Hello, hello!! I am so hugely thrilled about sitting here to write todays post, to be sharing some exciting (well exciting for me) blankety business with you all.
I took these first two photographs on Sunday I think it was, after the Little People had been hanging out on the sofa watching tv during the weekend. The Granny and the Hex blankets as you know are always around in this room, but Little Man especially adores the Ripple and often comes to ask nicely if he can bring it down from where it lives on my bed.
I love that these three blankets I've made during the last year and a half have become so much a part of our family life. Love that they are loved and used and appreciated.
I do believe that I shall always be making blankets, one after the other. I just love it so. I love the whole big process of creating a blanket, from the first beginnings of an idea, through the making process,and finally the ongoing pleasure of the finished article. It's pleasure all the way.
Now that I have learnt how to make mosaics of my photographs, I've been having a lot of fun with this idea. I made the above image a few weeks ago, they are all flowers that have appeared on my blog during the past year...and don't they just look so scrumptious? I was thinking of my favourite flowers, and favourite flower colours when I started planning this new blanket. I was thinking mmmmmm how lovely it would be to create a blanket that was like looking at a summer garden. Where the colours would remind me of roses and nasturtiums, of sweet peas and cornflowers, sweet williams and geraniums. And so slowly, slowly, the beginnings of a design was born.
The blankets I've made so far have all had a fair amount of randomness about them. Each one started with a pool of coloured yarns and then evolved quite spontaneously into different coloured squares, stripes, hexagons. But amongst this randomness, each of my blankets also has a small "constant" in it's design :: the granny squares had the green edging round each block, the ripple had the evenly spaced raspberry stripes, and the hexagon blanket had it's yellow centres. But apart from these decisions, all other colour selections were random.
And I do love randomness. I like the excitement of choosing colours on the hop, of not knowing quite how it's going to pan out when all the randomness finally comes together as a whole. I more or less know that so long as I start out with the right combination of colours, then random will work out. It will, I always have faith.
Anyhow, back to the point Missy Lucy, I am rambling I do appologise. So yes, the design for this new blanket :: it formed itself in my whirly gig brain quite distinctly one day at the end of last year, and I immediately went to Little Man's coloured pencils and drew it out on paper. I was thinking flowery circles inside squares, like flowers growing in a neat, organised potager garden. And I knew that I wanted the colours to be quite organised for this blanket, for the random element of colour to be contained in a calm, ordered, harmonious whole. Because this is going to be a big blanket, a big square double bed sized blanket. And it needs to be calm and harmonious because I shall be sleeping with it every night and quite honestly I cannot have it screaming at me like the hexagon blanket did. It would keep me awake!
Playing with colour combinations is something that gives me enormous pleasure, it drives my creativity in all things. I find such joy in colour, it's hard to describe in words, but I'm sure you know if you've been reading my blog how it is for me. How over excited I get over using colour creatively, its that buzzy, heart-flipping, jittery, squeeealy kind of excitement, it's that feeling that kind of makes me want to go ooooooeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!
This yarn, these colours, I am in love with it all. I keep wanting to stick my face into my yarn bag just to kind of snaffle it up. It was a real luxury purchasing so much yarn in one swoop, its the first time I've ever bought yarn this way. It was a bit stomach churning paying for it all at once, but hey, I am over that hurdle, I jumped it and cleared it with surprising ease. Sure, I've not yet fessed to husband how much exactly thirty balls of yarn cost, that's gonna be interesting when that conversation rolls around. But it had to be done, I had no choice. I had practically been down on my knees in the yarn shop last week, begging the owner to order this yarn in for me when originally they refused. I told them how much I loved their shop, how I would so much rather give them my money than some faceless internet yarn provider. They were eventually persuaded, but it was a big decision for them because as Rowan sells to shops in packs of ten, it meant they had to order in 130 balls of yarn in order for me to take my 30. So they did me a huge favour, and in return, I gave them my money up front. And my heartfelt thanks.
For this blanket I wanted to use granny squares again because I adore making them and they are fast and super-whizzy for me now, I can practically do them with my eyes shut. But I didn't want normal granny squares, no, I wanted to try and make them look like
circles-in-squares, like flowers.
I couldn't find a pattern I liked. I searched the
internet, I searched and searched. I tried some sunburst granny
squares, but oh too complicated! So in the end, I made my own pattern. Do you like it? I am extremely pleased with it, it's a joy to make, and so simple. And it creates the exact visual impression that I was after, of a flower blooming. At a slightly later date I'll be sharing the pattern here on my blog, just in case you might want to create your own flower garden.
So this is how it is coming along so far :: I am making four small squares and crocheting them together, then adding three rounds of "grannying" round the outside, ending in white.
The colours for the first two flower rounds are randomly chosen, as are the two outer purply-pink rounds. The other blue/green colours will remain the same to provide the "constant", as well as the edging in white. I've not ever used white in my crochet before, and I was unsure about it at first. But I think it's going to work well and will help to hold all the colour together.
I only began work on this on two days ago when the yarn took up residence, and I'm really thrilled with how pleasurable it is to make these big blocks. It has it's small challenges, but overall I am truly loving it. I'm planning on making thirty six of these big blocks altogether, so that's two down and thirty four to go.
And finally, a thought I wish to share about the business of blanket-making. It occurred to me yesterday that crocheting is one of those hobbies that one can do so easily and happily in complete isolation, yet sharing it somehow makes it a million-gazillion times more fun.
So can I say here and now, a huge ((Thank you)) for providing me with the most perfect sharing-opportunity, and for upping the fun-element for me. I am so grateful for your interest and enthusiasm, it means a lot.
XXXXX thank you XXXXX