Knitted polo shirt No 8 (pattern and yarn by Debbie Bliss)


Regency Blossom by Ruth End ( a Cheltenham square in Spring)

Yes, it’s another outing for one of my very favourite knitting patterns. Why look for novelty when something ticks all the required boxes for a successful children’s jumper ? It’s not as if they’ve all been knitted for the same individual, which might be a bit sad, though I now I come to think of it I could live with that – each in a different colour and each with a different Fair Isle pattern! Umm tempting. Multiple buying of the same thing certainly works with shoes for me – I’ve never looked back since I discovered how well Skechers footwear fit and now I have boots and shoes for all weathers and (most) occasions, some of which I’ve been able to walk out of the shop wearing which had never happened before. But, back to the jumper; I know recipients’ mothers  love this pattern too and even ask for repeats – in fact daughter No 1 would like a repeat for the smallest person, who at 4 years old is well beyond the maximum size for the pattern. I shall have a go but it will take a furrowed brow and much pencil chewing during the scaling up.

Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino Bk 3 Polo shirt

However … after my sixth knitting of this jumper I came late to the realisation that the 4 balls the pattern required for size 18-24 months was not enough. At least 5 balls of yarn were needed and possibly 6. By the time I came to jumper number seven, I initially forgot this (having made no note on the pattern) but those 4 balls in the chosen colour suddenly looked too few and out of caution I thought it a good idea to go for contrasting collar, placket, cuffs and bottom ribbing. Before starting number 8, I had 4 whole balls and most of a fifth but I still needed to use another colour for the collar. The next thing I do will be to annotate the pattern accordingly…

Detail: Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino Bk 3 Polo shirt

It’s daughter No 1’s birthday today. My birthday phone call caught her in the car on the way to  (or from) the council tip offloading rubbish while at the same time giving her younger sister driving practice, which is one way to spend your birthday. She knows I shall be making her a botanical wall hanging –  which I haven’t yet even started let alone finished – but the older I get the more I realise  you really shouldn’t let the birthdays of those you’re close to go by without sending them something, possibly something small but it must certainly be something lovely. With all the current pandemic emphasis on washing hands, we’ve turned our backs on liquid soap in plastic bottles and gone back to old fashioned bars of the stuff. Pears soap is one of our favourites but, as I pass Cologne and Cotton several times a week, I seem to have accumulated several really pretty boxes of their finest soaps. Now I know why for they make the nicest of special but not inordinately expensive presents. Happily daughter No 1 loved them and even said “they were just what she wanted”. Now the pinkest of pink boxes sits on a shelf in the pinkest of pink loos and all those little hands can come to the dinner table clean and rose perfumed. (Although I’m not sure the children have mastered the art of using soap to wash their hands without simultaneously flooding the floor and the soap shooting out of their hands into the most inaccessible parts of the room.!)

Detail: Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino Bk 3 Polo shirt

The lovely weather of Easter has given way to duller and colder days. This year blossom seems to have been early, to have been  battered about at its peak and so has not lasted very long. Forty plus years ago when I went into hospital to have daughter No 1, there was little hint of spring anywhere. Four days later, I went home with new life not only in my arms but all around me. In those few days trees had erupted with billowy blossoms, garden plants unfurled bright petals and green was lime rather than khaki of later in the year. Such a nice time to be born. Ruth End has captured the season beautifully in the picture at the tope of this piece. It sits on my bookshelves through the year and reminds me that winter will pass. My husband having just had his second jab, reminds us that other things should get better too.

Swatch Fair Isle sample (Mary Jane Mucklestone: 200 Fair Isle Designs. Design 194, p.192)

Note to self: Knitting pattern:Fair Isle Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino Bk 3 Polo shirt. Fair Isle pattern : Mary Jane Mucklestone: 200 Fair Isle Designs. Design 194, p.192). Yarn Baby Cashmerino Navy (008)  and Kingfisher (072)

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  1. ceci
    Posted April 11, 2021 at 12:10 am | Permalink

    I’m laughing about forgetting and finally remembering to annotate a pattern – I have the same problem with recipes, working out a variant I especially like, being sure I will never again forget it, and then sure enough the next batch is sadly off.

    We are having some lovely spring weather too, a nice soft rain in the morning and a warmer blue sky evening. Really practically perfect. Getting that second shot was quite emotional for me – hope you husband avoids side effects!


    • Mary Addison
      Posted April 11, 2021 at 11:08 am | Permalink

      Yes, me too with recipes, Ceci. I also find I get cocky with recipes and assume I can just throw things together as I know the dish so well. Gradually mission creep happens and suddenly the dish bears no resemblance to the initial recipe!
      No side effects as yet.

  2. Posted April 11, 2021 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Oh dear, yes. Having been brought up not to write in books, I have had to learn that sometimes the only thing to do is to annotate the recipe or the pattern, right there where the information is needed instead of on a separate piece of paper which can, as it happens, separate itself from the thing it annotates!

    Better late than never, though…!

    • Mary Addison
      Posted April 11, 2021 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

      Exactly. I have a notebook nearby all the time but I often forget to put those irritatingly important details in there too.

      • Posted April 20, 2021 at 10:55 am | Permalink

        I have one of those two, but have now got to remember whether the thing I noted down is in the current notebook or a previous one!

        • Mary Addison
          Posted April 20, 2021 at 11:51 am | Permalink

          … or the one before that, or that from 5 years ago …

  3. Amara Bray
    Posted April 12, 2021 at 4:31 am | Permalink

    I love this sweater. The pop of orange looks so nice in the Fair Isle against the dark blue. Congratulations on your husband’s second jab! I just passed my two weeks after the second jab point and the relief is amazing. Spring is coming in more ways than one.

    • Mary Addison
      Posted April 16, 2021 at 10:22 am | Permalink

      Thanks, Amara. I too like a bit of bright colour with dark blue, especially for children.
      Glad to hear you’ve had your second jab. I think I’ll be getting mine soon,
      Looking forward to summer, even if it’s still not quite normal.

  4. Anne
    Posted April 19, 2021 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    I love the colour combinations. Do you know what the shade of green is on the collar?

    I’ve nearly finished knitting a Debbie Bliss sleeveless pullover for our first greatgrandchild in primrose yellow for his first birthday in a couple of weeks time, and am starting to think about another project for Christmas.

    Knitting used to be much easier for the grandchildren – ten years later and my hands struggle especially on cold days.
    I do enjoy your knitting columns and am astounded by your embroidery.

    I agree about Prince Philip’s funeral. It demonstrated the immense power of silence. I thought the music was superb and would love to know who the lady singer was.

    • Mary Addison
      Posted April 19, 2021 at 4:58 pm | Permalink
      • Anne
        Posted April 20, 2021 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

        Thank you for the link., Mary. I shall look out for Miriam Allan in future.

        Such a change since my day when girls were not allowed to join the local church choir!

        • Mary Addison
          Posted April 20, 2021 at 10:45 pm | Permalink

          I forgot to say the little polo jumper collar is in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino Kingfisher (072).
          More and more cathedral choirs are now taking on girls although I think they tend to sing separately – e.g. Salisbury Cathedral Choir, the first to take girls, have girls and boys singing on alternate days.
          (I’ve just done a little research and at the end of 2019 there were in fact more girls than boys in cathedral choirs 739 girls to 737 boys.)
          Here’s an interesting article about the balance and strength of the different choirs of boys and girls from The Church Times of 2016

          • Anne
            Posted May 9, 2021 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

            Thanks for remembering about the colour of the collar. I had a surprise when looking through my Debbie Bliss boooks that I actually have the pattern already. I had just ignored it because it looked rather dull in the book. What a transformation your addition of other colours has made! IMHO the contrasting colllar and placket really modernises the look, and the addition of fairisle is a super addition.

          • Mary Addison
            Posted May 9, 2021 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

            Glad I could help you Anne. In fact the pattern states that only 4 balls of yarn are needed for the largest size, when you need 5 and it’s because of this that I first had to resort to a different colour for the collar and placket – at first this irritated me as I felt that along with the Fair Isle band there was too much going on – but then I learned to love the look!

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