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I want to make a baby blanket. Recommendations for wool/sizing/type of needles?

(21 Posts)
LemonPeculiarJones Thu 16-May-13 13:48:29

Hello, I'm 24 weeks pg with DS2 and have a sudden and acute desire to knit him a baby blanket smile

I want it to be a decent size and striped in various colours.

I have knitted before but not for years - can't remember how to cast on but am sure YouTube will have some helpful vids.

So - any advice on:

Best size needles for a nice density?

Will I need a circular needle?

Best wool that will be gorgeously soft but also machine washable?

What's the ideal number of stitches for a good sized blanket?

Any other advice at all?

Am really looking forward to choosing some gorgeous colours.

Thanks!

Primrose123 Thu 16-May-13 13:56:00

I can't help with knitting, but can you crochet? (I find it much easier!) There are two lovely patterns on Attic24's website, both of which work very well with lots of colours.

Have a look at granny stripe and ripple.

My current favourite is this.

I wouldn't attempt a knitted blanket this big myself, my knitting is not up to it! Crochet, however, is easy to start and stop, and very easy to put right if you go wrong. If I drop a stitch in knitting, I ruin the whole thing, because I can't pick it up again!

LemonPeculiarJones Thu 16-May-13 14:00:22

Thank you Primrose - those blankets are truly gorgeous!

But I am keen on knitting, I remember finding it really relaxing. And wouldn't know where to start with crocheting!

Primrose123 Thu 16-May-13 14:16:18

Sorry, can't help there! smile

If I was to knit a blanket, I would probably knit lots of small squares in different colours, and then stitch them together. <wimp>

LemonPeculiarJones Thu 16-May-13 14:42:53

Sounds a reasonable technique Primrose!

So knitters, any knitters out there, please apply your wisdom herein grin

TheWoollybacksWife Thu 16-May-13 22:36:28

Sirdar baby bamboo is a lovely snuggly yarn that is perfect for baby blankets. Colours here on the Deramore's website

I love log cabin blankets which start off will a small central piece and then you pick up stitches and keep going round. There are a few examples on Ravelry. These can be started on straight needles but you may want to switch to a circular needle when the pieces get bigger.

LemonPeculiarJones Thu 16-May-13 22:45:28

Gorgeous colours TheWoolly, thank you.

But the log cabin format sounds a little bit terrifying to a novice like me! Currently practicing on some acrylic yarn - just knit a line, purl a line, swapping colours......that's about as complex as I've got so far!

fossil971 Thu 16-May-13 22:56:34

I'm working on a striped blanket at the moment - I've got further now so will upload to the project page. It's my design but just uses a few increases and decreases to get the ripples. Pattern here but I'm just going to see if I can quickly upload a new picture.

This is the third garter stitch/Wool Cotton blanket I've made, the others were squares and Log Cabin and I love doing them in lots of bright colours rather than bland white and pale blue!

DewDr0p Thu 16-May-13 23:00:38

Baby Bamboo yarn is gorgeous.

I've made a few baby blankets - ones you buy in shops are massive, it's actually really handy to have a smaller one for tucking over the car seat or pram.

Ds is nearly 6 and still likes to snuggle up with his now.

Ohwooisme Thu 16-May-13 23:05:48

Was going to come on and suggest a log cabin - actually very straight forward - knit a square, cast off, turn square 90 degrees (always right) knit along & pick up stitches along one side, knit x number of rows, cast off, turn, pick up and knit and repeat! Whole thing done in garter stitch.

Suggest a lovely organic cotton to wash (I did one in Blue Sky - worsted weight I think) and a 5mm needle. Honestly - it was easy!! Am on phone, but have a look on ravelry or Pinterest.

Good luck - such a lovely thing to dosmile

TheWoollybacksWife Thu 16-May-13 23:07:47

I have had a look on Ravelry for a pattern that uses knit and purl stitches ie no lace, no cables etc.

This looks lovely but is knitted on a circular needle. I think this is purely down to the number of stitches and the blanket is worked in rows backwards and forwards like you would on straight pins, rather than in the round. It is also in one colour, although I'm sure there is nothing stopping you changing colour if you wanted a stripy one.

If you join Ravelry then you can search yourself. I used "baby blanket", "knitted", "free" and "DK" as my search terms and then just scrolled through the photos to find something suitable.

GemmaTeller Fri 17-May-13 22:03:11

what about this from Purl Bee via pinterest?

www.purlbee.com/the-purl-bee/2008/5/24/whits-knits-super-easy-baby-blanket.html

Callmecordelia Fri 17-May-13 23:14:18

A slight voice of dissent here - if you haven't knitted for a long while, you might like to do a blanket in chunky wool so that it grows quicker. I've only knitted one baby blanket, and although the result was wonderful it took forever. There was a bit of a rush to get it ready for the baby - they have a habit of coming out and not moving their deadline to suit knitting grin.

I made mine out of King Cole Merino Blend Chunky - it is a superwash wool so just chucked it in the machine on a normal wash and some fabric softener and it came out beautifully soft.

On Ravelry to find patterns for what we call chunky here in the UK you have to search on "Bulky" on the pattern search.

Callmecordelia Fri 17-May-13 23:25:24

Just faffing around on Ravelry with that search (which is here by the way) and I found this which I rather like....

Clg199 Fri 17-May-13 23:43:20

I've just finished a blanket I'm really pleased with - pic on profile. It's in Sublime Cotton and Kapok DK, 6mm circular needle (so easy to use, I prefer circular to normal). I knitted with 2 strands together to make it chunkier and quicker. 9 rows garter stitch, then 10 rows blanket stitch (knit 5, purl 5). Didn't take v long and I love it. Black sheep wools had the wool at half price.

Good luck, and have fun :-)

Lonecatwithkitten Sat 18-May-13 16:56:30

The last one I made was DK cast on to 4 needles 135 stitches 12 rows of garter stitch. Then main part of blanket 10 stitches of garter either side of blanket with stocking stitch in centre till blanket measures 84cm end on wrong side then 12 rows garter stitch. This really nice pram size blanket.

Molehillmountain Sat 18-May-13 23:49:23

I've made three, one for each dc. First was in a lovely rowan 4pky yarn - took ages but is lovely and fine and perfect for car seats. Second in sirdar luxury soft cotton dk- washes beautifully and very soft. Best of all was the third in rowan all seasons cotton Aran. Lovely, the same pattern produced a not too thick blanket big enough for a child to snuggle under and it washes well. Also, it knitted up satisfyingly quickly.

LemonPeculiarJones Wed 22-May-13 16:15:16

Thank you everyone for your advice and inspiration!

Clg your blanket is gorgeous.

I have started my project although it will be achingly basic to all of you wonder-knitters grin It's just garter stitch (that's what just knit stitch is called, right?!) and I've started with one stitch and cast on an extra stitch each row, so the knit is diagonal.

Not entirely sure about my choice of wool, in the end I got a bit scared by the cost of the most beautiful yarn and bought something that is fairly chunky Arran and part acrylic. For a first project it seems ok, although I originally bought some horrible plastic needles and had to go back for aluminium - the plastic ones were so nasty to use with the roughish yarn.

The needles are size 6 and I'll have to go and get myself a circular needle soon as it's getting bigger.

The yarn varies in colour from purples to blues to greens smile

I'm really enjoying how meditative it is. Once I've raced through this I think I will begin a new one with proper gorgeous soft yarns and create some stripes.

By the way, what is the best stitch to 'hide' colour changes (ie avoid the 'wrong side' bar)? The last in C&H said knit one purl one...

LemonPeculiarJones Wed 22-May-13 19:10:34

* last = lady

Callmecordelia Wed 22-May-13 22:31:55

A circular needle will be easier when your blanket gets larger as the weight is not supported on your wrists; the work rests on your lap. Your blanket sounds very nice, and I'm sure it will look lovely. If you have a tumble dryer (I don't) I've been told they soften acrylic beautifully. I'd just chuck it in the machine with some softener, it can really make a difference. Have fun!

LemonPeculiarJones Wed 22-May-13 23:26:53

Aw, thanks Callmecordelia smile Good advice re tumbling!

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