Handmade Baby Clothes

Handmade baby clothes are one of the best things about having a baby (besides the obvious, of course!).  I have a handful of adorable sweaters – a couple newborn sizes and a couple toddler sizes – that I’ve had sitting here, just waiting to be photographed.  So finally, here they are. 

I did not make any of these sweaters, nor do I have any pattern links for them, though I wish I could say that I did!  Many of these sweaters were either given to me by friends or family, or found at the local Goodwill.  I always seek out those gorgeous handmade baby clothes and blankets and such that are passed along to donate.  I know how long and how much effort goes into making handmade things, whether crochet or knit, or whatever.  So when they end up in a donation, I like to honor the unknown maker by buying that item and appreciating it the way that I think it should be appreciated – from one fiber artist to another.

handmade baby clothes - mellieblossom.com

This infant sweater is one of the first.  My in laws picked it up at a thrift store, I believe, and even though it’s 100 degrees out and little Alice likely won’t be wearing it in this heat just yet, I certainly hope that it will fit through the cooler months.  It seems like it might get up to a 6 month size, we’ll see.  It’s knit, and cuddly; baby colors throughout.  I can only imagine someone sitting, night after night, working on this sweet little sweater for a loved little one. 

handmade baby clothes - mellieblossom.com This is another tiny sweater or jacket that a little one might wear.  This one has a lot more detail, including the variegated yarn, the cables, even the hood (below).  I think that this one, even though it’s relatively small, can be used as one of those shrugs that the girls can use as they get a bit older.  The arms are longer, so it has a lot more flexibility. 

handmade baby clothes - mellieblossom.com

I wonder sometimes about the people who might have made these items.  It seems so sad that they end up in goodwill or other thrift stores, going for just a few pennies, when I know how much effort and care went into making something like these.  I wonder sometimes that my afghans will one day end up going for a buck or two somewhere.  I’d love to think that handmade baby clothes and other handmade goods would become family heirlooms and be appreciated and passed down through the generations, but I suppose that there’s just so much stuff anymore that handmades are just one in a pile of textiles. 

But I still like to think of it as “rescuing” these handmade baby clothes or blankets or whatever when I’m out and about thrifting and come across them.  Sometimes they need a little bit of TLC and I’ll weave in some ends that have come undone and started fraying, but in the end, they’re good as new, and filled with a lot of life left in them.  One such is the sweater below, which really had a lot of loose ends flying about when it was first given to us.  But oh, what a difference a little care makes.  Check out how unique and beautiful it is:

handmade baby clothes - mellieblossom.com

If we’re speaking of handmade baby clothes that were made with a ton of love, this is my absolute favorite of the bunch.  I in love with this adorable, elaborate sweater, that was obviously made with lots of love over a decent period of time.  This is more than just your everyday knit sweater.  It’s full of details and all sorts of goodness.  The colors, the added animals, flowers, stars; even the structural elements like the pockets and the zipper – all of them have been painstakingly added to create the cutest little sweater you’ve ever seen. 

handmade baby clothes - mellieblossom.com

And look at how sweet the back of it is – just as much thought and detail as the front.  I love the little raindrops and the appliqued rain cloud.  And wait until you see the elfin-like hood:

handmade baby clothes - mellieblossom.com It’s soooo cute!  Seriously, I cannot get enough of this sweater.  Clara wore this all winter long.  She’s not wearing it right now, since it’s in the triple digits, but if it doesn’t fit her by the time that fall comes around, you can bet that I’ll be saving it for Alice.  I love this so much, I’m even debating whether or not to recreate it in a crocheted version.  Even if I did, though, the knit version has so much more detail than a crocheted version could contain.  I love it.  Isn’t it the cutest thing?  If you do happen to know the pattern to this, or even who could have made it, definitely let me know!  This is fiber artistry!

handmade baby clothes - mellieblossom.com

And last, but definitely not least, the only crocheted sweater of the bunch.  This one will definitely fit the girls for a few years to come, with its extra length.  It is a well-structured garment made solely of double crochets; but it’s beautiful.  I love the simplicity and the minimalism of it; I love that it would work well as both a spring jacket or an over-garment for another dress during the colder months. Someone, again, put a lot of time and effort into making this piece, and I hope to do its maker justice by seeing that it’s well worn and loved.

 

~mellie

Crochet Owl Cocoon for Alice

So in case you’ve been wondering where I’ve been lately, I went and had myself another beautiful baby!  This is my sweet newborn, Alice Rose, posing wonderfully for the camera in this lovely crochet owl cocoon set that I made for her.  Isn’t it the cutest thing? (Almost as cute as she is… almost!)

Crochet Owl Cocoon - mellieblossom.com

I’m so in love with her – we all are.  Her big sister is learning to adapt better than we thought, which was a concern, because she’s been mama’s little girl since day one.  But things have gone on relatively smoothly. 

Of course, there are a few things that I’m still learning.  Figuring out the best way to grocery shop with four kids, including one curious toddler and one newborn, for example, has been a bit challenging!  But I have no doubt that I’ll figure something out eventually.  I hope. 

Crochet Owl Cocoon - mellieblossom.com

Anyway, the crochet owl cocoon and hat was such a cute photo prop that I couldn’t resist making one for Alice.  All things considered, it was quick to make, too.  The pattern can be found as a Ravelry download, and has a price of $2.95 as of the time of this posting.  The pattern is very clear and has a lot of photos.  And who doesn’t love a crochet owl?  It’s classic crochet.

I did do a few things differently than suggested though.  The first thing I did was alter the way the crocodile stitches were made.  Rather than go through some of the more complex back post steps to making the crocodile stitch, I simply changed the direction of the way I crocheted in order to make them.  So rather than going from left to right, like one would usually do following a pattern, after I made the round of dc stitches, I turned the cocoon upside down and went from left to right that way, making regular dc stitches up and down the posts (so 5 dc down one, and 5 dc up the other).  And in between, I added picots for some pointier tips (3 sc, and then a sl st in the 3rd sc).  The stitches turned out quite textured, but I like it, and with some blocking would lie more flat, I think.  But I like the fluffiness of it right now. 

Crochet Owl Cocoon - mellieblossom.com

And look how cute this crochet owl hat fits my little love.  She snuggled right up into this and fell asleep, so I think I would call this project a success. 

Since Alice is my fourth, and likely last baby, I’ve been taking so much extra time to really enjoy these first few baby months with her.  They go by so quickly, and it’s so easy to forget how little they are and how fast they grow.  I’ve been maximizing cuddle time and enjoying that baby smell and the soft baby skin, and the way that babies just sink into their mothers.  It is such a precious time, and I’m so grateful for another little one to snuggle and hold. 

I hope your summer is going just as happily as mine!

~mellie

More Crochet Along Squares

I’ve been slowly moving along on catching up on some of the crochet along squares from years past.  These are a lot easier for me to work on than bigger projects with a toddler underfoot, and half the time I’m working on them as a car passenger while the family’s been running errands, or when I’m waiting to pick the kids up from one activity or another.  A crochet along square is easy to pack up and bring along, and even fifteen minutes here and there eventually add up.  Sometimes I really need to be able to start and finish a project and be able to see it from beginning to end, especially in these mothering years where everything else tends to be an endless cycle of repetition. 

My 2015 blanket is the last large project that I finished, and turned out to be so successful and is used in our home every day, so I figured the 2016 and 2017 deserve a chance to be finished up too! Hopefully in time for the holidays this year, because I have two families that would love them and that I would love to share my creations with.  So, with some slow and steady progress, here are a few more squares from the 2016 Block-a-Month Crochet Along group from Ravelry that I’m adding to the pile of finished creations!  And if you’re following along with my progress, here is my gallery for the squares I have finished for this particular blanket on Ravelry.  Hopefully one that will be growing incrementally!

For all of these squares, I used Caron Simply Soft yarn and a G (4mm) hook.  The colors I used black, off white, light country peach, and red.  Because I use a smaller hook and sport weight yarn when most of the patterns call for worsted weight and an H or I hook, I make my squares 9″ instead of 12″ and often have room for a bit more of a border. 

Blue Jeanne Crochet Along Square

Blue Jeanne Crochet Square - Crochet Along Square - mellieblossom.com
Blue Jeanne Crochet Square

The original version of this square was designed with blue yarn, hence the name, but I think the red and peach turned out pretty well too.  I love the way the center motif of this crochet along square turned out – very unique but not overly difficult to make.  Blocking squares that have a million back post stitches are always difficult, so I hope I captured the essence of how pretty this square turned out to be!

Block-a-Month Crochet-Along Square: 2016 November Filler square

Free Ravelry Download: Blue Jeanne Crochet Square

Designer: Hooked on Sunshine

Price (at time of post): Free

 

Rebirth Crochet Along Square

Rebirth Crochet Square - Crochet Along Square - mellieblossom.com
Rebirth Crochet Square

This is the most recent of the 2016 squares that I completed, and I love it.  It’s been on my list to make since it first came out, with its strong zigzags and clean lines.  This one was made to be a little fancy by using tapestry crochet to carry the puff color through the dark background.  I also added a little bit of embroidery as flower puff “stems”, which I think turned out kind of fun.  I fall in love with this square again every time I look at it.

Block-a-Month Crochet-Along Square: 2016 December Filler square

Ravelry Download: Rebirth Crochet Square

Designer: Magdalene Lee

Price (at time of post): Free

 

Queen of the Meadow Crochet Along Square

Queen of the Meadow Crochet Square - Crochet Along Square - mellieblossom.com
Queen of the Meadow Crochet Square

This crochet along square is so unique.  It was the main square for August of 2016, and captures the essence of summer breezes, as was intended.  I did make a few changes, mostly in the “breezy” aspect of the white surrounding smaller stitches.  The original called for it to actually look like they were flying off in the breeze.  However, my picky sense of symmetry forced me to follow the alternative layout of the simple repetition instead.  Still, I love how it turned out. 

Block-a-Month Crochet-Along Square: 2016 August Main square

Free Ravelry Download: Queen of the Meadow Crochet Square

Designer: Lettice Rose

Price (at time of post): Free

Sometimes after I’ve been working on a crochet along square for a while, I get so caught up in making the details as perfect as I can that I forget to take a step back and look at them as a whole.  I’ll want to start an entire square over if I decide after the fact that a round should have been made in a different color, for example.  Being able to put them away for a while and go back to them helps me appreciate the work I’ve done.  Just posting these here makes me inspired enough to want to work on more squares today!  I’m so glad to share them, and each step closer to the final project being finished is progress made!

~Mellie

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases – May 2018

Nine months pregnant, it won’t be too much longer now.  I’m so behind on everything.  I pulled this post up to share the crochet pattern purchases that I bought and the title was still under “April 2018”, even though May is half over already!  And May is such a crazy month here, with a million birthdays, graduation parties, school recitals, and so on.  I’m going to be so happy when everything is over and calm and I’m cuddling with my new little one.  I’m so excited, and I’m so ready to be done with this pregnancy.  It honestly wasn’t even an overly difficult one, until right about 8 months hit me like a ton of bricks.  Nonetheless, I’m still so excited and counting down the days!

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases - Seaside Cottage Cocoon - mellieblossom.com
Seaside Cottage Cocoon / Snuggle Sack and Hat by Betty Fay Wallace

That’s why adorable little baby sacks like this are all over my crochet pattern purchases from the past month.  They grow so quickly, and I’m still finishing up another cocoon that I started, but this one is so lacy and beautiful that I hope to be able to find time to make this one too.  Plus just looking at the baby in this photo is making me emotional with anticipation!

Pattern: Seaside Cottage Cocoon / Snuggle Sack and Hat

Designer: Betty Fay Wallace

Link: Ravelry Download for Seaside Cottage Cocoon / Snuggle Sack and Hat

Price (as of date of posting): $6.50

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases - Fiesta Owl Pants - mellieblossom.com
Fiesta Owl Pants and Ruffled Bloomers by Ira Rott

These are just adorable, aren’t they?  I can picture Clara rocking a couple of versions of these cute little owl pants.  She’s growing so insanely fast as it is, I may just make one pattern size up and let her hopefully fit into it by the end of the summer.  I love the attention to detail that these have

Pattern: Fiesta Owl Pants and Ruffled Bloomers

Designer: Ira Rott

Link: Ravelry Download for Fiesta Owl Pants and Ruffled Bloomers

Price (as of date of posting): $8.50

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases - The Pondoland Square - mellieblossom.com
The Pondoland Square by Jen Tyler

I have a bunch of pillows whose cases are old, worn out, and ready to be replaced, so when I see a great square that works so perfectly as a pillowcase, I am all over them.  This one is so beautiful, too.  I have a preference for organic patterns over geometric to begin with, and that shows everywhere through my home decorating.  So a square like this, with its petals and popcorn puffs and smooth curves is going to be a perfect addition to my seating areas!  I can see this pattern in the colors of my home, all in different placements…. ohhh, just thinking about it makes me want to get started right away!

Pattern: The Pondoland Square

Designer: Jen Tyler

Link: Ravelry Download for The Pondoland Square

Price (as of date of posting): $2.00

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases - The Riebeek-Kasteel Weekend Block - mellieblossom.com
The Riebeek-Kasteel Weekend Block by Jen Tyler

Omg, the texture!  If I didn’t love working with color so much, I think I would honestly consider making this as a single color crochet blanket.  Or maybe something with an analogous color scheme, shades of grey with a splash of one bright color or something to emphasize the floral and leafy aspects.  My mind is already creating a ton of possibilities.  And the sizing seems to be perfect for a new baby, too.  I don’t want to wish for more weeks being pregnant in order to fit more crochet projects in, but on the same token, I sure wish I could speed-crochet so that something like this could be done in the next few weeks!

Pattern: The Riebeek-Kasteel Weekend Block

Designer: Jen Tyler

Link: Ravelry Download for The Riebeek-Kasteel Weekend Block

Price (as of date of posting): $2.00

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases - The De Rust Square - mellieblossom.com
The De Rust Square by Jen Tyler

There are some crochet square patterns that I look at and try to figure out how to bring out the best features and there are some that are just overwhelmingly beautiful and seemingly one can’t go wrong with however they place color or stitches.  This one is definitely one of the latter.  I’m definitely adding this to one of my sampler blankets, and I even have a particular one in mind.  The $2 price tag is definitely a fair price for what really looks to be an amazingly gorgeous square, and I’m excited to have it in my queue.

Pattern: The De Rust Square

Designer: Jen Tyler

Link: Ravelry Download for The De Rust Square

Price (as of date of posting): $2.00

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases - Sampler Blanket - mellieblossom.com
Sampler Blanket by Alessandra Hayden

Isn’t this gorgeous?  The last thing I need right now is yet another blanket to start and get halfway done with, but who cares what I need? haha.  This blanket looks like it uses a lot of really interesting tapestry patterns, and I just love its uniqueness and variety.  Even the edges that are not woven in give it a lot of its own character.  I really like it, and the color combination possibilities here are just endless and make me want to go stare down my yarn shelf until I find the perfect combinations. 

Pattern: Sampler Blanket

Designer: Alessandra Hayden

Link: Ravelry Download for Sampler Blanket 

Price (as of date of posting): $6.00

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases -Mother Nursing her Newborn and Mother-to-be EVE by Veronica McRae - mellieblossom.com
Mother-to-be EVE and Mother Nursing her Newborn by Veronica McRae

I love Willowtree figures!  I got my first as a mother’s day gift years ago when my eldest was born, and I’ve steadily built up a tiny collection of the ones I love.  They never fail to evoke an emotional response from me – the emphasis on the love of parents and children and families together.  So when I saw these crochet versions I immediately decided that they would be fun to make, especially considering that this is my life right now, and will be for the next months!

Pattern: Mother-to-be EVE and Mother Nursing her Newborn (these are two separate patterns and purchases)

Designer: Veronica McRae

Link: Ravelry Download for Mother-to-be EVE

Ravelry Download for Mother Nursing her Newborn

Price (as of date of posting): Each pattern AU$7.25 AUD ($5.76 USD as of today)

 

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases - Princess Charlotte Bonnet - mellieblossom.com
Princess Charlotte Bonnet by Karin Fernandes (knitted)

 

Princess Charlotte Bonnet
Princess Charlotte Bonnet

Okay, this is not crochet, and I’m not a very good knitter.  BUT.  We just had another royal baby born and now there’s a wedding coming up.  I’m not British at all, but this all the babies and hullabaloo going on the other side of the pond has brought me back to this sweet little bonnet that Princess Charlotte was introduced wearing.  I’ve heard that in the photo the bonnet is on with the wrong side up, but regardless, it’s so very pretty and classic that I thought I’d try my hand at it anyway.  And did you know that little Louis was also wearing a similar one for his debut photos as well?   I highly doubt I’ll be anywhere near done by the time my little princess is born, but practice makes perfect, and I may as well start somewhere!

Pattern: Princess Charlotte Bonnet

Designer: Karin Fernandes

Link: Ravelry Download for Princess Charlotte Bonnet

Price (as of date of posting): $2.99

 

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases - Forest Chains - mellieblossom.com
Forest Chains by Jessica Phillips

Finally, I picked up this pattern for Forest Chains.  I have a feeling that I made this square, or one that is really similar anyway for my BAWL blaket some years back, but after some (half-hearted) searching through some of my old files, I figured I would just buy the pattern again and have it on hand for any future projects.  Let that be a lesson learned, be sure to save your patterns in an easy location to find them in, unless you have automatic saving done for you, like in the case of Ravelry downloads.  I do love the simplicity of this square though, and a couple of bucks makes it an absolutely worthy pattern. 

Pattern: Forest Chains

Designer: Jessica Phillips

Link: Ravelry Download for Forest Chains

Price (as of date of posting): $2.99

 

So those were the pattern purchases I made in April, even though it’s May.  And depending on this baby, I may even treat myself to a few more, even though I know any possibilities of me actually getting a chance to make them are not very high (unless I’m blessed with a very good sleeper!  But I’m not holding my breath on that! lol).  Regardless of when I get to them, though, it makes me happy to know that all these beautiful options and patterns exist and that keeps the creativity and inspiration alive in my mind.

As with any of my other crochet pattern purchase posts, these really are all just my own personal preferences for patterns.  I am not getting compensated in any way, nor have I even been in contact with any of the designers or anything of the sort.  I do enjoy supporting individual designers, though, and believe that when they go out of their way to write a pattern that we all benefit from, they deserve to be compensated through buying that pattern.  So if you feel the same, go and support these great crochet contributors and enjoy creating some beautiful crochet items!

~Mellie