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Support thread - new blankets

(850 Posts)
tribpot Tue 08-May-12 21:23:55

I'm starting to pull together some ideas for our new blankets, very sadly knit for MNers who have both lost a beloved baby recently sad

You will have instructions from Pistey about wool colours and some suggested shops to buy from - personally I buy mine from McA Direct and have found their service excellent, but there are lots of alternatives out there. Warning: Hobbycraft do not generally stock the required yarns.

The question of how many stitches to cast on comes down to the question of gauge; how tight or loose your knitting is with the yarn in question. Best way is to knit a sample (or a plain square); just measuring how wide it is once you've cast on won't be a very reliable measure because it stretches out once you start knitting. Equally, if it's already more than 6" wide you're on a hiding to nothing. For most people, on 4mm needles, 33-ish stitches and about 45-ish rows should give you a 6" x 6" square but don't do a whole one if you're not sure or a slow knitter, as it's mega-frustrating to have to pull it all back down again.

What follows is mostly links to patterns that we've done or revised in earlier blankets, or ideas for things you might want to try. I know there are some specific pattern requests for these two blankets and I'm looking those out. Warning: many of these are links to patterns on Ravelry, which is like the Facebook of knitting. Registering is free and 100% worth it, although it may mean you start sending your salary direct to your yarn shop of choice at the start of each month as you discover more and more amazing things to knit.

If you want to start with something more adventurous than garter stitch (knit every row) or stockinette (knit one row, purl the next, and so on) why not try the Chinese waves pattern? (Non-Ravelry link). Or maybe stars - this is a bit more difficult - (Non-Ravelry link).

Birds have been specifically requested so we're starting with this lovely Owl pattern - this involves cables and ends up looking a bit like this.

Note, though - before having a go at these patterns you need to know what your gauge is, so you can modify the pattern (so in the case of the owl, cast on fewer stitches / chop out a few rows in terms of length for example) or change needles to get it close to the 6" size.

If you want to follow our adventures in trying to get a particularly devilish heart pattern right, please see the support thread in which Team Heart did battle with hearts, trees and elephants.

More to follow ...

tribpot Tue 08-May-12 22:26:37

Just pulling some more ideas off the old threads. Gleaming has a simplified heart pattern but I wanted to check with her before linking to it.

Lacy mock cable.

Ripple stitch block - I cannot see the pattern in the teensy pic here! I might do that one just to see what the heck it looks like.


Some other textured squares (also with minute pictures!)

Gleaming's link to a stitch library.

And another.

KnottyLocks Tue 08-May-12 22:29:58

Trib, the cutest bird ever is the design I followed for the Twitter birds for the Kwazii blanket.

tribpot Tue 08-May-12 22:35:45

Waves of love - this is cute, I am half-way through a square of this although not in the right yarn. Would need adjusting to make sure it was 6" though.

tribpot Tue 08-May-12 22:36:27

Knotty - tis the same pattern, n'est-ce pas?

prettybird Tue 08-May-12 22:36:42

Oh goody, I can experiment with new patterns/techniques from the big fat knitting book that my dad got me for my birthday! smile

MoaningMinnieRisesAgain Tue 08-May-12 22:36:56

200 knitted blocks I used this book for some easy ideas - it's all patterns rather than motifs but plenty of stuff suitable for novices.

I also googled for dishcloths as there are lots of cute motifs on free patterns, just watch how many you are casting on for the size of the square.

KnottyLocks Tue 08-May-12 22:37:55

It is, Trib. They come out beautifully, are very quick to make and use vry little wool.

<waves to PrettyBird> smile

prettybird Tue 08-May-12 22:44:29

<knotty - looks like I am going to be visiting Pistey end of July. You could gatecrash the slimmers meet-up!>

KnottyLocks Tue 08-May-12 22:46:12

Only if I'm slimmer by then!

tribpot Tue 08-May-12 22:52:43

Minnie - I have the knitted blocks book too, really brilliantly laid out.

Pidj linked to this fantastic cat crochet design on MrsK's blanket thread.

Btw, looking back at MrsK's thread, I see I have under-guesstimated how many rows most people would find made 6". Pistey set some sort of record on 72. As such I think the 'B' pattern Pirate found should be okay for many at 65 rows. And the site has links to the other letters too.

MinnieBar Tue 08-May-12 22:56:17

Hello all. Marking my place for Team Star, I'm off to Ye Olde Yarn Shoppe tomorrow to purchase some wool yarn. So what colours they have might influence what I decide to knit [pedant]

tribpot Tue 08-May-12 23:00:41

Some colour charts - there are some nice celtic motifs among other things, but I'm still on the lookout for mouse patterns that aren't of Mickey.

tribpot Tue 08-May-12 23:28:20

And finally for tonight, a very apt but very sad baby footprint pattern.

Night night all, thoughts to Greengoose and MrsY, and their families.

lemonlymon Tue 08-May-12 23:56:49

Massively touched by the stories behind these blankets. I've found these two peanut patterns - not sure if the crochet one can be adapted for a square, as I don't crochet myself:
Little Miss Peanut and Peanut Chart
Somewhere in this pattern should be a mouse, but I haven't found it yet!, don't know if someone with more skill may be able to work it out? I also found mouse chart, mouse face, mice crochet mouse and another mouse.
This is a cutegorgeoise bird with heart wing and knitting chart and a bit random, but this snitch pattern has a wing in it.

Almost all links are, btw.

TwoJackRussellsandababy Wed 09-May-12 06:53:48

Just marking my place, am a newbie, but have ordered cream and green wool, waiting for it to arrive and then thought that I might just do some textured squares if that's ok?

tribpot Wed 09-May-12 06:59:52

TwoJack - no, unless you are knitting to Olympic standard by the end of the week, you are OUT.

wink - no of course not. All squares are very welcome, and I will repeat Knotty and Pistey's mantra, plain squares are good, plain squares are essential. Textured squares are lovely.

Btw, for anyone reading who needs help getting started here is a video on the cable cast on, which is a nice one to do.

RatherBeOnThePiste Wed 09-May-12 07:04:39

Morning all lovely woolly people brew

KnottyLocks Wed 09-May-12 07:09:58

Simple squares are good. Simple squares are essential

Morning smile

RatherBeOnThePiste Wed 09-May-12 07:52:10

Off to work, catch up later, have fun in here smile

SurprisinglyCurvaceousPirate Wed 09-May-12 11:09:59

grin trib

<proudly sports her Team Star award> grin

Unfortauntely having done 10 rows I've realised it's not wide enough so will have to start again blush - but it is very effective.

Btw, completely forgot to check on the deadline - when do we need to have these done by?

tribpot Wed 09-May-12 11:32:43

Knotty and Pistey haven't set a deadline yet, Pirate, so don't worry. It's likely to be about 1 month.

SurprisinglyCurvaceousPirate Wed 09-May-12 11:36:13

Oh good, that should be more than enough time smile.

PurplePidjin Wed 09-May-12 12:11:52

The cats are great, but my 4yo nephew reckons they look more like Pontypines...

JParkson Wed 09-May-12 12:32:40

marking my place, I'm in the crochet club here.


Are there any crochet guidelines for squares (apart from the obvious 6"!) grin

i.e. rough no. of stitches per row. I know this is tension dependent, so I'll probably start with about 30 and see how I go. Most of the squares I've done to date have been 13cm square, (roughly 5") and that's about the 25 mark.

I've seen some squares on other blankets with 3D flowers and such on them - are those attached after the main square has been made?

lemonlymon Wed 09-May-12 12:33:20

Had to google pontypines, never come accross them before! Have read through the pattern properly and found the mouse bit. Got a bit confused by all the 'turning' business!


Row 1: With blackm ch 30, 2 sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc in each of next 7 chs, leaving rem chs unworked for tail, turn. (9 sc)

Row 2: Ch 1, sc in each st across, turn.

Row 3: Ch 1, 2 sc in first st, sc in each st across, turn. (10 sc)

Row 4: Ch 1, sc dec in first 2 sts, sc in each st across, turn. (9 sc)

Row 5: Ch 1, sc in each st across, turn.

Row 6: Ch 1, sc dec in first 2 sts, sc in each st across, ending with 2 sc in last st, turn.

Row 7: Ch 1, 2 sc in first st, sc in each st across, ending with sc dec in last 2 sts, turn.

Row 8: Ch 1, sc dec in first 3 sts, sl st in next of each of next 2 sts, (4 dc, ch2, sl st) in next st, sc in each of last 3 sts. Fasten off.^

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