Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Baby Blanket

I made a baby blanket a few months ago.  Actually, I should say I finished a baby blanket a few months ago. I started it in 2007.  (Have I mentioned it takes me a while to finish some things?)

I have no idea if that little thing to hang the blanket by is useful, but I was excited to add it. 

When I was studying abroad in Germany in 2007, I bought some yarn.  I had a vague intention of crocheting a baby blanket.  I just really wanted to crochet some granny squares, the end result of which would likely be a small blanket.  I was not in any hurry as the eventual recipients were in the process of planning their wedding, not pregnant, and not expecting to be pregnant for several years.  However, even with that much of a head start, it was not finished by the time their child was born. Their darling little daughter was born August 1, 2012. I finished it around August 23.

I've never made a baby blanket.  I've never crocheted a blanket. I had no idea what I was doing.  I had chosen a nice gender neutral blue/green variegated yarn that I paired with a soft cream, but I only bought one skein of each.  By the time I had crocheted all the squares I would able to make, I knew it was going to be a bit smaller than I wanted. Also, what the heck was I thinking with using a soft cream for a baby blanket?!  Figuring out the pattern took a bit because while I like the white design, I figure it would be a magnet for juice spills.  Cranberry, not apple, of course.

Granny squares!  So many granny squares!

Several years ago when I was making tiny squares, someone questioned the wisdom of making something with tiny little holes that a tiny little child's fingers could get caught in.  I had not thought of this. I decided to back it with a coordinating fabric and tack down the crochet, then bind the edges with satin binding.  I loved edges as a child; my mom had to serge off the corners of my baby blanket because I chewed it off.

I actually had the majority of the blanket finished by the time the child was born. Turns out tacking down crochet takes forever.  First I went through with my machine and a loose stitch to tack down the edges of the squares. Depending on the color of the square, I used either a matching ivory or a silver/gray that that was in the same tonal range as the blues/greens. Then I went through each square to tack down the inner edges by hand. 

The tacking down of the blanket as seen from the back.

The tacking down is kind of ugly, so I used another layer of the flannel to hide it.  It was sewn to the piece of flannel that the crochet was tacked down on so if the binding ever needs to be replaced (which I expect, because babies love soft satin binding and the things they love go in their mouth), matching up layers is one less thing to worry about.  So with two layers of flannel and crochet, I'm going to call this a winter baby blanket. 

Green satin binding

I found some tutorial online to figure out how to sew on the binding.  I don't remember which one at all, I think I looked at several.