Monday, 24 March 2014

Birthday Blankets

First up today was a birthday gift I knitted for my daughter almost exactly a year ago now.
She was getting a doll's bed for her birthday that came with a little mattress, pillow and sheet and I felt that it needed a snug blanket to finish it off properly and keep her doll cosy.

I used New Lanark Aran in a lovely pale teal colour that they call Lovage Blue and improvised a cable design on 5.5mm needles with a seed-stitch border.
I really like the effect of the off-set adjacent cables and wouldn't mind revisiting this on a larger scale in the future!

Next is the blanket that I knitted for the birth of my son (also about a year ago now). I used the Chasing Rainbows pattern by Trisha Mitberg, but improvised a bit with cream garter ridges between each colour and a cream border.

The yarn is Pisgah Peaches and Creme worsted weight cotton, knitted on 4.5mm needles. I like cotton blankets for babies as it makes for easy laundry and is not too hot.

I designed the colour selection in this blanket to use up left-overs and spare balls of yarn that I already had available. This let to a couple of sticky moments as the Pisgah Yarn and Dyeing company is no more and Peaches and Creme has been discontinued (and it was never easy to get in the UK in the first place). Both of  these problems were solved by the generosity of others:

While I was knitting the green band of the blanket, I ran out of yarn about a round and a half before the end. I'd used this yarn previously for a wash-flannel for my daughter and she very graciously allowed me to rip out her wash cloth and use it to finish off the green band. After this, when I was working on the outer colours, she would come over and look hard to see where 'her yarn' was. I did knit her a new flannel as compensation.

Later, when I was knitting the garter ridge before the final red band, I ran out of cream yarn. This was more of a problem as I had nothing else that would substitute, and cream aran-weight cotton isn't really that easy to come by in winter / early spring. I put an appeal out on Ravelry and a lovely lady in the states offered to wind 100g off a cone that she had stashed. She sent it to my FIL in boston and he brought it back to the UK for me, allowing me to finish the blanket. 

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