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2021 temperature blanket stats

A good-sized throw for his futon lounge or topper for the double bed

I wanted this to be a post with all the details for what is a toasty warm addition to the family now that temperatures have definitely dropped. However, life happens; and the latest happening has derailed things significantly. So, you know, if I give you a general idea, that might have to do. Complete, accurate details would require me to weigh the remaining yarn, then calculate how much of some colours made it into the blanket. I can tell you now, that’s not happening.

For colours and temperature range represented by each, see broad discussion here and below table for details.

Any changes to the original plan were mostly “Let’s not do that” things, dictated by unexpected health setbacks that necessitated a frank and fearless consideration of what could be left out so that YoungB would get his blanket at all (much like this post, actually). There is no “essence of QR code” square, for example. Although I’d planned a double border so that I could incorporate his name and the year, that didn’t happen either. It would have been too time-consuming. I may embroider the year on one of the neutral squares. Then again, I may not.

It was my design, but influenced by the need for solid squares and something that would quickly be square from a circular centre, so that the CJAYG method wouldn’t give me headaches (see discussion). I had assistance with colour choices from both Dr B and YoungB. I’m not sure we got it right in a couple of cases, but, hey, we’re the ones telling the story ๐Ÿ™‚

Temperature range หšCYarn colour (BWM Classic 8 ply) (bought)
โ‰ค 2.9610 – Indian blue: 25g (1 ball)
3.0 – 7.9600 – periwinkle: 200g (1 ball)
8.0 – 12.9777 – powder blue: 200g (3 balls)
13.0 – 17.9745 – pale eucalypt: 300g (3 balls)
18.0 – 22.9695 – guava: 200g (2 balls)
23.0 – 27.9612 – viridian: 350g (3 balls)
28.0 – 32.9769 – marigold: 200g (1 ball)
33.0 – 37.9767 – burnt orange: 50g (1 ball)
38.0 – 42.9608 – holly: 25g (1 ball)
โ‰ฅ 43.0779 – bright magenta: 50g (1 ball)
Year- and month-end (and CJAYG)694 – maize: 1000g (6 balls)
Planned to include602 – almond: 0g (1 ball)
BORDER DETAILS

Worked in linen/moss stitch,
alternating directions for the 17 rounds of changing colours.

All viridian rounds of linen/moss stitch
worked in same direction.

Final viridian round of htr worked in opposite direction.
marigold – 1 tidying round of (UK) dc
marigold – 2 pattern rounds
periwinkle – 1 pattern round
guava – 4 pattern rounds
pale eucalypt – 2 pattern rounds
powder blue – 1 pattern round
magenta – 3 pattern rounds
burnt orange – 2 pattern rounds
Indian blue – 1 pattern round
viridian – 5 pattern rounds
viridian – finishing round of (UK) htr
Cost of yarn purchased
(24 x 200g balls @ $13.50)
$324.00
Cost of yarn usedNot calculated, but probably around $250.00
Hours of work> 400
Yarn orders1 Jan 2021 – 8 balls = $108.00
1 each of: maize, pale eucalypt, almond, powder blue, Indian blue, viridian, burnt orange, bright magenta
9 Feb 2021 – 4 balls = $54.00
1 each of periwinkle, guava, marigold, holly
29 May 2021 – 2 balls = $27.00
2 balls of maize
13 Oct 2021 – 10 balls = $135.00
3 of maize
2 each of viridian, pale eucalypt, powder blue
1 of guava
Entirely unused at completion: 200g almond, 200g pale eucalypt and leftovers, 200g powder blue and leftovers; about 200g of viridian; and quite a lot of the holly, which wasn’t used in the border.
Temperatures represented by colour range; and yarn usage

I chose hook sizes to ensure that the completed blanket was “not too holey”. I’d usually use a 4.00mm hook for 8-ply yarn. I used a 3.50mm hook for the centre and middle rows, to provide that requested firm, not-too-holey fabric. I used a 4.00mm hook for the joining round, which gave overall better drape on the entire blanket, and made it easier for me to do the joins, but – again – met the “not too holey” requirement.

I went back to the 3.50mm hook for the linen stitch border, again so that the fabric would be firm, and to prevent rippling; or at least keep that to a minimum. Working rounds in alternating directions also helped to minimise rippling. I worked most of the viridian rounds in the same direction, as that was easier for keeping joins tidy. It was also easier to see what I was doing.

The parts that were fairly dull and boring were all those damn winter squares. Just like the weather! Although generally there are remarkably few special design features, I know a few crept in through those cooler colours. I was tired and not always counting as well as I should have been. I rescued most, and even I would be hard put to find the few that remain.

I got great value out of the mantra that CJAYG and tidying ends as you go allow: when it’s done, it’s finished. There are no ends to sew in, other than the one you’ve just snipped for the border.

As noted above, there were several unexpected derailments because of equally unexpected ill health. All in all, it’s a fine testament to a great deal of dedication and devotion, and an astonishing degree of crafting monogamy. I made one other crocheted project – a small wind spinner – and didn’t bother to have any knitting on the go At. All. Yes, I’m surprised, too.

In sum: did it turn out as well as I’d hoped? Yes, and perhaps better than I’d imagined. Would I make another such thing? Probably not! Would I used the yarn again? Of course. Bendigo Woollen Mills Classic 8-ply remains one of my favourite yarns, particularly valuable for being machine washable.

I now have a long list of beanies for babies and toddlers, and perhaps a little blanket or two and some adult beanies, and a few acrylic squares that I’ll donate for someone else to turn into a charity blanket at a nearby hospital, not to mention an unexpected adult beanie to replace one that sidled from one head to another as a loan and then, well, stayed on the new head! That seems to happen quite frequently with beanies.

I hope your crafting is keeping you warm and cosy if you’re in a chilly part of the world. ๐Ÿ™‚

 
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Posted by on July 16, 2022 in Crochet

 

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employment-go-round again

I’ll miss watching the progress – and the view ๐Ÿ™‚

YoungB’s contract is at an an end, so he’s on the job-hunt. Again. The thing about our recent elections – both state and federal – is that the change of government (at both levels) means that there are opportunities aplenty in different fields, some of which he might find appealing. He’s had his resume professionally tarted up – I beg your pardon; updated – and it’s impressive.

Me? I’ve officially notified the Powers That Be the date on which I’ll be retiring later this year. Leadership at work seems surprised. I don’t know why! My age is no secret. I’ve clearly been suffering work-related aggravations to existing health problems ever since I started there. I’ve made absolutely no secret of my intentions. Why is it suddenly unexpected, and something they hadn’t foreseen? You know that emoji where you smack yourself? Yeah. That seemed about the right response; but I didn’t.

Someone who appreciates why retirement is a good idea asked me what I’m going to do – apart from all the obvious things like crochet and knit, of course – and I said I might cook. She thought that was a wonderful idea. So did I. I like cooking. I would have to shoo Dr B out of the kitchen – it is his domain, after all – but I’m sure he wouldn’t mind me elbowing into his space if it means he has more time to do other things. I would bake, too. It would be gratifying to go back to making bread. That was one of my great pleasures that simply disappeared.

Dodgy back and leg notwithstanding, some routine exercise will also feature large. It’s most likely to be continuing the hydro-pool exercise classes that I presently attend. They’re generally kind in terms of both parts of the physique and, because it’s a therapy pool, the water is always wondrously warm. I would be free to join a book club. Or a gardening club. Or a photography group. Or all of the above!

I could once again suss out options for joining local choirs. This time, when they all respond with some version of, “We rehearse and perform during the day, during the week,” thus putting such delights entirely out of full-time worker contention, it wouldn’t matter. I’d have that availability.

I might by then have reached the top of the waiting list for eye surgery, and, postoperatively, be able to see better than ever – really ever, as I’ve been wearing specs pretty much all my life – and then I might be able to reinvigorate my sewing and make some inroads on all those projects that are presently too difficult. Oh, boy. And people wonder if I’ll have enough to do. Smack-yourself emoji again, I think.

Meanwhile, however, there’s a certain amount of excitement and tension around YoungB’s potential new job. There are choices in fields where he has qualifications and expertise, and there are choices in fields that would suit his outgoing personality. There are jobs with crossover. He’s already sent inquiries and job applications. It’s going to be an interesting few months, watching how everything turns out, but he is likely to have some much-needed downtime before starting in any new position, whatever the field.

During that downtime, I anticipate the mealtime conversation will centre on matters mechanical. I’ll be knitting in my room, if you’re looking for me ๐Ÿ˜€

 

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just like that

Four tidy corners and nothing more to do ๐Ÿ˜€

I’d almost decided to call it a night, then I shook out my work and had a good look at it. There were perhaps 20 centimetres remaining on the last side of the last round of the border. Yeah, that didn’t equal calling it quits and going to bed! So I sat up for as long as it took to work those remaining (UK) htr’s, snipped my yarn, wove in the last end and, just like that, it was all over. What an anticlimax.

It should really be a very big ta-dah moment: I have finished the 2021 temperature blanket and presented it to YoungB as a special delivery from the laundry fairy!! He pretended to stagger under its weight. In case I never see it again in daylight, I took a few photos. They’re not brilliant, but they will do to accompany a detailed post; which I am still drafting.

So what am I going to do now??? Well, apart from some of the by now fairly pressing household chores (consider above non-coincidental reference to laundry fairy), I have a baby beanie and some toddler beanies to knit or crochet. I have a couple of pram rugs to knit or crochet. There are a couple of adult beanies on the list, and those I will probably knit. There are new-to-me crochet techniques and patterns I’m itching to try for some knitworthy (or crochetworthy) recipient.

That should keep me busy till this time next year, don’t you reckon?

 
 

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only a few rounds left

The end is almost in sight

Last night, I sat up late, working on the blanket, because I couldn’t sleep. It’s not sensible when you know you have an early start, as today I did; but it’s sometimes unavoidable. Might as well be doing something useful. Right? As a result, I have commenced the final colour of the border, which is viridian. I am – as you might be able to see – part-way through the second round.

I’d originally half-planned to work the entire border in viridian, to pick up on the colour of YoungB’s futon sofa. Obviously, that’s another plan that changed, but no matter. We’ve plenty of colour choices, and now that I’ve completed the bits that used several different colours, I think I can truly claim the blanket is very close to finished; very close indeed.

We have a surprisingly busy weekend ahead, so I doubt if I’m going to finish all the viridian rounds in the available spare time, but I will certainly keep plugging away at it when I can.

Whether or not you have a busy weekend, I hope you, too, are able to keep plugging away at your almost-there-but-not-quite projects.

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2022 in Crochet

 

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definitely gaining

The border is wider, and I’m ever closer to finishing it

I had a day of WFH that included two long, must-attend online meetings, which didn’t require my input. In that case, what do you do but grab your in-progress blanket and keep yourself warm while working? Right? I did. The days here are getting colder, so a toasty blanket is definitely a winner. Somewhat surprisingly, we haven’t yet turned on our space heater but we’re not going to be able to hold out for much longer.

It’s interesting to note how tired we all are. We remain, astoundingly, COVID-free, although wider family members have been less fortunate in that respect. There are days when I think that the ongoing uncertainty and the tedium of daily RATs is all too much. YoungB is exhausted and despondent and we’ve only just begun winter. He is looking forward to having the blanket, so I must away and do some more rounds while he is out at salsa classes. They provide some light relief and physical exercise that is undoubtedly good for him.

I hope you’re also able to find some light relief, whatever form it takes.

 
 

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comparing but not really

Little visible progress on the border

That would be me on the border of the blanket. When the rounds get this long, you sometimes can’t easily see the progress. You’ve worked steadily for what is a significant chunk of time and you still haven’t finished the next colour!

Their progress isn’t obvious, either

The preparation for the remodelled GPO, however, is a bit the same. It has reached a point where there’s a lot of work – mostly pumping concrete, as far as we can tell when we line up at the window of our 13th floor lookout – but there’s little enough to see for the effort. The concrete is all going into the ground in long pillars of extremely-heavy-duty REO.

I’ll get there, and I’m sure they will, too. It’s not in any way a race, but I reckon I’ll finish first ๐Ÿ™‚

 
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Posted by on May 1, 2022 in Crochet

 

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still going around

Border getting wider, but I think needs to be wider still

Borders on large objects make the object even larger. It’s the nature of borders! YoungB would have been happy to take delivery of the temperature rug with a reasonably narrow border (about where it is in the above photo). The weather is cooling, and he’d appreciate the extra warmth provided by its undoubted weightiness. I haven’t weighed it yet or calculated rough weight from yarn used.

However, because the blanket is large, I think the border should be wider – something like as wide as the side of a square, simply for visual balance – and have kept working on it. I had hoped I might finish it on the long weekend just gone, but didn’t. All the same, YoungB shouldn’t have to wait much longer before he can use it.

I hope your long weekend went according to plan, no matter how you spent it.

 
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Posted by on April 26, 2022 in Crochet

 

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comparing modalities

That represents a lot more work than you’d think ๐Ÿ™‚

During lulls in the technological efficiency, I occasionally pick up the blanket and work a stitch or three of the border. It is looking good, but there’s definitely a very l-o-n-g way to go. I’m enjoying the linen stitch/moss stitch. As a knitter, I find it more similar to knitted linen stitch. I recognise that the chain 1 is approximately equal to the slip 1. I don’t as readily see it resembling knitted moss stitch, except in its reversibility. That’s a distinct plus.

Whatever you call it, it’s effective. The border at that point garnered praise from a knitter friend who has stalled on her large project (a wondrous blanket that makes mine look very ho-hum indeed). I would have stalled, too, I think, had I not decided Most Firmly from the outset that I would not do anything else until the temperature blanket was finished. I’ve been pretty good about that.

With that in mind, and as my computer has just given me one of those, “I’m going to shut down on you,” messages, I’m off to do a spot more work on that border.

I hope your dedication is also holding in the face of temptation ๐Ÿ˜€

 
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Posted by on April 20, 2022 in Crochet, Knitting

 

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long way round

I weighed some of the yarn to make sure it would get to the end ๐Ÿ˜€

Whatever you celebrate, or even if you don’t celebrate anything, I hope you’ve had an enjoyable weekend. We’ve taken things very slowly. Plans have vanished without trace and nobody has minded. When I’ve found a spare moment, or hour, I’ve worked on the border of the temperature blanket.

It is a long way, and getting longer with each round. It will be some time before I can call it done but I am happy with its progress.

I hope you’re happy with all your progress, too ๐Ÿ™‚

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2022 in Crochet

 

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corner, corner, corner, stop

Corner 1 – bottom RH

Bottom left-hand corner turnaround? Not an unusual thing. Bottom right-hand corner turnaround? Most unusual and Very Exciting.

Corner 2 – top RH

Whizzing up the long side – my word, that was quick! – and turning the top right-hand corner? Golly, how long ago some of those squares were made. Whizzing along the top edge – also quick; and there’s that dodgy one whose design-feature edge I remember putting to the outside for later consideration – and, guess what?

Corner 3 – top LH and stop!

Arriving back at the start, the corner that began it all. Yes. The basic blanket is finished. Tonight, I will probably start the tidying round of UK DC but that could be all I’ll get done, despite how speedy it is when you’re not having to JAYG or tidy ends. There’s a long weekend ahead. We’ll do our usual food and celebrations – lots of singing, of course! – but I anticipate plenty of time to sit back and relax with a bit of hooking.

All the best with any plans you have for the long weekend, particularly if they involve taking it easy with a bit of hooking ๐Ÿ™‚

 
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Posted by on April 13, 2022 in Crochet

 

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