Huge granny square blanket – finished!

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Otherwise known as the Tilting Granny Squares blanket! Sounds ridiculous, I know, but I didn’t actually notice the tilty nature of the squares until I’d crocheted about six. This was probably due to the cider and chat as I crocheted lots of them in pubs with other crochet and knitty folk. I was momentarily tempted to undo, or worse – throw them away – but then decided just to go with it. The end result is strangely pleasing. We really like the tilting!

I Googled tilting granny squares and it seems it’s very common when you crochet many rounds, or make one of those blankets where they’re basically one huge granny square. Have a look online at granny square blanket pics and you’ll begin to notice it a lot. I did wonder about making a Pinterest ‘Tilting squares’ board as I went, but thought some people might not be very pleased to see their work! Now I wonder if you see a photo of a blanket heaped on a chair, never spread out, then it might be hiding it’s tilty nature! I’ve spotted tilting target square cushions too.

Tilting is thought to perhaps be down to tension. I reckon it’s more likely to just be the gentle drag of the hook as you repeatedly go in the same direction.  One way to avoid tilting is apparently to change direction on every round. I asked a crochet and knitting designer and she said hers tilt too and it’s ‘just one of those things.’ On a forum I read someone had suggested you embrace it and make a feature out of tilting squares, and that’s what I decided to do. At first I considered laying them out so they tilted in the same direction per row, order in disorder, but ignored the thought and concentrated on colour placement of the squares. I joined the squares listening to the final chapters of this bookaudio book cover. I was addicted to the story, completely engrossed.

I wanted to use up all my odd balls of Stylecraft Special DK and I really didn’t ever intend to keep the blanket. I ordered the multi-coloured SS DK packs when I was new to crochet, now I want to choose my own combinations. I’d planned to give this stash busting blanket away, or maybe try to sell it. But with the tilting factor it’s so quirky and fun that it’s here to stay. Last night I felt chilly curled up on the sofa, so it’s been christened already.

Details:

Blanket weighs: 1.362 kg

Measurements: 70″ long, 52″ wide (single bed size, or to wrap self in on the sofa!)

Yarn: Stylecraft Special DK

Hook size: 4mm

Granny square:

There are many similar patterns but here’s the version I like to use:

FR: Ch 5, join with a ss

R1: Ch 3 (= 1 tr) 2 tr, 3 ch, 3tr, 3 ch, 3 tr, 3 ch, 3 tr, 3 ch around, join with a ss into 3rd st of ch 3.

R2: Ch 4 (=1 tr, 1 ch) then in next chain space work  3 tr, 1 ch, work (3 tr, 3 ch, 3 tr) in corner, repeat around and then 3 tr, 3ch, 2 tr and join with a ss into 3rd st of initial ch 3.

R3: Ch 3 (=1 tr) then into same space work 2 tr, 1 ch, repeat along edge chain spaces, (3 tr, 3 ch, 3 tr) into corner spaces. Join with a ss into 3rd st of initial ch 3.

Repeat R3 until you have 20 rounds in total.

Make a dozen 20 round squares, then join as you go using one colour to frame the squares. I think it looks ‘bare’ without a border.

My border: 6 rows of cream trebles (3 tr, 1 ch around with 3 tr, 3 ch, 3 tr at the corners.)

R7: 1 row of DC in cream (3 dc into the corner chain spaces)

R8: 1 row of DC in pomegranate (3 dc into the corner chain spaces)

R9: Dinky pointy edge: * 1 ss into each of next 3 dc, then in next dc (1 dc, 2 ch, 1 dc) * Repeat from * to * around.

Snuggle.

Joining

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I’m on the last section of joining (as you go method) of my huge granny square blanket. It’s a good feeling to be near the end, especially after all the darning I saved till the end. Never again I say each time, but then get carried away enjoying the crochet.
I’m not sure what to do borderwise. I think it’s best to keep it simple, I’m not convinced a fancy edging goes with the straightforwardness of granny squares.

What do you reckon?

Grannying

Making room in the Little Room for my growing pile of sewing supplies I decided to make big granny squares to use up leftover yarn
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It’s been so nice to pick this easy crochet up and treble around without any thought or counting, apart from making sure I stop at twenty rounds…

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Inspired by this BeAUTiFuL blanket it’s such a cheery way to use up oddments. I had three bags of yarn ready – tiny little wound lengths, small and medium balls from last year’s blanket making. Perfect for granny squares.

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I’ve hurt my left hand so the Clover Amour hook is the best thing to use. I’d like to say it was while doing something glamourous – perhaps during a break in Brad’s filming of Fury around these parts – but actually it was last week trying to unscrew the liquidiser jug from the base after making spicy butternut soup. D’oh! I’ve stuck to sewing and knitting lately to give my fingers a rest, but I’m missing the gentle rhythm of grannying now.

Simply Crochet

For ages now I’ve wanted to learn the join-as-you-go technique to see how effective it is, and if it can decrease the potential number of ends which will no doubt end up poking out of the back of my blankets in the future.
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I used this tutorial. It surprised me that it took several tries to get it right. There are reasons for this:

1. Wine.

2. I had to reverse it in my mind as I’m a leftie so had to imagine everything the other way around. I’m used to this but reason #1 influenced the process I admit.

3. I finally realised that my joins were messy V shapes rather than neat single lines because I was going into the chain space (I did 3 tr, 2 ch, 3tr for corners and 1ch in between the tr clusters) from underneath rather down through the top. It’s a tad awkward to do but results in a neat join.

4. Also I was trying to watch a vintage episode of Open All Hours.

It’s a good thing this, I shall practice with all my brightly hued scraps of Stylecraft SDK.

On Saturday you remember, while I was writing the week’s CAL post, my new crochet magazine arrived? I’ve taken advantage of a subscriber offer and ordered the three copies for £5. I missed issue 1 so have issues 2-4 coming.

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As you see there’s a fair range of items to make, articles and general crafty crochet chit chat also oodles of inspiration. It’s great to have a purely crochet magazine from the publishers of Mollie Makes. I adore MM but don’t usually make anything, especially as crochet is thin on the ground. I love it for giving general inspiration and for the crafty events listings.

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I like the crochet items for the kitchen, particularly the candy colours. The patterns would be suitable for newbies who’ve mastered basic stitches and would be a good way to practice skills.
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The notebook pages are interesting. I’ve asked my sis in law to look out for the Ikea metalwork range, isn’t it pretty?

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I’ve included this page in case you fancy taking advantage of the subscriber offer too (especially US readers.)
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There’s a spread of instructions for beginners. I didn’t think the bamboo hook and white yarn showed up very clearly and the instructions maybe don’t read as plainly as I would have needed. But I need a beginner crocheter to respond and say how they actually found these instructions to be fair.
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Oh this is pretty and reminded me of a similar flower garland I made last Spring.
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Natasja just used this idea! It looks better on her top than in the magazine, but I’m biased as I really like her blog.
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When I said I might crochet these bobble slippers (bobbles!!!!) S’s eye-brows went up two inches. Ha! Definitely got to make them now the gauntlet has been thrown down.

I’d recommend this magazine, it kept me silent for over an hour on Saturday which as S said is total value for money when the rugby’s on. ;-)

Blogalicious!

I discovered this blog According to Matt and I LOVE it!

  •  the colours of the blog: the simple white background and the glorious photos
  • the straightforward writing style
  • also I admit it’s the fact that I’ve found male crocheters whose stuff I actually like (nice colours, designs, enthusiasm and inspiration plus plus plus, and aren’t they easy on the eye too? ;-p)

Have a look at this, this is the winner for me, a gorgeous blanket…though I also love this thick grey ripple blanket. There’s even a tutorial for learning how to crochet a jammy dodger! I grew up eating those yummy biscuits.

Do share some of the blogs you love with me below, I click on people’s side-bars but I think more current links are neglected to be added sometimes.

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This week I’ve had some tea breaks, using my pint mug which says ‘the bigger the better’ around it (!) and worked on:

PS: I cleaned the tannin stains off my mug yesterday, in case you keen eyed clean-freaks noticed them :-D

The latest mini project

Yesterday I thought I’d try making the little granny squares baby blanket from the new Let’s Get Crafting magazine which I got yesterday.

I get a bit bored with granny squares but the finished thing looks so nice.

The yarn kit has the nicest colours yet…

I crocheted the squares quickly and enjoyed using the yarn, as opposed to the cotton I’ve been using for the Hilton crochet. Yarn, even acrylic stuff, is so much softer and ‘moves’ nicely!

Lovely colours aren’t they?

I crocheted 3 more squares and that was it – the 9/9 complete.

Then I tried to crochet them together using slip stitches into the outer loops, rather than the matresses stitch recommended in the pattern.

And that is another story….