Blanket happiness

I haven’t blogged about anything crafty for a while now, so I thought it’s about time I slotted something in. It’s not for lack of activity – as per usual with me there has been a whole lot of activity happening that I simply haven’t had time to put together into a post.

I’m really long over due for a catch up – I think I must have finished knitting two sweaters and one cardigan since I last blogged about anything crafty, but I’m so behind I haven’t event gotten around to taking photographs of most of it!

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I’m actually going to go in reverse order I think, and talk about something I’ve just begun this weekend, rather than sharing the things I’ve already completed – typical me, rushing ahead to the next thing already!

I’ve actually taken the probably unwise step of letting myself work on 2 blanket projects at the same time. It’s been a while since I’ve tackled a blanket – I think the last one I completed was my summery ripple, last year.

The first and most recent blanket which I’ve been working on is a granny stripe, the beginnings of which are shown in the picture above. I actually only started working on this this bank holiday weekend. It was inspired by my recent Cornwall holiday. Given my colour choices this may be a surprise, but it’s actually inspired by the Cornish coast.

stripecolours
The reason I say this may be a surprise is because looking at my colour choices, I think I probably haven’t chosen shades you might typically associate with the coast. You might, not unreasonably, expect a coastal inspired creation to feature more shades of blue and perhaps a little gold and yellow thrown in to represent sandy beaches?

I wouldn’t disagree with you, and indeed, not long after I’d started on this blanket I stumbled across Lucy of Attic 24’s coastal ripple from a few years ago, which very much contains those kinds of colours – you can see her post about it here. My own coastal blanket is pretty different, colour-wise I think. Don’t get me wrong, I think Lucy’s is lovely. It just struck me when I came across her post how differently we can all see things and how much fun that makes life.

My own coastal inspiration has pink in it, and no yellow. Maybe if I tell you that this colour palette was inspired by the following views it might start to make sense:

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Do you see the same kinds of things I see looking at the above snaps? I see pinks, lavendar purple, silvery shades of grey as well as rich and vibrant blues and greens…

Also some of the inspiration can from the beautiful colours on the inside of this shell, which I bought for a few pounds in St Ives:

Shellinspiration

 

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I’m not sure what you might think of my colour choices – I have a feeling they may be something of an acquired taste, at least in the beginning. But I’m hoping that as the blanket grows they will acquire a sort of harmony, with the stronger shades of blue, green and pink being set off by the softer pinks, lilacs and greys. Would love to know what you think of my choices – like them or not? What colours do you think of when you think of the coast?

J xx

Roses granny square progress

My granny blanket is progressing slowly…very slowly (or at least it seems that way!).

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So far I’ve made it to 14 x 13 rows of small granny squares. The amount of ends I will have to fasten off at the finish is terrifying…and the blanket still looks teeny to me!

Rosesblanketprogress

It just seems to be growing at a snails pace. 13 x 14 rows of squares means I have made 182 squares so far, and I feel like it needs to be at least twice as big to be of a decent size. Is it ok to admit as a crochet blogger that I am kinda sick of granny squares right now?! Well I am!

Roses granny square blanket

I may have to put this to one side for a little and come back to it when I’ve got over my granny square inertia. Either that or I’ll have to consider making this small granny square square the centre of the blanket and giving it a really deep border make up of rows of granny square stitching going right the way around. It wasn’t my original plan for this blanket, but…Hmmm. I think I’ll mull it over for a little while while I work on something different. Maybe I should work up another one of those mats which I showed in a recent post, with the lacy edging. I was asked about a pattern for that and have been meaning to share some details. I will try and do it soon, promise! I am just too lazy and procrastinate-y at the moment.

Apart from that I’ve been enjoying the end of summer. We’re in the middle of a mini heat wave here this week, 30 degrees. I’ve also treated myself to a little sparkly something, from a local store.

Sparkly

I love costume jewellery and I love finding things in independent stores rather than the big chains. I don’t know why, but the kinds of things I see there are so much more me than most of what you find in the high street names. Independents seem to stock more delicate, classic things as opposed to on trend stuff. I am really not a trendy person and have no pretension or desire to be!

dressingtable

Have a great end to your week, enjoy the sun!

Summery ripple throw

Finally I have managed to finish something! It feels like an extra achievement as it is a large something too. Yup, yesterday I stitched the final stitches and weaved in the final trailing ends on my ripple throw. It doesn’t really have a name, but the colours seem very summary to me so…summery ripple throw it is.

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I blogged about making this throw a little while ago, with details of the yarns I used, so I won’t repeat myself again here. I also mentioned before that I haven’t historically been a fan of Stylecraft Life, but I have to say that the experience of making this blanket and using the yarn again has really changed my mind.

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Having reached the end of this blanket and feeling very pleased with the result and value for money, I think I am a convert to the Stylecraft way, especially Stylecraft Life. I did use a combination of Stylecraft Life and Stylecraft Special – Life being a wool mix DK and Special being 100% acrylic. Somewhat to my surprise as I am a big fan of using natural fibres as much as I can, I really preferred the Stylecraft Special. Strangely I found the Life DK to feel a bit thinner than the Special, and overall I preferred the Special texture – it seemed to be more felty, and slightly thicker which I like for the purposes of making a blanket. Also I think Special comes in a larger range of colours than Life, which is good as I find I am becoming very picky in my colour choices and combinations!

That brings me on to the other big plus point of Stylecraft Special which is the huge colour palette. I only used a handful of the selection available in this project, but I have totally fallen in love with some of the colours. I particularly loved the new ‘Duck Egg’ and ‘Storm Blue’ shades, but also the neutrals in Parchment, Cream and Silver. I suspect these colours will feature in many future projects.

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I’ve been really happy with the colour choices I made for this project – I think the overall effect is soothing with a few shots of bright colour in the pinks and Sage green that just perk the whole thing up. Looking at it makes me think of summer seas with the blue-green colours and a lovely sunset above with the pinks and greys. I think another reason for my not falling totally in love with Stylecraft Special when using it before was that I had only really used the brighter shades. There aren’t any yarn shops near me that stock Stylecraft so I always had to choose shades and buy online, which is not great if you want to be picky about colour like me. For whatever reason in the past I somehow didn’t manage to pick my colours very well, resulting in my overall impression of the available shades on Stylecraft Special being that they were all a bit harsh and bright for my taste.

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However, this time I think I can safely say I got it right for my taste! I also now have a better idea of which other shades in the brand I am likely to like, so I’m already planning another blanket project.

Altogether I am dead chuffed with the result on this one, please forgive me if I sound a little braggy! Oh yeah, and apologies for the slightly blue-ish light in the photos – the light here is pants at the moment, the sun is not to be seen (whatever happening to Flaming June?!).

Now where is that tiny squares cushion I started….

 

p.s. This is not a sponsored post, I just wanted to share my new found Stylecraft love!