A Sweet Story about Knitting for Babies

knitting stretchesI don’t expect to see essays about knitting (with nary an animated gif in them!) at Buzzfeed, but this lovely story from Alanna Okun changed my mind a little bit.

Called “Babies Vary and Knitting Stretches” (a line from Elizabeth Zimmermann), it’s about knitting your first project for a baby and how that can be a reminder of the cycle of life. The author has had a couple of friends die at a young age lately and as she knit she thought about anticipating a life to come, and the life of its own this little knit item would begin once given to its little unborn recipient.

And so it was easy to forget that life can come into the world just as it leaves it. Making the sweater was a tangible reminder. Making anything feels a little like you are taking control in the chaos: This thing is yours, the way you would like it to be, and it exists where before there was nothing. With each row you knit on something meant for a baby, you start to see their outline more and more clearly, waiting to be fully formed. I liked knowing that the sweater was in my bag during the workday and by my bed when I woke up. I felt it glow; I felt it breathe.

This is a nice reminder of the value of knitting, and of knitting for small people, too. (And if you need some help coming up with projects for babies, check out my book on the subject!)

[Photo by Ilana Denis Bauer via BuzzFeed.]


  1. Rose S. says

    Lovely story. Thanks for sharing. I just finished a baby blanket for my son’s friend who has a daughter due in February. I know it will be cherished.


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