Friday, October 22, 2010

Hand Knitted Baby Sweaters

Many moons ago (and in a far off place) I knew a lady named Bobbie. Bobbie was born in London in the early 1920's and survived WWII losing only her hearing from the nightly bombings. She married an American GI and came to the US as a war bride. She was an amazing woman with wonderful stories to tell of her life and times. And she loved to knit. You never saw her without her needles and her latest project. Because she'd lost her hearing, she taught herself to lip-read, and never took her eyes off of you while you were talking. Even though she seldom looked at her knitting, she never dropped a stitch and she made the most beautiful sweaters and hats and blankets and things.

When I first met Bobbie, I had 3 children under the age of 6 and was pregnant with my 4th. When my baby was a couple of days old, Bobbie showed up at my front door with a paper lunch bag in her hand. Inside the bag was a lovely hand knitted sweater for my new little girl. The sweater was a delicate mint green, which was unusual... Bobbie typically knitted sweaters for new babies in pink, blue or yellow, but she told me she'd chosen green for my baby because my older girls had red hair, and she thought green would be more fitting for a red haired baby. I treasure that sweater, and hope to pass it on to a grandchild someday.

Bobbie taught knitting classes for our church group for a time, and she worked with me very patiently, showing me how to cast on and knit basic stitches. But at the time, with four small children (and two more following before I was finished), I had no time or energy to devote to learning to knit. I decided to save that for a different season of life.

A few years ago, I realized that that season had arrived. My children were all [mostly] grown, I had one married daughter and was starting to look forward to grandchildren. So I decided to learn to knit so that I could make heirloom sweaters for my own children to put on their babies. It took some time and patience, but I eventually remembered the lessons I'd learned and (thanks to the internet!) found some simple patterns that I've used to make sweaters for all the babies in my life.

I even expanded by repertoire and have started making more elaborate clothing for my grandchildren.


1 comment:

  1. The white dress is soooooo pretty!
    You know that red sweater you knitted me but I never wore?
    Well I thought you'd like to know I've been wearing it pretty much every day. I love it <3


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