Yarn and Heartstrings
Varied are the things that will pluck a mother’s heartstrings. For me knitting is one of them.
Can you guess what I’ve been making on my double pointed needles for a baby due in November?
My first fruit cap was a strawberry. A small modification to the pattern makes a pumpkin. The curl on the edge forms naturally. Decrease between leaves until you have eight stitches remaining. Knit these for six rounds for a stem. It’s that simple.
Are you looking for a pattern that will suit a fairly new knitter? I have gotten much use out of Ann Norling’s fruit caps, pattern #10. Sizes are for newborn to 2 years.
William (age 2½ ) agreed to temporarily be my model. He wore the pumpkin cap at my bidding in spite of it being a warm day and in spite of the cap being a little too small.
Last year I was happy to receive word that my fruit caps were spotted on the heads of two babies. One baby is a relative in California. My mother-in-law telephoned, “I saw a photo of Zoë’s baby. She was wearing the strawberry cap you made her.”
A week later my daughter Sophia reported, “At the garden wedding reception Rebecca’s baby was wearing the pumpkin cap you made him. He needed it. It was chilly.”
“He matched the bridesmaid’s dresses then didn’t he?” I giggled. It was October and she, her sister, and the other bridesmaids wore gowns of a striking sherbet-orange satin. Anyway, into my imagination popped two cuties wearing my knitted caps and I was tickled. Isn’t it funny how such a small thing can pluck a heartstring of motherhood? The gift is a trifle. But one of the joys of knitting comes from knowing that someone is blessed by something you made with your own two hands.
A cap can be completed in a week of sittings. Knitting is so conveniently portable that you can carry a project to the car as you leave the house and knit a dozen rows during your child’s piano lesson, etc. And if your husband is driving to church, the children are securely strapped into their seats, and you have your hands free . . .
When I’m in the cap-making mood I knit a small stash for reserve. It might be a blueberry, sweet pea, strawberry, or blackberry. The pumpkin cap is especially ooed and ahhed over when the baby shower happens to take place in autumn. Light weight and indestructible by mail handlers, these caps are economical and safe to send cross-country, even overseas, at Christmastime.
Washable wool makes the caps soft and warm. I experimented by using 100% cotton yarn for one strawberry cap, attaching black beads for seeds. It was endured for less than a minute by my model who told me by his body language that when it comes to strawberry he draws the line. Blueberry is his preference.
Have you noticed which things pluck at the heartstrings of motherhood?
P.S. I finished my toddler socks.