「Crochet」Baby Birthday Dress

Our little girl is 1 year young today, and I handmade her a special birthday dress!
Technically she is now a toddler and not a baby anymore. However, she’ll always be MY baby, I took the liberty to title this blog post Baby Birthday Dress.

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It’s not my own creation though, I rather followed the instruction of this neat post at craftideas.us. For the colour combination I chose a yarn with different shades of green and for the lower part of the dress I used leftover yarn in this beautiful vibrant pink/purple/white^^^

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「handmade」Knitted Pink-Purple Sweater

It’s the first time I knitted a piece of clothing for myself. In general I do more crocheting than knitting and did several baby clothing items throughout my pregnancy and after but never  “challenged” myself to make something for myself, until now!
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This knitting project basically took me about 2 months to finish – I used yarn & needle size 2-3 (EU sizes) but NO PATTERN!!! For measurements I simply used a bought sweater that I knew fits me well and that I liked wearing. I just looked at it constantly while making this and measuring different parts.

I really liked the pink-purple colour-interchanging wool, that has some white sprinkled in here and there to give it somewhat distressed look. I knitted this sweater in 4 pieces – basically only using garter stitch except for the hem and edges.

Starting of with the front I knitted the right and left side of the collar seperately then joined everything on one round needle at the tip of the v-neck there. For the backside I could start with one round needle right away and simply knitting from top to bottom copying the measurements and stitch counts from the front. But I kind of knitted a slope on the right and left shoulder so it would fit more comfortably and hug my shoulders rather than give it a rectangular look. The slope was about as wide as the right and leftside top of the front piece. You can see I joined them together in the following photo.
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Both arms were knitted in one piece and then joined on the on the bottom side were it matches up with the side-seams of joining front and back. I did pay attention to knitting the arms in the shape of the armhole on the top so it hugs my shoulder-upper-arm-joint nicely.

The hem & edging was simply done in a knit2-purl2 rhythm so make it a bit more stretchty and just giving it a nice visual finishing touch. I think you find that most of the bought sweaters have similar patterns.
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For the edge on the neckline I decided to first slip stitch with a crochet hook to get a basic line, then half-double crochet around it again. Lastly I did a second half-double-crochet row around that neckline but crochet together every 5th-6th stitch. That way it’s less loose, especially at the tip of the v-neck and around the corners on the shoulers
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I have to say I’m quite proud about my very first knitted clothing piece for myself. I wasn’t 100% sure I could pull it off  (only 95%, hehe), but I just sat down and started knitting and figured my way from there – step by step.

handmade cloth wipes make me smile :)

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Cute, colourful, really handy and sooo soft  – that’s what comes to mind when I think of our cloth wipes !
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These multipurpose cloth wipes are handmade (in the USA) by Lover of Life Designs, a working-at-home mother. They are made of double-sided 100% flannel cotton which feels so very soft, even after several rounds in the washing machine. They come in packs of 2 diferent sizes (large small) here at Stoffywelt.de 🙂

That softness of the flannel cotton is not only gentle on our daughter’s bum, but also on hands or face. She is drooling a lot these days, and using a tissue, towel or muslin cloth can be a bit rough on her skin after a while. Since using these cloths wipes on her face she doesn’t seem to fight it so much…I guess the flannel cotton really makes a difference even baby can feel.

I just love how they can be used for so much more than just the simple wash-cloth purpose. The cute, colourful designs seems fascinating to baby’s eye. Our little one loves to play and fiddle with one of those cloths while on the changing table or during a walk when laying in her pram. They are a good distraction & were able to entertain our daughter for several minutes at a time. DSCN2416.png
I have to admit that our baby girl likes the brightly coloured designs more than the ones with the light or softer hues. She will inspect all of them and tumble them around her tiny hands, but quickly drops the two that only have very little variety of colours.

I just use those not so fascinating ones to wipe her little fingers (when she yet again tried to eat her fist, silly girl ^.^) or tiny nose. And my nose. Yes, you read that right! Why only use them as wash cloth or cloth wipes when they can also be used as handkerchiefs, right?! They not only make our baby girl smile, but me as well! 🙂

How do we store & transport the cloth wipes??
In our wet bag of course! 🙂 Since we love owls and the nursery/baby room is owl themed I’m so excited to use the cloth wipe wet bag by Planet Wise with an owl design – just one of many gorgeous designs!
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It’s so cute, right?! The outside is simply cotton, but the inside of the pouch is designed so there are no leaks whatsoever. This means, we not only put our used, damp (from drool and whatnot) cloth wipes inside to take them home for a wash, but also can bring wet cloth wipes with us to use as wash cloth, and the wet bag will keep them wet and ready to use. Of course, you can also put other wet wipes in there to carry with you. I also tend to carry a teething ring or toy with me for our little girl, and like to transport it in this pouch for obvious reasons 😉 The wet bag also has those nifty snaps, so I can fit it even in a small bag or purse if the diaper bag is too full already. Very clever idea there, Planet Wise :

I can honestly say, the cloth wipes are in use every day around here, and I don’t really want to miss them anymore. I’m positively sure they will be used even when our baby turns into a toddler and older (hopefully not for drooling by then, but..you know what I mean ;)…)

*These products were kindly sent to me from www.Stoffywelt.de for extensive testing – Thank you!*

Cloth Diapers – our decision and experience

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For every pregnant couple (or woman) there comes the day when you decide on what baby products to buy. Diapers will play a big part in the life of a newborn & new parents. For us it was pretty much decided right from the start that we want to use cloth diapers once the baby is born.

Our (personal) motivation to cloth diaper was based on the following reasons:

  • Both, my husband & I were cloth diapers by our parents as babies
  • cloth simply feels much more comfortable (if you can feel the difference with your hands, babies can feel the difference on their bums! )
  • Saving money: Although a single cloth diaper may cost more than a single disposable diaper, in the long run it can save a lot of money (and even more if used again with 2nd or 3rd baby 😉
  • It’s better for the environment, because cloth diapers get washed and re-used instead of thrown away, creating tons and tons of waste that often takes several decades to decompose
  • We’re lazy! *laughs* not really, but the thought of having to go out every other day to bus huge packages of dispoable diapers, then having to empty the trash every night because they fill up the bin quickly, ugh…we rather spare ourselves the stress and time and spend it with our little one instead.
  • There are just sooo many cute designs to choose from, that make me smiley happy just looking at them (no disposable diaper ever did that to me!)

Now, after deciding we want to cloth diaper, there was another decision to make: Which “system” to use?? After reading up here on how different types of cloth diapers are used, we decided to go for the low-cost system of using prefolds & covers mostly. My mother kept loads of muslin inserts from when I was a baby, so by using those with covers, we only needed to buy a very little amount of extra prefolds/inserts and used the saved money to try the one or the other more pricey AIO (All in one) cloth diaper.

We ordered all of our diapers from Stoffywelt.de – which became our favourite cloth dealer by now, since the quick handling & shipping as well as the customer service is just fantastic. If you’re not sure yet which type of cloth diaper to use, or want to stack up and save a bit of money, they have great saving packs. At first, we ordered the Diaper Cover & Prefolds Test Pack for Size 1, plus two to three additional covers & one Blueberry Capri (Swaddlebees) AIO. That (together with the muslins my mother kept for us) was basically all we needed with putting one a wash-load once a day. Of course, as with everything else in the world, the more money you are willing to spend the more you can buy 🙂

Now, with a three and a half month old baby we needed to change from Size 1 to Size 2 (that will last until she’s out of diapers and potty trained), so we ordered the Diapver Cover & Prefolds test Pack for Size 2, as well as two additional covers: 1 of the Blueberry Capri brand and 1 of the Rumparooz brand. Since I just love the design and wanted to try them out, we also ordered two bumgenius freetime AIOs with snaps (we could survive with out them diaper-wise, but I just couldn’t hold back)

Here are ALL of our cloth diaper covers & AIOs
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I  really like how quick they dry after a wash and just how simple & easy it is (really not much slower than disposables, even with putting the prefold into the cover!). Both brands, Blueberry Capri as well as Rumparooz have double leg gussets which prevent leaking extremely well! We liked the snaps more than the hook & loop ones, as we had some pilling on them after 1 months (not much and still works just fine though) – I guess that’s personal liking everyone develops while trying out different types 🙂

Of course you need the prefolds to put into the covers (different types are included in the test pack) and optional liners  – here’s what we use:DSCN2444
Out of those different types of prefolds we like the hemp one the least, simple because they take so much time to dry (we don’t have a dryer, we hang-dry our clothes & cloths), they do absorb nicely though! Our favourites are the 100% cotton prefolds: easiest to tri-fold, great absorption and not heavy to carry with you in a diaper bag etc. The Little Lamb fleecy liners are a bit more expensive than other options but for us they were the most comfortable ones and best to handle so we stuck with those.

Our daughter has been in cloth diapers since the day she was born – we didn’t (need to) use disposable diapers at all. She didn’t have a rash on her bum once and we love to put on all the different, lovely designs!!!DSCN2447
(don’t be fooled by her stern facial expressions, she loves the changing table and getting changed, she just wasn’t fully awake yet from her nap )

「handmade」Litte Romper

I love getting “handmade” inspirations off the internet and then trying to make my own version of something. Naturally most of my projects are for my little baby girl – she has a whole handmade collection by now *laugh*.

The knitting pattern for this cute little (rhino) romper can be found here on ravelry and you may have seen it already in this blogtober2014 post of mine.

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I used my much loved colour speckled white wool for this romper, but took some bright yellow soft wool for the edging/borders.

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Digging through my box of buttons I found these nice little blue ones with tiny flowers on them and thought they’d go well with the bright yellow edging in the frontDSCN1502

 

Leaving and opening between the legs is very practical for a baby romper as you need to frequently change diapers, so just place some buttons there for easy access. For this area I used some sheer off white buttons as it’s not really something that needs to stand out or catch the eye.

 

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^^Here you can see how it looks opened up!^^ We used this romper so much, it was also perfectly at night during warmer days in summer. It seems to regulate the body temperature quite well, no over-heating or rashes or anything on baby’s skin. Since our little girl already outgrew this romper, I made a second, larger one with longer arms and legs for the winter time coming 🙂

Fall Fashion – the simple, comfy kind『blogtober 2014』

Day 16 of blogtober2014 is dedicated to the fashion of this season.

Fall Fashion
I have to admit that I’m not a real fashion-addict, who enjoys posting “Outfit of the day” updates. I don’t go shopping every week, not even every month, but I wear the clothes I buy for years mostly (of course adding something new when I feel like it). It’s not even so much a money issue as it is the fact that I just really like the clothes I buy and then want to wear the pieces for a long time. 321572_2590092628834_141800041_n
This is what I like to wear in autumn. It’s a 3-4 year old photo taken of me in Yamashita Park (Yokohama, Japan). BUT I still wear those same clothes on an autumn day this year. Just a comfy pair of jeans, my well loved dark petrol knitted long-shirt, a jacket and a dark blue scarf. It’s really simple and not “high-fashion” at all, but I rather enjoy the colourful autumn scenery instead of pondering too much over what to wear these days 😉

To add some color, I love to wear handwarmers as autumn  days can get quite chilly sometimes.
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I crochet these myself, you can find other creations looking through my handmade category 😉

Of course cardigans are also a big thing during fall season. I have several to just put over a thinner shirt to get that extra bit of cozy comfort. And since I’m a mum, I also crochet a ‘fall fashion cadigan’ for my daughter
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You can click here and see my blog post about this cardigan ^^with close up pictures of the details 🙂

So precious to me『blogtober 2014』

Yay, I’m back with day 4 of blogtober 2014, and this time it’s a picture prompt.

Favourite photo you’ve posted on Instagram
I have to say that I’m not a publicly active person on Instagram. I do use it for the neat filters and for personal use, but never shared even one picture publicly or with friends. So, I’m gonna change this prompt a little and will post my favourite picture that I shared with friends on twitter & facebook. It’s from August 18th, when our little IVF miracle daughter turned 1 month old ♡

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The quote there is from Disney’s ‘Dumbo’ & it speaks right from my heart.
It is one of my all time favourite photo/picture collage because it shows Nanami all smiling from the time when she first started to conciously smile at us. Also, in the picture of her sleeping she is wearing a colour speckled romper I knit for her when I was still pregnant. It is quite an amazing feeling to see her now in something I made while she was still in my bump.

mermaid, baby (^_^)

You might remember my blog post about the handmade mermaid sleeping sac I posted a while ago. Today I bring you a little update on that – WITH baby in it this time (^_^).

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Nanami is about four and a half weeks old in this picture and filles out the mermaid fish tale nicely, she slept in it for a few hours very calm and content. When seeing this picture my mother called her “Narielle” (taking the N from her name + Arielle), tehee.

I must admit that when I crochet this piece I tried my best to imagine her wearing it, but it’s even cuter now than I could have ever imagined ❤

colour speckled name hoodie for baby (crochet)

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^^This is our precious daughter Nanami (a bit over 3 weeks young) wearing the colour speckled name hoodie I crochet for her before birth. Now that I announced the name I can finally show you pictures of this handmade piece.

I want to start off by saying that I absolutely love this white wool with different colours speckled all over the thread – it creates such a young, playful design when used for a kntting or crochet piece!

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I stitched the whole vest (white wool part) in a crochet rib-stitch to give it some flexibility when wearing.

For the edging/borders I used purple wool that also has some hues of violet speckled all over & of course violet semi-transparent buttons in the front.

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The edges/border at the arm holes are done in simple crochet stitches (just like the other violet wool parts) but stitching 2 together every now and then creates this ruffled look that fits snugly but not too tight in that area.

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And of course the letter-buttons that create the name!!! I’m so happy I found colour matching wool/thread to attach the buttons. It really turned out so well – much better than I imagined before starting this project.

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All in all, I wanted to create a sleeveless vest, but add some style to it with the hoodie and name buttons, you know…for that “cool summer Baby” look *laughs*