I was recently lucky enough to buy a copy of The Big Book of Baby Knitting by Mary Healey. It was going for only 50p in my local charity shop. Most of my patterns come free from library books or the Internet. But this appealed to me because it was published in 1974 and has some really vintage patterns. Were people still knitting swimming costumes for their children in 1974? I don't think so; but this book also has lots of really practical and pretty patterns.
I started with two practical patterns....a baby hat that keeps the ears warm and bootees that look like they might actually stay on. The only change I made to the hat pattern was to knit it in the round. I always try to avoid seams on hats, especially baby hats. The bootees are the first I have ever knitted. I found the p2tog tbl stitch on the instep really fiddly to knit. A voice in my head told me that there must be an alternative stitch. Well, there doesn't seem to be; but there is an easier way of doing the p2tog tbl. Here are the very clear instructions that I found on the Lily Go blog.
The knitting world has really moved on since 1974. This book has no "knit in the round" patterns, uses different abbreviations for stitches, and has only one size for each pattern. Luckily the booties and hat should fit a baby aged 3 months. So I am putting them together and calling them a set. They will be saved until one of my many nieces and nephews (or daughter) have a baby.
In keeping with the vintage pattern, I used some vintage yarn. It is Family Choice DK by Wendy and there is no barcode on the label. I always take that to mean it is very old. (There is no barcode on me either, so I can confirm that theory!)
I have already made a start on one of the prettier patterns, though it is taking longer as it calls for 4 ply yarn. So I hope nobody is holding their breath waiting for a photo!