Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A sun hat and to tell or not tell?

My mother's group are having a birthday party for all our babies this week as they are all turning 1 in the next month or so. I can't believe how quickly they grow up, however it is certainly a fun journey to see your little baby grow, develop and become a person (its times like these we forget about all the challenges and struggles along the way. Challenges? What challenges?) Anyway, I stray from the point. So, for the big birthday, Mum's group are doing a present for each of the babies, like a Kris Kringle.

I was sitting there on the weekend, thinking what could I buy for the present? As this is my first child, I really don't have much experience with children so I have no idea what to get for my own daughter, let alone coming up with a gift for somebody else's. Enter the sunshine which has beamed down upon us here in Melbourne the past few days. Aha! a sunhat. So I set off to find a sunhat pattern. I couldn't go past Nicole Mallalieu design for hat patterns so jumped online to order my kids hats pattern (which has also recently been recommended to me by Mary at Perle 8's). And check out the very talented Nikki Cardigan's gorgeous hats of the same design. But sitting back twiddling my thumbs until Mr snail mail delivered my pattern didn't sit very well with me. I dragged out my trusty Ottobre Summer 2009 mag and made the sun hat ot of that.
Its a four panel hat with a brim. I was really impressed with how it turned out. Never having made a hat before, I thought they would be tricky and fiddly. But it all went together easily and worked really well. The fabric I used had rather large, sparse pattern on it so all the pieces were strategically cut out to highlight the fabric. Classic pink spots to match on the binding and on the ties (under the chin, which I added as the pattern didn't have any). I can't imagine a child's hat without some sort of under chin tie as they always seem to be pulling them off. It is fortunate my Mum's group has 8 girl and only two boy babies, so a pink hat has good odds of finding the right home.

The problem I am stuck with now is that I have put my love and effort in to create what I believe is a beautiful hat. What if the recipient (or the recipient's mother) doesn't like the hat? And do I tell that I made it myself (and avoid either being embarrassed if no one says how gorgeous it is, or equally so if they go on about how amazing I am to have made it (not that I think this, but others can often be a bit over the top in admiring something they don't think they could achieve). Or do I keep quiet, and just let what ever happens happen? And if they don't like it, can I ask for it back? Although how would you know if they don't like it (people rarely say so when given gifts). What if they hate it, but they feel compelled to put it on their baby every time we have Mum's group in the future so as not to offend me? This would be the worst. So is it just me thinking way too much about the whole gifting of handmade items, or do other people have the same worries?

At least I still have a mail package from Nicole Mallalieu to look forward to this week. And I have my handmade hat to look at, sitting on the dining table until it gets wrapped and gifted on Thursday. Until then...


  1. It's such a dilemma when the other mums aren't crafty. A crafty mumma would absolutely adore a beautiful handmade with love sunhat!

  2. It's such a hard decision! We had a similar birthday thing in my mother's group a few weeks ago - I don't think anyone owned up to which present they brought along. Personally, I would have LOVED that hat! Mother's groups can be a bit hard to negotiate though - we seem to come from such a different range of perspectives! I really like my mother's group though, even if we do have different ideas about what constitutes a great present ;-)

  3. I say - big flashing neon signs that say 'I made this myself!!!"
    Handmade rules!! Be proud!!
    (Are all the kids girls? Might need to have a boy one in reserve)
    Happy birthday to all the little people. Have a great party.
    Andi :-)

  4. Lovely hat, Pam. You should be proud to say that you made it - it's an original and will be appreciated, I'm sure.

  5. I think it's beautiful! No one is ever going to guess you made it if you don't tell.

  6. Hmmm, I say just 'fess up by putting a label on it (if you have one!!). Then maybe they'll put two and two together. What's not to love about a hat with a tie? It's a perfectly practical gift, as well as being lovely to look at, so I can only imagine it will go down well. If a boy doesn't get it!

    PS I'm getting Nikki (Cardigan!) to make hats for my kids. Tee hee.

  7. A gorgeous hat and if you have a label whack it on and don't mention anything unless asked.

  8. It's perfect Pam and tell them all that you made it.

  9. Having only just found your blog today, courtesy of the 12 months 12 challenges lists, I'm looking through your archived posts and although this one is back in November, I still just wanted to say how lovely this hat is. You've done a really beautiful job with the fabric positioning and the perfect stitching, It's so lovely and I think that anyone that received this for their child would be over joyed. Well done, it is the a very thoughtful and beautiful gift!