I am remarkably exhausted. Not only do I have a pregnant belly growing so fast that clothing which fit yesterday don’t fit today, but I had a wonderful visit from my sister this past week, and we whirled about the country, from the North Sea to Berlin, visiting, touring and overworking our feet!

From the beach to Berlin

Hooray for sister’s visits, and thank goodness too for a work free weekend afterward when I can spend time napping, knitting and picnicking on summer fruit with my feet up.

I plan on knitting some stuff for my baby this weekend. Another pair of slippers, a cute wooly hat and a knit jacket in tiny-size are on the list. If I get really into the baby-knitting groove, maybe I’ll start a second baby blanket.

I started a first baby blanket when I found out I was pregnant, before my belly started expanding, before learning I was having a boy. I just picked up a pair of decently large needles and cast on somewhere over 100 stitches.

Designing a baby blanket is very different than designing a three-dimensional object like a toy. I could treat the blanket almost like a canvas to paint: Besides the initial idea and a quick sketch of an elephant on graph paper, I added colors and knit along without too much planning or mathematical calculation of proportions.

The idea for the blue elephant was based on a painting I’d made and which has hung on our wall in the space between our windows for many years. (*I painted the second work on this wall  as well, and there are bonus points for the person who can guess the famous artist or artwork I copied from.)

I love this blue elephant motif. Maybe because I spend so much time looking at this painting each day, I now associate the blue elephant with wonderful protective arms (I mean trunk) of a parent around a child. I couldn’t not make a protective blue elephant blanket for my coming newborn.

For the knitting medium, I simplified the shapes, showing only the one elephant, without the tiny companions that appear in the painting. After I’d finished, and cast the blanket off my needles, I used a darning needle to embroider a navy outline around the animal.

The blanket turned out adorable, and adorably tiny. It will be just right for his first few weeks, but he’ll grow out of it quite quickly. Which means… hooray, a reason to knit another, bigger blanket! I think I’ll stick with the same basic concept, but pick a new animal to feature in the middle.

I’d love to know what you think of my elephant newborn blanket.