Directions for The Christmas Charity Blanket Project – Join in!

It appears that this fine project had gone global with pledges from a host of countries so thanks for spreading the word and don’t stop, the more squares, the more blankets.

Best of Crochet » Join us! The Christmas Charity Blanket Project – directions!

Please find below a snippet of the details for the Christmas Charity blanket Project. For even more details and ideas go to Best of Crochet where you will find more links and images to help create the perfect blanket.

On November 11, 2013 by bestofcrochet.com

1. What squares?

If you prefer to go with the basic granny square, that is great! You can find a nice

  • video tutorial on how to crochet a granny square here
  • here is a graph of granny square and instructions how to read it.

If you would like a challenge or some variety, I’ve found some beautiful granny square variations with great tutorials hereherehere and here.

If there are some knitters out there who are excited to join, please do! Knit squares go just as perfectly!

2. How big squares?

I propose to stick to squares around 13 cm x 13 cm (5,2 x 5,2 inches). This is around the size I get when I crochet 4 dc rows with size 7/4,55 mm hook.

Granny square sizeIf your square is slightly different in size, don’t worry, I will do my best to fit it in.

3. What type of yarn?

Granny squares are awesome because you get to use up your left over yarn and combine different yarns. We will have different granny squares from around the world, so I am sure we will also have different types of yarn in our blanket. I am not a yarn expert, but would recommend you stick to fingering (if not too thin) to worsted yarns as shown in the pic here. Feel free to mix!

If you would like to contribute to the cohesiveness of the blanket, and if you have the chance, you may add a row of white in your square so it would be a repeating color.

This is a wonderful way to give something in this season of goodwill so a huge thanks to Best of Crochet in sweden for inviting us to join in.

Please also spread the word so that we can reach more people and make an even greater blanket!

The Colours of Spring

I have been very busy behind the scenes these last couple of weeks but as promised here is my lovely stash of yarn.

Stylecraft DK YarnsAs you can see I have already been using some of it, I got busy with the blues first………………….

Stack of Squares………………and made this lovely stack of squares for the outer edge of a baby blanket in cool minty blues and greens.

Edge SquaresI wanted to mix things up a bit and as I love granny squares so much.

Baby Blanket Granny SquaresThen these little beauties for the centrepiece.

Baby Blanket Flower SquaresHere is how I joined them all together.

Baby Blanket 2Now to get on with a matching one in Pinks!

Update for Multi Flower Squares Crochet Blanket Number 4

I have been busy making a blanket for each of our 4 children and this is the 4th and final one which is for our eldest daughter, Missy L. I recently posted Multi Flower Squares Crochet Blanket Number 4 of 4 and thought I should give you an update on progress.

So here goes! I started making a few squares with no absolutely no idea about the final pattern design, here is my nicely growing stack of squares.

Stack of Crochet Squares

In addition to the squares in the last post I have done some more different patterns for the plain colours.

Crochet Self Coloured Patterned Squares

And another variety of Granny Squares, these will be in different colours too.

Crochet Granny Square

The brief for this blanket was “I love Granny Squares and would like the pattern to be a bit random, ‘hotchpotchy”, which was vague but fine, however I wanted it to have a floral influence and after all I am making it aren’t I?

So here are the flower patterns.

Flower Motif Blanket Squares 2and this one that I have made up myself, really pleased with this one! A tutorial will follow this post.

Flower Motif Blanket SquaresIt has been a real challenge to create a pattern that would fit the brief for a random look and include my flowers. I created these two rows first and was really happy with how they looked.

Crochet Blanket Squares 1

But after making some granny squares and adding them into the mix I started to have doubts.

laying Out 1

But I resolved to continue making squares and each time I set them out I came up with a different formation.

Blanket Pattern PlanningOh dear, I started to get really worried that this project was not going well. I was simply not feeling it, you know how it is when your developing a project, you just instinctively know that something is not right, the colour balance is out.

Then one evening I got out the squares again and set about laying them out and at last it started to fall into place. I realised that a totally random selection would be difficult to make work and that it needed some kind of sequence.

Blanket Squares in ProgressThere are 2 sequences at work in this pattern and both include order and a randomness.  Working diagonally from bottom left to top right are the plain colours, order comes from being the same colour, randomness from each square being a different pattern. Working from bottom right to top left are the flower and granny squares, here order is represented by the same pattern being repeated but the use of different colours provides the random feature. Now all the gaps are filled in it looks like this.

Blanket Squares Pinned on SheetYou can see the pattern sequence more easily now all the squares are there.

Blanket Squares Complete

Now I am really happy this is going to work into a real fine blanket. All I have to do now is crochet them all together and add the border then I can share the ta dah moment with you.

Multi Flower Squares Crochet Blanket Number 4 of 4

This is the last blanket, number 4 for my lovely Missy L and these are the colours from the Debbie Bliss Rialto DK range.

Debbie Bliss Rialto DK Colours

We have not discussed the pattern yet so I think I will be doing my usual and just starting with a few squares at random and seeing where it goes.

I found a pattern I really liked on Ravelry called Groovyghan although it gets its name in part from the bright colours used and my colours are more muted I wanted to use this particular flower pattern.

Large Flower Crochet Squares

My thoughts are to do a few different flower pattern squares, I have chosen this design too which is a bit of a hybrid made using different patterns and some of my own interpretation.

Small Flower Crochet Squares

I also want to incorporate a traditional granny square pattern.

Crochet Granny Square SelectionThese designs will be broken up with some self coloured squares. This is from the Jan Eaton 200 crochet blocks book that I have used before, pattern number 86 Sunray.

Crochet Sunray SquaresAnd pattern number 30 Shell Lace.

Crochet Square Shell Lace 30Now I am getting a nice collection of squares together I will have to start and work on the layout for this blanket soon. I think I am starting to have an idea about how it will work but I will share that with you soon.

 

How To Crochet A Granny Square Tutorial

I know this is a crochet basic and there are loads of tutorials out there already but I wanted to do this for 2 friends in particular, first is our friend Michaela who we met in Corfu. On our last holiday, I took a crochet project with me which I would work on while having our morning coffee, Michaela expressed an interest in taking up crochet so this is to help get her started. The second is a very creatively talented young lady who is a whiz with a pair of knitting needles and although she has crocheted some lovely things tells me she struggles to make a Granny Square actually square. So for these two lovely people and anyone else out there who needs a helping hand to get started, here goes…….

Make a slip knot to start and chain 6.

Granny Square Tutorial Starting ChainJoin with a slip stitch into the first chain to form a ring.

Granny Square Tutorial Join Starting Chain Ring

Chain 3, these will count as the first treble crochet for the first cluster.

Granny Square Tutorial Chain Start of First ClusterWork another 2 trebles into the centre of the ring to form the first cluster.

Granny Square Tutorial First ClusterChain 3 to make the first corner.

Granny Square Tutorial Second Corner ChainWork another 3 trebles into the centre of the ring to form the second cluster.

Granny Square Tutorial Second ClusterChain 3 to form the second corner followed by 3 more trebles to make the third cluster.

Granny Square Tutorial Third ClusterWork 3 chain to form the third corner and another 3 trebles to make the fourth cluster. To complete this first round chain 3 to form the fourth corner.

Granny Square Tutorial fourth Corner

Then slip stitch into the third chain of the first 3 chain worked.

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Slip stitch across the next 2 trebles.

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And again into the corner three chain space created on the previous round.

Granny Square Tutorial Slip Stitch Into Corner

Chain 3, these 3 chain count as the first treble.

Granny Square Tutorial Chain Start Second Round

Continue working into the same corner space, work another 2 trebles, chain 2, 3 trebles to form the first corner of the second round.

Granny Square Tutorial Second Round First Corner

Working into the next corner space, *3 trebles, 2 chain, 3 trebles* to form the second corner.

Granny Square Tutorial Second Corner

Repeat * to * into the next corner space to form the third corner.

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And into the last corner space to make the fourth corner.

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Slip stitch into the third chain of the first 3 chain worked at the beginning of the round.

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As with the previous round slip stitch across the first 2 trebles and into the first corner space of the previous round.

Granny Square Tutorial Second Round Slip StitchChain 3, these 3 chain count as the first treble, continue working into the same corner space, work another 2 trebles, chain 2.

Granny Square Tutorial Third Round First CornerWork a further 3 trebles to form the first corner of the third round.

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Chain 1, work 3 trebles into the next space, chain 1.

IMG_7640Working into the next corner space, *3 trebles, 2 chain, 3 trebles chain 1, work 3 trebles into the next space, chain 1*.

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Repeat * to * twice more, then to complete the round slip stitch into the third chain of the first 3 chain worked at the beginning of the round.

Granny Square Tutorial Third Round CompleteContinue adding rounds until your square is the desired size noting that each round will add another space on the straight edges.

Four rounds.

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Five Rounds.

Granny Square Tutorial 5 rounds

To complete my square I did six rounds ending with a slip stitch into the third chain of the first 3 chain worked at the beginning of the round.

Granny Square Tutorial Six RoundsYou can end your square here but I like to finish with a round of double crochet as this gives a nice firm finish and a neat joining edge if you are joining several squares together.  As we will be working into each treble and chain space of our last round there is no need slip stitch across to the corner space to start this edging round, you can continue from the slip stitch at the end of the final round.

Chain 1, this counts as the first double crochet.

IMG_7647Work first double crochet into the second treble of the previous round, second double crochet into the third treble. Work 3 double crochet into the corner space.

Continue to work 1 double crochet into each of the next 3 trebles of the corner.

Work 1 double crochet into the next chain space.

IMG_7651Continue all the way round working 1 double crochet into each treble and each chain space of the previous round and 3 double crochet into each corner space.

Granny Square Tutorial Double Crochet EdgingSlip stitch into the chain at the beginning of the round and snip your yarn leaving a 2-3 inch tail.

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To fasten off pull the tail through the loop on the hook.

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Pull firmly.

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Now all you have left to do is sew in the loose ends at the beginning and the end of your Granny Square.

Thread the tail into a wool needle and push through the chain next to your finishing knot to the back of your square. Then sew into the back of the double crochet round.

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Cut of any loose ends.

Thread the tail at the start of your work onto the wool needle and sew into the back of the trebles on the first round, this will also tighten the centre ring.

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Cut off any loose ends and there you have it, your first Granny Square complete.

IMG_7676I hope this tutorial is useful to my good friends and anyone else out there who wants to get started. If you have any questions or would like any further information please feel to ask away and I will do my best to help.

Crochet Granny Square Afghan – Update

Well I got a lovely surprise when I got onto work yesterday!

I had received a box full of lovely crochet squares and a letter from Mama H. I am so pleased with the colours we chose, when you see them altogether they look really vibrant and cheerful.

Box of Crochet Granny SquaresI cannot believe how quickly she has got this many done.

Box of Granny SquaresWhen I emptied the box I found a variety of patterns from Granny Twin Stripes No. 5.

MamaH Granny StripesCorner Granny No. 7

MamaH Granny CornersThen Mama H started to get more adventurous with these Alternate Bobbles N0. 17 in plain colours.

MamaH Crochet Bobble SquaresAnd the wonderfully colourful Arcadia N0. 9

MamaH Crochet Sunray SquaresAnd some more single colour blocks called Openwork Square N0. 10

MamaH Crochet Plain Squares

I have done a few more as well which I will show you later when we start to arrange our blanket into a pattern. Mama H wrote in her letter that we may need some more plain squares and I think she may well be right but I will let you know in our next update.

If you like Granny Squares I found some interesting links below that you might want to take a peek at too.

Crochet Granny Square Afghan – Keep it in the family!

Whilst my mother in law (from here on to be known as Mama H) was staying with us recently she decided to refresh her crochet skills. She told me she had only done a little years ago but to be honest I think she was having me on, once I refreshed her memory she has been away like a whippet, I can’t keep up with her!

Anyway this is how we began…..HandGBlanketYarnWe selected colours that we both liked and chose a few granny based patterns from this book by Jan Eaton I have used it so many times it really is a great tool for Afghans. Mama H completed a few practice squares during the visit just to get her hand in again.

MamaHPractice GrannySquares

We also ordered ourselves a fresh batch of our chosen colours and split the order so half were sent to Mama H at home and the balance to me. We decided to base the pattern for the final blanket on absolutely nothing which I find really exciting. We are each going to use the patterns and the coloured yarns we have selected and make a random selection of squares.

This is the growing batch from Wales………

HazelSquares2

And this is my meagre offering……

FirstGranny SquaresbyG

Mama H is way ahead of me at the moment at the last count she was up to 15 and I have only done 2, however my excuse is I had to get the children’s blankets finished first and I still have one more to do so I am splitting my time between the two projects which is actually quite good as I can just do whichever takes my fancy at the time.

I will share a bit more about blanket No. 4 of 4 for Miss L with you shortly but I think I should go and make a couple more granny squares if I am ever going to catch up.

It is going to be so much fun when we can all get together and have the joy of fashioning our random granny squares into a new blanket. I am going to entice my mum Mama E to join in too but shhhhhh as I have not asked her yet.

This is going to be a real family heirloom by the time it is finished.

Colourful Crochet Blanket – No 3 of 4

I have to confess that I haven’t got these posts in very good order as I made this blanket first, before doing the boy’s wave pattern blankets but this post is a bit more detailed so has taken a bit more time to put together. For the benefit of anyone who has not read the other posts on this subject we have 4 children who are now fully grown and independent and I wanted to make a blanket for each of them.

This one is for our youngest daughter Miss A.

First step was to confirm the colours, I had a head start with this blanket as the basis was to follow the colours used in the Blooming Flower cushion I had already made for her last year.

Rico Essentials Soft Merino AranNext was the planning stage. This was the first blanket I was to attempt using squares rather than one continuous pattern so there was going to be a learning curve here.

My Mum bought me Jan Eaton’s 200 Crochet Blocks for blankets, throws and afghans for my birthday. This is a wonderful book and flicking through all the gorgeous squares set my creative juices flowing. It is amazing how using different colours can change to look of a design completely.

Also on page 16 titled Mixing and Matching Blocks there was a fantastic tip to help with setting out your design, it suggests you make 1 of each of your selection of squares then photocopy several of each of them, then you can play with them to your heart’s content, laying them out this way and that until you are happy with how they look. If you do enough you can lay out your whole blanket.Crochet Blanket - Planning the design.However, be warned you can spend ages setting out your squares in a whole variety of patterns. I spent the whole of one Sunday afternoon crawling around the lounge floor trying combination after combination, all the family got involved and of course, everyone had an alternative view on the preferred pattern. Above is just one example but as you will see from the finished images it is not the one I went with in the end.

As I was too indecisive about the layout and began to question the viability of some of the samples I had done. After so much experimentation and deliberation I thought it better to move into action and just start making some squares. The first pattern I confirmed I wanted to include was Pattern 98 Old Vienna

Crochet Square - Old ViennaThe next square was a bit more tricky as I designed it myself, I wanted this blanket to compliment the Blooming Flower cushion so using the style of this pattern I made a small 3 layer version of the flower. Then I worked out a way of picking up behind the flower to form a square around it, all the squares need to be of the same proportion so there was a bit of trial and error to get it to the required size but I was happy with my final effort.Flower Square for BlanketThe third and final pattern was again based on a pattern from Jan Eaton’s book, pattern number 37 Pin Stripes. I used many more colours than the pattern suggests but I liked the broad and narrow stripes created by the use of single and double crochet.Crochet Square stripy designI settled on using just the 3 patterns with the placement of the squares in a diagonal fashion alternating thus: flower, old vienna, pin stripe, old vienna but each row in a different colour combination. This was a rather self-indulgent method as playing with colours is my favourite part of a project.

I was pleased with how the pattern and the colours worked with the Blooming Flower Cushion.

BloomingFlowerCushionandColourfulBlanket

I must admit that joining all the squares did take sone patience. Firstly I tried sewing them but was not very happy with the finish so I crocheted then together by placing right sides together and joining the back of each loop.

To frame the squares I wanted something that would maintain the colour element but nothing to frilly or lacy so after trying a few different looks I decided on a simple stripe in double crochet.

ColourfulBlanketSideEdge

This worked easily around the corners too.

ColourfulBlanketEdgingCorner

And finally it was finished and thrown onto the bed in the bedroom of the lovely Miss A.

ColourfulBlanket-BedspreadNext project is the final blanket for Miss L…………