Stay Put Baby Leggings (Ravelry link)
Handknit baby leggings that stay up! Is that possible?
Why yes it is! And here's the proof:
Yes, that is snow in the background and yes he is barefoot. It's actually a warm day and our 5ft of snow is melting away to near nothing. Yay!
Even while crawling.
The secret is elastic enclosted thigh band. You can put elastic in the top and bottom or just the top. The pair shown have elastic in only the top.
Why baby leggings? First of all they are just stinkin' cute. Secondly, for around the house they make for nice quick diaper changes or if you EC your baby they make potty trips easy. Also, it's cold here and they make a nice quick easy second layer. In the spring they are nice for changing weather. If you leave the house and it's warm but it gets colder later in the day, pull a pair out of your diaper bag and cover those legs up!
And did I mention they are ridiculously cute. The yarn is from Biscotte & Cie off Etsy. I love knitting self-striping yarn.
I'm writing this up as a basic recipe so you can use whatever yarn and needle size you want. Need help? Just ask!
Materials: Yarn of your choice. Appropriate needle for the yarn. I used a 40" length and magic looped. DPN's would work just fine as well. About 9-11" of 1/2" width elastic.
1. Figure out your gauge per inch. I got about 5.75 sts per inch.
2. Figure out your circumference by measuring baby's thigh. Muchkin has 8" thighs (he's a squirt) and I added an inch so there was a little room to grow for a total of 9".
3. Multiply your gauge per inch by your desired circumference. 5.75x9=51.75 We'll round that up to 52.
4. We will work the thigh band like this: Enclosed Elastic Waistband (in this case it's a thighband). You don't have to do it this way. You can do a normal (but loose) cast on and just sew the band shut.
- Provisional cast on the # you get in step 4 (52 for me).
- Do not join in a round! Knit flat stockinette (knit 1 row, purl 1 row) for about 3/4". End having worked a knit row. Do not turn.
- Instead of turning, now join in a round, place a marker and purl this first round.
- Knit stockinette stitch for 3/4"or until the ends meet when folded in half at the purl ridge (see tutorial if this doesn't make sense).
- Place provisional cast on edge onto another circular needle the same size or smaller than the working needle.
- Knit the provisional cast on edge to the working edge (again, see tutorial for pictures)
- You should now have the same amount of stitches on the needle as you started out with.
5. Now we will work even (knit stockinette stitch straight) until piece measured as long as desired. I measured a pair of store bought baby legs to get my length, so about 13". If you want to work a simple 1x1 or 2x2 ribbing on the bottom, work 1" less than desired length.
6. Ankle band: For an enclosed elastic band at the bottom, purl 1 round. Stop working in the round and just knit stockinette stitch flat for about 3/4" like you did at the top. Bind off very loosely. Fold at the purl ridge and sew in place.
1x1 ribbing: K1, p1 around for 1"
2x2 ribbing: K2, p2 around for 1"
Or use whatever cuff you like (lots to choose from in the Adorabubble Baby Britches Pattern.) I think these would be super cute with a fringie cuff. I need a girl to knit for.
7. Elastic: Cut amount of elastic needed, thigh circumference plus about 1/2." Make sure you don't make it too tight and cut off circulation. Feed elastic through using a diaper safety pin and sew ends together securely. You can sew the hole shut but I left mine open in case I need to adjust the elastic as the munchkin grows (or slims down as he is now a speed crawler).
Sew ends in and you're done!
I'm casting on a pair in worsted weight wool right now and I think I'll write this up into a more formal pattern so you don't have to do any math. I love math but I know not everyone else does. It'll be in sock weight and worsted weight.
Once you make a pair, I'd love to see them! Like me on Facebook and post a picture in the album.