Maybe Matilda: My Granny Transformation is Complete

Friday, June 1, 2012

My Granny Transformation is Complete

I think I’m aging far too quickly. I’ve been slowly morphing into a granny for years  (far more quickly than most people seem to), but things are speeding up lately. My gray hairs are multiplying at an alarming rate, my hobbies are increasingly grannyish (baking homemade bread, reading [gasp] non-fiction, and of course, crocheting like a fiend), and I’m pretty sure I’m getting arthritis.

But one old lady thing I swore I’d never do was crochet a granny square blanket. Before I learned to crochet, I thought granny squares were the ultimate tacky old lady craft. I had only ever seen them done in a distinctively grandma fashion (although neither of my own grandmas crochet, as far as I know, so I’m not sure who I’m basing this on): bold, harsh, non-matching colors, cheap and scratchy yarns, washed and used hundreds of times for decades until the blanket feels like cardboard. I hated them and said I’d never sink to a granny square level.

I hereby repent of my granny square prejudice. Once I started to crochet, I noticed that there are so many gorgeous—truly stunning—granny square blankets out there. They weren’t all the mismatched, wonky-looking, tired and scratchy pieces I’d thought. As soon as I identified a theme in the granny square blankets I loved, I was itching to make my own. My favorite granny square blankets have plenty of white to tone down all the color (like this one), have something of a color theme (like this one), and look very orderly despite the chaos that is a blanket made of a zillion different colors (like this one).

So I tried my hand at the infamous granny square blanket, and I have to say, my inner granny is pleased. She’s already plotting for more. I kind of think she might be evil. I mean, she is kind of taking over everything around here.

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I followed this pattern for the squares—I love that they look almost like little flowers, so the entire blanket ends up reminding me of a flower garden. That pattern was pretty straightforward and easy to follow, and I had a fun time crocheting up stacks of little granny square blocks.

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I used all yarns from my stash to make this blanket, but I tried to stick to a color theme. It’s definitely a loose theme, and all I kept in mind when choosing the colors, really, was that they be girly. I used mostly pinks, yellows, purples, and blues, and even the not-so-girly colors like gray and sky blue and green came together to make a decidedly girly blanket.

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Predictably, the absolute worst part of making this blanket was joining the squares. Is there anything worse than being only one step away from finishing a blanket, but that step is an interminably long, mind-numbingly dull step such as whipstitching squares together? (Answer: yes, there are a million worse things. Sheesh, white girl problems.)

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I finished it off with a cute little scalloped border. And I love it. I love the whole thing. It took a few weeks to put together—it was really quite a lot of work between making all the squares, switching colors hundreds of times, weaving in countless little yarn tails, sewing all those squares together—but I think it is so fun and spunky and sweet and charming. And, of course, hopelessly old-fashioned and granny-ish. In a good way.

This one’s headed over to the shop, so pop in to check it out if you know a little lady who could use a sweet granny square flower garden blanket.

31 comments :

  1. Oh. My. Gracious.

    You seriously read my mind this morning. All morning, I have been dreaming of making a blanket just like this one. I vowed to not buy more yarn until I use up some of my stash, and I thought something like this would be the perfect project. My inspiration was this: http://solgrim.blogspot.com/2009/06/sirkel-i-kvadrat.html

    Yours is gorgeous!!

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  2. it is gorgeous!!! love the color combos!

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  3. It's Adorable! I especially love the scallop edging you finished it with. Granny squares are on my new years resolution list of things to try this year, but you're right, all the work of hiding the tales and linking them together makes me keep putting it off. (Plus I should probably finish one of my 2 dozen half finished projects first! ;D)

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  4. Granny-esque or not... I love it!

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  5. Whip stitching is so much easier than actually crocheting the pieces together like my pattern made me do. And you'd get along with my husband - every time I complain about anything, he says "ohhh, whine, white people problems". Yes indeedy they are MY white girl problems (and I'm not white), speaking of which - my sewing machine is sputtering and probably dying. Can you tell me a bit about your Bernina? As in, will I have to have ramen for a month in order to afford it?

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  6. I love it! I want to make one similar for our room.

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  7. Wow that is gorgeous!! I have tried to get into crocheting but I have only made it as far as making a few washcloths, haha!

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  8. Gorgeous as usual! I started a typical granny square blanket a while back but have gotten side tracked this might be motivation to finish it after my 3 other projects are finished.

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  9. I have the same granny square blanket images in my head that you speak of-scratchy and ugly and stinking of oldness. Your blankie is nothing like that at all! It is so fresh and bright. I love it!

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  10. So pretty! and I love the scalloped border, really adds a lot to the blanket

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  11. You are rocking old lady-hood!

    This blanket is precious.

    Get yourself some Ben-Gay and keep whipping these babies up! ;)

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  12. Well welcome to the world of granny chic. You have to check out my fave granny chic blog dottie angel! This blanket is lovely and reminds me of one my granny made me when I was little. I bought a few of your headbands at the queen bee market and I love them.

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  13. I have had in my mind to make something like this forever!! Have I done it yet.. no :( I love yours, it turned out so gorgeous. Love the scalloped border, maybe you could do a little tute on how you did it?

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  14. It's so pretty!! I still haven't made one like this for myself yet, someday!

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  15. Ohh, It would be fun to do a granny square quilt with an ombre effect...I need to get a crocheting for dummies book.

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  16. Love it!!! SOOO pretty, absolutely beautiful :) Hope you have a lovely weekend! xo Holly

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  17. Oh my Rachel. This is beautiful! I'm really digging the colors you chose...they're so happy!

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  18. You make me giggle in almost every post! I love the blanket. Beautiful job.

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  19. i love this! its so pretty!! and i think im going granny as well and i just turned 25 yesterday! the sound of whip stitching the squares together makes me want to jump off a cliff! instead i slip stitch my squares together! (in the back loop only) gives a nice look - so maybe consider crocheting them together - you might enjoy it more!!

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  20. I'm pretty positive my grandma made me an afghan with those exact squares--different colors of course. But yep, same thing. Unfortunately, it's at home in Utah, otherwise I would take a picture to prove it. Happy granny-ing! :)

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  21. You're the hippest 20-something granny I know. This is a pretty cool geriatric blanket. I love the scalloped edges. Do you really want to sell it? I think you should keep it. It would look perfect in a little girls room. ;)

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  22. Ok ok. It 's cute, and I do like it. Well done. You're slowly scooting me closer to the idea of it all...but I still hold all those prejudices against granny squares...actually, horribly, ANY crochet blanket. I can't wrap my head around the use of a blanket with holes in it and it just doesn't work! (I probably haven't checked out all there is to offer in that area, though, sticking with hats for now) but this and your All Star blanket that your Forrest hates, are convincing partly because they're not very holey.

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  23. I love this blanket. It's so cute! Here's my next recommendation: http://pinterest.com/pin/58828338853002368/

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  24. I love this blanket. It's so cute! Here's my next recommendation: http://pinterest.com/pin/58828338853002368/

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  25. I love all the white. Granny squares are so pretty. And don't get me started on granny stripes. We both know I love those. ;)

    (yes. I'm just now catching up on 2 months of google reader.)

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  26. Wow hon, I just spotted your stunning blanket!! It's an absolute beauty - you must be thrilled to bits with it. I had to giggle reading about your original opinion of granny blankets! I had similar memories. Oh how far we have come. Have a fabulous week hon.
    Leah

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  27. Just saw this on pinterest and fell in love with it. You did a awesome job.

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