My Comfort Blanket

My Comfort Blanket

Published by Michelle on 23rd Jul 2020

Right at the beginning of lock down, I sat down to knit socks on a Sunday but I could not settle to them.  I wasn't enjoying the yarn I was knitting with but that wasn't the problem, I've knit through yarn I haven't liked before.  I could have picked up another project or just cast on another pair of socks but my heart wasn't in the knitting!

I started some ‘busy work’… sorting through my pile of knitting magazines, cutting out the patterns I wanted to keep and recycling the rest. I mean, who really does that when they could be knitting! Then I started organising my knitting book shelf and my sock yarns … but there was a block… my yarn remnants … all those quarter balls of sock yarns, the ends of hats, the ends of sample balls … I knew it was time to do something about them!

I need colourways in all of these combos!

I got my 7mm needle tips (based on a 6mm being the starting size for chunky and I figured 4plyx* 3 would be chunky-ish), a long cable (150cm) and just cast on, holding the yarn triple. I worked out that I had plenty of golds and oranges and thought if I held them with a pale and with a dark, I’d get a relatively even look, or a faded look.

I cast on enough stitches to just cover the big circular needle I was using. 275 stitches as it turned out. I slipped the first stitch purl wise with the yarn at the back for every row to get a nice slipped edge.

I can never get enough of a slipped edge

I decided to just change a colour when I ran out of another. I did this by working until one of the three balls had about 5 inches of yarn left, I then got the next ball and joined that in so that I was knitting with 4 strands – the new yarn, the two yarns I was continuing with and the yarn I was about to run out of. I kept knitting all of the yarns together until I ran out of the fourth yarn and then continued with the new yarn in its place. This will mean that I can just clip off my ends rather than sew them in (I think …)!

Will they ever be sewn in?

For the last who-knows-how-many-weeks, every time I wanted to knit but can’t settle, I have continued knitting the blanket. I’m so glad I made it. I feit comforted by it. It’s helping clear out my stash and becoming something useful – this cold blooded creature always needs a blanket!  My yarn drawer is definitely tidier. As I write this, I am just about to finish the cast-off.

If you fancy making your own, the following is a quick guide but if you need any help, pop over to the TLYC Facebook Group!

To make your own

  1. Gather all of your 4 ply yarn ends
  2. Work out how many stitches to cast on
    • Using size 7mm needles, and the yarn held triple (three strands) cast on 20 stitches. (I used a loose cable cast-on)
    • Knit (garter-stitch) until you have knit for two inches (No need to knit more as row gauge doesn’t matter, you just keep knitting)
    • Measure how wide your piece of knitting is. Don’t do this too close to the cast on edge
    • Work out how many stitches you have per inch/cm (Divide 20 stitches by width of your knitting)
    • Decide how wide you want the blanket to be in inches/cm
    • Multiple the width you want by the number of stitches you have per inch. This is your cast on number of stitches
  3. Cast on the number of stitches you have calculated
  4. Work in garter stitch until the blanket is the length you want, changing colours every time you run out of a single colour (change using the method described above). Slip the first stitch of each row purl wise with the yarn in back to get a nice slipped edge
  5. Cast-off (I’m using a modified version Jen’s surprisingly stretchy cast-off, the video is on the TLYC Facebook Page)

I’ll probably cast on another one to eat up all my other yarn ends but first I am going to have to get comfortable that it will have to be a lot less even! Perhaps if I make bags of each yarn weight and then pick one out every time I need one and have no control at all … I’ll let you know how that goes!

It weighs 3.2kg!

Stay safe x

M.x

Worried you won’t have enough yarn? Just make more socks ; ) Visit the sock shop here!

Care note: I am not going to block mine and will spot clean it. I can’t machine wash it as I know I have some non-superwash yarn in there. If you want to be able to machine wash it, use only machine washable yarns and wash your swatch to see how that goes. I am not sure how successful machine washing a multi-stranded project would be.

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