Thursday, April 22, 2010

modern day pram set

My sister is almost 7 months into her first pregnancy, and the excitement is building! I can't wait to meet my nephew, and I'm psyched that my kids will finally have a cousin.

Unfortunately she lives halfway across the country and I can't make it to the shower, so I had to hurry up and finish my gift so I can ship it.

I've always been intrigued by the "pram set" that you often see in old knitting books (1940s and 1950s era). But it is typically knit in very fine yarn, and often seems quite "girly" in my opinion. I know that in the old days people dressed baby boys and baby girls in much the same fashion (day gowns, lacy knit/crochet garments), but that is certainly not the case today. And knowing my bro-in-law's love of sports, this kid will be a masculine baby.

Still, they walk their enormous dog every day, and even bought a special super-duper stroller with a mega telescoping handle for the very tall daddy to push, so I know they could actually make good use of one of these sets.

So I made one!

The baby is due in the middle of summer, so I made a 6 month size for fall and winter use.

The sweater is my old standby, the Knitting Pure and Simple neckdown cardigan. Seed stitch edgings instead of ribbing, as usual. I haven't put the buttons on yet because I'm still debating what to use. The yarn is Hobby Lobby's "I Love This Wool" in navy, which I used because I couldn't find any other reasonably priced navy wool worsted weight yarn. US size 7 and 8 needles.

Little Turtle Knits picky pants in medium. I used Knitpicks Swish Worsted in the Dublin colorway (it is a much deeper, truer green than this photo shows). And I ran out just as I finished the crotch seaming! Luckily after completing all the other parts of the set, I had enough navy wool to make the I-cord drawstring. These were knit on US 8 needles.

Elizabeth Zimmerman's Ganomy hat, rather heavily modified to fit a baby head - I used smaller needles (US 7) and lighter weight yarn than she calls for, which appears to have worked to reduce the size of this hat. It's not perfect, and I don't love it, but it came out pretty cute and I really wanted the earflap feature to cover baby's ears when they go for family walks out in the cold. The pom-pom on top is actually made of the Hobby Lobby navy yarn and a bit of Knitpicks WOTA worsted in jalapeno, which I purchased to make a sweater for AJ. It just happens to be almost exactly the same shade as the Swish, so I borrowed a little from my son's sweater-to-be.

And finally, booties. Do you know how hard it is to find a bootie pattern in a size beyond newborn? It's hard! I have umpteen baby knitting pattern books and none of them had what I wanted, so I just took a pattern from a Leisure Arts booklet that was written for sport weight, and gave it a whirl using worsted yarn and slightly larger needles. It seems to have worked! I wouldn't recommend trying this with just any pattern, but for these baby booties the proportions held. You can't see it well in the picture, but there is a little cable running down the entire bootie below the ribbon tie.

So there it is, a modern day pram set for my upcoming nephew. Squee!


Karen said...

looooooooooooooooooooooove. every single stitch.

HangerMom said...

Too adorable! I giggled when I saw the first picture. Lucky sister!

On a random note that your post made me think of - have you ever noticed in the Eloise Wilkins Golden Books story illustrations, you can't even tell which babies are boys are which are girls? Or maybe the illustrations just don't match the pronouns she's chosen... but it always throws me for a loop. Maybe they really did just dress babies all the same back then.

Ruth said...

So, so cute! Especially intrigued by the picky pants ... what weight wool does it call for?

April said...

ditto Karen.... knitting eye candy.

lizzytish said...

I'm just starting to knit (at age 53!) and have found your blog today (May 1). This set is beautiful; I love the colour combination. You are an inspired and inspiring knitter. Good job Kate!