Maybe Matilda: blanket
Showing posts with label blanket. Show all posts
Showing posts with label blanket. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

A Belated Granny Blanket

Props, props, and more props to those of you out there who can manage to plan out a DIY gift, start working on the gift, finish working on that gift, and actually give that gift right on time for the occasion for which the gift is being given. (<—that sentence there? Me and my keyboard don’t totally understand that concept of ‘succinct.’)

My sister Bekah got married at the start of June and since she weighs roughly 42 pounds and suffers from Perpetually Cold Skinny Person Syndrome (PCSPS, if you will), I thought maybe a cozy handmade blanket would make a nice wedding gift for her (it is the only known cure for PCSPS). She and her now-husband will be furnishing and decorating their first apartment together, so I figured I’d kill two birds with one stone and keep the poor skinny thing warm plus give her a throw blanket to decorate the new place with. And I even started nice and early, over a month in advance of the wedding. Then the big day came, the big day went, and almost exactly one month after the hubbub has died down, I finally finished their blanket. Better late than never or something like that.

Blue, pink, and green granny square blanket // www.maybematilda.com

You know what I think the problem is? It’s all those dang ends. I actually had the blanket itself finished almost in time for the wedding (almost is pretty okay, right? not awesome, but pretty okay), but dragged my feet when it came to sewing the ends in for weeks and weeks. I hate, despise, abhor, loathe weaving yarn ends in. The worst worst worst worst WORST part of any crochet project. I need to train Forrest to do it for me. I could pay him in Cheetos and Netflix. This could work. It’s high time he start earning his keep around here, and weaving in my yarn tails sounds like the ideal way to do it.

Blue, pink, and green granny square blanket // www.maybematilda.com

In a slight departure from the typical granny square afghan, I alternated colorful squares with plain white squares. I love that it adds a bit of a brighter, fresher feel to the blanket. And I really like how the thick granny stripe border turned out. I actually had planned on making that border about 3 times wider than it is, but I ran out of the green yarn and couldn’t get my hands on more at any of my local stores. So instead of continuing without it (or waiting for it to arrive by mail), I just finished it off. Maybe I’ll ask for the blanket back and tack on a few more rows of border in time for their 1st anniversary (that’s too optimistic, considering my sluggish turnaround time on this blanket . . . 4th anniversary it is!).

Blue, pink, and green granny square blanket // www.maybematilda.com

And I can already feel it coming . . . someone will ask for the pattern for these squares. And I am so, so sorry about this, but since it’s been so long since I started the blanket, I have no idea where I found the square pattern anymore. I’ve combed through my Pinterest boards and Ravelry favorites and can’t find it, and my googling has gotten me nowhere. I apologize. If anyone recognizes this particular square and knows where I can find the pattern, let me know and I’ll post it here! {Update: woohoo, a reader found it! This pattern appears to be identical to the one I used. Find it HERE. Thank you for the help, Megan!}

Blue, pink, and green granny square blanket // www.maybematilda.com

I used Vanna’s Choice for this blanket in White, Aqua, and Sapphire, and Vanna’s Choice Baby in Sweet Pea and Pink Poodle. Vanna’s Choice is consistently among my favorite yarns for just about every project. Wonderful color choices, affordable, soft (but not so overly soft/slippery that it won’t hold a shape), and it wears very nicely over time. (They are not paying me to say any of this, by the way. I just love my Vanna and would wholeheartedly recommend it.)

Feels good to finally get that blanket off my couch and into the newlyweds’ possession. And I’ve learned my lesson—next time I plan to start a project that produces zillions of dreaded ends to sew in, I’ll give myself a generous 4+ month window.

read more "A Belated Granny Blanket"

Monday, February 17, 2014

Granny Stripe Blanket Tutorial Part 3: Scalloped Border

Woohoo, we’re on the final installment of my pattern and photo step-by-step tutorial to make this sweet little granny stripe baby blanket! I’m glad we’ve made it this far. I’m not going to lie to you, friends, I’ve gotten tired of photographing and writing up steps for this blanket. But I will never get tired of this classic, simple style. So pretty.

Pattern and photo step-by-step tutorial to make this cute crochet granny stripe blanket!

If you’re just joining in, or need to jump back, feel free to revisit the first two parts of this series using the links below . . .

Part 1: Blanket Pattern
Part 2: Timesaving Tips and Tricks

Today we’ll finish it up with a nice wide border, ending with some sweet little scallops.

After working through parts 1 and 2, you should have a nice little blanket, completed and ready to add a border. I ended mine when it was something like 30-32 inches square.  My border adds another 4 or so inches. I think this is a nice size for a baby blanket—easy to carry around or play on or snuggle with.

To start the border, either chain 1 with the color you used last, or, if you want your border to be in the color you aren’t currently using, fasten off the last stripe color and join in the border color at the corner of your final row, and chain 1. Work 1 single crochet in each stitch, all the way across this top edge of the blanket. (I like to work the final single crochet of each cluster into the little opening between each cluster instead of just through the top two loops of the stitch. I think it looks neater this way. You can see where I work this stitch in the photo below.)

sc border

Work your single crochets all the way across the top edge of the blanket. When you get to the corner, work 3 single crochets all in the same corner space before continuing on. This will allow you to work evenly around the corner so your border stays nice and flat instead of curling up.

3sc in corner

Now we’re on the side of the blanket, and there aren’t obvious stitches to work our single crochets into like there were along the top edge. You’ll work 2 single crochets around each double crochet (or chain) that starts/ends each row.

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If your border looks a little wavy or uneven at this point, don’t worry. As you add more rows, it evens out beautifully.

Once again, work 3 single crochets into the corner of the blanket. Continue working single crochets across the bottom edge of the blanket (which is the starting chain—just place one single crochet in each chain across the bottom), work 3 single crochets into the corner, then continue up the remaining side with 2 single crochets around each dc/ch. Finish up with 3 single crochets in the final corner, and slip stitch to the starting chain 1 of the border to join.

Chain 1 and continue working around until you’ve reached the width you’d like for your border. (Remember to always work 3 single crochets into the point of each corner! Other than the corners, work 1 single crochet into each single crochet around.) When you’re happy with the width, slip stitch to your starting chain 1 to join.

finished sc border

On to the scalloped edge! Don’t chain again before beginning this final row. The last thing we’ve done is slip stitched to join the start and end of the final row of single crochets.

Without chaining, skip the first stitch of the row, and work 5 double crochets all into the next stitch.

first shell of scalloped border

Skip the next stitch, then slip stitch into the following stitch. This slip stitch will ‘anchor’ this first scallop down.

starting scalloped border

Skip the next stitch, and work 5 double crochets all into the next stitch; skip next stitch and slip stitch into the following stitch. Continue all the way around the blanket (you don’t have to change anything to work around the corners; just continue with the pattern of skipping a stitch, placing 5 dcs in the next, skipping a stitch, then slip stitching into the following stitch). So, to summarize, each scallop will have 5 double crochets all worked into the same space, with one skipped stitch on each side, and a slip stitch between each scallop.

scalloped border

As you work your way around and get closer to the start of your scalloped row, you may find that you’ll need to fudge it a little to get your final scallops to fit in nicely. Just do your best to fit them all in as evenly as you can. No one will ever notice if you skip more than one stitch between the final few scallops, or pack them in a little more tightly with fewer skipped stitches. For my last scallop, I had to put two scallops right next to each other without skipping the spaces between them. It’s okay.

When you reach your first scallop, slip stitch to join. Fasten off and weave in all ends. You’re done!

Tutorial and photo step-by-step to crochet this sweet granny stripe baby blanket!

I just love how these sweet granny stripe blankets look. They have such a timeless look, but depending on the colors you choose, you can really make them look so fresh and modern.

Pattern and photo tutorial to crochet a beautiful granny stripe baby blanket

I love how it looks in this crisp turquoise and silver. And it looks awfully nice in Darcy’s nursery! Although I hope it doesn’t stay there for long . . . I’ve put it for sale in my shop, if anyone is interested. You can find it here.

Well, I hope this tutorial is simple and clear enough to follow, even if you’re new to crochet! If you finish a blanket using it, I would love to see it. Tag me in a picture on instagram (I’m @maybematilda), or post your picture to my facebook page!

read more "Granny Stripe Blanket Tutorial Part 3: Scalloped Border"

Monday, February 10, 2014

Granny Stripe Blanket Tutorial Part 2: Timesaving Tips

Last Monday, I shared a photo step-by-step to get you started making a sweet little granny stripe baby blanket (you can find that post HERE). Today, I want to show you two neat little timesaving tips you can use while you’re working to speed things up and save yourself a lot of weaving in at the end. I HATE weaving yarn tails in at the end of a project—it is absolutely, positively, definitely my least favorite part of crocheting. So these two tricks will help cut down on the amount of tails you end up with at the end. Big win in my book.

Part 1: Blanket Pattern
Part 3: Border

Pattern and photo tutorial to make this granny stripe baby blanket!

Timesaving Tip #1: Crocheting tails in as you go

This is a nifty little method to incorporate the tail as you’re crocheting, so you won’t have to sew it in later. If you do this little trick, you can weave the tails in while you’re working, and it’s just as secure as it would be if you waited until the end of your blanket and sewed it in as you normally would. I love being able to cut out that step.

Okay, so here we are, ready to change colors for the next stripe of our blanket. We’ve joined in the silver yarn and chained 3 to begin our next row. To work that silver tail in as you go, pull the silver yarn tail to the front of your work and use your thumb to hold it down snug against the first 3 double crochet cluster of the previous row.

How to crochet yarn tails in as you work so you don't have to weave them in at the end

Begin your next double crochet as normal—you’ll be working right over the silver tail, trapping it under the stitch. But don’t finish the double crochet just yet—stop halfway through the stitch (you’ll still have 2 loops on your hook). See how the stitch is worked right over the silver tail?

How to crochet yarn tails in as you work so you don't have to weave them in at the end

Now bring the silver tail up and drape it over the silver working yarn, from front to back. I hope this is clear in the picture below . . . this process was a little difficult to photograph. (And I tried 3 times to shoot a video and they were all disastrous, so photos it is.) To summarize so far, the silver tail went underneath the double crochet, and now, halfway through the double crochet, it is coming up and over the working yarn. Hold the tail at the back of your work for now.

How to crochet yarn tails in as you work so you don't have to weave them in at the end

Finish your double crochet stitch as you normally would, by grabbing a loop of the working yarn and pulling it through the two remaining loops on your hook. The silver tail should now be coming out of the halfway point of that stitch—see how in the picture below, the tail is coming right out of the middle of the double crochet?

How to crochet yarn tails in as you work so you don't have to weave them in at the end

To continue from here, drape the silver tail over the working yarn again, this time bringing it from back to front over the working yarn (the opposite of what we did in the previous step when we draped it from front to back). So it’s now coming up and over the working yarn, and should be pulled forward to the front of the work again. By draping it over the working yarn as we work the stitch, we’re carrying it up along with the stitch as it’s made, essentially weaving it in, just like we would at the end if it were just a dangling yarn tail. Hold it down snug with your thumb against the next 3dc cluster of the previous row.

How to crochet yarn tails in as you work so you don't have to weave them in at the end

Now we’ll just repeat what we did already from the start—work the first 2 double crochets of this 3dc cluster right over the silver tail. Stop halfway through the third double crochet.

How to crochet yarn tails in as you work so you don't have to weave them in at the end

Repeat the front to back, then back to front draping process that we did before. Bring the tail from front to back over the working yarn, finish the stitch as normal, then bring the tail from back to front again over the working yarn. The yarn tail will always go underneath all three stitches of each cluster, then it will be draped and carried up with just the final stitch of each cluster.

Continue this process until you’ve run out of yarn tail. It’s best to stop when the yarn tail is underneath the stitches rather than mid-stitch. See the picture below—the little stubby end of the silver tail is coming out of the sixth dc cluster of the row, and instead of trying to carry it up into the final double crochet of the cluster, I just left it there. And since it’s been carried under and up and through all those clusters, it’s just as secure as it would have been if I’d waited until I was finished with the blanket and sewn it in. Neat, huh? Having fewer tails to sew in really makes me happy.

How to crochet yarn tails in as you work so you don't have to weave them in at the end

 

Timesaving Tip #2: Carrying colors

Another super easy trick is to eliminate many of the yarn tails altogether by carrying the colors up the side of the work instead of cutting them at the end of each row. This really only works if you’re planning to do a border around your blanket, which will hide your ‘carried’ yarn. If you’re not going to add a border, I wouldn’t recommend this. And this works best if you’re doing short stripes (like my blanket with two rows in each color), and only switching back and forth between two colors.

So here we are at the end of our silver stripe, ready to switch back to blue for the next stripe. But wouldn’t it be nice if we didn’t have to cut the blue to rejoin it, and cut the silver to join it in again for its next stripe? So many tails to weave in. I hate tails so stinking much.

How to carry yarn up the side of your work instead of cutting it

So let’s not cut anything. Instead, we’ll just bring our blue working yarn up and pull it through the silver loop already on our hook.

How to carry yarn up the side of your work instead of cutting it

You have to be quite careful with your tension here. Pull the silver yarn snug, and play around a bit with the blue yarn to see how it looks if you leave that yarn you carried too loose (it’ll gap open against the side of your work, and be harder to hide effectively with a border later), and how it looks if you pull it too tight (it’ll make your blanket pucker and scrunch up if it’s pulled too tightly). You want it to be just snug enough that the edge of your blanket lies flat without the carried yarn looking too loose.

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Now you’ll make your chains and just continue crocheting normally. See how the blue yarn that we carried up is lying nicely against the edge of the work?

How to carry yarn up the side of your work instead of cutting it

Let’s fast forward two rows . . . here we are, ready to switch back to silver. We’ll do exactly the same thing we did before. Bring up that silver yarn that’s dangling two rows down, and pull it through the blue loop already on your hook, and continue working normally.

How to carry yarn up the side of your work instead of cutting it

So at the end of each color stripe, just bring up the other color yarn and begin working with it again without cutting anything. One side of your blanket will have all the carried yarn along the edge—see how at the end of each color, you can see the other color being carried along?

How to carry yarn up the side of your work instead of cutting it

That’s why I wouldn’t recommend using this little trick unless you’re adding a border to your blanket. When we add our border, we’ll crochet right over those carried yarns, and you won’t even be able to see them anymore—perfect!

Next week, we’ll finish it up when I share the tutorial for the cute scalloped border!

read more "Granny Stripe Blanket Tutorial Part 2: Timesaving Tips"

Monday, January 20, 2014

Granny Obsession

Who doesn’t love a nice granny, really? So classic and timeless and snuggly.

We’re all on the same page, right? We’re talking granny stripes. Everyone loves a human granny, too, I’m sure, but the granny variety I’m currently obsessing over is the crocheted version.

It started with Darcy’s baby blanket. I wanted to make her something very simple and sweet, so I went with a traditional granny square blanket in a pretty sage green (a lovely color that is, sadly, completely butchered by this crappy cell phone picture) and tossed a few cream stripes in to keep it interesting.

Green and cream granny square blanket

I worried that maybe I’d get bored with this blanket over time—it is a very clean, simple look—but in the months since I made it, I’ve really come to love it more and more. And I needed more granny goodness in my life.

So I started on this little brown and cream number, and it was such a delight to make.

Brown and cream crochet granny stripe baby blanket

There’s just so much to love about granny stripes and squares. They’ve got that simple, classic look. They have endless variation possibilities. Depending on the colors you choose, they can be bold and dramatic, or soft and sweet, or modern and edgy. They’re quick to work up, and don’t require a vast amount of knowledge or experience. What’s not to like?

A simple and sweet brown + cream granny stripe blanket.

I love how the brown and cream blanket turned out  . . . the colors are understated and simple, but it has such a great classic look. I added a scalloped edging, and I love what it adds to the blanket. I’m really happy with how it turned out. (If you’re interested, it’s in my etsy shop now!)

I also loved the idea of a simple granny square blanket in a neutral color, with a bold punch via a cool and unexpected border. So I played around and came up with another baby blanket.

A simple granny square blanket with a bold mixed stitch border

I love this finished look. Starts out as a simple, standard granny square blanket, but BAM. That’s an exciting border if ever I’ve seen one.

Fun mixed stitch border for a crochet baby blanket

It was surprisingly liberating to just start out a mixed stitch border without a plan in place—I just picked whatever color and stitch felt right at the time. I normally really plan things out before I begin, so it was very different for me to just wing it here. And very gratifying to have it turn out nicely, too! I can’t wait to make another with a set of brighter colors for the border—I’m picturing springy pinks and greens.

And a work in progress—after the chocolate and cream granny stripe blanket, I thought it might be fun to do one in a single color scheme. I dug all these purples out of my stash and am making a conscious effort to be a little more random than usual and not plan out the stripe sequence.

Purple granny stripes!

It’s shockingly difficult to not stress about how the overall stripe pattern will look and just choose a shade of purple for each row without worrying if it’s too soon to repeat that shade, or if another shade might look better there . . . but the effect has been fun so far. I clearly need to loosen up, if total control over something as ridiculous as stripe sequence is this difficult for me to give up.

I’m thinking of writing up patterns for the mixed stitch border blanket and the granny stripe with the scalloped border, so you may be seeing more of them in the future. If you love grannies as much as I do, hopefully you won’t mind.

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Thursday, September 26, 2013

Grandma’s Lacy Ripple Crochet Pattern

I recently shared my finished sofa blanket made using a pattern called Grandma’s Lacy Ripple. The pattern is published in an older book called Rippling Effects. But a quick Google search revealed a PDF copy of Grandma’s Lacy Ripple, all for freesies! I shared a link to that PDF in my post about my blanket, but I think all the visitors coming from my post (as well as a feature/link to my post on Lion Brand Yarn’s facebook page, which made me feel all sorts of awesome!) broke the internet, which I had previously believed to be unbreakable. The PDF stopped loading for people, and everyone who visited it from my link only saw an error page instead of the pattern. Sad!

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I would guess that I’ve received something like, oh, I’m gonna guess between 10 and 5,000 inquiries about the pattern—where can I find it? Why isn’t the link working? Where did the PDF go? etc. And I felt bad, taunting you with a pattern that up and disappeared from the fickle interwebs.

Crochet Bedspread

(my other version of this blanket pattern, queen-sized to fit my bed, posted about HERE.)

Luckily, I printed myself a copy before the web page went into cardiac arrest (that’s why you ALWAYS print your patterns! aaalwaaaaaays) and was also emailed a PDF copy by a smart reader who made sure to download and save herself a copy, and I even figured out how to work my scanner and scan my copy. It was hard. I got frustrated. I tried to keep the swearing to a minimum. And I think—hopefully?—that I figured out how to share it. I hope that this is okay to do. I guess I’ll just put this up and if someone has a problem with it being available online, I’m sure they’ll let me know. I mean, I got it off the internet in the first place, and I’m just putting it back where I found it, restoring the world/internet to its proper state.

I’m not 100% sure what I’m doing, but I’m going to try and embed the PDF below. If it doesn’t work and you’re not seeing a PDF below this paragraph,  HERE is a link to where the pattern should hopefully be online. If neither of these are working, please let me know in the comments and I’ll try to figure it out. I’m not terribly internet savvy (gasps of surprise heard ‘round the world!), but I’ll do my best! I know how frustrating it is to have a pattern you desperately want to make but can’t get your hands on.

Grandma's Lacy Ripple

Hopefully this works out, and happy crocheting!

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Finished Sofa Blanket (Grandma’s Lacy Ripple Pattern)

This post has been a long, long, long time coming. You will almost definitely not remember a post I wrote back in February in which I pondered various patterns that might be a good fit to crochet for my living room. I wanted a throw blanket to toss on my sofa for a few reasons: 1) a black leather couch in a room I have tried to make very light and airy could use a little lightening/cozyifying [totally real words] in the form of a snuggly blanket, 2) I spend a LOT of time on that couch crocheting, reading, pondering life’s great mysteries [I kid, of course; I mostly ponder things like how handsome my current celebrity crush Mr. Ackles looks in a 1940s suit], and a blanket would make these enjoyable tasks even enjoyabler, and 3) well, I sure love crocheting blankets, so why not?

And now, 7 months (!!!!) after settling on a pattern, selecting yarn, and eagerly starting my blanket, I’ve finally finished it.

7 months. SEVEN! That’s a bit outrageous, especially considering that I loved everything about this project—the yarn was perfect, the pattern was lovely, I felt confident about my choices and ability to tackle it . . . I guess my excuse is pregnancy brain. I’ve been pregnant for all 7 of those months, and while I picked up this project every now and then to add a few rows, it spent a lot of time being set aside while I worked on baby projects instead. But I’m so glad it’s finished, and I absolutely love my finished blanket. Behold!

Crochet Throw Blanket (Pattern: Grandma's Lacy Ripple)

Isn’t it nice? I ended up using the same pattern I used for the queen-sized blanket in my bedroom—it is called Grandma’s Lacy Ripple. Never have I heard a less appealing, more granny-sounding title for a crochet pattern, but boy, it does make a nice finished piece! The pattern works up quickly and simply (well, it’s quick if you spend more than 15 minutes per month on it, that is), and I love the detail in it. It’s simple and pretty and has a bit of an old-fashioned feel, but still looks fresh and cozy.

Grandma's Lacy Ripple blanket

And though the pattern is part of an older book, I got lucky and found a PDF copy of it online HERE. Win! UPDATE: Bad news folks—we broke the internet! That link, which has faithfully worked for oh-so-long, is dead, deceased, and gone. I don’t know what happened. But I uploaded my copy of the pattern—visit THIS POST to find it. Thank you!

I used one of my absolute favorite yarns for this project—Vanna’s Choice by Lion Brand Yarn. I love experimenting with different brands of yarn, but this is consistently one of my favorites. It’s the perfect mix of soft + structure (it’s cozy and soft and comfortable, but holds its shape beautifully so intricacies of the pattern really stand out).

Vanna's Choice yarn in Silver Blue

I chose Silver Blue and hoped it would be a good fit for my green and blue living room, and I think it fits in beautifully. I struggled to decide between using a blue or a gray yarn for this blanket, and this color was the perfect in-between . . . a cool, icy blue that doesn’t come across too strong. I ended up using 11 skeins for my throw blanket (I made it very generously-sized . . . definitely big enough for two to cuddle up under), and I can’t wait for cooler weather so I can snuggle up with it while reading or working on new projects.

Grandma's Lacy Ripple Crochet Throw Blanket by Maybe Matilda

Hopefully my next project won’t take anywhere close to 7 months to complete. What’s your longest project to date?

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Monday, June 3, 2013

A Crochet Dress, Sweater, and Blanket

Thank you so much for all your kind comments on Saturday’s post! I so appreciate your sweet well-wishes. I don’t know what it is about having ONE boy that makes me think I am only capable of producing boys, but it was quite a surprise to hear the doctor say there was a little girl brewing in there. And of course, a girl must mean girly projects!

I’ve worked on 2.5 projects for the little Miss so far, and they have been so fun to put together. First up, a little dress I crocheted . . . before we knew she was a girl. It was a bit of a gamble, but I couldn’t resist. (Pardon the cell phone pictures—these are all from my Instagram, and I’m too lazy to retake ‘real’ photos.)

Angel Wings Pinafore by Maybe Matilda

I’ve had my eye on this pattern for a while—it’s called the Angel Wings Pinafore, and you can find it free HERE. I used worsted weight yarn, which really is too heavy for this dress, but it was a last-minute naptime project so I had to just work with what I had on hand. It came out very cute anyway.

I also worked up this little sweater recently:

Picot and Lace Sweater by Maybe Matilda

And I love how it came out. The pattern is called Picot and Lace Sweater Set, and you can find it HERE.  I struggled a bit with this pattern—it’s definitely not the most crystal-clear, well-written pattern I’ve ever encountered, but if you’re fairly confident that you can piece together the things it leaves out or doesn’t spell out very clearly, it does make a cute little sweater with only a few swear words uttered in the process. I used Caron Simply Soft yarn in Pistachio for this one—overall, Simply Soft is far from being my favorite yarn, but the weight and feel of it are perfect for a baby item. It came out so sweet, and since it was another naptime project and I have NO patience for leaving a project unfinished when it’s thiiiis close to being done, I used a ribbon woven through the stitches to tie it shut instead of waiting to buy buttons for it. I think it’s kind of a cute touch.

My final project only counts halfway as being made for the girly-poo, because I didn’t start it with the intention of keeping it, and I’m still not 100% sure whether I’ll keep it for her or sell it.

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I used the Bold Stripe Blanket pattern (another free one!) from Baby Love Brand to make this, and I love the gradient purples mixed with that silvery gray. The colors are a bit distorted in these pictures, but I used a very light lavender, a pinky-‘orchid’ purple, and a deep jewel-tone purple along with the gray. It was a fairly quick blanket to make, and works up so fast thanks to using two strands of yarn at a time, making for a super-thick, super-chunky, super-warm finished blanket with a lot of great texture in the stitches.

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I made it more of a throw size than a typical baby blanket, inspired by my buddy Kim of Newly Woodwards’ baby blanket . . . when I worked on her little Henry’s blanket (which you can see in this post), she requested it be big enough for mom and baby to cuddle in at the same time, and I don’t know why I’ve never thought before that it would sure be nice to BOTH be warm while cuddling under a baby blankie, not to mention that it can eventually be upgraded to a toddler blanket or a throw blanket when baby outgrows it. So a big’un it is. 

Make sure to stop by again on Wednesday—I’ve got a great giveaway that you’re going to love!

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Monday, April 29, 2013

Rip Slip (or, some Ripply Crochet Goodness)

SEO be damned, I’LL NEVER STOP GIVING MY BLOG POSTS STUPID TITLES!!!

If you’re a crocheter/crochet appreciator on Instagram, I’d highly recommend you follow OneCraftyLady. She crochets the loveliest things, and I’m always inspired by her creative color choices and gorgeous photography. Anywho, before I creep her out (is she reading?! I would die), I’ll get to the point: she’s been working on a ripple blanket recently, and it is just so pretty and perfect that I had to try it out myself.

I pulled a few colors from my stash and liked the way this dusty purple, cream, and greige looked together:

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No big surprise there, but I’m not terribly adventurous when it comes to my color combos. Nice and safe makes me happy. The ripples are quick and satisfying to crochet—kind of monotonous and repetitive, which makes it sound boring, which I guess it kind of is . . . but sometimes I like boring. It’s nice to be able to crochet without hardly thinking about it.

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I used this ripple tutorial from Attic 24 to model my blanket after. I’m doing 3 rows of each color to end up with thick, solid stripes, and her instructions are very clear and simple, so if you’re newer to crochet or have never tried a ripple before, I think you’ll be well-equipped if using her instructions.

And shortly after posting the above pictures, a pregnant friend emailed me a color list to use so I could make one for her soon-to-debut little boy, and it’s coming along swimmingly as well:

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(In case my cell phone pictures have distorted the colors, the stripes are light gray, mint, charcoal gray, white, and blue.)

Since there are so many more colors involved in this one, I’m only doing two rows of each color, so each one gets plenty of showtime in the blanket. These are super fun to make, and hopefully I’ll have the little guy’s blanket done in just a few days.

(The pictures are from my Instagram—you can find me at maybematilda if you want more.)

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Friday, February 15, 2013

5 Crochet Blanket Patterns I Love

I have a problem, and since it’s common knowledge that the first step to recovery is admitting the problem, here we go: *deep breath* I’m addicted to crocheting blankets.

This is probably not big news for you since I thrust them in your face every time I finish one and try to talk you into buying them. And frankly, it’s not an addiction I feel particularly compelled to fix, so there. I’ll just carry on. (Is denial a step in the recovery process?)

I’ve been wanting to make a throw blanket to toss on my living room couch (you can see this room HERE). This probably shouldn’t be all that big of a decision, but since I know it’ll take weeks or months to finish, I’d hate to put all that work into something and end up feeling anything less than wild passionate love toward it.

blue + green living room

While I figure out what exactly I want to make, I’ve had my gray + white zig zag blanket on the couch. I love that blanket, and I do think it fits in pretty nicely, but it isn’t really big enough for the sofa (although I think it would be a great size for a chair), and I’m thinking zig zag blanket next to zig zag pillows might be a little much. So I thought I’d share some crochet blanket patterns I’ve been eyeing. I’m leaning towards a pattern that I can make in a solid color, but that has lots of great texture.

1. Summer Lace Afghan

Summer Lace Afghan free crochet pattern

This is currently the leader of the pack in my search for the perfect throw blanket. I love all the texture, I love that it looks comfy and cozy for winter but airy enough for spring and summer use, and I think it would fit in nicely in my living room. I love browsing the crochet tags on Instagram for inspiration, and I wish I could remember whose version of this blanket I saw there. It was amazing, and I’m glad it pushed me to look up the pattern (which is free, by the way—bonus!).

2. Chunky Cables Throw

I don’t think I’ve ever seen a blanket before that made me more excited than this one at the thought of snuggling up with a good book and a mug of hot chocolate. (On second thought: keep your hot chocolate as far as possible from this gorgeous thing. I can only imagine the conniption I would have if someone spilled their hot cocoa all over it.) I think it’s bulkier than what I’m going for (I’d like a year-round, lighter-weight afghan), but would be so perfect and so homey and cozy during the fall and winter.

3. Zig Zag Afghan

Lion Brand Zig Zag Afghan

This one is definitely not right for my room, but isn’t it cool? I love the sort of tribal look, and the colors they used are perfect. I’m not sure where it could fit in in my house . . . but I keep coming back to it anyway. Such a neat look.

4. One Skein Throw

I love the lightweight look of this one, and I bet it would be a breeze to work on and come together quickly.  Although I’m having a bit of trouble believing you could really get a decent-sized throw out of just one skein . . . maybe a baby blanket, but a throw? I don’t know. Somebody try it out and change my doubting ways.

5. Spider and Cobwebs Throw

Spiders and Cobwebs crochet blanket

Although I’m having trouble getting over the horrific name of this blanket—not to mention the cheeseballs with a side of extra cheese photo—I have to admit that I actually do like this pattern. Breezy and airy with lots of great texture. I think it would be lovely in just about any color.

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