Recently, I spent a good chunk of my knitting time on a few projects which I couldn't talk about online, as they were intended as a gift for another web-savvy knitter. Well, two weeks ago that dear friend gave birth to a beautiful bouncing baby boy, and today I got to meet him and give him his presents!
First, a wee cardigan and a hat to match:
Second, an itty bitty bunny hat:
The bunny hat was at the suggestion of my husband. He spent the winter of his first year dressed up in a fleece snowsuit with bunny ears, and the photos are pretty priceless. We included a few of them in our wedding slideshow this summer, much to everyone's amusement. So, a bunny hat it was! I used the Bunny Beanie pattern, available for free here on Baby Center. This was a great little pattern and I highly recommend it. (Although it is a little light on the directions when it comes to attaching the ears, but after a little advice from my friend SnappyStitches, it all came together perfectly.)
The cardigan was made from the recently published Gramps pattern. It was love at first sight. This pattern is so cute and the copy made me laugh out loud. ("We think it’s hilarious how babies sometimes look like old geezers - so we created this shawl-collared grandpa sweater for your grouchy little old man!") I made the 0-6 month size, which by measurements is definitely more appropriate for a 6 month old baby of average size (otherwise, I pity the woman who bears a newborn who could fit it!). The pattern is well-written and I especially enjoyed seeing the shawl collar come together. (I used this tutorial by Cat Bordi for concealing the short row wraps and it was incredibly helpful!)
My only criticism of the pattern is to do with the button band/collar. They instruct you to pick up stitches starting at the bottom hem, working as you usually would (i.e. picking up from the outside/RS so the seamline ends up inside the garment). However, when you reach the part of the neckline where the collar begins, they instruct you to switch so that you're picking on from the wrong side (and thus the seamline will now be on the outside). I understand the reasoning - in theory, the shawl collar will fold over, concealing the (now) outer seamline, and will be more likely to reveal the seam from the inside. However, in practice, there's no way it's ever going to fold over that far. This is compounded by the fact that the uppermost buttonhole is right at the bottom of the collar - thus preventing it from folding over to conceal the seamline. Hopefully these photos illustrate my point (it's more obvious on the left side than the right). The first photo is with the top button done up, the second is with it undone.
Anyway, it's not the end of the world. It still looks pretty tidy and I imagine she can just leave the top button undone. If I ever knit this again I'll just leave the seamline on the inside the whole way around. I had to omit the cute elbow-patch and pocket details as I ran out of contrasting yarn, but I'd love to make another version of this sweater one day with all those little details included! I still think it's a completely charming pattern and highly recommend it.