Apologies for piling onto the birthday question bandwagon, but I need some input. I have a friend who lives down the street. Her son is the same age as Noe, and the two kids have been best friends since they were babies (we exchange babysitting all the time, and have playdates at least once a week). Her son's birthday is next week, and we'll be attending a small casual party at his house. When she emailed me a reminder about the party today, she mentioned that she wanted to include a "no gifts, please" addendum. Which would be totally fine, except ... I've already knitted him a hat. It's been sitting around for a month waiting for his birthday. I should add that I specifically picked the pattern and the yarn with him in mind, and I think both he and his parents will like it. I feel a little disappointed at the idea of not giving it to him -- making something for somebody is very personal for me.
I know it's not really about me, though, so it seems that if she doesn't want gifts I should abide by her wishes. In thinking about it, I realized that at Noe's last two birthday parties, their family gave us handmade notes but no gifts, even though we had not specified no gifts -- and let me rush to state that I am absolutely fine with that, and the only reason I mention it in this context is that now suddenly I wonder if giving him the hat will make her feel uncomfortable, since her practice has been to not give birthday gifts.
What would you do?
Not give him the hat ever? (It will fit Noe and other small children we know, so it's not really wasted.)
Give it to him, but at some time other than his birthday?
Bring it to the party anyway, give it to the mom privately and explain that I made it before I knew she preferred no gifts?
UPDATE: We hung out last night and talked a little about the bday party, so I mentioned that I had something for him and wanted to make sure it was ok. She said of course, and I can give it to them whenever. Solved! Thanks for all of your advice!