A Continuation

A little girl was born a few weeks ago. She came into the world and her grandfather mailed this Baby Surprise Jacket to her yesterday.

After I gave it to her grandfather, he told me something touching and moving, something that I’m glad, in a way, I didn’t know until I’d finished the knitting.

Baby Surprise Jacket

I don’t know this little girl, her parents or anything about them. I only met her grandfather yesterday for the first time over a pot of tea in a cafe. He is a fellow blogger called Dave who writes about local history – Canberra and surrounds – and he asked me to make this after he saw the Baby Surprise Jacket I made for a little boy a few weeks ago.

Baby Surprise Jacket

I said it was a pleasure and it was, but I’ll tell you this. Don’t get too cocky with your knitting! I did – I thought, having made this jacket once before that doing it again was a breeze. I didn’t check my work as I went. I messed up. I got cross and put it down for a week. I broke a needle and had to order another one. It seemed like it wasn’t going to work. Then I picked myself up, reminded myself that it pays to concentrate, and got on with it. Then I finished it.

I chose pretty little white buttons that I liked so much I bought extras so I can use them on something for Alice.

Jacket buttons

It was only as we were standing to go after I’d handed over the jacket that Dave, the new grandfather, told me the reason he’d asked for this jacket.

He explained his late mother had been the family knitter. He said if she was here, she’d have knitted her great-granddaughter’s first garment. He said it was important to him that this new little girl had something hand knitted from someone.

Baby Surprise Jacket

I teared up. Who wouldn’t. We parted ways and I called my sister and mum to tell  them the story. I knew they’d get it.

All new babies should have something that’s been made just for them. I hope if her great-grandmother is looking down, she’s pleased to know this new little girl won’t go without.

There’s so much pleasure in continuation and in knowing there will always be knitters, always someone to keep children warm and clothed.



37 thoughts on “A Continuation

  1. Pingback: Knits for Little People in 2011 | Bellsknits

  2. I agree – I think every baby deserves to have a hand-knit just for them. I almost teared up just reading the story (hmm.. over tired perhaps?!) but it’s a lovely story.

  3. Oh how lovely you could be part of that, Bells – what an amazing thing to be able to do for someone; continue a tradition, even if it wasn’t in the traditional way (if you get my meaning?)
    I teared up too…

  4. Beautiful sweater, beautiful story.

    I wonder if you know of the Chinese legend of the red thread? (Which is close enough to the red yarn you used …) Legend has it that each person has an invisible red thread that connects her/him to all the other people that that person is destined to meet. The thread may tangle, but it never breaks. I find it wonderfully fitting to have your project of love and red yarn being given to a newborn.

  5. how generous and wonderful to share your skills and have them appreciated so much. i still have tears prickling my eyes too. it’s truly lovely, bells!

  6. Thank you so much Helen. It really is a beautiful jacket and my Mother would have fussed over it (she was like that 🙂 Anyway Aussie post should deliver (Melbourne) today and I will definitely get a photo to you of my little Aliya so we can see the garment in operation. Thank you Helen, your hand crafted knitted garments display a lot of love. Cheers

  7. *sniff*

    My kids both had things knitted for them by their talented grandmothers. My own grandchildren will not be so fortunate as I can’t knit anything. Perhaps I ought to learn, finally.

  8. It’s a lovely story, Bells, and so nice that you were able to do this for the grandfather, and for the little girl. Turned out beautifully…I love the colour, and the buttons are adorable!

  9. Now that you mention it, RoseRed, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a BSJ in a solid color. It looks lovely and snuggly warm. This year I’ve come to appreciate the beauty of garter stitch. I hope Granddad Dave sends you a photo of her modeling her sweater. Lovely story, it really perked up my drab day.

  10. You tell a great story, Helen. That is one lucky baby, on so many levels. And you’re inspiring me to get back to the BSJ I started last month but put down for another cast-on. I’m lucky I’m more monogamous as a wife than as a knitter!

  11. It is a darling sweater; thanks so much for the story. My grandmother was a phenomenal knitter and has been gone for more than 10 yrs now. As you’ve encouraged me to start knitting in my late 40’s, I now often think of Mimi sharing her projects with us on each visit and the gifts she made every Christmas birthday. Thanks for the moment to appreciate her once again 🙂

  12. Yes, I believe babies and children should have something handmade just for them, too. How lucky the grandfather found you! And the buttons are fabulous (I love a good button!).

  13. What a beautiful story to go with your beautiful knit!

    I can’t imagine a family without knitting; both my grandmothers, both my aunties and both my parents could knit (though I never saw my father actually doing so). I knit and my DD knits. My MIL knits and DD’s MIL knits. I guess we’re the unusual ones!

  14. There’s something about handknits that lets people know that they are treasured and dearly dearly loved and I hope that love is something every baby has.

    And how special for you to be part of loving that baby. I love this story.

  15. Oh, Bells. It’s too early to make me cry! I’m so proud of you. I think we focus too much on growing up to be someone who moves mountains, when really it’s the little drops of water that carve the stone. Much love!

  16. Your story struck a real chord with me. The first thing I did when I found out my sister was expecting my nephew (now nearly 12) was to knit three little cardigans in bright primary colours. I remember how when I gave them to her we both has a bit of a cry because it represented the huge change that was happening for both of us and also that having lost our mum when we were both young it was something that she would have done.

    Lovely cardi by the way!

  17. I have to admit I teared up on reading your post. The grandfather is lucky to have found you, you are lucky that he found you, and the baby is lucky to have a lovely hand knitted garment that will have so much history attached to it. I am sure the mother will keep this very special garment. Heather

  18. That is such a lovely story and you must feel so pleased to be the person who fulfilled the hand-knitted ‘something’ like Princess Aurora’s fairy godmothers. (The nice ones!!) Such cute buttons.

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