What is it about baby gifts that makes me start a project with good intentions and enthusiasm, only to have me discard them for several months, prompting a mad rush to finish as the due date approaches? It was exactly the same with my latest crocheted baby blanket. As soon as I heard my friend Cat had one in the oven I practically ran to John Lewis to buy up yarn for a baby blanket. My enthusiasm waned about three quarters of the way in and it languished, unfinished, until it hit me that Cat’s baby shower was only two weeks away and I really should get cracking. Cue lots of crochet on trains. In the middle of a heatwave.
I’ve made many, many baby blankets out of square patches (check out Jan Eaton’s 200 Crochet Blocks book for inspiration), but I felt it was time for a change. A granny ripple tutorial caught my eye on Pinterest, and that seemed to strike the right balance of the challenge of fathoming out the method and then being repetitive enough for me to watch the telly while crocheting once I had the hang of it. Check out the Lazy Hobbyhopper blog for a great tutorial if you want to have a go yourself.
Hunch-based colour scheme
Anyway, Cat has decided not to find out the baby’s sex, so I went for neutral green colours on the basis that I’m convinced she’s having a boy, green is on the masculine side of neutral and even if it’s a girl it’ll still work. I’m pretty pleased with my colour choices, and a lot of people have made some lovely comments on them as I’ve been working on it. It’s Debbie Bliss Cotton DK if you’re interested.
I’m also pretty pleased with the effect of the colour combinations used. I wanted to use around about the same amount of yarn of each colour, so I worked patterns in blocks of six rows. Each colour could be used twice within that block of six, but it didn’t matter where, so I started playing about with the combinations as I crocheted. When I got to what I thought should be the middle, I decided it’d be cool to make the blanket symmetrical. Nice idea, but it took a bit of head-scratching to work out what should be next, especially when I picked it up after a few months’ break. Still, for a pattern worked out on the hoof, I think it’s turned out really nicely.
Tha endz, innit
One of the pitfalls of changing yarn so many times is the ridiculous amount of loose ends it produces. I reckon, that with the loose yarn at each end of the blanket, and with each new ball I had to join in, there must have been at least 100 little moments of hand sewing joy, right there. I hate hand sewing. It’s the one thing that would put me off making this blanket again. But on the train on the way to my parents’ up north this week end, I became determined to finish it, so I persevered and in the end it didn’t take as long as I thought it would. I finished off the blanket with a round of double crochet to cover the knobbly bits created by the woven ends and that was that!
I’m chuffed with this blanket. The colours are cool and the zig zags of the granny ripple make it funky and modern, as opposed to the ubiquitous (and frankly, boring) granny square. It’s maybe a bit heavy for use in a cot, particularly for a summer baby, but it could be ideal for an outing in a pram. Just hope the soon-to-be parents approve!
What else is happening?
Well, I am itching to do some sewing! I want to get cracking on that fabric from my last post, but have struggled to find time recently. I have been all over the place either for work or socially recently and I am mightily looking forward to not having to sit on a train for a while. As a result I’ve also found it difficult to get to my local haberdashery to buy some supplies – I am out of interfacing and I could do with some zips before I can start anything new. I’m working from home for most of this week so a cheeky lunchtime trip might be in order. Nevertheless, I’ve got a couple of posts up my sleeve to bridge the gap, so watch this space…