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Archive for the ‘Blankets’ category

Planned out the blanket. Discovered I was missing one square. Oops.

I learned to crochet pretty much entirely to knit the Babette blanket, which I find beautiful. I had the pattern in my Ravelry queue for years before I actually started it, and my first attempts at granny squares were enough to make the wee baby Jesus weep. I practiced with acrylic until I got to where I thought I needed to be. I thought that my first squares were pretty good, but once I’d finished the two spiral blankets and came back to the Babette, I realized how wrong I was. The squares that had looked great to me were uneven, the row changes were sloppy, and on the whole it didn’t look like anything I’d ever want anybody else to see. Thankfully, I had only done a few real squares, so I didn’t lose much time by going back and undoing those. I shudder to think of how bad my rejected practice squares must have been.

Piecing together one section

Once I was better at crochet, I got going in earnest, and made the approximately million and three  squares in this blanket (okay 126, but who’s counting)? In between, I did crocheted some hats and skulls (many many skulls), which I think further improved my stitches. Even when I went back to crochet the one square that I was somehow missing, I noticed the change in my stitches’ tension, as compared to my efforts back in October.

I’m now finished with all of the individual blocks in the blanket, but am having the worst time figuring out the final configuration, and how to achieve it. I’m not sure how this is going to pan out, because I haven’t really loved any of the available options for putting together this blanket. Whip stitch is ugly, mattress stitch seems like too much work for not a pretty enough payoff, single crochet looks a little ugly, and I’m reluctantly going with slip stitch, but I have yet to be bowled over by how it looks. Plus, because I’m joining blocks of different sizes, the standard wisdom regarding connecting horizontally and then vertically really doesn’t apply here.

Another problem is that I clearly need to block my squares (like, ALL of them), and I really don’t want to. This thing may be hibernating until Jesus comes back.

I really like the way that this Purl Bee Babette came out, and I may have to go back to Purl Soho and look at the blanket, which is usually on display in the shop.

I finished my first crochet baby blanket. It is – and I say this without any undue pride – ridiculously cute. For years I’ve been all “Crochet, the horror!,” but, amazingly enough, once I actually decided that I wanted to learn how to do it, I realized that I pretty much already understood the basics. I think this is going to be for Baby Girl W, who had the temerity to be born a couple of weeks early, meaning that this gift is official late. Thanks, kid.

Anyway, behold:

In the early stages


Despite the fact that my stomach starts to hurt if I look at this for too long, I really like this blanket. So much so, that I decided to make another one. This kid isn’t due until November, but maybe I better pick up the pace, just in case…

I got off to a good start with the Baby Chalice Blanket for my friend, and made pretty steady progress in the weeks leading up to her baby shower. Then a crazy, act-of-god-type thing happened that derailed me for a bit, and meant that I didn’t finish the blanket until approximately two hours before the shower!! Luckily, it came out okay (Figure A), but obviously I wasn’t going to give it to my friend unblocked. I wrapped it, and let her cuddle it at the baby shower, before whisking it away with me to be blocked and prettified.

Figure A

Figure A - Unblocked and bunched

Then, I was so proud of myself for having finished and blocked it that I basically sat on it for weeks. Then, when I was ready to send it, I caught the cold from hell, and I was laid up for the better part of two weeks. I actually wanted to knit then, but was so gross that the thought of knitting anything was disgusting to me; I didn’t want for me or anybody else to come into contact with my sickness germs, and I knew that no amount of washing would ever make me feel good about anything I’d knit during this time. So then I was feeling better and finally sent the blanket to be blocked, which took longer than I was given to expect (I am not the only procrastiknitter I know).

Figure B

Figure B - Blocked, but on a desk & wrapping paper

Finally, it was all done (Figure B), but I’d started a pair of booties at the meeting of my knitting group, and decided to throw them in the box, as well. So of course, there was nothing to do but to finish the booties and then block them (Figure C). Then I got delayed by the storm from hell, but I finally, FINALLY mailed the package out today. I thought that I was going to be in time for the baby’s due date, but it turns out that Baby A’s sense of time is very much like my own, and he is actually several days overdue. Ooops! It looks like my blanket is going to be arriving pretty much the same time he does, since my friend was induced today.

Figure C

Figure C


I am working on two baby blankets right now, for friends who are going to be welcoming their first children in 2010.  For reasons I can no longer remember, I decided to go with Madeline Tosh Worsted yarn. I bought it from Webs. I used the colorways Fjord and Clematis. The Fjord came right away and the colors of the 4 skeins I received were pretty similar.  The Clematis skeins were backordered, and arrived after three and a half weeks. When I did get them, they weren’t at all consistent, and two of the skeins look nearly navy or black, while the other two are nicely variegated. This is an annoying but not impossible set of circumstances to fix. Still, I am shaking my fist at the losers at Webs who gave me four non-matching skeins of yarn. I understand that they’re hand-dyed, but I’m pretty sure that they’re matched by humans, and whoever put this order together probably could have done a better job at making sure my four skeins matched.

That's more like it.

Fjord. Awesome.

See? See?

Clematis. Less awesome.

I meant to finish weaving in my the ends of my OpArt Blanket. Really, I did. It was too hot to do anything outside, so it seemed like a good idea to try to be useful in here. Unfortunately, I seem to have left my tapestry needles at work after my last In Stitches meeting, so that idea went out the window. Then I tried to work on A’s socks, but by now I sort of hate looking at them. I think I’m going to go back to one sock at a time. Aside from the first pair I made, when I was still learning what I was doing, I’ve never let nearly this much time go before finishing a pair. I considered starting my Buttony Sweater that I bought the yarn for last year, but I haven’t ever made a sweater before, and I wanted to learn more about sweater construction before I start; it seems that the pattern is pretty bare, and others who’ve knit it stated that they had or wished they had added some shaping. So that was out the window. AND THEN I decided to do the gauge for a new scarf that I wanted to start, but I couldn’t find any size five needles, which at first seemed insane, until I realized that most of my size 5s are circulars, and I think the one straight pair that I own is in use by an In Stitches member (not like I know who, though).

Well, there’s always tomorrow, right?


I cleaned up last week, not really in honor of Independence Day, but more because I couldn’t stand the sight of my dresser anymore. I decided that there are a few things I want to accomplish in July, and that includes finishing things that I’ve been working on for a long time. Number one on that list is my Op Art blanket, which I’ve been working on since October. The baby it’s for is almost 6 months old; I do feel a little bit ashamed, although previously this shame wasn’t enough to spur me into action.

Over the course of May and June, I slowly worked the final rows of the second color, and tonight I finished the last few rounds with it. I’m up to 720+ stitches, and I frankly don’t understand any of those brave souls who consented to make the larger blanket. Right now I’m about to bind off using the main color. Then I’ll have to worry about the weaving in and the blocking, but for now I’m just going to be proud of this accomplishment.

I’ll rest on my laurels for a day or so, and then get back to the socks I’ve been making for Amy Sue since January. I feel slightly better about those, though, because I warned her ahead of time how slow I can be at finishing things. I want a pair of socks for me, though, and I’m not allowed to have those until I’ve finished hers.

Oh! And I also need to finish the baby beanie that I’m making with the knit group I lead at work. This is our inaugural group project, and it would probably look bad if I didn’t finish it, right?

I haven’t posted here in a long while, mostly because I haven’t worked on anything recently. I still have not finished poor baby M’s OpArt blanket. I’m home sick today, so I am going to work on it right now before I lose my motivation and ignore it for another two months. I have just decided that I’m not allowed to post about the awesome yarn I just bought until I finish the blanket, so maybe that will provide a well-needed nudge in the right direction.