I don't think a lot of us crafters, knitters etc would be able to pin point a moment in life that we decided to put our intrigued fingers to work, neither could we give a reason why we do it. I've only ever answered this sort of question to one thing; writing. I said I write because I can't not write. I suppose I knit for the same reason; I can't not do it.
Earlier in the month, I published a short beginner's tutorial to knitting, in the lovely online magazine for Peta's Vintage Boutique. It was difficult to put these actions into words, as it's been a long time since I completed my first few stitched under the watchful eye of my Nan, a keen and talented knitter for many years. That was where I got the bug, fast forward to present day and now, I have even more reason to go 'handmade'; there is nothing quite like watching Daisy man-handling (baby-handling) the sensory blanket I made for her.
You can find the original knitting tutorial here ---> http://www.petasvintageboutique.com/issue-2.html
I chose this Val Pierce-inspired sensory patchwork blanket as my first baby-project. The different knitted textures and the daisies are great for little grabbing fingers and will, hopefully, become something of a comfort blanket for Daisy when she is a little older. I chose to work with pastel, light colours to fit the Beatrix Potter theme in Daisy's nursery. I was really pleased with how the colours blended together - Peter Rabbit's Blue, Jemima's Pink and Lilac and a soft baby Cream. It worked wonders for the first few weeks after Daisy's birth, as we were hit with such cold, snowy weather and now it's great as a sensory object that remains familiar to her.
As an intermediate knitter, I found this blanket quite easy, the bulk of the blanket is made with simple garter and stocking stitches; these make for a very classic patchwork look. The challenge lay in creating the daisies but I'm always up for a crafting challenge! It's a great pattern for sitting in front of the TV, especially when I needed my mind taking off impending childbirth. I'm now looking at adapting this pattern with different sensory objects and colours. Results to follow!
I've got the handmade bug! More posts to follow on 'handmaking' your home and nursery on Life is Peachy!
Are you interested in commissioning a sensory baby blanket? Email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information, costs etc. I would love to hear from you!