It’s time for the inundations of crocheted baby blankets to begin!
If there is anything better than being pregnant with a much-beloved little one, it’s being pregnant with one of your very best friends and her much-beloved little one! A dear friend of mine, with whom I’ve gone through so much over the years, found our life paths on the same track once again as we’re welcoming new babies into the world. Miles was born a wee bit early, and I’m coming around my final month here, but we’re still delighted to be going through these happy times together. And of course, I promised that I would make baby Miles a crocheted baby blanket all his own. He’s already been in this world a few weeks, and I’m a little late, but I finally finished it up the other day and it is filled with stitches of love for him and his mama too! (And next I really need to get working on finishing up all these crocheted lovelies for my babe!)
I don’t remember when I came across this pattern on Ravelry, but it was right around the same time that I found Caron’s Simply Soft Ombre and picked a few colors up. The pattern seemed to fit perfectly with the softly shifting hues, and I started to experiment with the pattern and yarn together. The pattern seemed to create itself, and it kept the entire project interesting and vibrant. The colors that I used were the only ones available at the store at the time (though now that I’m looking online, I see a few other colors I would have liked to have added – oh well!), and those colors I used are Avocado, Rosewood, Stormy Weather, and Teal Zeal, along with the same off-white color I’m using for the 2016 bamcal. (Find them here on Amazon if they’re not at your local Joann’s).
The pattern is one of the mixed-stitch stripe blankets that I really enjoy making. This one is called Fantasy Blanket by Ana Contreras and can be found as a free Ravelry download here. The instructions are very clear and charted as well as written, which I tend to prefer, so it worked out nicely for me. And the variety in color makes it look like I used a lot more color than just five yarns, which also saved me the effort of having to weave in a million ends (though I still spent a solid few hours doing just that anyway!) I didn’t follow the pattern perfectly – I added a few extra rows here and there, and altered the height on the repeats of dc. But I do think I kept the essence of the pattern in tact.
I wanted to add a bit of a special touch to the border, and to make something that was a little less lacy, so I decided to go with a random edging pattern that I found while browsing. This is called simply, Edge for Fleece Baby Blankets (Unisex Style) by Arina Purcella and featured a variety of options in creating it. I went with the minimum along with a bit of green at the very edge, and I really like how it turned out. The free pattern for the border can be found here.
For those who have asked before, one of my secrets for getting such a straight border up the sides of these kinds of crochet work is to work a couple of rows of slip stitches on the jagged sides (the ends that are woven in). As you can see in the photo above, I started with one row of loose slip stitches (I actually went up two hook sizes to make certain that it wasn’t too tightly stitched) and then across the top and bottom, I used a blo sc stitch, so as to keep the stretch in the horizontal pull. Then into the blue slip stitch/sc, I worked another round of off-white slip stitches (and sc’s). Finally, I started the border into the back loop of the second slip stitch round. This avoids the messier look of working stitches directly into the ragged edges and also allows you to straighten up any overly loose or tightened ends by making sure that the first slip stitch line is straight. It takes a little bit of extra effort, but it’s well worth it, in my opinion!
Anyway, this blanket is off to its new home in order to wrap baby Miles up in warmth, love and a lot of color! And now, with just a few weeks left to go (if I make it a few more weeks that is), I have a bunch of baby projects to finish up! Stay tuned.