For those of you who follow my social media, you might have seen me talking about a secret knitting project I’d been working on for a while. I was finally able to release the details of this a couple of weeks ago so I thought I’d write a blog series telling you all about how the project came about and my design process.

Now, I’m sure you’ve all heard of The Very Hungry Caterpillar and some of you might have even seen the huge range of fan inspired creations that revolve around the character. A few months ago I was asked by a colleague if I could knit a baby outfit inspired by the very hungry caterpillar. I was immediately excited at the thought of the challenge and agreed pretty much straight away.

I did some research on Pinterest and there are quite a few styles out there being made already, along with patterns to recreate them. But I had a vision in mind of what I wanted to create so I decided from the off to create my own pattern and design the outfit myself. I had just finished working on another commission so I was under no illusions as to how difficult this was going to be.

As with most new projects for me, the first thing to sort out was the yarn I would use, and this meant yarn shopping (what knitter doesn’t love yarn shopping?!). The only yarn suitable for babies that I’d bought before had been traditional baby colours – pastel pinks and blues etc… so I was worried that they wouldn’t have the range of colours that I needed. Luckily, my local yarn shop had a great range of Sirdar Snuggly DK yarn which had the perfect colours. The yarn is a mixture of 55% Nylon and 45% Acrylic so it is machine washable at 40°c – always useful when making an outfit for a child! I chose a range of bold greens and teals for the main body and then red and purple for the head.

Sirdar Snuggly

After choosing my yarn I realised I had absolutely no idea what size babies were…the patterns I found online varied so much in size and stitch numbers that I had no idea where to start. Luckily, when I was in town one day, Joe came up with the idea of finding an item of clothing for the right age of the baby and then measuring it with my hands – it actually worked out brilliantly!

Measuring Baby Clothes

So that is how this project came about, and the start of my design process, look out for part 2 of this series where I’ll talk in a bit more detail about making the body of this Very Hungry Caterpillar!

Have you ever made a children’s costume inspired by a story character? Let me know in the comments below!