Friday Favorites V: Soakers and Longies

Today I want to talk about my favorite soaker and longies patterns.

Woolies are my favorite type of diaper cover and I have nothing but great things to say about my experience with them.  We haven’t had issues with compression leaks, even in the carseat.  I have found that this is the most satisfying of projects- something so useful and functional.  Using them on such a constant basis is gratifying.

First I’ll talk about the soaker patterns I’ve made and been satisfied with.

The first is Adaptation by Connie Stults.  This has sentimental value to me because it was the first project I knit.  It’s knit flat and in garter stitch, so it was a fantastic beginner project.  It’s the best nighttime soaker ever, basically bullet proof.  The garter stitch makes it stretchy so it accomodates the doubled up prefolds underneath.

The Frantic Mama Knitted Soaker by Rebecca Krolikowski also has sentimental value to me.  After finishing 4 Adaptations, I was ready to move onto knitting in the round.  Frantic Mama is my favorite basic soaker pattern.

The next soaker I’ve made a few times is the Curly Purly pattern by Marnie Ann Joyce.  For those that loathe I-cord, this is a good choice.  Ribbing and a high rise make this soaker fit a baby well.  I like this pattern because it fits for a long period of time.  It’s also the first pattern I made with short rows and I like short rows on the backside of woolies very much.

I sort of wished I had a little girl to knit for so I can make some sweet skirties.  I don’t know if that will ever happen.

I have had rough luck with longies.  The first pair I made were for my newborn, but I made 2 sizes bigger so he could wear them for a long time.  I followed the pattern measurements for the elastic, and even though I made them too big, the elastic was so tight around his belly.  Not only that, but he has short legs so the longies were much too long.  It made me sad.  I didn’t like the pattern since they were knit from the legs up and then joined.  It was a very poor design.

Longies in general have not been well received by me.  Yes they are functional, but it took me a while before I thought they were cute.  I know why, it’s because just about everyone on Ravelry who makes longies makes them with the loudest, most obnoxious variegated yarn they can find (as did I, see above picture).  I have come to the conclusion that I strongly dislike the way variegated yarn knits up, but oh it looks so beautiful in a hank.  A very subtle variation in one color is beautiful, but I hate when it changes colors completely.  I wish I had known that before I bought so much of it.

While I have so far not really liked longies patterns, there is one that I adore.  It’s Leapfrog by Annika Barranti.  I love the cables, I love the short rows, and I love the pictures of her sweet baby in the longies.  They are gender neutral and the example was knit in a solid color that is visually appealing.  I will be making these.

Photo by Annika Barranti

I am currently working on the second pair of longies this season.  It’s my first time doing any sort of colorwork if you don’t count stripes.  I did a Fair Isle chart from a pattern in the book, Son of Stitch and Bitch.  They are nearly finished, but I got burned out working with the wool.  After one evening of working on a project with baby alpaca/slik  yarn, I’m ready to finish the longies.  They will be done soon.

A lot of knitters, including myself, don’t like knitting i-cord.  One day my husband and I were at Jo-Ann’s.  We saw a french knitter on clearance for $1.  He insisted that I try it, and if I didn’t like it I could throw it away since it was so cheap.  Knitting 40 inches of i-cord isn’t fun.  Knitting 40 inches of i-cord on this French Knitter was really fast and easy.  I was really happy with it, and thought I would share in case anyone else out there purposefully avoids knitting i-cord.

You may or may not have noticed, but all patterns I have talked about are free.  This leads me to a serious pet peeve I have, paying for woolie patterns.  Seriously, there are some on Ravelry for $12!  Just for the pattern!  The same day I put my Hootie Pants pattern on Ravelry, another person put a longies pattern up too.  The only thing that made it special was that it had a Jack O Lantern motif on the bum.  Cute yes, but seriously, people can’t just look at it and make it without buying the pattern?  The pattern is $8.  It claims to have some detailed instructions and tutorials but unless someone is fairly new to knitting, this stuff is generally already known.

I have come to a place in my soaker and longies knitting where I can look at the pattern and make it without looking at the instructions.  I know a lot of other knitters that do the same, so charging for woolie patterns is pointless unless there is something really special about it.  This is just my opinion, and I don’t mean any offense to anyone.  I will happily pay for patterns that are special and unique and willingly support designers.  But I have to say, I really appreciate when patterns are free.

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4 Comments

Filed under Cloth Diapering, friday favorites, knitting

4 responses to “Friday Favorites V: Soakers and Longies

  1. This is another really helpful post! I am on a longies kick and I’m working on Cargo right now. I really liked the way the pant legs were hemmed, but the finished product does look boxy in a lot of finished projects (and the legs seem really skinny!). I can’t wait to try your hootie pattern. A free pattern put out by a mama who cloth diapers. Perfect!

  2. The photo of your WIP just loaded. Those skulls are super cute! They’d look great around the cuff too!

  3. Nat

    Are those skulls on the longies? Very festive! Cute cute!

  4. Thank you for the nice words about my pattern! Do you know, I still have not knitted a pair in wool. I really should do that. I originally envisioned them as woolies but ended up using Blue Sky Cotton because it fit the magazine theme (and I love knitting with it).

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