It’s not a race

But if it was? I would win. (Not that I would be competing against unborn infants. That would be wrong.) The twins sweaters are finished, and the twins aren’t here. (I shall advise her today that she may fire when ready. )

The sweater for the girl half of the set.


This is Rutelilje, from this book in the 0-3 month size. Yarn is baby Ull and Lanett superwash. (I often combine these two to get a broader range of colours. They are not identical, but they are close enough for company work.) I love everything about this sweater. The picot neck, the little blooms around the yoke. The sixty million miles of seed stitch which turned out to be totally worth it….


Modifications? Er. Always. I made the sleeves a little shorter than they asked for, and I put three buttons at the top instead of five running the length of the front.

The sweater for the boy half of the set.


Erle, from the same book as the sweater above. (This book is fast becoming one of my favourites, I heard a rumour it was discontinued…can anyone confirm or deny?) Yarn is Baby Ull, and after an enormous debate in the button store (White buttons would *too* have made it Christmassy) Meg chose the buttons.


Modifications include altering the pattern for five buttons instead of six (I like odd numbers), lengthening the body by an inch (as per a helpful comment from Mary) and shortening the sleeves, just as I did with the sweater above.

If I’m going to make a sweater for someone younger than six months (and why wouldn’t you? They are so conveniently small.) I almost always shorten the sleeves by a bit. I’ve been trying to figure out for years why it is that infant patterns pretty much uniformly have them too long. After long consideration (and no, I don’t think that thinking about baby sleeves is a waste of my time) I’ve decided that it must be that pattern makers measure baby arms the same way as adult arms. (Thanks to Sam for letting me boost the Bitty Baby out of her room for these pictures.)


To measure an adults arm, the arm is extended straight and measured along its length. This works pretty well, since (you can feel free to check this) when your arms hang by your sides they are more or less straight. Same length as they were when they were extended.

Trouble with baby arms is that if you pull them straight to measure them you’re going to have sleeves too long, since once you let go of their arm, it’s going to flex.


Until babies sit, crawl or walk, they hold their arms (and their legs, now that I think about it) in pleasant curves. In a sweater sleeve, especially one that’s a little roomy, the arm curves within the sleeve and suddenly you have all of this extra length. Cuffs fall annoyingly over tiny fists, babies suck and chew on your perfect ribbing and every-time you see the sweater on the kid, the mum has rolled up your beautiful cuffs. I shorten them, which makes them fit better, albeit for less time. I don’t mind.


For my American friends, Happy Memorial Day (is that supposed to be happy? I looked it up and it seems like a sombre day.) and for my Toronto friends, hang tough. Try to think of the TTC Strike as a great start to Bike Week. (Note to self: must watch more news, didn’t see this coming.) Funny how having to ride your bike from one end of the city to another always seems to coincide with the heat eh? I’m betting that the 31 degrees with a humidex of 39 (that’s 102 for you Fahrenheit users) will be enough to wipe the Bike Week enthusiasm right off my face round about the time I’m hauling my bike and arse up that huge hill on St Clair. Drink your water Toronto, and don’t forget to buy an extra one to give to a street person you pass today. The 12 weeks of heat in Toronto kill more people than the 22 weeks of cold. Go knit under a tree.

Added later: I know it’s wrong to obsess about these things and that it really doesn’t help, but the humidex temperature outside is now 42 (That’s 107 Fahrenheit ) and I’m thinking about painting the side of my house with a sign that reads “Climate change is real”. Rant over. I shall resume melting quietly by myself.

147 thoughts on “It’s not a race

  1. Beautiful sweaters! And thanks for the baby arm/leg tutorial. It makes perfect sense. And thank you for the Memorial Day wishes. It is somber day, a very odd choice to kick off summer.

  2. LOVE the sweaters.. I await the day that I knit at your level and speed!! And in our family, Memorial Day is just another reason to get togehter and eat a lot and drink (ofcourse) ! CHEERS!

  3. Sweaters are gorgious btw. Calgary had a 2month transit strike a few years back. It was absolute hell for commuters and the City spent so much money on cab vouchers and other costs, agreeing with the union demands would have saved the public millions.
    Thanks for the sweater tutorial. I never really thought about sleeve length for babies. It makes sense.

  4. WOO! second person!!
    that would most likely explain why my baby sweaters all have rediculously long looking arms…

  5. Adorable, unbelievably sweet sweaters! Makes me wanna have a baby… then I snap out of it : / heh heh!

  6. Now that it’s warm, maybe I’ll take a break from knitting wool socks and try a sweet little sweater like one of those! They’re so beautiful!
    Thanks for the Memorial Day wishes. It’s a holiday full of contradictions, but there’s a lot to both commemorate and celebrate here. Happy summer to you and good luck with the biking : )

  7. Love your comment about buying an extra bottle for a homeless person, that’s so thoughtful.
    Also like the comment about knitting a tree.
    Oh, knitting UNDER a tree! Same diff.
    Am now knitting my third pair of socks. This is habit forming, but what a great habit.

  8. Meg picks great buttons – the monkey faces are perfect!
    The sweater mods make perfect sense – especially the shorter sleeves. Who else would have thought to measure the difference.
    Listening to the news would not have made a difference in knowing about the TTC strike – I think it happened in the early morning hours. It certainly made a few people late and cranky this morning…

  9. LOVE the monkey buttons! The sweaters are gorgeous. I’m knitting a baby set for a shop sample for Knit One — and having SUCH a good time. Finished the back and the front left while watching a movie. How awesome that felt!! Your knitting, as always, is inspiring. Good luck with Bike Week!

  10. Memorial Day is supposed to be somber. I guess we forget that people died in the armed forces so that we can go camping. Well, in the Pacific Northwest we’ve had rain all weekend. It’s certainly been a somber Memorial Day here. I’m trying to not think about how many people will die in Iraq by knitting a baby sweater.
    How much shorter do you make the sleeves? (Measurements in cm are ok; my tape has two sides!)

  11. A smog advisory AND a heat advisory AND a TTC strike. Knitting under a tree, or under the sprinkler, sounds lovely.
    So are the sweaters. I hope you don’t have to get to the mom-to-be by transit!!

  12. You have absolutely crushed me. For years my summer dream (summer here runs from the middle of April to the end of October) to someday move to a place with reasonable summer temperatures, like Vancouver or Toronto. You get a heat index of 102??? You have totally crushed my dream!
    However, the baby sweaters, especially the girly one, are adorable. They are almost enough to have me rethink my general rule of not knitting things that need blocking or much seaming. I am planning a Baby Surprise Jacket for a baby due in about 2 weeks (he’ll have to get it after birth, I think), but that’s about as far into sweaters as I’m willing to go. Yours are adorable. The twins are lucky to get them!

  13. Love the sweaters, love the buttons that Meg chose. Can she come choose some for me? I can have the hardest time with buttons sometimes. Transit strike? Ooh, not good. That sounds worse than high gas prices. I would like to ride my bike more, but I am afraid of the crazy drivers in our area. I am nervous enough riding my motorcycle (which I really should do more, too). Besides, it is hard to knit and drive a motorcycle at the same time.
    We spend Memorial Day playing baseball, or watching one of the kids play baseball, that is. It’s another one of those supposedly serious holidays (Memorial Day, Veteran’s Day, President’s Day, ML King Day) that we have turned into a shopping event. It is so sad. Veteran’s Day and Memorial Day really shouldn’t be treated that way, especially.

  14. Obviously you have never knit a sweater for any of my 7 children when they were babies. They all had long everything and I had to add length to both the sleeves and the body to get sweaters to fit them. Odd, though, that sweater designers would base their designs on kids like mine with their freakishly long limbs and torsos! If only they would do the same with adult sizes . . .

  15. WoW! If I could draw a walking WOW for you I would. (Grade school fun, don’t you know). Those sweaters are just awesome. I’m still a little reticent to try another sweater as the last one was twice as large as it was supposed to be. (Can’t swatch to save my life apparently.)
    Stay cool and best wishes for the little ones.

  16. Bike week! But its impossible to knit while biking!
    Vancouver had a *4 month* bus strike a few years ago. Now that was alot of cab fare.
    Beautiful beautiful sweaters!

  17. Memorial Day, at least in the rural Midwest, used to be Decoration Day — you redd up the graves of your beloveds, plant the urns, pick wild lupins along the railroad tracks to have enough flowers. Not so much somber as bittersweet — a Midwestern Dia de los Muertos. Still happens a lot of places.

  18. We’re freakishly hot here. Even socks are too much.
    Worst Memorial Day Program Ever today. All about guilt and God’s will. One of my former Girl Scouts sang the anthem beautifully, though.

  19. the sweaters look beautiful! great job.
    please wear sunblock if you’re thinking of biking in that heat. i learned the hard way.

  20. The sweaters are utterly gorgeous. How I wish I could have more grandkids to knit for. Alas, my daughter swears she will only give me a granddog, grandkitties, and a grandsnake, who would look rather silly in a sweater.

  21. Sounds like Toronto is having the same weather issues as Detroit. The beginning of last week it was in the 50s (10 C) and now it is a record of 92 (33 C). No wonder everyone is getting sick. Memorial Day is a somber occasion but in the new generations (and I am only 29) it is seen only as a 3 day weekend. It’s sad really.

  22. Meg, great job on the buttons. (but if you were the one arguing for white in the store, sorry, gotta disagree with you there)
    Steph, you could have been glued to the news every waking moment for the last week and you still wouldn’t have seen this effing strike coming. No one did.

  23. Stephanie, the sweaters look fantastic, i have no little ones to knit for yet, as in grand kids sigh, it’s hot here in wisconsin (about 87) and i live in a small town so no transits strike unless the dh won’t give up the car keys.I don’t know about you but school is nearly out here. hurrah!!

  24. Love those sweaters!
    Yeah, Memorial Day is supposed to be somber but mainly it ends up being cookouts and beer drinking and camping.

  25. congratulations on beating those babies!!!
    sounds horrible, i know. just couldn’t resist.
    and thank you for reminding me why i don’t live in toronto.
    the sweaters are beauties…

  26. I hear you on the heat. It’s twenty to one and the air-conditioner got turned on three hours ago. Since I like my house around 20 degrees all year round, that’s pretty bad. The humidity is enough to get you every time.
    I like your idea about the water. I never thought about it before. It makes sense though doesn’t it. Pretty sad that something so basic is so far from our minds most of the time.
    Thanks for the reminder.

  27. Congratulations on finishing the sweaters and I hope their finish prompts the arrival of the little ones. I’m sure their Mom would be happy to be done with toting the little rascals around!
    Memorial Day is for remembering those who died; originally, it was commemorating those who fell in the Civil War. Nowadays, we remember all those who have died and honor the fallen members of the military from all wars. For me, personally, a day to miss my Mom and Grandparents more than usual (and that’s more than a fair bit) and to play the pipes at cemetaries honoring the military dead. One last time tonight, as the light starts to fade, my husband and I will stand by the lake and play “Amazing Grace” one last time for all those who may have died and been forgotten.

  28. On a completely different note, I am almost through reading Yarn Harlot: the secret life of a knitter and I can’t tell you how much I love it. I am on leave from my job, undergoing agressive treatment for breast cancer and have bought myself a present for each round of chemo. This round I bought myself this book and Knitting Rules (having already read and loved Meditations for Women who Knit too Much). Stephanie, your book has both tickled and moved me deeply. Thank you so much (and I can’t wait to start Knitting Rules).

  29. I don’t see Memorial Day as somber at all. I am an immigrant. I lived in persecution until our family moved to the U.S. So, I am eternally grateful to the veterans in history who tried their best to protect the aspects of this country which improved the quality of my life so drastically. Through celebration, I honor these men and women and watching older veterans, full of pride, participating in Memorial Day activities usually makes me tear up a little. I am very hopefully looking forward to the day when the world stops creating new veterans of war and the past veterans will be remembered with pride and honor.
    Off the soapbox now. Thanks for the tips on baby limbs. It never occurred to me that sleeves/legs should be measured differently. What do you think of using short rows to create curved sleeves/pant legs? Do you think that might be a little anal retentive?

  30. Those monkey buttons are *great*. As is all the knitting to go with them.
    Heat index of 39/102? Okay, I’ll stop complaining about the heat index of 87ºF/31ºC, even if I am trying to pack for moving.

  31. Beautiful sweaters! I’m in love with the “girl” sweater so I checked on the book, and it’s still in print! I always end up falling in love with projects from discontinued pattern books. Now that I have a copy on order of a pattern I love, what are the chances that the universe is going to allow me to knit it without a problem? By the way, the underwear glued to the homework was supposed to be a joke…. What can I say? Teaching teenagers all day long has given me a warped sense of humor.

  32. Those sweaters are fabulous! I hope to knit like that one of these days.
    Thank you for the baby knitting facts. That really does make sense. I know a friend of mine will be getting pregnant soon, so knowing this helps as I’m sure she’ll be the first person I’ll knit a baby sweater for. Now, to only figure out how to alter patterns!!!

  33. Lovely sweaters – hope the mom-to-be is able to find a cool place to spend the heat wave. It’s absolutely brutal to be hugely pregnant when it’s that hot.
    I just found out a good friend is due in December, so will be giving sweater patterns lots of thought over the summer. The sleeve length info is very useful.

  34. Lovely sweaters – hope the mom-to-be is able to find a cool place to spend the heat wave. It’s absolutely brutal to be hugely pregnant when it’s that hot.
    I just found out a good friend is due in December, so will be giving sweater patterns lots of thought over the summer. The sleeve length info is very useful.

  35. Lovely sweaters – hope the mom-to-be is able to find a cool place to spend the heat wave. It’s absolutely brutal to be hugely pregnant when it’s that hot.
    I just found out a good friend is due in December, so will be giving sweater patterns lots of thought over the summer. The sleeve length info is very useful.

  36. Lovely sweaters – hope the mom-to-be is able to find a cool place to spend the heat wave. It’s absolutely brutal to be hugely pregnant when it’s that hot.
    I just found out a good friend is due in December, so will be giving sweater patterns lots of thought over the summer. The sleeve length info is very useful.

  37. I love the sweaters. The girl sweater is absolutely beautiful with the blossoms. And I love the monkey buttons for the boy sweater. Very nice job!

  38. That’s an interesting observation on the sleeve length issue. I am knitting a sweater now for Ambrynn and everything matches her measurements except the sleeve length – they are too long, so I’ll be shortening them.

  39. I lived in Toronto from the day I was born until 6 years ago. I miss TTC. It was effcient and the same price as my small town fare here. I don’t miss the frequency of the strikes. I can remember about 5 before I moved and, what, 3 since? In all due fairness I would get female drivers talking about how at night who had been sexually assaulted on the job. I stopped complaining about the strikes then.
    Now to the knitering. I need advice on how to translate the pattern from infant to, well, my size. The Sweaters are to squee for.

  40. Congrats to you! An interesting aside; the beginning of bike week for you coincided with our own bike event here in Chicago.. Sunday they closed Lake Shore Drive to traffic so everyone could come out and bike the ‘Drive. Its quite a startling change to be riding along, downtown on one side and Lake Michigan on the other-but in near total absence of traffic noises. Well worth getting up at 5:30 for.

  41. Beautiful sweaters. Congrats on finishing them on time, too. I need to swallow my fear of color-work and make something like that for Catie. But it looks so intimidating. Great job.

  42. Gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous. And I’m totally luvin’ up on the monkey face buttons. (so cute!)
    And btw, don’t melt quietly. SCREAM your opinions on climate change from the roof tops. It’s the only way anyone will hear you and force industries/nations of the world to change thier greenhouse gas producing ways.

  43. Yes, Memorial Day is about honoring the men and women who gave up their lives in the fight for freedom. Nobody said freedom comes cheaply. The day also has been set aside, as someone said before me as Decoration Day. We would visit the graves of our loved ones, clean up after the winter, and plant flowers.
    I am far away from my family, and I really miss being able to do that. I remeber that when we went to my grandfathers grave, there would always be a couple of graves that looked like nobody visited, ever. My Mom started buying a couple more plants than we needed, and we would plant them on the other graves. It always felt right.
    I know that the people who comment on this blog have a very wide variety of opinions on every subject, but I hope that everybody takes a minute today, regardless of where you are from to honor the people who have given everything so that others can live free.

  44. Lovely sweaters! I read somewhere that the human eye finds odd numbers more pleasing than even numbers. It never gave a reason why, though.

  45. Love the sweaters, especially the little rosebuds and the monkey buttons. Makes me want to sew together the Double Scoop Sweater that’s nearly finished.
    Here in Pittsburgh, my thermometer says 93.4 F (34.1C). It’s humid, too, but I don’t know what the heat index is.
    For us, Memorial Day has created a three day weekend to get stuff done around the house. If I lived anywhere near my grandfather’s grave, I would go visit that as well. Thinking of him has to suffice.
    The primer is almost dry – time to go paint the bathroom.

  46. It is so sad that few cherish and remember those who have died for our freedom. I wish to be on Bryn’s lake tonight with my heart full of Jackie and Linda’s revery for those who died so that I could live free.

  47. Lovely here, in the 60’s and sunny, a nice breeze for the last day of the regatta. Roses and orchids are blooming, strawberries, tomatoes and limes are coming on, herbs are glorious…
    The sweaters are excellent. Monkey buttons!
    Memorial Day is a serious celebration in our home. We remember the fallen and tell stories about the veterans in our family. We spend the long weekend reading aloud from history books, from current blogs about heroism, democracy, and honor. We talk about freedom of speech and religion, the struggle of good vs. evil (Hitler!), and the importance of remembering history.
    DH was upset when he saw that Google didn’t do anything. He said, “They celebrated Mother’s Day and Mozart’s birthday (both good things), but not Memorial Day?!”

  48. You have to start finding friends who have kids one at a time (much easier to make ONE sweater instead of two!)
    The sweaters are gorgeous!!

  49. The sweaters are beautiful! Thanks for the tips on modifications. I’d better get that book and get started, my daughter announced yesterday that I’m going to be a grandma in January!

  50. My first thought today, upon sitting down at the computer, was that I was glad today isn’t a Canadian National Holiday, because that meant more hope of a Harlot post. You didn’t disappoint.
    The sweaters are fantastic!! And thank you for the baby arm size tip.
    Now a question: Am I assuming correctly that you did the fair isle bit on the girl sweater on both knit and purl rows? I mean, there’s no evidence that you did this in the round. I have done this occasionally, but I can never, NEVER get the hang of stranding on the purl side. Is there some magic solution for this that you can share?
    What lucky babies to have you in their lives .. those are the most beautiful, love-filled sweaters imagineable.

  51. Dear Miss Stephanie, (that is U.S. Southern for”Hi Lady”) Just thought to tell you about a kid taught to knit who ignored it. My kids 2 g, 1 b, learned as children. As my sister and I did. Only Now, has the eldest (45 years) discovered knitting! April 21 this year she got drawn in by a RR track yarn in slithery acrylic. Wanted a scarf to wear with her suit. So I showed her again to cast on and bind off and knit and purl. Gave her the #15 needles to work it on and sent her on her 400 mile trip back home. With a ball of cotton and needles to make a washcloth. She has now finished the scarf WITH fringe, blankets for each of their 4 cats (and the washclothes). Greatest thing for this mom is that she avidly prowls yarn sales and she “wonders” what would happen if… Discovered inc and dec (see, she’s as sharp as Samantha), pick-up-and-knit, and a number of other things that I can’t quite figure out from her emails! Sorry for this excessively loooong note, but I hadda tell Sombody!!! Paula O’Neal in Iowa, formerly in Oklahoma.

  52. Oh those sweaters are fabulous. I love the girls sweater so much!
    And those monkey face buttons! What a find.
    I cannot believe the heat you people have to endure out there.
    Climate change is real – so naturally it is about time we pull out of Kyoto.
    Don’t even get me started. Dangerous path.
    Drink your water – and hey, I heard the transit strike is over already. Good luck.

  53. Oh – the sweaters are absolutely, positively beautiful. What lucky babies! You already seem like you’d be a great friend to have – but the fact that you knit beautiful gifts for your friends just puts you over the top on the friendship scale. I hope you have friends just like yourself, who knit gifts for YOU from time to time. (Although, come to think of it, it might be intimidating to knit for The Yarn Harlot. Maybe that’s why they gift you with beautiful yarn, instead. You have smart friends…..)

  54. Now I know why the arms on the baby jackets are too long! Thanks! The twins’ jackets look lovely!
    Is there ever any nice weather in Toronto? Like you know about 25 degrees, sunny, a light breeze, low humidity? Have you ever contemplated upping stumps and moving elsewhere?

  55. Lovely sweaters! Red is one of my favorite colours and the Monkey Buttons are perfect for a little boy. The white sweater looks so delicate and just perfect for the sugar and spice in a little girl. You do such awesome work and the talent to alter as needed to make something even better…(bowing and taking off hat)
    Weather report from North Idaho, cold, shivery and rainy all weekend. Below normal temps the whole time. Two weeks ago we had 90-93 degrees (F) and broke all kinds of hot weather records. GLOBAL WARMING IS A FACT!!!! I was glad for the cooler days and rain myself.
    I have never tried a sweater. I am intimdated by even the thought of following the instructions much less “altering” them. Ponchos, scarves, mufflers and hats for me. Ok, I DID download a free sock pattern from Lion knits….I am gonna give it a try.

  56. If you paint the Global Warning sign, I’ll gladly put one up in my front window.
    Love the sweaters! Especially the little wee red one!

  57. The boy sweater is wonderful. But that girl sweater? That is beautiful enough to make a heart skip a beat! I hate to admit we have our air conditioner on, just enough to take the humidity out of the air. The three humans were battling the heat fine to middling, but the pug of the house was ready to croak.

  58. I love the Dale baby patterns — I don’t think it would be easy to choose which ones to do. As for Memorial Day and climate change — here in central PA this is usually the first weekend it is safe to plant most of the garden, but like Toronto we have been hit with record-breaking heat. I have the AC on — in May!!!! Unheard of. And Memorial Day, while somber or respectful as a holiday, also creates the first 3-day weekend of the summer. So traditionally public pools open this weekend, the beaches open this weekend, the weather is usually good even up north… so it also marks the beginning of the pleasures of summer. Before global warming, anyway.

  59. Congrats on finishing the babies sweaters on time. They are beautiful. It seems the weather is either all or nothing lately. It’s either really hot or really cold.

  60. I’m going to use your blog to rant a little.
    Today? I was supposed to be induced. Since the TTC strike, the hospital is running a bit slowly. Which means that I have to wait. Until tomorrow at least. I had mentally prepared myself for today.
    By the way, I didn’t see the TTC strike coming either. What a surprise!
    At least this gives me another day to finish the baby sweater I started. Why my baby needs a warm sweater in this heat, I have no clue. At least he’ll look cute as he sweats.

  61. Sweet, sweet sweaters. YOu were so right to stick with the red cable/lace pattern for the boy. The monkeys make it all boy.
    It is HOT here in Wisconsin too. My husband grew up in Arlington, VA, across the river from Washington, D.C. He didn’t have air conditioning. he calls me a wimp for wanting the AC on this weekend. Finally, this afteroon, he let me turn it on. I slept in the basement last night.

  62. LOVE the sweaters. Isn’t it great how much the perfect buttons can enhance a garment?
    Hey, I challenge all you knitters to take 2 minutes to visit and the Yarn Harlot’s sweaty rants will not have been in vain. (95F in Toledo, OH today and steeeeeamy.)

  63. brilliant thinking about the baby sleeves that way. thanks for teaching me that.
    yes, clear potable water. it’s a divine blessing. more precious than any other . drink up everyone who can, and pray thanks.

  64. 39C is only 102F?! I was trying to figure today what it was, based on babies’ temperatures, LOL. All I know is when it hits 40C or 104C on the thermometer, the babe goes to the doctor (the baby thermometer, not the one in front of the funeral home).
    Our air conditioner in our new house broke. We live in one of the windiest areas of Ontario. There is no wind. So, blame climate change on me–I took the kids for a drive in our air conditioned truck. Sanity saver for me as well as them, LOL. A hot 6 month old is NOT good!!
    And I love the buttons! I hate picking out buttons. Sweaters will wither away in hiding here because I can’t be bothered to pick out buttons…or then sew them on. I think I need button therapy.

  65. Memorial Day started after the US Civil War. Confederate ladies decorated the graves of their war dead, and decided to decorate the graves of Union soldiers as well — “because each of them is some mother’s son.” That may not be accurate, but it’s the history I heard, and it’s the history I choose to believe. On Memorial Day, I think about my beautiful, vigorous, living son – and the others.

  66. Lovely little sweaters! I certainly hope you didn’t have to turn on the air con! Here in Whitby it has stayed relatively cool in the house. That is if you don’t run around too much.

  67. Yeah for beating the babies! Not literally, of course. The sweaters are so cute. I just want to squeeze them. Of course, squeezing them with babies in there are much more fun.
    Oh the side, any new tour updates? I’m wondering about the Minneapolis/St. Paul one in particular. 😀

  68. Yeah, Stephanie, melting right along with you… My mom asked me recently if I really believe in all that global warming stuff… ’cause President Bush say’s it’s not real… And he’s such a great source. For scientific information.

  69. Fantastical sweaters –bothof them . If I had to choose just one I couldn’t do it. Hurahh for you beating the arrival of those lucky babes. Sure hope we get to see them with them on in the future. Now I know why people take up knitting cotton what with the tempereature where it is. I’ve never tried kitting a pattern with more thatn one colour and my neighbor is expecting her first baby in Dec so just might try a baby sweater with a design. All the BEST to the Mom in this heat

  70. OH OH OH just went to see the book and saw the sweet hat that goes with those sweaters. Seeing as how you have them done why not do the hats to match ? Just a thought

  71. Those are just lovely sweaters!
    Sorry that you’ve got a strike on with this heat. I hadn’t even really been looking at the paper, so was somewhat surprised when it got so hot today. It’s 7 pm and 90 F on this side of the lake. I’m guessing that TO is about the same as the Rochester area…90 F plus temperatures don’t happen often and definitely not in May! We just opened the pool, so it’s not far from iceberg temps, but I went in anyway.
    I don’t really need a special day for Memorial Day. I remember my loved ones every day!

  72. We need some sort of blog shorthand for “Fantastic knitting, we kneel at your feet, please buzz some knitting mojo to us in your blog…” The sweaters are tear-droppingly adorable–and here in Nor-Cal we had 80 days in February and 70 degree days in May… temperature change? Is it changing? Naw….

  73. We need some sort of blog shorthand for “Fantastic knitting, we kneel at your feet, please buzz some knitting mojo to us in your blog…” The sweaters are tear-droppingly adorable–and here in Nor-Cal we had 80 degree days in February and 70 degree days in May… temperature change? Is it changing? Naw….

  74. 39C is only 102F?! I was trying to figure today what it was, based on babies’ temperatures, LOL. All I know is when it hits 40C or 104C on the thermometer, the babe goes to the doctor (the baby thermometer, not the one in front of the funeral home).
    Our air conditioner in our new house broke. We live in one of the windiest areas of Ontario. There is no wind. So, blame climate change on me–I took the kids for a drive in our air conditioned truck. Sanity saver for me as well as them, LOL. A hot 6 month old is NOT good!!
    And I love the buttons! I hate picking out buttons. Sweaters will wither away in hiding here because I can’t be bothered to pick out buttons…or then sew them on. I think I need button therapy.

  75. Both sweaters are beautiful, and the monkey buttons ROCK for a baby boy’s sweater!
    Spent the day with dh’s extended family at a great parade filled with fire department, police, and military personnel, then at a family barbecue sharing stories of those who had passed and enjoying their memories.
    Came home and lit a candle for those who are no longer with us, especially my angel (BTW, thanks for the story of the single bootie in your book, it moved me, and I think it’s helpful for those of us who have lost babies to let others know that it’s okay to talk about it). Now I’m going to go put my stinky toddler in the tub. 🙂 Happy Memorial Day.

  76. Beautiful sweaters! Thanks for the tip about the sleeves. Now that we have a New Baby in the family, I see more little sweaters in my future. As for the heat, we (in central PA)were having a lovely cold spring (most days around 65F and nights at 40F or cooler) until yesterday and then the heat shot up to 85F. Yuck! The Boys have always planned to move up north for the coolth (as opposed to warmth) and will be disappointed to learn that you are over-heated up there, too!
    As for the water bottles, I got an e-mail yesterday passing on the news (from John Hopkins Hosp.) that freezing water in plastic bottles is just as dangerous as microwaving fatty foods in plastic re dioxin transfer. By all means drink cooled water, but use ice cubes rather than freezing in the bottles.

  77. Adorable sweaters…though it does seem a little strange to look at sweaters then read about the insane temps you’re having.
    107 F! That’s a day to cover the windows and pretend you live in a cave with only ice and pretty yarn to keep you company. Outdoors? What outdoors?

  78. Memorial day is very traditional in the small town that I come from. Get up early and dress the children real cute because you will see everyone that you know at the 5 minute parade. Then stand in the sun with cranky children at the memorial in the park while several old soldiers make long winded speaches and one lucky eighth grader recites Abraham Lincolns Gettyesburg Address…….then you go home and set up for the big family picnic out in the yard……and just as grandma arrives…..the rain comes pouring down !!! Every year…I swear!!..and we still plan a picnic every year… like dimwits! I loved the sweaters they are both just perfect and those monkey buttons are just the right ones for a little boy…and so unexpected! Hope that Mama is still surviving in spite of carring around twins, and all that heat!! Does she have to ride her bicycle to the hospital too??? Hope DH has the “wind” and the dexterity to carry all three of them on the handlebars !!! (can’t you see that in a cartoon?? with the hospital at the top of a hill of course!!)…you did a beautiful job on those sweaters….reminded me that maybe I should get out the needles and do a little Christmas knitting!!! My grandchildren (2) didn’t get sweaters when they were born they got quilts..(I just hadn’t knitted in awhile and didn’t even think of it until it was too late)…..guess it’s time for a sweater!!

  79. Wow that is HOT. Time to break out the portable a/c. I don’t get the weather up there, did it totally skip over the pretty Springtime and hit the miserable Summer heat waves?
    I’m guessing the Twins are staying inside Mom where the weather is cooler…

  80. You are brilliant! Why have I never seen the reason for the poor fitting sweater? Amazing. Thanks for sharing your wonderfulness with us.

  81. I don’t know about that climate thing: I left Park City, Utah yesterday morning in 35 degree (sorry, I don’t do metric or whatever) temperature and SNOW. The day before Memorial Day. SNOW.

  82. Last year, I got snowed on on my anniversary, June 6. This year, it was 85F in February, and we were worried about drought. Then it was 60F all through March and April, and rained for weeks. Global warming doesn’t mean all warmer all the time, but more extreme, and not what we’ve come to expect.
    The baby sweaters are adorable, and I love the monkey buttons. I hope they become heirlooms.

  83. I haven’t had a chance to read all the comments, so maybe you know this already. But Bea Ellis website does indeed list the book as discontinued. I cruised over there and bought one the minuite I saw the little girl sweater on your site (and I don’t even have any babies to knit for!), and I believe the site said “discontinued, limited supply left” or something like that. It’s a great book for certain and I’m so pleased to have gotten it before I had to start looking around on e-bay! Oh, and both sweaters are just gorgeous, Steph.

  84. And I thought we had it worse (down South) at 89F last week… wow!
    And, it’s not ranting to point out, rather simply, that climate change is a problem.

  85. Both of the baby sweaters are awesome, but I especially love the red one. The little monkey buttons are just too cute. 🙂 Also good to know on sweaters for babys that you normally have to shorten the sleeves a little. So now i’ve learned something today. 🙂

  86. Paint it!! Paint it!! Great idea 🙂 I’m going to do it too. Or maybe get a banner so as not to ruin the lovely yellow bricks … climate change is real. This is totally absurd ~ the poor plants don’t know what to think.
    The sweaters are lovely, btw. And you continue to amaze and delight us. Thanks.

  87. instead of saying “close enough for company work” around here we say “government work.” is that a statement on the state of our government? i don’t know, i’ve heard the phrase as a small child, during the carter era (democrat) and this is a bush year (republican). who knows, they’re all frigging bureaucrats.
    sweaters are jsut darling, and i LOVE the monkey buttons

  88. LOng Baby Sweater Sleeves: Well, it’s hard to keep mittens on a baby, and when little old ladies in the park tell you that your baby’s hands are like ice, then you can’t go to that park anymore. EZ has the idea that you can actually run a wee little draw string through the cuff for this purpose. Also, the first baby growth seems to be in length rather than width, so the longer sleeve stretches out (pun alert) the months that baby can wear the sweater. Finally, ( yes, I’ve actually thought about this a lot), cuffs are very, very cute.

  89. Do you have a standard percentage by which you shorten the sleeves?
    Is it safe to assume that you are not near the water, then? Here on the coast the summer weather stays much more moderate, and I would imagine that it would be similar right along the lake.

  90. Beautiful sweaters! I was in a sweatshirt all day here in Eugene, and socks under my Birkenstocks. Come on down and cool off!

  91. I feel your pain… It’s only about 85 degrees F (that does not count our massive humidity here in kentucky) but my air conditioner is not working and I think it may have taken the fridge down too…..

  92. Hey, comment number 100! (Assuming.) OK, it’s not like being first, but I doubt if I’ll ever be first again.
    Anyhow. Beautiful sweaters with beautifully proportioned sleeves (do you make them from the top down? that way you could lengthen them, assuming that the rest of the sweater still fits and that you wouldn’t rather just make the kid a new sweater, I know how you are), and sorry about the heat. We don’t have climate change in this country, as you know. If we did surely our leaders, being scientifically minded and concerned for our well-being, would be the first to tell us.

  93. Gorgeous sweaters! Thanks for the thoughts/tips on baby arms. And no argument here on the climate change… Minneapolis should not be 97F (I didn’t even look at the heat index – I would’ve curled up into a little whimpering ball) in May. Not not not not.

  94. Thanks for the sleeve tips, I’m just about to cast on the baby sweater from Fiona Ellis’ book.
    First I need to shower to wash off the weather–bike week, day two: now with added smog.

  95. Love, Love, Love the baby sweaters and especially love the monkey buttons on Erle!
    When it gets hot and humid down here in Tennessee I immediately begin envying family and friends who live in New England, especially those just below the Canadian border and this now includes you, or it did until I read your blog today: 107 humidex!!! It’s going to be a mere 93 here. Yep, there really does seem to be a global climate change a coming. Can’t put all the crap we have put into the atmosphere, soil, etc. without Mother Nature showing her resentment of it!

  96. Button store? BUTTON STORE??!! Yeah, yeah, the monkey faces are adorable, etc., etc. But back up a bit, there. You have a whole store for buttons?! That is so utterly not fair. Geez, I live in some kind of cultural backwater. Sigh.

  97. See, that red sweater isn’t the least bit “girly” now that it’s knit up. 🙂 It looks grand!

  98. Hey, you finished early. Now you still have time to add a blanket. 😉
    It’s bike week every week for me! Yay bikes! I just with there was a way to prevent biker bottom syndrome.

  99. Fantastic sweaters. I really like the little flowers on the girl-y sweater. Very sweet. And yeah. Biking. I’m not familiar with “bike week” but I just biked my arse (hee) into work this morning and it was quite a workout.
    And Memorial Day? For most people it’s a lot like May 2-4 weekend (although it’s supposed to be somber, respectful, etc., and probably should be.)

  100. Gorgeous sweaters. We hit 90 F (33C) here yesterday. A 15 minute drive had us on the shores of Lake Superior, though, with a 20F temp drop. The water was icy, but another week of temps like that and it won’t be.
    The flowers went out to the cemetary on Monday, to show, as my little ones reminds me, that “someone remembers.”

  101. Thank goodness your race with the babies didn’t end like the Indy 500 and they weren’t delivered seconds before you finished! For most Americans, it isn’t too somber. It’s a trip to the cemetery (maybe), a Memorial Day parade (maybe), watching/listening to the Indy 500 (maybe), then picnics, pools, & parties!
    I love the monkey buttons! Any fears that the sweater might be too lacy for a boy are gone with those faces down the front.

  102. I didn’t realize that Toronto was the land of extreme weather. It seems that you had zero Spring.

  103. ok so speaking of the heat.
    i knit the beautiful tank top (from knitty surprise) for my daughter and i was so excited for her to wear it to our friends house yesterday
    and it was 102 degrees f with about 80% humidity and my friends house didnt have that wonderful A/C.
    but the top is cute and i did get a picture:)
    i will post it later on my blog

  104. Monkey buttons! Monkey buttons! I must now go on a quest to find monkey buttons…
    (oh….and the sweaters are, of course, gorgeous)

  105. I can confirm that Dale baby book #129 is discontinued. It was in their summer newsletter that they sent to my shop. Sorry!

  106. Sorry about the heat. It’s been surprisingly pleasant here in Arizona, where even the dry heat isn’t over 100 yet. Man.
    And Memorial Day is happy because we get the day off from work. Never in my life can I remember a time when I was told by an adult (at school or at home) what it was memorializing. I had to look it up. >sigh<
    Oh yeah, and those sweaters are gorgeous. Their beauty will only be outdone by the beauty of the babies who wear them.

  107. love the monkey buttons!! (white would indeed make it christmassy- no question- can’t believe there was even a discussion)
    also, thanks for the sleeve insight. i sat with a friend last week and watched her baby gnaw on the cuff of the sweater i made him. i hope the little booger doesn’t make a hole in his sweater!

  108. Maybe you can help me. I’m trying (operative word) to design a cardigan for our baby-to-be and I’ve been thinking a lot about the sleeves lately. Since you seem to understand the anatomy of a newborn, how long do you recommend I make the sleeves on a sweater for a freshly hatched kidlet?

  109. I can’t tell you how much I love these two sweaters. Those monkey buttons are priceless. I love them. And I love that little white sweater. I want one to live in a drawer at my house so I can take it out and revel in its cuteness. I also await the day I can knit with your skill, speed and beautiful yarn choices. There is no yarn shop in this two-horse town but Wal-Mart. You can imagine my joy.
    Anyway, thanks for the beautiful sweaters and the Memorial Day wishes. It is a somber event, but also a lovely day for a beer and some socializing after the flowers are out. And of course, it’s a free day off from work. Need I say more. These comments are much too long. My apologies.

  110. I snatched up a copy of Dalegarn #129 at a LYS going out of business sale a couple of weeks ago – full of adorable patterns. The woman next to me saw it in my hands and said, “that book has the sweater the yarn harlot is making!” Sounds like it is discontinued, I’m so glad I found it!

  111. I’ve had so much trouble with finding matching buttons that I try to find yarn to match the buttons. Wouldn’t it be convenient if the yarn co. put out a line of buttons to match their yarns?

  112. This is a comment about “Knitting Rules” I’m on page 194, and I thought that was very sad that he left you “After” you gave him a sweater. 🙁
    I’m enjoying the book! {even though I’m an Organic, Novice, never made a sweater, shawl, socks, or worked with “Tension-Squares” Gauge, type of Knitter} Take Care!

  113. That is one MASCULINE red sweater!
    Very nice job dear…they will look smashing in their new threads. 🙂

  114. The sweaters are gorgeous! I just recently lost a race with a newborn baby…not that I was competing…but the little stinker beat me.The felted slippers were not completely dry when he joined us.
    I forgave him immediately when I saw how cute he is!

  115. How is it hotter in Toronto than in Albuquerque? Its a balmy 88 F. here in the desert… Something doesn’t seem right!

  116. Is it just me, or does it seem wrong to knit sweaters for babies due in May/June in 0-3 month sizes? Or did I read that wrong? I know you live in Canada, but still, it seems as though they would outgrow them before fall.

  117. Is it just me, or does it seem wrong to knit sweaters for babies due in May/June in 0-3 month sizes? Or did I read that wrong? I know you live in Canada, but still, it seems as though they would outgrow them before fall. They are beautiful, though, and sure to be treasured.

  118. Beautiful sweaters for adorable babies. Congratulations from your American friend! By the way, I finished your Yarn Harlot book this AM. in the ER for animals ( I am a teacher turned Vet tech./ Knitter). The doctor asked, “How could a yarn book be so funny?” She doesn’t knit, therefore, she doesn’t get it…

  119. I love theses sweaters! I can’t believe you finished them so quickly (and just in time!). Your work is so inspiring!

  120. it’s not just the humidex. the sun actually looks brighter, and at 8pm – super white and bright. this is not normal, i’m sure of it. stop with the SUVs people (including you mr. prime minister!)
    okay. i’ll stop. i LOVE the sweaters. and the buttone are perfect. the twins even more so!

  121. The sweaters are lovely. and the babies are lovely. I aspire to be a Knitter someday, right now I’m a lowly knitter. When are you coming to California?

  122. Talk about perfect timing! I’m doing a baby cardi now and am thankful for your little observation regarding the sleeves. I’ll be sure to put that to use.

  123. Hmmm…. I’m wondering if it’s the *ENGLISH* version which is being discontinued, and probably because of a smaller demand. According to Dale, book 129 “is still available because it’s still just as relevant” (my translation). Since Dale is still listing it on their website, you should still be able to obtain it in Norwegian. They’re fairly good about removing patterns which they no longer publish.
    For most folks outside the country or who don’t have ties to the place, I’d say that would be a real problem (how many people can actually read Norwegian?), but you’d probably manage fine. 🙂 If you can get through a FINNISH pattern (the amount of cussing is irrelevant), you could manage Norwegian, particularly since the Dale patterns are printed in Bokmål rather than Ny Norsk.

  124. Thank you SO MUCH for clearing up the sleeve length mystery! (And I though everyone I know was producing kids with stubby arms!) Since I’m not a mom, I always attributed the problem to gauge or poor pattern writing.
    Live and learn!

  125. Wow! Those are some great sweaters for the twins. Next time you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, we would love it if you stopped by Our Knitting and Yarn Shop in San Jose, CA. Keep up the good work…Knitting Rules!

  126. I am also freaking over the monkey buttons!
    Both of those sweaters are absolutely gorgeous. If I were the recipient of such a gift, I would bawl my fool eyes out. In a good way.

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