Monday, August 1, 2011

Blanket Mayhem!

My sister, man I love her...lucky for her! She has this friend, Heather, who is getting ready to have a baby (yay!). Kristy was planning on making her a blanket and bringing it to the hospital when the little princess was born.

The other week, my sister was offered and accepted a job in Iowa (yay again!). Since she is leaving, she wanted to get the blanket finished and give it to her at her shower... which was this past Saturday.

Kristy didn't get home from visiting Iowa until Saturday, which left her, er, us... SIX DAYS to completely start and finish a blanket. Not to mention a pattern that neither of us have ever made before.

We had made granny squares before, so that part wasn't hard. It was a little different from what we usually did, but pretty much the same. We set to work creating the cute little squares. When we were done, we decided that they all needed a color around the edge to tie them together. That way we didn't have random border colors bumping up next to each other. The problem? I could not find a bright green bulky yarn like she wanted. I visited Michaels, a local yarn store and finally Wal-Mart before we decided just to take regular yarn and double it to make it thick. So instead of pulling it from one end, we were using it from both of its starting points. Anyway, we finally finished step 1.





Aww! Aren't they cute?

Next we had to figure out just how on earth to attach the things. As it turns out, there are a million ways. Several YouTube videos later, I had chosen what I thought would be...quite honestly, the easiest way to attach them. The other ways were cute, but seemed like they would take longer or be a lot harder to figure out. Plus, this was cute and how would she know we took the easy route? Unless she reads this blog that is.

So we lined up the little squares and set to work. Since we were in a hurry we each sat on one side of the table and both worked on joining. I don't have a photo of that unfortunately.

This night was the most difficult. It was Friday. The shower was the next day and WE HAD TO FINISH! We crocheted and crocheted. We crocheted until our hands ached and then kept crocheting... You may think that I'm exaggerating, but I'm not. My hands don't usually ever hurt, but Friday I got off work at 3 p.m. and didn't stop working on the blanket until after 11. We may have taken 5 minutes to eat a sandwich that G was kind enough to make us...but not at the same time.

We had 6 rows. This is what a finished row looked like. If you unfold it there are two attached completely horizontally. We attached them vertically after the horizontal. This created little "windows" on the back, which I thought was cute.


Oh, and did I mention that I kept flipping squares? Ugh! Since they're all very different colors we were trying not to place too many of the same ones close to each other. Occasionally I would flip the squares and have to pull it out and start over! When you're joining they're all kind of sandwiched so its hard to see what you have going on until you finish the square.

Friday we got the entire blanket joined and added one row on the border. It could have been finished, but Kristy left it with me (she had to work in the morning until she would leave for the shower) in case I wanted to add a little more to the border to make it bigger...which I did.

I mean, I wanted it to be done and it was really cute, but if we were going to spend so much time on it, dangit, I wanted it to look awesome, and not just good.

Here it is Friday night. My sister and a cute baby modeled for me.

Saturday morning I got up and started adding to the border. I added yellow, pink, blue and purple. Then, I decided to throw it in the washer and dryer to make it smell nice and fresh.
While it was in the washer I showered and got cleaned up. It was getting close to shower time. I was just going to add one more green border and be finished.

I went to get the blanket out of the washer and... one of the squares had come undone! Apparently it didn't get tied and had fallen apart. I've never mended a blanket before and didn't feel good about it. It was 2 hours before the shower! I panicked. I'm not even going to lie. Then, I sat down and fixed it.

Then I added a ruffled green border, which was really cute. I did this while it was still wet (remember? It had just come out of the washer) because I didn't know how much time I would have to dry it. Working on it wet made it a lot harder because my needle didn't easily slide on the dry yarn. :s Plus I was getting wet as it sat on top of me.

The ruffles took a little longer to make, and I didn't finish until after 1. My sister got off work at 1 and was on her way to grab the blanket. I quickly threw it in the dryer and waited for her to get there. Lo and behold, when I got it from the dryer, another square had come apart. I could have cried. But I didn't. I sat down and fixed it. This time with a lot more ease.

I'm not happy that I had to keep fixing it, but its a blanket...not to mention a baby blanket. It's supposed to be machine washable! I'm glad that I washed and dried it and repaired before Heather did and it came apart on her. That would have been terrible!

Finally, just a few minutes before the shower, the blanket was done! I don't have a ton of pictures because Kristy was in a hurry. But it turned out really, really cute.




Here's the back. Note the distinctive squares. I like it.

The best news? She loved it. And I'm sure baby Scarlett Brianne will too!

Oh, and I enjoyed making it too! I was so happy to see the completed blanket and have finished something I'd never done before. Next time, I think I would make all the squares the same (for easier attaching) and of course, give myself more time. But I really had a fun time making it and spending time with my sister before she leaves us in a few weeks.

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