Posted in This and That

My Favorite Recipe . . .

. . . for a knitted blanket. This blanket is heftier than most knitted projects, since it’s a doubled thickness; and the main enjoyment comes from simply knitting and knitting and knitting. No special requirements to pay attention with this pattern, you merrily knit away while you watch a movie, visit with a friend, listen to an Audible book or your own thoughts. 

I’ve made ten of these so far, and I find people absolutely adore them; it’s a great way to use up leftover balls of yarn, so you always have a unique color combination in each blanket. Just grab a ball of yarn, tie it onto the tail of the last one, and keep going! They make great gifts.

On a 36” or longer circular knitting needle (I use a size 8 but you can use whatever you have) cast on 252 stitches. Join and knit 125 stitches. Place a marker. Slip one stitch, (this will make a nice fold line for when the blanket is finished) and knit another 125 stitches where you will place a second marker. Now, off you go! Always slip the stitch after the marker so you have that line for folding the blanket. When you are finished, fold it carefully then crochet around all the edges, closing the open ends together and using the slipped stitches as a place to put your crochet hook. You can crochet something fancy around the edge if you wish, after you’ve sealed the blanket’s edges.

Posted in This and That

For the Love of Yarn . . . (or, what I do when I’m not writing)

I’ve always loved yarn. This smitten-ness came upon me when I was quite young. A favorite aunt of mine showed me what to do with a crochet hook, and for years afterward I crocheted everything I could; it became my favorite hobby. I’ve made over thirty afghans, dozens of rugs, a plethora of toys, lots of silly potholders, a few truly ugly jackets and some beautiful Christmas ornaments.

Knitted hats for Christmas elves
Crocheted blanket
Crocheted blanket

Knitting, however (the other thing you do with yarn) was different. It took me several years to learn how to knit. I’m admitting this because I think I’m not alone here. Some of us just have a hard time figuring it out. I don’t know if it was because I learned how to crochet first, or what.

Crocheted blanket

My mother was an excellent knitter, and so was my great grandmother. She knit socks for her eighteen children in Denmark. So impressive. Once I got the hang of it though, I was smitten again. I set aside my crochet hook and began to knit. Everything. I, too, love to knit socks, but I will knit just about anything that strikes my fancy—sweaters, blankets, scarves, shawls, leg warmers, vests, ponchos, hats, mittens, slippers, toys . . . a few years ago, I knit up an entire Noah’s ark for my grandchildren.

Noah’s ark animals, with Noah and his wife
These teddy bears are the size of an average two-year-old child