The little things

It’s Thanksgiving up in Canuckia today, and my far-flung siblings and their children gathered in Vancouver this weekend to celebrate. Thanksgiving isn’t quite the huge deal back home that it is in the USI mean, it’s a fairly big deal, but in my experience, at least, December is when people really pull out the stops to get to where their family isbut this Thanksgiving’s a special one. This year, there’s a brand new Elliott to be thankful for. (And Werb. She is half Werb, and that’s a good thing to be, too.) My sadness at not being there is somewhat lessened by the knowledge that I’ve sent some thankfulness for this new tiny human in the form of baby knits, and these will be there, and that makes it a bit more okay. And hey, now that they’ve arrived, I can show them off to you! So here we go: tiny knits, round 1.

all the baby knits

The first thing finished was the dress: a sweet, simple thing from Purl Soho’s Clean + Simple Baby Dress pattern, using some now-discontinued sport weight cotton from the deep stash.

Clean Simple Dress full

I matched the pattern’s stockinette gauge on the first go, but had a heck of a time with the linen stitch gauge (of course, since that’s the gauge that really matters for this thing), and ended up using a needle several sizes larger than suggested. No matter; that’s why we swatch. Once I got going, the dress was a joy to make. I found some sweet little buttons at a local sewing shop and even got some grosgrain ribbon for the bands, which helped tidy up the buttonholes and will make sure those buttons stay where they’re put.

Clean Simple Dress detail

So freakin’ adorable. I’m thinking of making another one in superwash merino for winter.

Next, the inevitable booties. I was (gently) flipping through the baby section of my grandmother’s Practical Knitting Illustrated (by Jane Koster & Margaret Murray, published in the early 1940s) when I found this:

Zukis bootees in progress 2
I know, I know: before seaming, they look a bit like the reason you’d need booties in the first place.

These booties are fantastic: knit flat and seamed, with all sorts of little details to make sure they stay on even the kickiest baby, using the stretchiest of stitch patterns so they’ll fit for a while. These ladies knew what they were about.


My sister’s already commissioned as many more pairs as I can make. (Yarn: Malabrigo Sock in Lettuce.)

Of course, there had to be a toy. All the nieces and nephews get a toy. For this niece, I went with Susan B. Anderson’s* Bear in a Bunny Suit from Drop-Dead Easy Knits.** Though the recommended yarn (Quince & Co. Owl) is lovelyI used it for my Mountain Avenue Shawl designI wanted something washable, so I went with O-Wool Balance, an organic 50/50 merino/cotton blend. I think it worked out nicely.

Today I am thankful for this tiny new human and the family she’s joining, creative friends, and the knitting skills (and books) my mum and grandmother were kind enough to share with me. Thanks to them, if I can’t be there, I can send love in the form of knitting.

*If you’re into knitting toys and haven’t seen Susan’s designs, do check out her work. She designs some of the cleverest toys I’ve ever seen.

**Full disclosure: I’m friends with two of the authors of Drop-Dead Easy Knits, one of whom is Gale Zucker, my indispensable pattern photographer. That’s not an affiliate link, though; I just really like the book.

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