Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Frida's Ensemble

In early June, Megan had a baby, and though I didn't get to meet little Miss Frida until early August, I already knew how much I would love watching her grow up. And how much I would love watching Megan grow up, too.

When I first met Megan, she was 27-years-old and had just returned from a many-months-long trip to Europe. Both wordly and world-worn, she came home to San Francisco to find that her best friend Mark had started dating a 23-year-old SoCal transplant (me). The first time Megan and I met, we huddled together in Mark's bedroom amidst a thick layer of cigarette smoke, surely listening to whatever the newest release from Bloodshoot Records was that day. We instantly became very good friends, not unlike the easy way that children make friends when they are young. Without overthinking, without wondering if the enthusiasm is shared, without wondering if you can trust your secrets, or if you're oversharing. The joy of making a lifelong friend is an instantaneous thrill, and ten years later, I'm not surprised to see the bond is still going strong.
In the month leading up to Frida's birth, I knit furiously and thought about who Megan would be now, what her life would look like with a child in tow, and how lucky Frida was to be born into the world of such a strong, interesting woman. I guess you could say I knit my good intentions into it, though Megan reports that they keep finding strands of my long blonde hair knitted into the fabric, so I guess you could say I knitted more than just my intentions into it? (For those with hair phobias, sorry...I know that's sort of gross. We find it funny.)

Because Megan is passionate about hot pink (and most bright colors for that matter), I figured that Frida would not be a pastel baby. But she also would not be a carbon copy of her mother...it just couldn't be so. For Frida, I chose this deeper pink, a vibrant fuchsia...let's go ahead and call it hot plum. And because she will be a San Franciscan and a German (her father is from Berlin), she will need a hood to get her through the damp winters, and she might as well start getting used to wool now. (Superwash, of course...I'm not insane.)
Soon enough I realized that it had to become an outfit, and so I whipped up this amazingly fast and satisfying baby kimono from Heather Ross's Weekend Sewing. An old tablecloth and a few yards of bias tape and we had ourselves a matching set. (For those crafty types who need a last-minute killer baby shower gift, I highly recommend.)

Before I mailed the package off to a yet-to-be-born Frida, I did what I always do with baby clothes: modeled them on my old teddy bear. (The effect is a bit creepy, but you get the point.)
Personally, I think Frida is a far cuter model. And in Megan's always excellent fashion opinion, red and hot plum do go together. I'm so glad that I made the sweater in the bigger size, so she can wear it with the super long sleeves rolled up now and still be wearing it this winter as she grows. (For those who are interested, the sweater pattern is called the Audrey Hoodie, and it's from the fabulous book Vintage Baby Knits by Kristen Rengren!)
As for meeting Frida? Words sort of can't explain. It's funny how when you meet the baby of an acquaintance, you might feel tentative and not exactly melt into a puddle from the cuteness. Hell, you might even think the child looks like a squirming alien. But when you meet your best friend's baby, you go straight over to her and grab her little hands. You find yourself holding her and bouncing around and singing a little song that you just made up, and you stare and wonder and catch glimpses of your friends' expressions in her furrowed brow. Honestly, it felt like I was meeting a person who  already knows the punchline, who already knows the stories, who is already in the club, even though she has yet to learn any of it. She will. After all, she's one of us girls now.