baby talk

March 04, 2016

Hello there!  I recently came back from a fantastic cruise through the Panama Canal.  It's a trip I've wanted to take for forever and it did not disappoint.  We did however have 4 at-sea days, which meant lots of leisure time, which I actually love-and I know you can guess why: knitting time!  I took four projects with me and knit in the room, on the deck, by the pool, in the library, in the bar, in the theater, during the lectures and trivia games and so many more places I can't remember.  I never left the stateroom without one of my small, lightweight projects I packed for this trip and kept in a tiny bag that was snapped onto my belt loop.  Whenever I had an extra moment, it was there waiting.  Several times I had women walk by me and say, "Oh, I'll just run and get my knitting and join you."  But more often than not I heard, "Oh darn, I forgot to bring my knitting on this trip."  I am left speechless to this statement as when I am faced with packing for a trip, the very first thing I pack is my knitting.  (One of the women who forgot her knitting said her arthritis was acting up something awful and that her doctor recommends she knit daily to keep her fingers fluid.  Interesting.)

With all that idle time I made some progress on quite a few things: I got caught up with my baby blanket for the Martin Storey KAL.  The Montreal Kidsilk Haze tunic grew to be over a foot long.  I worked on another Martin Storey design, a simple shrug also in KSH, and then finished all the pieces for this baby sweater.  Last night I did the blocking and seaming, and now all that remains is for the baby to be born!  This is going to my son's childhood schoolmate who is expecting her first baby in July.

Let's talk about the yarn: Baby Ull by Dale of Norway (yes, the same Dale of Norway that makes those gorgeous, fairisle ski sweaters) is a fingering weight wool that has been around for ages.  It is 100% machine washable Merino wool and has an excellent range of colors.  It is extremely soft--soft enough to be right next to baby's skin.  It's very easy to knit with great bounce and stitch definition.  I've used it many times and love it, and because it is fingering weight using small size 0 and 2 needles,  the resulting fabric is very light-weight and suitable for year-round wear except perhaps in the hottest climate.  I highly recommend this yarn.  The put-up is 180 yards (165 meters) for 50 grams and is an excellent value at around $8 per skein. The wool is sourced in Australia and made in China.

Long time readers know I love this pattern to death and have knit it literally dozens of times.  In my opinion there is no cuter baby garment in the world.  In fact, I'll say that no baby's wardrobe is complete without an owl sweater!  Decades ago, Penny Straker's mother Janice was the first knitter to write a pattern for the popular cabled owl.  Over the years, many have copied but none have bettered her adorable, well-written pattern.  The pattern is now easily purchased as a pdf download through Ravelry.

I'd love to hear from you.  Please click here to make a comment.  Below are all the links.

in sizes 6 mos, 12 mos. and 24 mos.

in children's sizes 2, 4, 6, and 8

My yardage, color and needle details on my Ravelry project page.

I'm lucky and can find
Dale Baby Ull
at my lys, Uncommon Threads, but it can also be found at these fine online shops:

When button shopping, if I happen to come upon tiny, two holed buttons, I snap up a few packets to have on hand for the owl eyes.

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  1. I've had several of those skeins of Baby Ull in various colors for some time now. This might be their destiny. Now all I need is the baby.:-) Chloe

  2. This sweater is PERFECT...I love it!!! Like you, my knitting is the very FIRST think I pack, even when I'm getting in the car with my husband for Saturday errands!!! I wouldn't dream of leaving it behind on an actual TRIP! Perish the thought!!! As for the arthritis... I have Rheumatoid Arthritis {have had since I was 9 years old and am now 51}. My doctor, whom I just saw again 3 days ago, reminds me every single visit to keep up my knitting EVERY SINGLE DAY, as she is examining my hands very thoroughly... God I LOVE that woman :-))) I'm so happy you were able to take a long awaited trip. Such a blessing to be thankful for... and to come home with all that lovely knitting done up.

    1. That is so interesting to me about your doctor recommending knitting. I had hand surgery a few years ago for an infection I got in the sheath of my tendon from a lethal rose thorn. I I had two surgeries over two days with stitches crisscrossing the palm of my hand. My doctor also recommended I get back to knitting as soon as the stitches were out! Yay for the healing properties of knitting!


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