Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Ballerina Girl

It seems for the last couple of years I struggle with coming up with a knitted  gift to give for  my nephew's girls.  They are now 4 and 6.  As babies it was easier.   They didn't have much say in what they liked.   But now it's about getting the right size without having to get the parents involved with all sorts of measurements emailed back and forth.   I also have to mail the gift as they live out of town.     So to be  creative and fun is important at this age group.    

This year for Erin's 7th birthday I debated whether to knit a garment, which meant I have to get knitting really quickly or just go and buy something.   Of course I scoured ravelry and decided on this pattern for legwarmers.   I guess I need to back track a bit.  The reason for the legwarmers is that Erin is in ballet and  they looked so like they would be fun to knit.
The pattern I found was Legwarmies by Alana Dakos, I have always liked any pattern by Alana Dakos so I felt confident that this free online pattern was going to fit the bill.   What I didn't take into consideration was the size was geared more to a toddler size.  Not any of the finished projects on Ravelry showed girls of Erin's age.  I needed to get some advice with sizing.  

I did get a knitting friend of mine who has a seven year old daughter to give me an idea on length, the pattern asked for 9" length before blocking and it sounded small.   I was planning  to add a couple of inches for safe measure and decided to do 12" .   Once I started knitting the pattern , the cuff was in ribbing and the rest  in stocking stitch, it was starting to look loose.   I knew this little girl did not have chunky legs.   So after going to my yarn store it was suggested to knit it all in 2x2 ribbing and go down a needle size.    In other words I was going to knit a tube like sock with no feet.   Well that is exactly what I needed to do to make a wearable leg warmer that was going to stay up.

The original pattern was done in stripes and most of the projects were also done in stripes and it certainly does give a more fun appearance, but with time being a factor I didn't want to fiddle with changing colour so I went for a solid colour in washable yarn.  Erin loves pinks , but I didn't want to do a pink colour so I chose a lilac colour instead

The best part of these legwarmers was adding the knitted flowers.  I knew there was something that I needed to add to make them more fun and girlie.  I decided with a flower and a vintage button in the center.  The flowers were so quick to make and I had the perfect left over yarn to make it with,  it has a variation of purples and lilac shades.    Turned out so cute !!!
I did get pictures before I put them in the mail today.  

Pattern:  Legwarmies by Alana Dakos 

Yarn:  Debbie Bliss Cashmerino

Here is Pixie, she is checking out the action, she stepped into the shot at the last second.  

I hope that Erin will have fun with them and enjoy wearing them.

Alice xox

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