Friday, October 19, 2007

The best far

Baby Bolero
Yarn: Blue Sky Organic Cotton Yarn, Sage
Needles: US 8 circular, Tapestry needle
Pattern in OneSkein, Leigh Radford

I started a Baby Bolero sweater from the OneSkein book a few weeks ago when I realized that everyone I knew was pregnant.

I figured I'd get started on a project that I could hopefully replicate in different colors fast enough to keep time with all the babies showing up.

So far I'm on track to keep up with at least the babies currently brewing. Although it appears there will be more babies and I'll fall behind my baby sweater making schedule since every single day someone new tells me they are pregnant or "trying" or implies some other forthcoming baby situation that requires hand knit recognition.

Sure, I could go to their registries for gifts, but I don't know what any of that crap is and feel weird ordering boob cup attachments for breast pumps that are going to be touching my friend's naked tatas.

I'd rather knit.

Maybe they'll hate me because I'm doing that ignoring of the ever-precious registry thing that everyone gets all pissed off about (not that I bitched about this a lot when I got married and people gave us ugly vases instead of the white plates I'd registered for or anything - I'm just saying) but the only things that ring any bells on there are car seats and Butt Paste (obviously awesome) and most of the time these things are either wicked pricey or already taken, respectively.

Sidenote: I did come across a friend's registry recently that had both of these items miraculously unpurchased so, probably due to the initial shock, got both and tried not to look directly at the nippley gadgets in the category above the Butt Paste. Really, people, what happens to your boobs and asses? Nevermind. Let's not discuss this.

Anyway, screw your weird registries of plastic shapes I don't recognize - I'm making baby sweaters. That's not bad, right? I mean, I assume babies do not like being cold any more than I do (one could argue that my Ugly Librarian Sweater is just a huge fugly adult version of these sweaters with a zipper) and a sweater would be a practical gift for the hundreds of people having babies in the winter months.

And, apparently my No Rest for the Childfree knitting schedule is working because I got an invite to a good friend's out of state shower happening this weekend and had, TAH-DOW, a freshly hand-knit and adequately blocked Baby Bolero ready to wrap and send.

Oh yes. It was a grand moment in my life of searching for efficiency and uniqueness. Usually I settle for being one or the other: showing up well-rested with a store-bought gift OR showing up with yarn in my hair and bags under my eyes from staying up most of the night to finish the very cute and personal hooded baby blanket (or whatever) craftily wrapped in tissue and ribbon with cute Care Instructions on recycled paper pinned to the corner.

It is a rare and glorious day when I get to give a handmade gift that doesn't try to kill me in the process. And aside from the puny eyelet pattern that I had to rip out 10 times (really, at least 10) because I refused to stop drinking my wine long enough to decode the not-hard seven line pattern, this was a pretty fast and easy little sweater.

We will not be talking about the one hundred ends I had to weave in after assembling all the parts because I think we all know that sucks so I don't need to rehash it even though I have plenty of swears I could use to describe the process of thinking one is done "weaving in ends" when one is, in fact, only halfway there. And I love that it just says something like, "BO. Weave in ends." like it takes five seconds when in fact it takes like two hours, but you know.

For those of you about to take yarn to needle for this pattern, I will share a few of my personal shortcutting notes:
  • Changing from size 8 - 9 needles at random intervals per the pattern instructions seemed like a tedious waste of time and I did not do it. My sweater does not look any different from those who have done it this way and I now feel vindicated in my rebellion. I encourage the same descention.
  • Despite what others have told me, this pattern did not leave enough yarn left over from the One Skein to make a baby hat. I've decided these people are all liars and that my decision not to change needles had no impact on the amount of leftover yarn and I do not care to hear otherwise.
  • "Provisional cast-on", as is indicated in the first line of the pattern, is, I decided, a made up method of casting on that I ignored in lieu of my normal casting on method because figuring it out was going to mean digging out my Vogue Knitting book that was all the way in the office and I didn't have that kind of time nor did I want to be separated from my beloved couch. It may very well be a real thing, but I still haven't looked it up because my normal casting on method (maybe it's a provisional cast-on? Who knows?) worked fine and I was able to retrieve the "waste yarn" they speak of without incident. So, feel free to blow it off, too, if you like to live on the edge or also don't like to leave your couch unsat upon.
That's about all the wisdom I can impart on such a small and simple pattern, but if you want to read more of my ramblings, find me on ravelry and this pattern in my Projects.

I'll probably post photos of a few more of these sweaters since I have another one in the works right now (started and finished the body last night - woo fast!) and another skein waiting in the bin.

So, ya'll, if you're pregnant right now, my friend and having a baby in any month other than July or August, expect a sweater similar to the one pictured above. And for godssake, take care of your T&A and don't tell me about it.


  1. You crack me up Fin. I love the sweater and the Knitting Schedule for the Child Free.
    Awesome work!

  2. How adorable!!!! You did a great job!

  3. Do people really put breast pump boob cups (say that 10 times fast) on their registries? Ewww.
    Anyway, super cute sweater. I always loved getting a few handmade items for baby. After all, boob cups come and go, but a handknit baby sweater is a thing of beauty forever. : )

  4. Handmade gifts are better than T&A gifts anyday. Good Job!

  5. No idea what all the T&A trouble is about. No registries in Italy. Nothing called Butt Paste, for that matter, so it wouldn't go on even if there were!!

    About weaving in ends... ever since I taught myself intarsia, I started weaving in as I go along (works only if it's not at a cast off)... not sure if this is legal but it saves me a bunch of annoying strings at the end. Just take the "end" and when you join the new yarn, wrap the end around the new yarn (when on the RS) and keep doing that until it's tucked into the new stitches on the wrong side. Probably makes no sense but when you're here I can show you.

  6. Well, you are ahead of me. The babies have been born and I'm just starting the gifts.

  7. I'm sure I'm being Captain Obvious here, but I'm pretty sure the Butt Paste is for the baby, not for mom. The bolero looks really cute. I thought the MDK Baby Kimono would be the perfect gift (only one seam!), then I realized it involved seaming garter stitch together. Bah!


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