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Tag Archives: granny squares

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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long way round

I weighed some of the yarn to make sure it would get to the end 😀

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 🙂

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2022 in Crochet

 

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slow and not yet very exciting

Working back to enclose row 20 of 20. Yesss!

I’ve had a longer break than anticipated from the temperature blanket. For what seemed like ages, I had three more squares ready to add to row 20 and a fourth that only needed its tails tidied before it, too, could be incorporated into the last row. Slow, for sure, but progress. Then there were a few more middles and a few more tails tidied. Then came the magic moment when I sent a message to YoungB to say, “I’ve just made square 380.” It and a few of it mates weren’t added, or even ready to add. But they were made.

Last of the squares with all tails tidied and in order of appearance.

By now, I’ve tidied all the tails – isn’t that a glad sight! – added those row 20 squares and am working back on the enclosing round. This time, when I get to the bottom corner, I’ll have a Very Big Happening: I’ll actually go around the corner, not turn back and add another row. It’s enough to make me want to sit and crochet all night, but I am back at the office tomorrow. So, yeah. No all-night crochet fest for me. There’s a long weekend coming. That might be the perfect time to take it easy AND manage to get a good run at doing the last enclosing all the way back to the beginning of the blanket.

Given the number of health-related interruptions this blanket has had, I’m reconsidering the notion of a time-consuming envelope border and looking for something a good bit simpler. As long as there’s a border that ties to the colours used in the body of the blanket, that will be enough. I have lots of yarn and a plan that involves simple DC stripes or perhaps moss stitch.

May your plans, whatever they involve, be as simple or complex as you want.

 
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Posted by on April 10, 2022 in Crochet, Health

 

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do year-long projects take a year?

The nature of temperature blankets is that they represent the temperatures for a year. In my case, the year is 2021. Had I commenced with the year and done a square a day, I couldn’t have done it in less than a year. I started late. I try to catch up, but it’s probably foolish to expect that I’ll catch up by very much. In other words, I’ll finish it a year from the starting date; more or less.

That appears to be how it’s going, if we include the border in that calculation. If we talk about the basic blanket, all squares enclosed all the way around, there’s a chance – a slender one, but a chance – that I might finish it in a shade under a year. It would bring great joy if that were its status by YoungB’s birthday, which occurs a few weeks from now.

I’m not holding my breath, as that will certainly require fewer interruptions than life generally holds, whether they be work-related or family considerations. I’m doing my best to ignore distractions. I’m also reminding myself that doing a long border – no joining, no fancy footwork – will be quicker than doing squares, despite the increasingly enormous number of stitches it will involve.

We’re transitioning back to largely office-based work in a week or so, alas. On the bright side, that may assist with progress while I’m still doing squares. I can’t take the entire blanket with me on the bus if I happen to be at an enclosing round, but the production-line centres are still an option. They are fewer than through the cold months, but there are still some rows with numerous same-coloured centres – and, as the photo shows, they’re often powder blue centres.

The length of yarn used will total a few kilometres. I’ve yet to calculate that properly. Weight calculations are tricky, for all sorts of reasons, but the weight of the finished blanket will be over 2 kilos, possibly over 3 kilos. I can say with some certainty that it’s going to be Very Heavy when wet. And, whether it takes a calendar year, or less or more, the grand total of hours involved will be greater than 380.

If you’re doing a year-long project, best of luck with shaving off a few days here and there 🙂

 
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Posted by on March 4, 2022 in Crochet

 

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blanketing the days to Christmas

Taken late at night, before packing up. Blanket-like.

Only so-many days till Christmas, I keep hearing. The number isn’t great and it’s constantly reducing. I recently calculated that I would need to make two squares per day to finish my temperature blanket by the end of the year. Logistically, that’s not impossible. If I were to dedicate serious amounts of time here and there to making more than two squares per day, I might even catch up.

I spent yesterday taking it easy because my moon boot is now off. Hooray!! However, I’d been standing about for far too long after work on Friday and the “once this was broken” part of my foot was the least of my aches and pains. I hurt all over and didn’t want to move far, so I set up my bag of yarn in the spare room. I worked out from two centres I’d done earlier (same colour) and added those. Then I made two more squares. Then – and this is the most surprising part – I worked all the way back to the end of the row. It took me hours, but I did it. That’s row 7 completed.

Today, I have done two the first two squares of row 8, as well as lots of laundry and sundry domestica. I’m hoping I might get a few more made and attached before it’s time to sort out tomorrow’s work wear and something to put on my feet.

Weekends are never long enough, I know, but I hope you’ve had a pleasant one.

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2021 in Crochet, Health

 

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chopsticks again

It doesn’t look like much, or much work, but it’s a good start

The temperature blanket is coming along slowly, but it is making progress. I’m delighted by how well the colours are working together. When the first row was blocking in a column on the chopsticks (see photo), it didn’t scream “rainbow” but it was cheerful.

I’m sure you’ll be pleased to hear that I am still being very good about finishing ends as I go. Again, please refer to the photo.

I’m about to start CJAYG with the maize we’ve definitely chosen as the joining colour. A refresher video-viewing of the methodology is in order. And I think the idea of having only a couple of ends at the end is sufficient incentive to continue being good with tidying squares as they’re made.

I’m using a half-size larger hook for the joining round – a 4.5mm / size F – so that the squares sit nicely flat.

How’s your present project progressing?

 
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Posted by on April 23, 2021 in Crochet

 

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about that temperature blanket

I liked the look of my bicraftual friend’s solid granny squares, which she starts from a circle. Via messages and sharing photos, we were able to establish a pattern that gave me the same results (the one on the right; photo taken at my computer desk after I’d unpicked the previous model). I ended up doing something slightly different, because I thought that joining on the “circle to square” round was asking for trouble. I’m not suggesting it couldn’t be done, or that I couldn’t do it. I’m merely being pragmatic.

So, using the above as a basis and with that colour, I’ve begun. Nine of the “neutral” squares – to denote month-end and blanket-end – are completed to second-round status, and one to third-round status. I needed one completed square, so I could calculate likely finished measurements. I’m working with a blanket dimension of 19 x 20, meaning there will be 380 squares. I am nowhere near up to date, but there’s no deadline.

Interestingly, when I took delivery of tranche 1 of the yarn, YoungB’s first question was as to whether that was for his jumper? He loved the brightness. Hmm. I have a plan for working on his grey jumper, – grey by request, you might recall – and note that sorting out that yarn is also on my list. At the moment, other things would interfere with my dedicating big chunks of time to knitting. However, I am able to crochet a two-round square in the time it takes me to get to work.

If you’re able to work while you commute, are you also managing to tick things off your to-do list?

 
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Posted by on February 15, 2021 in Crochet, Knitting

 

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dowel pins, dowelling or chopsticks

pegboard_dowels_blocking.jpg

I made it work when I was able to spread out under the pergola. But it’s too cold for that now.

When I needed to block my granny squares, I went hunting in the shed. I’m a great believer in using what you have and I knew that Dr B had a stash of pegboard. He was happy to give me a sheet, so I cleaned it up then scratched my head in an effort to make it work! I wasn’t able to find any dowelling and ended up buying a pack of small dowel pins, for which we will undoubtedly find other uses.

As you can see, I padded the holes and made the dowel pins fit. Their height, or lack of it, was the truly limiting factor. The rainbow squares were – indeed, still are – puffy rather than flat. At that time of the year, I was able to spread out under the pergola. That I could only fit three squares per set wasn’t too much of a drama. I simply added another square to the board and away we went.

I admit I tried chopsticks, but couldn’t convince myself that they fitted well enough. Also, given that I could spread out, it wasn’t necessary to go higher. Times change, by which I mean that it’s now winter and cold and I’ve decided that I can pad the pegboard even more than I did for the dowels so that chopsticks DO fit!

I have now built myself a single-block tower using the straightest chopsticks from our collection – accumulated over many years – to give me height. They’re not wooden, so there’s no likelihood that the yarn will snag.

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It’s not perfect but it does the job, and I can use it to block all the squares for one blanket 😀

I’d seen someone else doing a neat trick with pegs, in that case providing some tension on the squares. I hunted in my peg bag (joint contributions, don’t you know) and found those pegs. They’re hopeless at the job for which they were intended, but they work well here in providing tension not on the squares, but on keeping the tower square.

Ah, improvisation. Don’t you love it?

 

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now to neutral

 

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Layout established, all squares now blocking on my pegboard.

The rainbow hues are bright, and the fully completed squares are now blocking while I wait for some uninterrupted time to join them into their final format. The joining round will be white, and I intend to put some colour into the bordering rounds. I haven’t yet decided which colour or colours that will be.

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Another lovely pattern, but not quite so easy to remember

The neutrals are also lovely, but the pattern requires more concentration. Dr B will not leave me alone to work on them, so getting them made and joined is going to be a long job. It’s the same as ever: if I’m around, I’m fair game. And, as much as I enjoy discussing pivot notes and the harmonic ramifications of modulations to distant keys, they, too, need a fair amount of concentration. I can’t do both simultaneously without both suffering. When I’m being asked to make sensible comments about harmony, I can’t crochet something that requires strenuous counting.

But to keep it real, I’ve decided I’ll do two slightly different colour combinations that won’t tax my brain too much when it comes to settling on a layout.

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Second colour scheme. Edging round will be cream.

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Always the way, you only notice an error after you’ve made it! A better idea of how they’ll play together.

May all your mathematical and musical problems be less taxing than mine 😀

 
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Posted by on March 23, 2020 in Crochet

 

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impediments all round

flourishing_geranium.jpg

Even without green thumbs, I seem to have done quite well with this plant. It’s flourishing in a way my crocheted blankets certainly aren’t 😀

I acknowledge that many of my impediments to productivity are mental. I truly despair at the bureaucratic cynicism that permeates my workplace. It taints my thinking and I can’t drag myself to higher levels of recognition that, cynicism notwithstanding, our sector does a lot of good for a lot of people.

Real impediments also include a recent finger injury that’s painful and inconvenient, and makes sewing tricky no matter how dedicated I am with wound dressings. I think we’re just about out the other side with that one, so perhaps the sewing will ramp up again.

Let’s hope so. There’s only a couple more weeks before B-day, so I must get those rainbow squares joined asap, so that I can start on the next little blanket. Neither baby will be getting the blanket immediately, but lest you think I’m a terrible person, I mention only that these are extras, and I have already gifted more immediately useful items to both young women.

May your impediments be few, no matter what you’re up to 🙂

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2020 in Uncategorized

 

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