Yana Knits

Learn to Knit

My First Baby Blanket

A little over a year ago I was invited to my co-worker’s baby shower. I wanted to give her something special – I could have gone to Pottery Barn Kids and picked up some overpriced newborn essentials, but that wouldn’t have been memorable either for her or for me. An idea of giving her baby a handmade piece of clothing was far more attractive. Besides, I wanted to get more seriously into knitting so that was my chance.

I poured over at least 2 dozen websites and numerous baby knitting magazines looking for ideas, but nothing I found was all that appealing: little hats and tiny baby sweaters looked alright, but it was summer and no sane baby would have wanted to get stuck with a wardrobe of warm clothing in July and grow out of it by winter time. Cute but impractical. And then I came across a few baby blankets that had a more versatile outlook: with the air conditioning cranked way up during the summer months it could come in handy. Besides, this was something that could be used for many months provided I make it slightly bigger than the size of a newborn. That’s how the Pink Baby Blanket was conceived (pun intended).

I called it “pink,” but in reality it’s actually very pale purple. My co-worker wasn’t into the whole “pink only for girls” trend. In fact, she would have preferred if it was yellow or green. Not wanting to deviate from the traditional girlish pinkness too much and not wanting to offend my co-worker’s tastes, I went with purple. It also happened to be a nice color to look at while knitting the blanket for many hours on end.

Having never made anything like this before, I didn’t know how much time it would take to finish. I was glad I started a month before it was due because I was working on it until 2 hours before it was delivered. I only had a few hours a day, if that, to dedicate to knitting the blanket, so it probably ended up taking about 50 hours total. If I wanted to get paid at least $20 an hour, this would have been a $1000 blanket – not bad for a baby shower gift, huh? I found that knitting the blanket itself wasn’t all that bad: switching between different types of squares kept me somewhat entertained. However, finishing it up was really tedious – it took a long time to fill in the groves with a different color yarn and then tuck all the loose ends (and there were A LOT of them) in.

Once it was all finished, I was amazed as how well the blanket turned out: it was very pretty and soft and a perfect size to last a baby for quite some time. I was even tempted to keep it for myself as a lap blanket – after all, it was sitting on my lap for almost a month in its various stages of development and I grew attached to it. In the end, I did decide to part with it, and the moment of giving the blanket away to my co-worker was priceless. It was worth all the time and effort I put into it to see her and all the guests completely stunned and awed by the fact that the gift I brought was handmade. I didn’t realize how easy it was to impress people with something knitted by hand. I’ll have to remember it for next time.