Thursday 31 December 2015

A year in 4 blankets

For me 2015 will be "The Year of the Blankets" because I seemed to spend a lot of my spare time knitting and crocheting blankets! I have just put my hook down and taken photos of my last blanket of the year. I really wanted to finish it by the end of today and with 9 hours to spare I was happy to achieve my deadline!

the 4 blankets

The first blanket I completed this year was crocheted following the gorgeous pattern, "Sophie's Universe", by Dedri Uys. You can find the link to Dedri's pattern here

Sophie's Universe in progress

I loved following this pattern because it taught me so many different stitch techniques and combinations, every day was a school day!

At the very start of the year I began work on my Beekeepers Quilt. This was a knitted blanket, formed by making "hexipuffs" which were worked on 3 double pointed needles. I wrote a blog post about the start of this quilt adventure in January this year if you would like more information on this one.

finished Beekeepers Quilt

I was inspired by an Instagram friend, Anthea, @theforestflower ( link here) to make 1 hexipuff a day for the year, creating enough hexies by the end of the year for a blanket. I made mine using all my scraps of double knitting wool, instead of 4ply wool as the pattern stated, resulting in a very thick and heavy blanket! I decided to stop knitting in the autumn and started to join them together because I was worried about the weight causing damage to the blanket. The pattern for the hexipuffs is by Tiny Owl Knits and is available on Ravelry here

detail of hexipuffs

Throughout the year I worked on another blanket, on and off when I felt like a break between projects or when I had accumulated fresh supplies of scrap yarn. This was the largest of the 4 blankets, big enough to cover our king size bed! It was made up of very simple granny squares, designed by Jan Eaton, it's in her 200 Crochet Blocks book.

my husband, snuggled in the large blanket

This project kept me sane in the run up to Christmas because the squares were so easy to crochet and allowed me to chill out from all the extra goings on at that time.

cuppa and crochet

detail of the large squares

My fourth blanket of 2015 was completely different from the others, this one was self coloured which was a real change for me! I crocheted it following a pattern by Shelley Husband called GREG which was released fortnightly as a mystery CAL (crochet along). This meant that I had no idea how the finished blanket would look but I had been following Shelley on Instagram, as Spincushions  for long enough to have faith in her pattern writing abilities and I knew it would be an awesome blanket!

GREG in progress

I quickly found that working in one single colour meant that little faults and flaws in my crocheting stood out much more than in multi colour work. I learnt a few new techniques to help conceal the start and end of rounds with and I was soon much happier with the finished squares. You can find a link to Shelley's blog which has a link to her new eBook here

another GREG in progress

As the year drew to a close I realised that I had not really considered who the recipients of these blankets would be! I had a feeling that the Beekeepers Quilt would go to my youngest son because he had been sneaking off with as soon as it was big enough to huddle under! The large king size bed blanket was for our bed, I wanted a blanket that was big enough to keep one half of!! The other 2 blankets, what to do with them? I decided to give them to my other 2 boys to keep everyone happy and give everyone an heirloom blanket which I hope will be treasured for years to come.

my boys, posing with their blankets!

Now that they are all finished, what shall I make next? 

Marta xx

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