23 Nov 2014

Maternity photoshoot

Finally decided on having a professional photoshoot of my pregnant belly!
While we keep track on the progress with weekly 'shadow-pics' (and I don't feel radiant and pretty all the time) I knew it was now or never to have professional pics made.
In this stage of the pregnancy (32 weeks) some people prefer to spend money on 3d-echo pics of their baby, which is almost as expensive, but I my idea is: the baby will be here in just a few weeks, and my bump (with this baby inside) will be gone forgood...

I didn't want to wait for too long. They say the best weeks for a photoshoot is  between week 32-36. The last thing I wanted is to have expensive pics made of me with a huge bump, swollen ankles and face (you just never know...) so I had my pics made at 32 weeks. The bump is prominent enough by now, but the proportions seems still to be in balance.

Above part of one picture which I really like, to give an idea of the atmosphere.
I knew I wanted something different from the traditional 'casual' shoots (mom, dad, jeans, hearts and stuff) and settled on an etheric, fantasy-theme, inspired by Renaissance art (halfway between Botticelli and Michelangelo).
The photographer is a friend of us, and I knew she was good. She mostly does shoots with professional models and uses lots of accessories, make-up and Photoshop.

We used just a few accessories, I made a flower crown myself and there was some flowy fabric, with clean lines, simple white background and a minimum of make-up. I wanted just a slight amount of retouching afterwards, no more than slightly lightening up the pics, removing weird looking shadows and spots.

I must say, the finished pics look just like I wanted! Somehow they look incredibly tender and 'breakable', which is the reason I don't share them online.
A memory for a lifetime, for sure!

17 Nov 2014

a crochet project: owl pram spanner

Started another quick little project this week: crocheting little owls!
I bought this amigurumi-type pattern a while ago here. (There is also a Ravelry site for this pattern but the link doesn't seem to work...) The designer sells other accessories too, like the safety-eyes, clips and little wooden balls for the finishing touches.

For this project I use a cotton crochet yarn in the colors of the nursery (our stroller is black): Lana Grossa Cotone and crochet with metric size 2 needles. The stuffing comes from my trusty IKEA pillows (weird, but if you don't need large amounts it is way cheaper to buy the cheapest IKEA pillow than to buy a small bag of stuffing...)

12 Nov 2014

Simple blocks baby blanket finished + pattern!

Here it is! Finally finished this knitted blanket. Though it took me 2 weeks I am very pleased with the results.

material & sizing:
The yarn I used is the drops 'Karisma'. It is a 4-strands, sport weight, superwash-treated, 100% wool yarn. It comes in a lot of different colors. I choose a light blue-grey hue (nr.70)
I used just a little short of 9 skeins of 50g (approx. 440 g)
Using metric size 4 needles my gauge is 21 sts per 10 cm.

simple blocks baby blanket pattern:

material: about 9 skeins of 'drops Karisma'
gauge: 21 sts to 10 cm (approx. 22 sts to 4 inches)
K=knit    P=purl

Cast on a multiple of 8, + 4 stitches
(I started out with 156 stitches, this makes approx. 75 cm in width)

Border: Knit for 11 rows
Next row: continue in square pattern, from here on this is going to be the right side of the work. (This way the border has a nice ridge at the bottom)
You have now 6 'ridges'.

Main part:
The main part of the blanket alters the square pattern with garter stitch rows.
  • Block pattern:
Every uneven row (=right side): Knit
Every other row (=wrong side): K8, P8 * K4, P8 * K8
Repeat these two rows 5 times (you count now 5 ridges along the squares on the right side)
  • Garter stitch rows:
Knit for 6 rows (this will form 3 ridges on the right side)

Border at top:
Continue to the desired length and finish with the garter stitch rows.
Continue in garter stitch for 6 more rows, ending on wrong side.
(You have now 6 ridges on the right side)

Cast off loosely in the next, right side row.
To prevent a tight cast-off I used this method which I learned from my grandma many years ago:
Knit two together through back loops and place the stitch back onto the left needle.

6 Nov 2014

Baby blanket progress

It seems like this is the slowest progressing project ever! Although I'm a fast knitter, it seems like it takes forever to finish this blanket. Probably because I'm used to knit smaller pieces. Even a 40's jumper for myself seems to go faster...
On the positive side I'm already at 2/3rd in the length, so definitely getting closer to the finish!

With 10 more weeks left of the pregnancy the next project is going to be a sewing one: dressing up the family cradle bassinet! I finally made a choice for a cute fabric, which I'm going to use in combination with plain white cotton batiste for the liner at the sides and the canopy!