Friday, December 16, 2005

goo-goo ga-ga

bad photo of cute baby things,
aka EZ's BSJ and Anouk, pre-blocked
(well, they were cute in the pattern)

But I haven't got much time at the moment to try and take better pictures, for not only is it that time of the year, but a friend, in her infinite wisdom, brought her wedding forward to the week before that time of year (also, I think she didn't want her unexpected but much longed-for babies to be born b******s). (And I say, nothing wrong with being born a b******, as technically, I was. And I'm being mean and grumpy about it, and nobody is allowed to get married/have parties/have fun of any kind ever again, or at least for the next five years, if it involves me having to go shopping for something to wear.) So what with the shopping, and the shopping for something to wear, and the shopping, and the finishing of gifts, and the head-in-sand attitude towards all things seasonal, and the stress and the... Again, you know how all this goes.

But seriously dudes, baby clothes. So unbelievably cute, makes me almost want one of my own. (By the way, asking people 'how large is a baby's neck?' results in some quite strange and possibly slightly disturbing gestures.) And quick to knit. Ultimate gratification, brownie points for using stash, and all official gift knitting finished.

Things I have learned - Anouk

Anouk is clever, french-baby chic, just right for a Continental European baby. But I'll say it again, and maybe I will remember this time, that cotton is a pain for showing errors, no matter how cheery the colours. However, I have decided that those odd little tension kicks - when a stitch just doesn't sit quite right, when it is a little loose, or a little tight - are not my fault. They are the fault of all the people/cats/telephones/cats/doorbells who interrupt me mid-row.

If I made it again, I might adjust the shaping at the bottom, as the moss/seed stitch border does tend to pull in a little.

For a really quick knit, you could leave off the pockets altogether, or knit them plain. To avoid sewing pockets on, you could always experiment with making a double knit pouch (which one day I might just do).

I cannot sew. I cannot even do a simple duplicate stitch, with instructions in front of me, and make it look even half-way acceptable. Anything that expects me to sew is doomed from the start.

Things I have learned - Elizabeth Zimmermann's Baby Surprise Jacket

Thank you, thank you, thank you - to all the bloggers I have discovered in recent months who kept mentioning EZ, which finally prompted me to go and have a look and see what all the fuss was about. She is so much fun, and I firmly believe in a woman who roamed far and wide in her attempt to eradicate seams. And the BSJ is such a hoot to make.

What else? Well, you can make 'interesting' seams if you attack them with a crochet hook, and make it up as you go along. Anyway, it's for a baby, so no-one will be looking at the seams.

Jamieson & Smith (ah, how do I love thee, let me count the ways, my passion for J&S is running out of control at the moment) smells ever so faintly of the farmyard when wet, of small baby lambs and mucking out stables and unpasturised milk, healthy and fertile and fun (a nice organic farmyard, not one of your battery places, no thank you). Which is a good thing if you dreamed of having your own pony when you were a little girl, and would spend hours starting at ungodly hours in the morning working as slave labour just so you could be near a horse. But standing at the kitchen sink inhaling wet wool and dreaming of My Friend Flicka does not get the cat hair out or the blocking done. And the mother of the baby did have a pony when young (hiss, hiss, spit, spit, gently turning green), so faint farmyards won't faze her at all.

Now I'm off to stand over wet wool, and day-dream. And pretend I don't have to sew on 8 buttons.