Folksy Ltd

Christmas Baby blankets - opinions!

(Elsa Fuster Mears) #1

Hi

I’m thinking of felting baby blankets in merino and/or silk and possibly hand dyeing them with natural dyes from my garden. I’m attending some christmas markets this year and thought they would be ideal as pressies.

The question is how likely are they to sell? Would you buy such a thing? If yes, what would your purchase be based on i.e, price, colour/design? What would be the most money you’d spend on such an item?

I’ve often bought and made blankets as personal gifts for new borns as I feel you can never have enough of them - blankets that is, not new borns!
But i’m not sure how others feel about buying such a potentially expensive item (£30-£50) for a baby.

Any suggestions, ideas, comments appreciated… please… before I go to the trouble of bothering!
Elsa

(Sasha Garrett) #2

If I was looking to buy such a blanket as a present I would be concerned about the washability of it and that would put me off unless you could do lots of reassurance. My experience with babies is limited but I know they can be very messy so I would want my gift to be the sort of thing a stressed mum could just throw in the washing machine (and potentially tumble dryer) and not worry about it. Is the felt going to be machine washable? Are the dyes going to be colour fast? Are the dyes going to be suitable for potentially sensitive skins? These are the things you would need to convince me on before I would buy.
The prices you quote wouldn’t put me off - I spent £30 odd on (mashine washable) bamboo/ silk/ cotton blend yarn to knit a friend a pair of baby blankets - one for the wash, one for baby. I’ve told her when it out grows them I’ll sew them together so it has a larger blanket to keep it going for a few more years and I’ll knit a new pair for any additional babies.
Hopefully that’s all helpful to you.
Sasha

1 Like
(Eileens Craft Studio) #3

I would be weary of buying them if they are dyed from natural dyes from your garden this is because babies have sensitive skin and can have an allergic reaction. Just because something is natural doesn’t mean someone couldn’t have an allergic reaction to it.

You’ll be able to felt only wool ie animal based yarns however silk will not felt.

Personally I find felted blankets a bit stiff for baby and often far too warm.

Oh and the new advice is not to have blankets/covers etc in the new born baby cot, as new born babies can overheat. But they also advise keeping the nursery at a constant temp so new baby doesn’t get cold.

Hope that helps.

(Elsa Fuster Mears) #4

Thanks for the great and detailed feedback!

Great points made especially about washability of the item.
As for potentially harmful or sensitivity issues, I only use dye plants that are extremely safe such as nettles and fruits like damsons.

I nuno felt organic merino onto silk or cotton fabric and make soft, light-weight blankets for pushchair use. They’re rather on the small side and therefore, wouldn’t be suitable for the cot.

They would be machine washable and colour fast but not suitable for tumble dryers.

Maybe i need to rethink this whole project. Its a bit of a mine field!

(Roz) #5

I thought along these lines in the past and even got as far as making up a small patchwork nuno felted blanket but never finished it for the following reasons.

  1. Washability - as others have pointed out babies can be very messy and chances are any felted blanket would not be machine washable/tumble dryer proof unless it had been felted to such an extent that it would no longer shrink in which case it tends to become a bit thick and stiff.

  2. I was concerned about the fibres detaching from the felt surface if the baby was to suck/pull at the blanket (something they are apt to do) I know hand felted toys are extremely hard to get CE certification for for this reason (hence why I steer clear) Although blankets do not need certification the fact that detached fibres can represent a choking hazard in under 3’s puts me off selling them.

BTW I ended up turning the blanket I made into a cushion for the nursery :smile: and decided to steer clear of items for babies/children - as you say too much of a minefield.

(Kelly) #6

I think babies are priceless and we all love them to have beautiful things. I do recall paying £69.00 for a baby blanket for one of my Daughters, it was all done in patchwork and had a beautiful white bear down the bottom corner which looked like it was peeking over the top.

Babies are indeed very messy I mean, there’s been tons of times a blanket has been washed and dried, all gorgeous to give back to baby and then they sit and deliberately pour their drink on it, look up and smile at you lol. Their so cute!

I’d too would have concerns as Roz @Rozcraftz has about fibres because babies put anything they can into their mouths. Would you not be able to use fabric instead? x

(Elsa Fuster Mears) #7

Thanks to everyone for their replies.

I have now dropped the blanket idea. Shame, as they are beautiful but I understand the issues which may put potential buyers off.

As for making them out of fabric- I’m a felter. So, can’t get my head around any other format :wink:

Thanks again for helping me decide.
Elsa

(Elsa Fuster Mears) #8

Gorgeous cushion, BTW! Great idea!!

(Roz) #9

Elsa @Milana - Have you thought of lap blankets - I moved on to them when I realised the baby blanket idea was a non starter! Haven’t sold any yet but get lots of lovely comments at craft fairs and who knows as winter approaches - I had wheelchair users/elderly immobile people in mind when I made this. Am now making a full sized blanket for my daughters bed.

(Elsa Fuster Mears) #10

That’s beautiful! Such a lot of work too. Another great idea. I seriously need to put my thinking cap on!

I just wonder if I’ll be limiting buyers if I try to appeal to adults with this at a craft fair. really don’t know?? I have to be sort of sure that something will sell as they would be destined for a market stall and not online - and therefore, limited in space.

But this idea is appealing to me at least!

(Sasha Garrett) #11

A lot of craft markets/ fairs will let you bring a hanging rail so things like blankets (or scarves) could be hung up on the rail with one hanging as a back drop behind the stall so that people can get an idea of the full effect before unfolding any on the rail. You would be amazed at how much you can get on a stall (and still have it looking good) the trick is to go up and think 3D.
Sasha

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(Eileens Craft Studio) #12

When winter comes people like throws or smaller blankets to cuddle up with on the sofa while watching tv.

I sold a number of crochet ones last year via commission. So this year I’m going to make some for my shop.

In fact I’m just putting the finishing touches to a patchwork quilted lap throw/blanket for a commission that’s going to The USA.

(Elsa Fuster Mears) #13

Good to know Eileen. Its great to get first hand confirmation of what will actually sell.

Using a rail and a blanket backdrop seems a good way to do things. I like the idea of lap blankets so will definitely think of new designs that will appeal to adults. Hmmmm. Such a different take on the baby designs. That’ll keep me busy for a while.

But how big do these need to be? Never having owned one, I’m not sure what I’m aiming for.

(Sasha Garrett) #14

My sofa blanket was knitted for me by my mum and I think she thought that I would share it with the other half (I do occasionally) as its 5ft by 7ft ish. Not so much lap blanket as all of me blanket! That size is probably best left for commissions :smiley:
Sasha