Welcome to the big Ripple Reveal everyone. Feast your eyes on those ripply, ripplesome, rippletastic ripples! Aren't they wonderful? Oh I'm so glad to be showing you this project in it's completed, finished state, after many months (has it been 4? 5?) of showing you bits of it. This blanket has spanned over two seasons, started in March/spring and finished in August/summer. It's been such a joy, a pleasure in every way. Soothing, rhythmic, creative, exciting, fulfilling, fun. Every one of the 85 ripples has a streak of pleasure and happiness running through it. Spring and summer memories. It's that kind of blanket.
It's a bedroom blanket this one. I just love seeing it spread out on my bed, love when I walk past the bedroom door I catch an unexpected glimpse of it laid out there, rippling softly.
Love that I can go to sleep with it and wake up with it. Love that the colours also go beautifully with the jar of flowers currently by my bed :: a gift from Lovley C, a hastily picked bunch of soft, pastely sweet peas, vivid orange calendula, and deep cornflowers and cosmos, presented to me as I was about to leave her wonderful house and garden on Tuesday. They are the happy colours of a summer garden, coffee and flapjack, crochet and natter. And my blanket.
The Little People really, really like this blanket, which makes me so happy. I catch them creeping onto my bed and crawling under it. And in the evenings they politely request permission to bring it downstairs for a spot of cuddling up on the sofa. Which is precisely what handmade blankets are for.
I'm sorry the colour is sometimes slightly "off" in these photos as the light in my bedroom is not great. Really these colours are beautiful in real life. There was a time when I wasn't sure about my colour choices for this blanket. I started out with nine colours of Rowan Cashsoft yarn, which were mainly pastely blues/lilac/pinks, with the lime green and orange thrown in to provide zing. Now you know me by now don't you? Know that my natural tendancy is towards bright, strong, vivid colours. But as I did really want this blanket to be for my bedroom, I thought I would try a soft colour palette for a change. But yes, the inevitable happened :: after about 15 or so stripes, I was getting bored with the softness. I was finding it too dull. And it's very hard to work on a project which is giving off dull vibes.
So that's when I added in the Raspberry stripes. Do you remember I bought a couple balls of this when I visited London in March? Its a Debbie Bliss Cashmerino yarn and the addition of that bright reddy-pink colour made a Big difference. As I only had two balls of it, I had to space these stripes out evenly making only five altogether. But what a huge difference those five stripes have made to the overall tone of the blanket, don't you think? The regular spacing of the raspberry stripes was the only colour choice I made that wasn't random :: all the other stripes were randomly chosen as I went along. And I'm really, really pleased with the way it all panned out.
There's a lot to be said for buying yarn locally, for handling it, for arranging it all over the shop floor, and Rowan is my local yarn suppliers choice. Which is why I decided to use the Rowan yarn in the first place. But I've since found another small independent yarn shop about 8 miles away in another town which sells Rowan and Debbie bliss yarns side by side. Now theres a destination for Retail Therapy if ever there was one. So if I was to embark on a second ripple (which is highly likely), I'll go more with my natural instinct and choose bold, vivid Debbie Bliss colours I think.
The pattern for the ripple came from Jan Eatons book, and to me, it was a dream to work, although I know I've had one or two emails from people asking for help/advice about this pattern. Its the first few rows which are the hardest, when you have this long, dangling chain of loops and you're frantically counting and hooking and hoping it's all going to come right by the end of the row. But once you get going, it's easy to see the stitches, to see the rhythmic counting thats involved ::
one dc, one dc, one dc, 2dctog, 2dctog, one dc, one dc, one dc, 2dc's, 2 dc's, one dc, one dc, one dc
And so on. On and on and on, its the Rhthym of the Ripple. Nothing complicated folks, just simple stitches and simple counting, row after row after row, ripple after ripple after ripple.
So would you like some riveting facts about this here project of mine?
Ok, here you have it ::
Measures :: 110cm x 170cm
Starting chain :: 219 stitches
Stripes :: 85
Rows :: 170
Time :: approx 50mins each stripe = 4,250 minutes = 70.83 hours
Balls :: 29
Weight :: 1450g / 3.19670 lb
Cost :: £4.35 per ball = ermmmmmmm a LOT, but its a family heirloom, don't question.
Mileage :: 29 balls @ 130m each ball = 3770metres = 2.34 miles of yarn (!)
Photo :: me sitting on the stairs in my pyjamas, taken by Little Man one morning
Blanket :: gorgeous
Me :: happy.