Knitting for children, especially babies, is one of the most addictive kinds of knitting you could find. Knitting tiny sweaters and blankets have all the fun of a regular garment with the added benefit of taking less time. Plus, they’re just too cute. However, here are 4 tips when knitting for babies we knitters should keep in mind, especially when knitting for someone else’s little ones.
#1 Have a sense of style
I know this should go without saying, but it’s one thing a lot of gift givers (or makers) forget. Just because you like the style of something, doesn’t mean everyone else will. I know we’re all thinking that this adorable little sweater is for a baby and the babies don’t have a sense of style, but mommy and daddy do. If the parents have a really plain sense of style, chances are, they aren’t going to dress their little girl in tons of frills and bows.
#2 Go functional
You know what every new parent needs? Blankets. I was recently the hostess of a baby shower and didn’t realize, until that moment, how many sheets, blankets, cloths, towels, etc. are required for one small baby. If you’re not totally sure if the garment you’re looking at knitting is going to be well received, blankets are always used!
Wash-ability would also be under the functional headline. If you’re looking to make an heirloom, hand-wash only would be acceptable. If you’re looking to make something a parent would actually use, I would highly suggest a fiber that is machine washable.
#3 Think color palette
If it isn’t obvious, I’m a huge color person. I love all shades and will admit to reigning myself in when it comes to matters of choosing colors for babies. While I might think rich colors are awesome, some mothers might object. If there’s a color palette for the nursery a matching blanket will be safe. Odds are the parents have picked colors they like for their child’s room.
Another good thing to think about is gender stereotypes. It’s more and more common for parents to break the ‘blue is for boys’, ‘pink is for girls’ color schemes. I know there are strong feelings on both sides of the color-stereotype line; it would be best to find out if there are any strong feelings either way.
This is something that can be easily overlooked, but of paramount importance. If knitting a textured blanket, have a care, the lacework could get tangled around little fingers and toes. Make sure buttons are sewn on securely and all pom poms and bobbles are kept within reason to avoid choking hazards.
Taking these 4 tips when knitting for babies into consideration will ensure your lovely knitted gift is received and used with joy. A few well placed questions could save you hurt feelings and frustration. If you’re going to spend hours making something why not make sure it meets the stylistic and safety standards of the recipient.