Some projects are long in the making. I started this blanket back in February but I got distracted by other projects. I rarely crochet but I go through weeks of intense to obsessive crocheting occasionally. It is quite gratifying, progress is quick with the hook.
This particular blanket speaks to my soul. It contains elements I cherish: bright but not garish colours, a bit of randomness and lots of soft yarn. It can't really get any better. It is quite small but big enough to cover my body and legs if I am sitting in my favourite armchair.
The pattern is the Happy Scrappy Blanket. You can find it on Annette's blog My Rose Valley. It is a lovely blog, you must go and visit, if you have a spare moment. The pattern is very well written and has an entire page of stitch illustrated stitch explanations, should you need those. I like the combination of colourful V-stitch section and the two-coloured woven blocks on the narrow sides. The blanket is subtly framed by a minimal border. I didn't plan to make a blanket quite so similar to the one in the pattern but my leftover bag of yarn did contain all the colours of Annette's blanket. I do love the colours very much. I knew what colour to use for the border on the long sides before I even started the blanket. I don't know why I felt so strongly about this and I tried a couple of other colours but none would do.
This was the first time I used V-stitch. It is far less tedious than ripples I think and no counting necessary. There are lots of ends to sew in though as the colour changes with every row. The woven blocks look sophisticated but are nothing more than rows of single crochet (US terms) and chain stitches. Ingenious!
I started this blanket thinking I might be able to use up yarn remnants from previous projects. Alas, it didn't quite work out like that. I don't have a huge yarn stash and crochet eats up yarn very quickly, far quicker than knitting in fact. I very quickly ran out of some of my favourite colours. I honestly tried to use all the yarns, even those that I am not so much in love with but I did of course buy more yarn. With the blanket finished, I have more or less the same amount of yarn as before I started. I think I am going to donate the yarn. I don't want to start another blanket and fall into the 'need more yarn trap' again. Maybe I make a cushion cover or something small but probably not.
The yarn is largely Drops Karisma. This is a super wash wool, which keeps very well. It is also good value despite being 100% sheep wool. The price is around £2 per ball, which is pretty good for super wash wool. It is more expensive than everybody's all time favourite yarn for crochet blankets, Stylecraft Special DK, but f you have been visiting here for a while you'll know that I don't like to use acrylic yarn, which I find unpleasant to touch, particularly after it has been washed a few times. I used to think that working with wool and not acrylic yarn is better for the environment, which is true for untreated wool. Super wash wool however has been treated to remove the teeny tiny scales of the wool fibre so it is washable without felting and is not without its own environmental issues. This knowledge has not only caused me to tumble from the moral high ground but has also wasted a good amount of my life because I was reading about the process in the peer reviewed scientific literature. It is rather interesting but I won't bore you to sleep with the information. Anyway, I also used a couple of balls of Sandness Smart, which is another Scandinavian yarn brand. It is exactly the same weight and length per weight as the Drops Karisma. The two yarns have slightly different colour ranges, which makes it interesting for me.
What have you been working on lately? Whatever it is, you could share it on Jennifer's winter project link party. Jennifer is working on a stash buster crochet blanket and is far more successful than I with using stash up :-) Love the simple granny square she is working on.
Have a good weekend. xx