Vintage Baby Knits, part I

Though I’m not a mom, I had a fabulous Mother’s Day this year. After chatting with my mom and grandma on the phone, I headed to Porter Square Books, a fabulous local bookstore, for the signing of Vintage Baby Knits.

This fabulous new book was recently released by STC Craft, with Thayer Allyson Gowdy doing the photography (that name is familiar because she also photographed the designs in Knitting Nature and Knitting Lingerie Style, among others).

When I found out author Kristen Rengren was making a stop in my ‘hood, a trunk full of cute baby clothes from the book in tow, I just had to be there! You see, in the spring of 2008 I knit three of the samples for this book! I loved the patterns, and very much enjoyed working with Kristen. I was eager to see what other goodies the book contained and to meet Kristen herself.

Not surprisingly, the rest of the designs didn’t disappoint. I think they struck just the right balance of timeless and modern: classic silhouettes combined with punchy colors and washable yarns. I also enjoyed Kristen’s historical account of the patterns and their evolution, and her anecdotes of organizing all the vintage information into a cohesive book. The book itself has all the right components – yarn advice, charts and schematics, historical tidbits, and resources for navigating your own vintage pattern treasures.

Kristen mentioned one thing which really resonated with me: many of the patterns in this book use fingering-weight yarn. For hoarders… no, connoisseurs of fine sock yarns who are all socked-out, this is the perfect collection of patterns: just as quick and satisfying, able to use up the stash, and yet not socks :).

Before showcasing some of my favorite designs, I wanted to mention that Vintage Baby Knits will be making a second appearance on my blog in the near future, as part of Kristen’s upcoming blog tour. I just couldn’t wait until then to share this gem with you. During the blog tour (I think) I will tell you about the three items I actually knit, and perhaps there will also be a fun surprise! So, please come back ;).

See the designs in the extended entry!

Click on any image to view bigger:







22 thoughts on “Vintage Baby Knits, part I

  1. Sarah O G

    I love almost every single pattern in this book, I just wish some of the stuff was bigger. I may need to procure this for my many uses.

  2. Mary K. in Rockport

    Hey! For American Girl doll lovers, there’s a Molly sweater in there.

  3. Bertha

    How large does the sizing go? All of these are SO cute but June is likely too big for most of them! I really love that gold boatneck cabled sweater and the fair-isle bonnet!

  4. mai

    i saw that book the other day at stitch DC! definitely lots of cute stuff in there. i can’t wait to see the three designs you knit.

  5. Sue F.

    I can’t believe I didn’t realize you were there!

    It’s a great book and someone made the comment that by using thicker yarn and larger needles she had sized up a baby pattern without changing the pattern. Food for thought? And there’s a vintage toddler book in the future too.

  6. threadbndr

    Since I’m about to embark on grandmotherhood (EEEKKK!), this is on the short list of books to buy!

    I used a skein of Colinette “Jitterbug” to do an Elizabeth Zimmermann ‘Baby Surprise Jacket’ – the fingering weight was perfect!

  7. Angie

    I haven’t caught the sock bug, but I say that baby sweaters are my socks. Thanks so much for reinforcing these great knits.

  8. Karen B.

    Zero degrees of separation. I know Kristen from my LYS and various events around Chicago. I should have known you’d have a hand in such a wonderful venture!

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