The deep freeze is still going strong here, but thankfully the temperature is meant to jump up about 10 degrees tomorrow. Until then, I will still be clutching my favourite hot water bottle, waiting for sensation to return to my extremities.
I have an American friend who was utterly baffled by my hot water bottle – somehow she had never heard of such a thing and thought me completely mad, until I made one up for her when she was a houseguest. I think it’s safe to say she was a convert by the time she left. But they often come either without a cover, or with a cover that is nasty and cheap, or a novelty character of some sort. As with so many things, it’s much nicer if you can make your own.
My one effort in this department goes way back to 2008, and all in all I was pretty pleased with the result.
Making one now, I think I’d be tempted to go with a nicer yarn – this was an anonymous acrylic blend, I think, and some proper sheepiness, or fluffy Malabrigo, would be sooo much nicer. I’d also be keen to try a bolder colour, or some cheerful stripes, which can go a long way to preventing your creation from shouting OLD LADY! at an embarrassingly high volume.
It’s not perhaps the most exciting gift for kids, although you could have some fun by knitting a character or animal of some kind – add some ears and a tail, embroider a face, turn it into a rocket, whatever you fancy – and it might help to make bedtime slightly more bearable.
I used a very simple pattern, and what I liked about it was that the ribbed neckline was just about wide enough to accommodate the bottle and didn’t need other fastenings or ties to keep it in place. The bottom was seamed, although if I made it now I’d probably start it like a giant toe-up sock with Judy’s Magic Cast On.
It doesn’t take up too much yarn, and could be a good opportunity for some stash-busting or using up leftovers, especially if you like stripes. It’s also very easy to customise the pattern with something more challenging if you fancy it. What could be better for keeping your nearest and dearest extra cosy this Winter?