amazingly soft merino with a touch of cashmere, beautifully hand dyed and machine washable, it's the perfect choice for a precious baby! And here's a vote for the main color I used, Au Natural. In person it glows like the inside of an oyster shell, complex and absolutely stunning. Pick your favorite contrast color and you've got an heirloom!

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Thursday
Jun212012

Molly's Sketchbook: Newborn Kimono Shirt

My mother is now retired, but for most of my life she was the head designer and co-owner of a children’s wear company called Sweet Potatoes. Growing up I would occasionally find some of the very first clothes she made for me carefully tucked away in a trunk. I always marveled at how tiny the newborn sleep sacks, jackets, and dresses were. I couldn’t believe I had ever been that small!


Inspired by one such sleep sack, edged in bias tape and made for me thirty-three years ago, I designed this Newborn Kimono Shirt for my own little one who, as I write this, is due very soon (but who may have been born by the time you read it!). I realize that newborn clothing doesn’t fit fast-growing babies for very long, but I love the idea of showing her just how little she was!

For the body of the Kimono, I used natural Essex Linen which has a beautiful, timeless heirloom quality. And for the binding, I used Nani Iro's adorable new Bias Tape. I love its subtle but playful polka dots, especially because I think they work equally well for a baby boy or girl. The Kimono's construction is very simple but with attention to important details, so it doesn’t take long to sew, but it will last a lifetime! --Molly

P.S. In case you all are wondering, YES, Molly had her baby!  Guadalupe Raquel was born on June 17, 2012.  Both Mom and Baby are doing great!  Congratulations Molly!  xoxo - Purl Bee

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Friday
Jun012012

Laura's Loop: Receiving Blankets

Call it what you will... binky, boppie, lovey... every baby needs a good old-fashioned security blanket. Regardless of the season, it's so nice to have a little something to snuggle! So for summer, we've whipped up a new lightweight version of our crochet-edged Flannel Receiving Blankets.

Nani Iro's newest line of airy flannels are just right for cozy, warm weather receiving blankets. These whimsical prints also offer a good dose of sophistication, perfect for mom and baby! Edged in Koigu's fingering weight Premium Merino, these cuddly keepsakes can be machine washed time and time again for long-loving use. 
Between Koigu's sharp colors (2229 and 1051 used here!) and Nani Iro's unique patterns, the combinations are endless. For even more options, explore our other flannels here, and for step-by-step instructions, please visit our Flannel Receiving Blankets project journal, right here!  Enjoy!  --Laura
Sunday
May202012

Molly's Sketchbook: Tiny Triangle Dress

When I tell other parents that I’m expecting a baby in June, they always tell me what a great time of year that is to have a baby. You can get outside and enjoy the weather with your new little one, and then down the road you can have fun outdoor birthday parties. This all sounds nice, but I’ve got to say, I’m not convinced.

As a native northern Californian I have never gotten used to New York City summers (or winters either, but that’s another story.)  The classic East Coast heat and humidity combo is both totally foreign and totally unbearable to me, and I’m worried that I’m going to have an equally uncomfortable kid. 

This super simple Tiny Triangle Dress is an attempt to help my daughter-to-be beat the NYC summer heat! It’s inspired by a traditional pillowcase dress and made out of Liberty of London Tana Lawn, which is just about the coolest and breeziest fabric ever made. The pattern is such a snap to sew that I’m planning to make a bunch of them in my favorite Liberty prints. So even if my baby’s hot, she’ll still look cute! --Molly

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Sunday
Apr292012

Molly's Sketchbook: Broken Dishes Baby Quilt

I have always loved to make baby gifts, imagining the baby-to-be and anticipating its arrival. Lately this has been particularly true because I myself am expecting my first baby (a girl) this June! After years of crafting gifts for the babies of dear friends and family, I relished the idea of making my own baby something extra special. Of course, a beautiful quilt would be just that!

Picking out the fabric proved to be much easier than I had imagined. I walked into the store one day and there was a stunning rainbow of Japanese yarn dyed linen blend solids, each lovelier than the next! I instantly fell in love and bought a piece of every single color.

Using the traditional “broken dishes” pattern, I approached my work with a sense of unhurried improvisation, putting the blocks next to one another randomly and then rearranging them as I saw fit. It felt more like flower arranging than sewing, and I loved seeing my quilt grow at about the same pace I did! Once the quilt top was finished, I decided that the slow process of hand quilting it would give me plenty of time to daydream about its recipient.  

It took me almost the whole length of my pregnancy to create this quilt, but if you’d like to make your own, it doesn’t have to be such a major commitment. Machine quilting and pin basting would go a lot quicker. But then again there is something lovely and very rewarding about not rushing certain projects. Kind of like growing a baby! 

ps- This quilt can be made in any color palate imaginable using any quiltweight fabric. Shot Cotton, and Kona Cotton have some gorgeous color options! Also, The pretty stuffed swan in the pictures above was made by the very talented Tamar Mogendorff, you can check out more of her work here.

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