Friday, 13 April 2012

A finish and a start

Hello again! It has been a while since I have had crochet to share with you, a combination of factors left me really not feeling the love for making amigurumis last month & my focus shifted instead to the two blanket projects I have had on the go since the start of the year.
The Ripply Goodness blanket was finished in the last week of March so made it into the Monthly Makes post HERE but the baby blanket I have been working on wasn't quite ready. I have mentioned in previous posts how much I loved making the ripple blanket, but the baby blanket was a bit of a different story. Maybe it was down to my total lack of experience at crocheting squares & blankets when I started it or because instead of picking a pattern & following it I decided to get all creative & design my own as I went along. Part way in I started having real doubts. This was the first blanket I had ever attempted & I began wondering why I couldn't have kept it simple & gone with a ready made pattern! I lost sight of the vision I had at the start & abandoned it, after all there were weeks and weeks left till May when the baby was due & there were a lot of other projects on the go that I had a lot more confidence in. I found my bliss in the ripples ;-)
Then one day it occured to me that it was 10 weeks till baby's due date. I recounted. But yup, it really was! Oh help! I definitely needed to get a move on... Well bit by bit, square by square, I made it to 80 little squares. I laid them out on the bed & played with them one last time, decided on a final layout for them & worked out how I was going to join them up. It took me a week but finally on Easter Saturday morning I made the last stitch & darned in the last end! So here it is laid out on the floor...
Very nervously I put it in the washing machine and waited :0 Would the seams hold or would I open the door to find a whole pile of little squares again? Yes, the little squares had begun to haunt me ;-) With much relief I pulled out the same complete blanket I had put in there & pegged it on the line. I had hoped to get a photo of it happily dancing in the breeze, with maybe a clear blue sky behind it but it was not to be. Pretty soon I was back out unpegging it as the rain drops got going in earnest for the day. Oh well.
To make it I started off by gathering up all the assorted pale blues, minty greens, and white in my yarn boxes & then decided to add in another color. I found the lemon yellow in a local store & also ended up buying another ball of minty green to help balance out the colors. I thought of it in terms of 4 rectangles, two made of plain one color squares, and two composed of multicolored or striped squares. All the squares are composed of just one stitch, hdc (US terms), to help unify them & I added a narrow border of two rows of white sc (US terms) and two rows of blue sc.
During that last week of working on it I discovered I did actually like it after all, and as it hung on the airer upstairs drying I found myself smiling at it when I passed by. I hope my daughter-in-law will like it too when I give it to her this weekend.
Well that's the finish in this post's title, now on to the start. I have been itching to play with some of the blocks in the Jan Eaton book my awesome daughter gave me for Mother's Day, so this week I started on a new blanket. This one is going to be a bit bigger than the two I have made so far, I'm wanting to it to be double bed sized so it seemed like a good opportunity to use some lovely yarn I brought back from the States last summer.
 Yes, another variegated Red Heart yarn called to me from the shelves in Walmart! The shade name is Watercolor &, although not usually a huge fan of green, I really love the color combinations in this. I found some big 200g balls of aran yarn locally that seemed made to go with it...

Isn't that a lovely pile of yarn? I really have been very restrained not diving into that until the other blankets were finished! The book has around 200 different blocks in it so it took me a while to narrow down which ones I wanted to play with first, but in the end I came up with three. I will swap the colors about in them too so there will be a lot of variety in the finished blanket. Here are a few I have completed so far... 



At this stage I haven't worked out an overall design yet, I'm planning to work some up in different color combinations, scan them into my computer, & play with them on a publisher document. Just an idea, I will let you know how that works out in practise! Because the aran yarn I'm using is thicker than the dk yarn the pattern was written for the squares are coming up at 7.5" square instead of 6". At the moment I'm thinking I will need 63 of them plus a border of some kind to make up to the size I'm after. So three down, sixty to go....
 I have a couple of other things to share with you, but that will need to wait for my next post. Until then I wish you happy Spring days!

10 comments:

  1. Love them both, the start and finish..
    -josie

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  2. Hi just love love love the blankets

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    1. Thanks Sheila ;)
      Good to see you here, but we should try & get together for a coffee soon?
      Helen x

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    1. Aww thanks Dvorah, I have the feeling he will get lots of handmade things!
      Have a great week x

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  4. Beautiful! Love your colour combinations.

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    1. Thanks Rhona! I'm just a big kid - love playing with colors wether it's threads, paper, buttons, yarn... lol

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  5. Missed this post! I so love the baby blanket, what beautiful colours and a stunning design, well done you on getting there :-)
    I love the watercolours yarn, such a lovely combination of colours your blanket will be beautiful!
    Lori xx

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    1. Thank you, I learnt so much doing this one!
      Hopefully I will do it justice, right now it is a bit neglected as the other one has grabbed me!
      Helen xx

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