One of my favorite pastime is to make things from leftovers. Colourful, unique, special and beautiful, things that are never the same no matter how often you knit them. And if they make others happy, even better! I’ve been busily working away on my Sockables so that I get this lovely jar full of leftovers which I intend to use for my next few projects 🙂 Can’t wait to mix and match!!
But my absolute favourite project with these bits and pieces are the Hot air Balloons for baby mobiles. No two balloons will ever be the same!
When I was creating this pattern I wanted to make something small, that makes for a great gift and also something colourful. Because believe it or not: If you go into a kids store here in Sweden nowadays, the only colours that you’ll find are mute pastels, grays and browns. Hooray for Swedish Hipster-style…
WHERE ARE ALL THE COLOURS??? Oh well. Lucky for us that I make stuff myself 😛
Both of my two little monsters just LOVE their Hot Air Balloons Mobile, the big one is happily spinning it for the little one and the little one is mesmerized by the colourful balloons swirling over him. No wonder that others also want a mobile for their babies. I think I knit certainly more than 100 balloons already, since I published the pattern in June 2015.
I’ll give you some tips for shaping the balloons in this post, as people sometimes ask how to avoid that their balloons end up like this: (although that’s fine, mine look like this before I squish them into shape, too!)
The most important thing is the right stuffing. I like using soft flocks fiberfill to shape my toys correctly. This stuff is flexible and allows for some shaping after the seams are closed. It’s also hypo-allergenic, which is a big plus if you want to give toys as a gift, so you don’t have to worry about allergies. And oh – it’s the same stuff Ikea uses as filling for their cheap pillows, by the way 😛 Psssst.
Stuff the balloons firmly but make sure you don’t over-stuff. Don’t stretch the fabric so that the fiberfill shows. But not too little either, otherwise they will look like balloons that lost some air.
When I add the gondola I’ll squish it like this, to make sure it gets the balloon-y look that I want:
After stuffing the balloons look something like this.
Hold them with one hand on the bottom end and squeeze tightly.
With the other hand press and squish circle wise from the top
until it looks like this
And there you go: tadaaaa – a balloony balloon 🙂 Wasn’t that difficult, was it?
No magic, really, but a small detail to keep in mind, maybe. After all, we only want the best for our little ones 🙂
This is the first mobile I made. My first son wasn’t born then and it was so exciting to choose the colours and decorate the nursery!
It was really hard to stop making them! I have so many pretty self patterning sock yarns in my stash and these are a great way to try them all out! Plus there is always someone pregnant these days (yes, it’s that phase of our lives) – so no shortage of happy recipients there 🙂
The latest mobile I made for a customer from the US, who is expecting her first baby soon. She wanted to have something matching her nursery in olive greens and light grays, so I made this bunch of balloons for her and she loved it! Phew! This is the highest reward for me as a knitter. What do you think? Hope her baby will like it, too!
And here it is in its new home! I absolutely love it! I’m sure the baby will have no trouble sleeping and feeling right at home!
Now I’m off drooling over the leftovers and will get started for a new lovely unique piece of art 🙂