Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Finally, A Blanket!


Well, it only took seventeen months and thirty balls of yarn, but it's finally finished. It feels like it's been a really long journey. Do all blankets feel this exhausting to plan and make, or is it just me?

Here is it laid out on our bed in the spare room at my parents' house. 


 It began with squishy balls of wool...


...which became little circles-with-circles...


 ...until they became squares. I then spent an inordinate amount of time arranging them in various piles and patterns and photographing them.


Once the required number of squares (225) had been reached, they were arranged...


...sorted and labelled...


...joined in sections of 25...



...blocked...


...and then joined again until I had one large and VERY heavy blanket.

Honestly, all that thought and planning just to make a crocheted blanket look pleasingly random...the irony is not lost on me, I can tell you.



I had originally thought that it would go in our bedroom and wanted it to be big enough for our king size bed. It is just, just, big enough, but I think I'll probably end up keeping it on the back of the sofa throughout winter, as a throw. 


 Here it is on the back of Mum's sofa. (Yes, it is the same as ours. We bought ours first. Just saying.)


I do like it, very much, but at the moment I just think that I'm a bit sick of looking at it. I have worried continually that some of the colours are too dark, but I think overall it's ok. John really likes it, which is good and makes me feel happy. I can't wait to put it on our own sofa in our own house. 

*

Notes:

The yarn is Rowan Pure Wool DK worked on a 4 mm hook. In total I used about 30 x 50 g balls of yarn, although not all were finished up. There were sixteen different colours and the rest was cream and some black for the border. It measures 163 cm or 64 inches square and weighs 1.5 kg. (It has some serious heft to it, which I rather like. It's incredibly warm and it was such a pleasure working on it on cold days.) I joined the squares by crocheting them together on the wrong side, and the pattern is from Granny Squares by Susan Pinner although I did deviate from it slightly for the joining part.




85 comments:

Jennifer said...

It's beautiful. It's also a real labor of love, so much time and work went into it. I know it will look great anywhere you put it. You should be very proud of your creation.

Rachel said...

Wowzers! What an achievement! The blanket is beautiful, so very, very pleasing to look at, and it must be so cosy and snuggly too. This is all very good timing and inspiring as I have lost faith somewhat with a granny square blanket I am crocheting. I will pick up my hook and keep going, now!

LilyLindys said...

I think it is absolutely beautiful, you will fall in love with it again.... Speaking from experience it is sometimes an anticlimax reaching the end, and believe it or not you'll end up wanting to do another blanket!

Mrs Tiggywinkle said...

Such rich, warm, sumptuous colours. I love them. Well done, Gillian.

LindaSonia Anyname said...

Well done!! It's gorgeous and you've inspired me to make one for myself!!

Sarah - Red Gingham said...

It's perfect and I love the dark in the edging. Love it! You will love it too when you get over the amount of time you spent on it. Well done.

Mary said...

Absolutely gorgeous! I really like the white background for the beautiful colors of the "flowers".

Irina said...

it is beautiful!

Pam said...

I love it, the colours sing and I know that tune. My crochet blankets are on the sofas, I want to look at them every day and soak up the happy colours. They will end up on the beds as I have yarn for more, I am on a sewing kick right now.

VeggieMummy said...

It's so beautiful - well done for finishing it. You're also very lucky that your husband likes it too; mine tolerates my crocheted blankets at best! x

Librarian said...

It's lovely, and does not look too dark, what with the cream backdrop and many of the squares having yellow and other bright colours in them. You must be feeling very accomplished now!

driftwood said...

utterly beautiful x

Vintage Sheet Addict said...

Fantastic Gillian, not too dark at all, it's good to have different ones.....finished mine yesterday, no where near as complex as yours, but don't it feel gooooood! :) xxx

Taciana Simmons said...

Wow my dear friend... I have to say this is one fantastic, gorgeous, marvelous, beautiful blanket !!! And the more words I say the more comes to my mind. You did it! And 17 months may seem like an eternity but I know you will miss working of it and soon will start another one... It is addicting isn't ? I have no worlds other than absolutely fantastic, I cannot wait to see it in your own house. Hope you find your place soon ... Just the perfect one .

Jooles said...

Oh My ..... It's amazing! I remember being sick of seeing my crochet blanket by the end but give it a week or two and you'll be adoring it!
The colours are gorgeous too ..... you deserve a pat on the back for all that amazing work x
love Jooles x x x

Sarah said...

Oh, I do love that. All that work and time spent - you've created an heirloom! S x

Curlew Country said...

Ok? It's bloomin glorious! What a labour of love. I'm in complete admiration of such a joyous treasure you've created. And the colour combinations look perfect to me. Well done and enjoy it xx

KirstenLN said...

So beautiful!!! My first blanket was in Rowan pure wool DK, too - I recognize some of the colours. Wonderful quality!
I can't believe how many ends you had to darn in with this blanket design - understandable that you tire from it. I do hope though that you fall in love with it soon Again - it's a great job!

Hannah Taylor said...

So beautiful. I once made one that size (pre baby) and it took me a year. Nowvdays I think a blanket like that would take me 2 years!!!

Chickpea said...

Wow it beautiful! I love it! Well done you. Look on my blog in about 5 years and I may have finished mine x

Amy at love made my home said...

Beautiful!!!!! I love the colours, the size, the fact that it is heavy - amazing how heavy they are isn't it! - the border, the black row around the edge... Everything!! Can you tell I love it!! Well done you for such a great job and for keeping on with this. It is a big achievement, well done you!! It will be great to have a new blanket for your new home! xx

Gina said...

It is stunning and makes me want to get on and finish mine!

KittyKittyWeaselFish said...

Wow! Looks fabulous...I bet you're chuffed!

Col | Hello Olive Designs said...

It is absolutely exquisite! Well done Gillian! Although it looks lovely on the bed I'm glad you'll be using it in the living room, because that way other people get to see your beautiful blanket too! x

Samantha Roberts said...

Looks amazing, the colours are not too dark at all - the cream joining lightens it up. I know what you mean about mammoth task making blankets, and I don't like some of my longer projects when I first finish them, but once I stand back from them and they are not the total focus of my attention for a while, I fall in love with them again. And your blanket is well worth falling in love with! Happy house hunting by the way, Sam xx

Jackie said...

It's lovely Gillian ~ well worth the waiting for. I have just finished a blanket which has taken me just over three years! And I totally get where you are coming from wwhen you say you were a bit sick of looking at it! :O)x

❤Coco Rose❤ said...

It's a beautiful blanket Gillian, and one that I am sure will be well used and well loved over the years xxx

Christina said...

It is a beautiful blanket Gillian, I absolutely love the colours. Rowan pure wool is just the perfect yarn for such blanket, it will feel and smell perfect and have a wooly heaviness to it that just can't be achieved with anything else but pure wool. Just love it. I made a similar blanket but used dark grey to frame the colourful circles. It looks amazingly different. I also like your and your mums sofa, we are looking for a comfortable new one just now and are a tad undecisive. x

Joanne Wilson said...

It's beautiful, well done you. It really is a special blanket & I so want one now. The colours are just perfect. xx

Lucy B said...

It is really beautiful. Must be more determined to finish something myself x

Rachel Jaques said...

Oh that is just so beautiful, not too dark at all. I do like your process of sorting the squares into piles. I also work on a 'too much thought into being totally random' basis!

Stitches and Seeds said...

I also have an epic blanket project on the go. Over two years since I started it. I have made a bit of a push recently and can see the end in sight. Eleanor xx

Heather @ my little red suitcase said...

it looks gorgeous on that grey couch, watch out your Mum will want to keep it!...but yes such a process, but it is a family heirloom now. X

Leanne Paxton said...

Hey Gillian,
17 months!!!!! That's an amazing achievement. And I'm with John, it's a real beauty. You are so very clever.
Leanne xx

Jo said...

YAY!!! it is phenomenal, it really is, I am hoping to have the same feeling when I finish my patchwork quilt. You will love having that on your very own bed in your very own house. Happy hunting. Jo x

Maria said...

It looks gorgeous, well worth the time and effort! Once you get over the "sick of looking at it" feeling, I think you'll be very happy with it!
Maria x

Jacqueline said...

That really does look gorgeous and wherever you decide to put it in your new home it will look lovely.

Caroline South said...

It's beautiful Gillian, well done! The colours are all lovely, not too dark at all. It looks fab against the sofa. xx

Ali Whale said...

It's gorgeous and you are tenacious in getting it done. I'm with you on random, to get good random takes hours of thinking and planning - that's why I liked doing my rainbow baby blanket, I knew which colour came next. I can't ever see me making a blanket of this complexity, I just haven't the patience, I applaud you!

Ladybird Diaries said...

It's absolutely beautiful Gillian and the colours all work so well together. It will be perfect for your new home.
Marianne x

Pati from London said...

Absolutely gorgeous!! I have an ongoing blanket that's been on my basket for at least 2 years but I'm determined to finish it this year..... As all my other projects can't fit in the basket and are all over the place.... Good luck with your house hunting!! Pati xx

Brugsche mokke said...

Gorgeous, beautiful, phenomenal, lovely, well done, amazing, absolutely exquisite, fabulous,... This is just a summary of all the nice comments above !
Please continue inspiring us with your nice works of crocheting !
Annick

Julia said...

It is absolutely gorgeous, Gillian! I think the colors work so week together, and its not at all too dark. It looks really great on the grey sofa!

Julia said...

oops... (so "Great" together)

harknessangels said...

Absolutely gorgeous! It looks fantastic on your bed and on the back of the couch!

Marion Ogden said...

It's a beautiful blanket, Gillian. All your hard work and perseverance have paid off. Can't wait to see it on your sofa in your new house! x

Ingrid Orens said...

Oh Gillian, it is just simply gorgeous !!!

tangled_web said...

It's beautiful Gillian-well done! xxx

amanda peters said...

Lovely...
Amanda xx

Linda Gilbert said...

Well Gillian. I read your words and laughter out loud!!!!! My VERY BIG Elmer blanket is still unfinished. It was supposed to be king sized tool and I can't bear to look at it but it winks at me everytime I open the cupboard door where it's waiting !!!! Yours is gorgeous

Cleo Bonbon said...

That's beautiful! I'm about 3/4s of the way through a double bed sized blanket for the guest room. I've used the 'big blanket' pattern on Attic24 so it's 36 squares, each one is made up of 4 smaller squares-i feel your pain! Glad to see you are settling in your temporary home

Julie said...

I can only add my 'wow' and 'gorgeous' and 'beautiful' to everyone else's. I love the rich, warm colours and the single dark border is just right. It looks perfect against 'your' couch. x

Mereknits said...

Wow, it is amazing, such a beautiful creation and such a lot of work. Can you imagine counting the stitches?
Hugs,
Meredith

Gillian said...

Your blanket is stunning! It takes (a lot) more work to make something look random than sticking to a set scheme or pattern. I made a patchwork quilt and wanted to make it random. It took a lot of swapping about of tiny pieces of fabric to get it to look random. Well done on getting it all finished.

Penny Miller said...

What a huge project, but so worth it. It has turned out beautifully, and will become part of your home forever now. Lovely X

Sally A said...

Worth every minute. I would love to do something similar myself but there is no way I would want to sew all those ends in so I am sticking with rows of trebles for now.

A Little Blue Dragonfly said...

Amazing, amazing! What a beautiful end result to be rewarded with after so much work! I love the happy colors you chose. *hugs* :)

galant said...

Brilliant! Just brilliant!
Margaret P

SaraJ said...

It's all been said really - but it really is a wonderful blanket, which I am sure will be treasured for years to come. A beautiful make for your new home. x

Tracey said...

as I can see everyone thinks the same, it really is a beauty! Can we put in orders please!! :) x

CJ said...

It's absolutely gorgeous Gillian, clever you. I love the colours, and I love their arrangement, you have got it just right. It will be around for a very long time I think, I know it will be treasured. I'm intrigued by the crocheting together on the wrong side, it sounds a genius way of joining. When I knit things I absolutely loath joining the seams, and that's put me off making a crochet squares blanket a little bit. But I think I might like joining it with crochet, and it certainly looks beautifully finished. CJ xx

Xelenacrochets said...

Congrats! This is a beautiful blanket! I like it on the sofa better.

Joeyanna said...

The is so beautiful!! It's perfect! Well done! Oh and you and your mum have great taste in sofas :)

the linen cloud said...

So beautiful Gillian. A marathon, not a sprint! When are you starting the next one ;)? Bee xx

Joyful said...

It's beautiful! I too am making a crocheted blanket for the first time. It will fit a double bed and so is a lot more work than I really bargained for. I did very well making most of it within 2 months then set it aside for over a year! I hope to pick it up and finish it soon. I hope it will look as lovely as yours. Well done for your efforts and I'm sure it will give you many happy and warm times ahead. x

Jacquie said...

Hi Gillian, I LOVE your blanket. It's just beautiful. I'm sure it will be well loved and well used for many years.
Jacquie x

Susan Smith said...

Lovely Gillian and I'm sure all hat effort has been worthwhile. Hope the househunting is going OK. Take care.

Wainwright and Wright.Co said...

It's beautiful, and I think the colours are generally darker but I like that, they contrast better with the white. And having it on the sofa means you can all use it and admire it much more often than if it was in your bedroom. Well done on completing it!

michelle smith said...

It was worth the wait Gillian ,its beautiful x

mags said...

It's magnificent. I love watching antique programmes and looking at the amazing craftsmanship and wonder what will the antiques be that are worth keeping from these times, well your blanket will be one of them. It's an heirloom and I'm sure one of your lucky grandchildren will be enjoying it in a 100 years time. Well done you. Xx

madewithloops said...

Gillian it's stunning! It is obvious how much love and work has gone into it, but it's been so worthwhile. The result is stunning and will surely become an heirloom.
If you ever make another one this is a good tool for random square distribution:
www.crochet-square-colors.com
I use it when designing these types of blankets for commissions.
Good luck with your house move, Heike xx

love those cupcakes said...

'Tis a joy to behold.

Annie Cholewa said...

It's stunning, and delightfully random, and not at all too dark anywhere, and entirely covetable. Well done you x

Helene said...

From where I'm standing the colours are perfect. What a crazy amount of work! Well done, it's stunning!

Curvywitch said...

Moving house and finishing a blanket! Now that's what I call taking the New Year by the horns, I feel most inadequate and 'must do better'. It looks wonderfully warm and looks great on the sofa. Can't wait to see it on show at the new house. Good luck with the house hunting.

Lisa said...

What an achievement. It's totally gorgeous. I look forward to seeing it on your sofa in your new home, it will look perfect,
Lisa x

Sandra (Cherry Heart) said...

Oh wow, you did it!! Yay, well done you! It's fabulous too, really fabulous. I love a few darker colours in a blanket, they give it a depth and richness I think and your looks wonderful. Just perfect on the sofa and lovely on the bed, and folded too, with just the right amount of randomness. A real art to the pleasingly random effect, it does take effort you're right! Anyway I hope you feel justly proud of yourself, you conquered the magnificent beast! Now you get to enjoy it! ;)

S x

Helen said...

It's gorgeous! It looks so unbelievable cosy and warm, just perfect for the current weather and it's so pretty too! x

Alison said...

Well done Gillian, you should feel very proud of that blanket, it's gorgeous xx

A little happy place said...

Gillian I am in awe...your blanket is truly beautiful! It is everything that one day I hope to crochet! xo

Kate-Em said...

This is beautiful. You must be so proud.

Andrea said...

So lovely....inspiring me (when winter comes) to finish the blanket I have in progress....Right now the beach is calling though :)

A little bit country said...

Ohhh, my heart skipped a beat when I saw this....beautiful xo

goosefairy said...

Oh I love love LOVE this blanket! I especially like your idea of joining them in groups of 25, blocking, then joining those blocks. I will keep this in mind when I do my own.

Nicole said...

I don't think it's too dark at all, it will go lovely on your sofa just like your mums. You obviously have good taste for her to get one too ;-)

Unfortunately (for me at least) blankets are also an absolute mission. I've got one on the go, I don't even want to know when I started it!