by Meredith Gudger-Raines
(Morgantown, WV, USA)
Anna and blanket, 2 months
Please describe and tell us about your baby blanket.
This is a crocheted blanket using a hexagon motif. It measures 43" x 32" and has 115 motifs. The last round in the hexagon is white to make it appear like colorful dots on a white background. The circle motifs are made in dc and the white hexagon border is in sc. The blanket is bordered with a row of dc in turquoise and a row of sc in purple.
What yarn and needles did you use and where did you get them? Why did you pick this yarn?
I used Knitpicks Cotlin yarn for a couple reasons. First, I wanted to use natural fibers that would feel good on my baby's skin. It also had to be easy to care for. I wanted to use the blanket year round, so I thought cotton would be more versatile than wool. And I loved the color range of the Cotlin--bright, but not overwhelming. Knitpicks' yarn is so reasonably priced that I could afford to make a blanket with natural fibers. I purchased the yarn on line.
I used a Boye aluminum crochet hook in size G. I think I purchased it in a set at Michael's.
Tell us more about your design. Was it inspired by another pattern? Why did you pick those colors?
I used the "Hexagon How-to" tutorial and pattern from Attic24 (http://attic24.typepad.com/weblog/). For the first three rounds of the motif, I used random colors. I tried not to repeat combinations, but a few snuck in there. For the last round of the motif, I used single crochet instead of double, and did it all in white. This made for a white background that set off the colors. If I'd used dc, there would have been too much white and it would have looked washed out.
It looks like a blanket of playful, colorful dots instead of hexagons.
Did you run into any problems when knitting your baby blanket? How long did it take you to knit?
I started making the three-round circles in January. I joined them together as I made them into hexagons. I
began that process in March, and my baby girl was born in April! I finished the blanket in June, so it took me six months.
When I joined the motifs together, I tried not to place two with the same third-round color together. I placed them randomly, but also paid attention to how they looked next to each other. As a result, I ended up with a bunch of circles with dark blue or dark purple on the outer round. I could have used more with turquoise, yellow, pink or green as the outer color.
The blanket is not quite symmetrical. I needed one shorter row on the side to make it symmetrical, but then it would have been a little more square, which meant I would have had to add another row to the end, and I was (1) running out of circles and (2) ready to be done. So it?s not symmetrical, and I decided I like it that way.
Anything else you'd like to share about your baby blanket or knitting in general?
I love using bright colors for babies. I know pastels are traditional, but newborns can't see very well yet. The first thing they can see are vivid contrasts, so bold colors are a perfect choice. Using lots of color is a great way to teach babies the names of colors. I love reciting the names of the colors as my little girl pokes the circles with her finger.
The blanket lives on the back of the arm chair in Anna's room. After nursing Anna, I'd put her against my shoulder to burp. When she was six weeks old or so, I could tell she was looking at the colors. After a few more weeks, she was reaching her arm out to touch them. A month later, she was pulling at the blanket. Now Anna is 9 months old, and I'll pull the blanket over us while we're reading. She loves to put her finger through the tiny hole in the middle of each circle. I love that I've made something special for her, something bright and cheerful and beautiful, just like her.