To tell the truth, I've been holding out on you a little while with this one. It was finished early this month and I've been hanging on to it... Partly because I've been waiting, in vain I might add, for some good weather to try and get better pictures. But mostly, I must confess, because I fell a tiny bit out of love with this little blanket towards the end.
When I last spoke to you about this blanket, I was still totally in love. I was enjoying mixing my colours and I had this beautiful stack of squares to look at.
All, in short, was right in my crocheting world. It took a while to make all 99 of the squares needed, but although I was glad to be done, I did enjoy making them all. Next, I pined them all out to block. I've used some acrylic, so I knew it wouldn't be totally effective, but it does help straighten them out and tidy them up ready for joining together.
I was very happy at this stage, I love to see them all lined up, square and regular.
Next came the joining and this is were the trouble started. I wanted to join them as shown in the book, because I liked the effect but although I tested it out on a few squares first, once I'd done a few rows I started to have my doubts. They are joined by crocheting along the back, which means that each seam has a line of crochet along it. I'm sure you know the kind of thing I mean.
The problem I had is that once joined, the squares, and in fact the whole blanket, doesn't really lie very flat. There's a sort of valley at each seam which makes the blanket look all wavey and bumpy. Have a look at this picture that shows the front and the back so you can see the seams.
Can you see the ridges along the back and the valleys along the front? At this point, I had joined so many I had reached a kind of point of no return as I couldn't face undoing what I had done, so I carried on the the seaming and finished off with a lovely border.
I hope you don't mind if I just take a moment to drag you aside to talk about the border, which I do love. It's from this fantastic book, Around the Corner Crochet Edges by Edie Eckman, which I can't recommend enough. When I first started crocheting and saw books like this, totally devoted to edges, my mind boggled. It amazed me that, not only could enough edges be found to fill a book, but that it could ever be necessary for anyone to have an entire book devoted to them! How wrong I was. Silly, naive me! Now of course, I know that a good border can be the making of a project and this book is stuffed full of brilliant ones. So if you get the chance, it's definitely worth a look.
Well, back to the story of the blanket.
Although I was pleased with the border, I was still left a bit unsatisfied with the finished article but what to do? The cream edges and border are all done in Stylecraft acrylic, so there's no blocking it out, without steaming a whole blanket! Not something I'm going to attempt, that's for sure. Maybe I just seamed them all too tight, I do tend to be tight with my hooky sometimes. Maybe the effect will wear off once the blanket is being used. Ah well, it has been done for a while now, time to forget that and think of the positives.
My little one, who the blanket is intended for, was delighted with it. She's going to be using it to keep her cozy on cold days in the car and she's been wrapping up in and wandering around the house in it since it's been finished. I guess that it has her seal of approval, which is the main thing.
Time to show you the whole, finished thing I think, so you can look and judge for yourselves. I took it outside to get a bit better light, but somehow I couldn't get a photo I was totally happy with either. Maybe it's just one of those projects.
Now, some details, for the detail minded:
Blanket size: 95 x 75 cm (3 ft x 2 1/2 ft)
Total number of squares: 99
Total weight: 832g
Total yards: 1555 (approx)
Total colours: 19 plus the cream
Total yards in cream: 1135 (approx)
Total yards in other colours: 420 (approx)
Yarns used: A mixture of brands of mostly dk yarn with some sport and a 4ply. Pretty much all from stash.
Time for me to go now, it's been a long day and I think it's time for a hour of knitting before bed.
See you all next time.