Wednesday, September 13, 2006
From The Hats Of Babes
Babies. Now, I consider myself a pretty observant mother, but I seem to have a huge mental block concerning the size of a baby's head. In addition to my own babe (who is now by all measurements a full-fledged todler) there suddenly seems to be babies coming at me from all directions. And for a knitter a new baby means one thing: whipping up gifts of baby hats (or, for the more industrious, blankets).
It seems that despite making at least half a dozen baby hats over the last couple of years, I've lost my ability to gauge the size of a child's head, newborn or otherwise. Last week I needed to make gifts for two August babies: Ashley (my cousin's new daughter) and Anita (my friend Barb's two-week old girl). I ended up giving them both SNB Umbilical Cord hats knit up in Brown Sheep Worsted. I went up a needle size, so for the first one (which was given to Anita at her shower last week) I decreased by a few stitches. While it seemed tiny, Barb assured me it would fit. For Ashley's I knit to pattern and I have no idea if it's going to be way too big. Ruby's baby (who is named, simply, "Baby") is modeling Anita's hat. Luckily, Anita lives in Calgary, so she'll be needing the hat pretty much right away, while it still fits.
I also made a couple attempts at Last Minute Knitted Gifts' Children's Cotton Hat with disastrous results. First off, intended for Ashley, I tried to modify the pattern using some bulky purple yarn. No dice. As you can see, though, the hat fits Blythe perfectly, so it's clearly too small for any baby. And too un-fetching, I may add. Still, it's '70s quality suits Blythe, so on her head it'll stay.
So, I tried to knit another one, in toddler size to spec using my skein of Suss cotton, which should have subbed well for the Mission Falls. Nope. Granted, I didn't test for gauge, but it seemed to be a decent size until I tried it on Ruby's head. Not even close. Does Ruby have a giant head? Sort of, but I think the hat is also smaller than it should have been. I would have ripped it out and reknit it in the "Child" size, but I didn't have enough yarn left over. So, this one's going off to Ashley too with the hope it'll fit her in the spring. Now I'm off to dig through my stash to see if there's something I can use to make Ruby an adult size hat, since that seems to be the only sure-fire way of keeping her head covered this fall.