White Baby Layette

I don’t think my baby will even wear these jackets I’ve been making, but I’m doing all these baby clothes now so I can learn more about crochet. The pattern is on page 77 in a book my mum lent me called “Crochet with Style”, published by Murdoch Books in 1990. For this I used some really nice white wool my mum gave me for my birthday.

I’ve learnt a lot from from doing this jacket. It looks simple enough , but the challenge was interpreting the pattern for the shaping in the bodice and sleeves. As it was, I made a mistake in the front right yoke, so repeated it on the left side so at least they matched! I know what I did wrong. When the pattern said to repeat 3 more rows, I should have just done plain rows instead of decreasing like the previous row. I’ll know better next time! I tried a red ribbon and some very cute strawberry buttons I bought years and years ago but have never used, but have settled on some lovely silky yellow ribbon, also given to me by my mum. I do have some white ribbon but it is a different white so didn’t match. I could change the look of this set again and get some blue ribbon if I wanted.

I found the sleeves a real challenge and am quite proud that I figured it out! To join seams I usually use a crochet hook and dc, but that made this too bulky. So I undid the dc and sewed the seams with a yarn needle for a less bulky finish. And for these seams I did something I’ve not had to do yet with crochet – I actually pinned the pieces together first before sewing! I’m quite pleased and surprised these sleeves worked out. These are the first shaped sleeves I’ve done, and doing this has helped me learn more and makes me think I might be able to do an adult cardigan one day.

The bonnet was fairly straight forward, as were the booties. For the booties, the pattern gets you to fasten off twice, as the bootie is not all in one piece, but it wasn’t too bad. I just left a length of yarn and used that to sew up the seams at the sole.

This was really nice to do, and was a pleasant surprise that I was able to complete it without any help which I thought I would need, especially with the jacket. And I don’t know who will ever wear this. It’s a newborn size, yet my baby is due in the summer, and my guess is, it’s going to be a hot one!

At least I learnt more about crochet by doing this exercise, which can not be a bad thing at all!

Green and Orange Baby Beanie and Booties

We’re still 4 weeks away from finding out the gender of our baby, so I’m really leaning towards baby things in neutral colours.  I just received a lovely random package from my sister-in-law which had some very, very cute baby jumpsuits, all in neutral colours like lemon and green, or silver stars, which is just gorgeous. I’m rather leaning towards these coloured clothes for baby anyway. I really don’t agree that the very young should be shoved in a labelled box so early in their lives. Too many baby clothes are overly pink and flowery or blue and macho in my opinion, there is no way I will be wanting to dress a baby boy in army greens, or black with a skull and cross bones print! I’m almost tempted to dress a boy in pink flowers just to get a reaction out of my father, it could be very funny to watch him freak out!

I still have some baby wool left in this nice variated orange and green, so decided to do another pair of booties. I then made a beanie to match using the same pattern as my purple and white baby beanie.

The booties are very similar to my purple and white baby booties, which are based on a pattern you can watch on youtube by Theshyrainbow. I added my own cuffs which are not in the video.

When I am using just one colour, I don’t like to cut the wool, fasten off, and start somewhere else, so I have altered the pattern slightly so I can keep it all in one piece. By changing rounds 6, 7, 8 and 9  so that the start of every round is at the toe instead of the heel, there is no need to fasten off in the middle of the bootie.

One colour, One piece variation
1-5. as per youtube video by Theshyrainbow.
6. ch 3, tr 1 in same, (tr decrease every 2) 3x, tr 32, (tr decrease every 2) 3x, tr 2, sl st
7. sl st 8, ch 1, turn, htr 16, turn
8. ch 2, sk 1, treble don’t pull through leave loop on hook * , sk 1, trebel *, sk 1, treble *, etc to end, you should have 9 loops on hook, pull through
9. dc in space just left of centre, dc 2 in next sp, decrease dc over 3 in corner, dc 22, decrease dc over 3 in corner, dc 2 in next sp, dc in space just right of centre
My cuff variation
10. ch 3, tr in dc left of centre, this will create a little gap at the front, cont. with the rest of the cuff, which basically 6 rounds of trebles, and a 7th row of htr or dc.
11. ch 3, 1st treble in next space, then trebles around …

Two Pairs of Purple Baby Booties

I’ve been having real trouble finding a bootie pattern that is quick and easy, I even tried to make up my own pattern! The difference with making slippers for dolls and teddy bears is that I have them to model and make sure they fit. But for the baby booties, my intented recipient is … currently busy growing inside my tummy! We did get to see the baby’s feet, complete with tiny toes, on our ultrasound at 13 weeks though. Isn’t it amazing how formed the baby is after only 3 months?

After trying several different types of bootie patterns, I found this one which looked simple enough. I hope I don’t get to actually use these premmie booties, that my baby arrives strong and healthy. But these premmie booties were really fun to do and look cute hanging on my pc. This pattern for premature baby booties is by Beverly @ http://www.bevscountrycottage.com/thumb-booties.html

When I was trying to make my own pattern for booties I referred to the sizes chart, also @ Beverly’s cottage ( http://www.bevscountrycottage.com/size-chart.html). I didn’t think making baby booties would be so troublesome, considering I’ve made up shoes and slippers for dolls and teddy bears without patterns! I tried several patterns, one I didn’t like because it wanted me to keep fastening off and starting over in a different spot, which I believe was unnecessary, a bootie pattern should be simple and in one piece. Another pattern totally miscounted the stitches I’m sure, when I counted and recounted over it just didn’t add up so I gave up on that one, too!

Eventually I watched some videos on how to make baby booties on youtube and found one I liked by Theshyrainbow. I couldn’t find a website where the pattern was written down, so I’ve written it down for my own reference so I can make them again without having to watch the video. My pattern is not very clear, it’s just for my own notes, so I recommend watching the video. Although it has some little spelling errors, it’s quite straight forward and useful.

A baby bootie pattern based on Shyrainbow’s youtube vid – be sure to watch her youtube video! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7TCpHbNPCs
1. ch 15, 2 tr (US dc) in 4th ch from hook, tr in next 10, 6 tr in last ch, tr in bottom of next 10 st, 3 tr in last ch, sl st (32 tr counting 1st 4 ch)
2. ch 3, tr in same, 2 tr in next, tr 13, 4 tr in next, 3 tr in next, 14 tr, 2 tr in last, sl st (40 tr counting 1st ch 3)
3. ch 2, htr (US hdc) in same, 2 htr in next, htr 16, 2 htr in next 4 st, htr 16, 2 htr in last 2 st, sl st (48 tr counting 1st ch 2)
4. ch 3, tr in same, tr 46, sl st (48 tr counting 1st ch 3)
5. repeat row 4
6. ch 3, tr in same, tr 14, (tr decrease every 2) 3x, tr 4, (tr decrease every 2) 3x, tr 16, sl st
7. for top of toe I use a contrast colour, join in 12 st from main colour (9th st from centre of toe), ch 1, htr 16, turn
8. ch 2, sk 1, treble don’t pull through leave loop on hook * , sk 1, trebel *, sk 1, treble *, etc to end, you should have 9 loops on hook, pull through and fasten off
9. back to main colour which is still at the heel, ch 1, dc (US sc) in same, dc 9, decrease dc over 3 in the corner, 2 dc in next sp, 1 dc in sp just right of centre, 1 dc in sp just left of centre, 2 dc in next sp, decrease dc over 3 in corner, dc 12, sl st

I added my own ankle cuffs (not in the video) …
10. for ankle cuffs, ch 3, tr in same, tr in ea st around, sl st
11. and 12. repeat row 10.
13, 14 and 15. in contrast colour, repeat rows 10-12,
16. I added a hook at the end in case they ever get hung up somewhere because they look so cute, ch 10, sl st in 1st ch, fasten off.

A Barbie Doll with Green Earrings

I just love how this $1 salvaged doll turned out,  I think she was a really great find! This doll’s amazing transformation is my post for Transformation Thursday which is hosted by The Shabby Chic Cottage.

I found her naked at the Greenslopes Lifeline store tied up with another Barbie and a shoeless Bratz doll for 2 dollars. I’m not sure yet what I’ll do with the Bratz doll, and the other Barbie has hair in very poor condition. I’m actually wondering if I’ll give up on the other dolls and maybe sell them on ebay.

This doll with green earrings was in such good condition I knew I could clean her up well so this is the second doll I ‘restored’. I combed, conditioned, shampooed the hair with herbal shampoo. Then I left conditioner in the hair for 3 minutes after combing through, rinsing thoroughly when done. I washed the doll’s body with shampoo also, there was a black mark that could be texta on her leg that didn’t come off straight away but now it has rubbed off. I finished off the hair my smoothing some baby oil over it lightly when it had dried naturally.

I chose the lovely multi-coloured baby wool for her dress with flecks of green in it, and I’m really happy with how it turned out. I added the raised ribs into it as I went along, and made it a pull-on style so it’s easier for a younger child to dress the doll. The stitch on the skirt is something I saw at craft group and involves clusters of 5 trebles (English) that are separated with an English double in the middle of the cluster below. I saw this in a picture for a wedding dress for a Barbie doll.

All is left to do is make some cute scuffs for her flat feet, which have very cute pink painted toenails! I finished these orange sandals yesterday, they are a cinch to make! And because it’s winter here now she looked a trifle cold in her strapless dress so I put on the green shrug I did months ago when I was trying to work out how to make one for me. The green shrug was just a random thing I did while I was trying to understand how shrugs were shaped.

I’m really happy at the transformation of this bargain $1 doll, from naked in the op shop bin to cleaned and dressed, she has scrubbed up very nicely indeed!

I just love looking through the other posts for Transformation Thursdays, there are always fantastic ideas, I highlight my favourites below. If you love home crafty things, be sure to check out the other blog party posts at The Shabby Chic Cottage.

Some of my selected highlights from this week’s party (oh so many!)

Barbie’s White Kaftan and Sunhat

Oh, isn’t she gorgeous? This is the current base Barbie brunette model, only $9.95 from K-mart although other places ask for more. I think her flat feet are gorgeous, but of course getting shoes for her is hard so I made my own! Today I am tagging along with White Wednesday.

When my sister visited me last week with her beautiful 3 year old daughter, I had this doll ready to give in case my niece  liked it, which she did! As new, the doll only comes with a bikini, so I had to make a kaftan as David suggested! And because she is going to Darwin to live, she needs clothes for the tropics! Everyone going to Darwin absolutely must have a hat, so I made her a cute white hat to match the kaftan! The day after my niece left with this doll and the white outfit, I made another hat with white wool, this time with a wider brim.

I also made the cute pink scuffs which were very easy to make with a tiny bit of vinyl plastic and fine crochet cotton. As well as this special outfit, I gave my niece some of my other Barbie clothes, like a blue dress and a rainbow top which I don’t have a foto of. So now I have an excuse to make more Barbie clothes!

Sunhat, using 2.5mm hook and medium yarn.
Top of Hat
1. small beginning chain then 12 trebles, sl st
2. ch 2, 2 trebles in ea treble, sl st
3. ch 1, (1 x double, 2 x double) to end (optional for a bigger hat, omit for a tighter hat)
Sides of Hat
4. ch 2, 2 trebles in same sp, sk 5 trebles (skip 3 two times then 4 in smaller hat), (3 trebles 1 ch 3 trebles in 6th treble) to end, 3 trebles in same sp as 1st ch 2, ch 1, sl st
5. (repeat row 4 which has 6 pairs of shells) ch 2, 2 trebles in same sp, (3 trebles 1 ch 3 trebles in next chain 1 sp) to end, 3 trebles in same sp as 1st ch, ch 1 sl st
Brim of Hat
6. ch 2, 4 trebles in same sp (9 trebles in next ch 1 sp) to end, 4 trebles in same sp as 1st ch 2, sl st (6 x 9 trebles)
7. ch 2, 2 trebles in same sp (1 treble in ea of next 4 trebles, sk 1 treble, 1 treble in ea of next 3 trebles, 3 trebles in next treble) sl st
8. for optional wide brim hat, 1 treble in every treble, except 3 treble in the 5th treble (middle)

To make the kaftan I merely cut a very simple piece out of very fine material and handstitched it. I did not double over my thread like I normally do to reduce the bulk, I also only fold the edges once instead of twice for the same reason. Although its a very simple pattern, it took me all morning to hand-stitch. But it was good to work out how to do, if I do it again it will be quicker and also, better!

Here is an image of our farewell party for the new Barbie that went to Darwin with my niece! For future reference she is Barbie in “A Mermaid Tale”, also otherwise known as a Beach Barbie. In the picture you can see a baby doll, which I will be making an outfit for in a future post!

Be sure to check out other beautiful whites @ Faded Charm, which is host to the White Wednesday blog party.

My selected highlights from this weeks party