After a marathon knitting session the past week, I finished the baby blanket. (I used a pattern from the Purl Bee for the chevron baby blanket.) A lot of other things got put on hold so that it would be ready by the time I left town for Christmas because I didn’t want to mail something so precious (read: sort of expensive and time consuming).
Now that it’s over, I can’t believe I made it. I mean, I know I did because I spent many hours knitting it and I ran out of yarn six rows too soon two days before my trip and the nice people at Purl Soho made a skein of yarn materialize out of nowhere to help me and I sent out text updates like “10 rows left!” to anyone who would listen. But when I look at it now, I don’t think about that. I think, wow, that’s beautiful. And it’s even more beautiful wrapped around my perfect, perfect niece.
I’m not a very experienced knitter. Before this blanket I think I just knew how to knit and purl. I could knit or purl two together, and I could maybe increase a stitch or two after looking up how to do it on youtube. But for this baby blanket I learned two new stitches (kfb and ssk). And that was all it took to make a chevron stripe and the biggest thing I’ve ever knitted.
This is why I love taking risks on bigger projects. When I started, it seemed impossible. I messed up a few times, and just kept going. And going, and going, and going. And when it seemed like I would be doing these two stitches for the rest of my days, suddenly I was done.
And now I’m ready to move on to a bigger blanket, or a few new stitches. Who knows where it will take me or what I can make next. I wasn’t even sure I could do this one.
But now that I’m one blanket smarter, I would do a few things differently the next time around. It turns out I knit looser than this pattern really intended. This means that I ran out of yarn faster (I used Purl Soho’s super soft marino), and because this pattern used a whole skein for each color of stripes, I ran out of yarn before I was finished with each section. After this happened the first time, I left out a garter row of my last stripe for every color. This kept me from running out of yarn, but it means that my stripes are of varying sizes. As I’ve said before, I’m no perfectionist, so this was ok by me.
But if I were to make this blanket again, I’d make each color stripe only three garter rows instead of four, and I’d go ahead and buy an extra skein of white yarn from the get-go. So if you’re a loose knitter (which I know now that I am), I’d recommend those modifications. Another thing I learned about knitting loosely is that you’ll end up with a slightly bigger blanket than the pattern indicates. So if you leave out some rows, that would make up some of the difference.
But even with uneven stripes, I think it’s about one of the best things I’ve made. If only because I made it for my brand new niece.
You can see previous progress on the blanket at baby blanket, baby blanket progress (4 inches), baby blanket progress (a note to baby girl), baby blanket progress (11 inches), and baby blanket (a lot of inches).
(I chose this project and paid for the yarn on my own. I’m not affiliated with Purl Soho–I’m just a fan.)