One of my very favorite things in all the world are handmade hand-me-downs. How can they not be? The memory of the joy in making it. The memories of the child (or children) wearing them before. And the excitement of seeing someone new embrace them - someone with entirely their own personality and quirks and ideas about the world. Annabel has recently discovered and fallen in love with the Jane Austen dress that I made her older sister eight years ago. Eight! I can't even believe that. Adelaide wore it a bit, but not a whole lot. Ani, on the other hand, has been reaching for it often, and I'm so glad to see it so frequently. I gave it a little bit of a revamp - repairing the stitching of the knitting onto the linen, and shortening the hem just a bit to make it more wearable (judging from the previous hem, I hadn't yet discovered my love for the blind hem - the foot on my sewing machine that I couldn't live without, I love it so).
The wearing of hand me downs also, of course, marks the passing of time and serves as a reminder to enjoy what's happening right now, for how quickly it passes. And on that note, while lingering on Ravelry looking for the next pattern recently, it occurred to me with a start, that I've never knit a cape for one of my littles! I've sewn plenty, but never knit. And given that my littlest is going to be five this spring, I'd say the clock is ticking on that opportunity. And so, a little red riding hood cape it is, before she's just too grown up for such a thing. How I have come to possess so much of that red yarn in my relatively small stash is another story for another day, but for now, I'm about to choose just the right 'little red riding hood' red, and get to work. While she's still little.