Friday, 3 February 2012

Baby blankets

I think I mentioned somewhere here that I started to knit with a capital K when The Little Model was expected and I began with a blanket for her

Then last summer I blogged about my first reaction to the news that my daughter was to have another baby. I bought yarn - what else would a Knitter do? The yarn sat in my pending projects basket till after Christmas then I had to knit at 100mph

The pattern comes from Blankets and Throws to Knit by Debbie Abrahams, You might have read about the first blanket I made from this book earlier.  My intarsia technique improved as I went along

This square was easy, never more than three colours and three balls of yarn per row.  But intarsia can be tricky, it is easy to end up (as I have done) with a less than flat surface with small areas of colour bunching up and bumps appearing at the point that colours change.  The trick is to use a separate little ball or length of yarn for each colour change.  Even if the colour appears again further along the row you should not be tempted to run the yarn across the back of the work creating 'floats' as in fairisle.  I like to use long lengths rather than little balls as it makes untangling easier (you just draw the yarn gently through the cats cradle of colours one by one) but it does sometimes mean I have to join the yarn more often than is ideal.

I realise it's the height of knitting naughtiness but I knot yarns when I have to join them, leaving enough yarn to darn in the ends as well.  I hope that anything I make will be used and washed a lot (this blanket is machine washable) and I don't want to risk the work unravelling.

When changing from one colour to another the instructions always say to twist the yarns together.  I used to think this meant twisting tightly for several turns but this is how I ended up with bumps.  Just a single twist (imagine a row of dancers linking arms) pulled as tight as possible is better.

I have lots of yarn left and plan to make bootees... soon

The work is backed with cotton jersey.  This helps make the blanket warmer, of course, but also hides all the joins.  The lazy daisy stitches over where the corners of the squares met were a quick way of making the plain white backing look prettier but were also practical in fixing the backing to the blanket.

It was just finished in time for his arrival this week




WildflowerWool said...

Lovely blanket!

Brooke said...

What beautiful work! I'm sure he (and his mom) will both treasure it. :) Congratulations to you and yours!

Jane said...

Lovely blanket - and beautiful baby.

Tracy said...

Congratulations to you all. It is a beautiful blanket to mark such a special time.