Crochet Blanket

A couple of months back, I decided to crochet a baby/toddler blanket for my expectant sister-in-law. As her and her husband decided to keep the baby’s gender a surprise, I set out on a search for gender-neutral-colored yarn. I found that most of the baby yarn primarily came in pastel colors; while cute, I wanted something a little bolder that would work well beyond the newborn stage - I figured if I was going to spend hours and hours hand-making a blanket, I wanted it to be used for more than a few months! (And I had a hard time imagining a three year old boy liking a pastel yellow blanket). So I decided on yarn by Vanna’s Choice (from Lion Brand); they had a beautiful, deep yellow color that seemed like it could work for either a little girl or a little boy. I also wanted both cream and brown accent colors to complement the yellow - only cream accents felt too feminine while only brown accents felt too masculine. I settled on the Mustard, Fisherman, and Taupe colors. I went ahead and bought all the yarn with matching dye lots that I could; I even had my husband drive me around to four different stores and nearly wiped out their selection! I didn’t want to get stuck without enough matching yarn, and I figured I could always return what I didn’t use.

I enjoy crocheting, but I am not a prolific crocheter. My husband had recently bought me a huge book of crochet stitches called The Complete Book of Crochet Stitch Designs - 500 Classic & Original Patterns by Linda P. Schapper[1] to try to encourage me in the hobby. So once I got home with all the yarn, I cracked open the book and tried out a few of the stitches - some were too “holey” for my taste and some were so tight that I was afraid of how long it would take to work into a full blanket. After experimenting, I went with the “clusters-inverted shells” stitch (#232) on page 184. I thought it looked beautiful and it was relatively easy (although I did have to learn the cluster stitch, thankfully Schapper’s book has a “Basic Stitches” section with instructions and helpful pictures for each type of simple stitch).

With my stitch chosen, I dove right in. I was aiming to make a 36" x 60" blanket, but was already at those dimensions by the time I decided to finish up with the Mustard (unfortunately, I don’t remember how many stitches across or how many rows I did of the Mustard in the end). I originally planned to use a different stitch for the Fisherman and Taupe borders, but decided to stick with the same stitch to keep the blanket from looking too busy (each border is two rows of the “clusters-inverted shells” stitch). I also added an additional Mustard border of three rows of single crochet in order to have a crisp, clean edge. The blanket ended up at 40" x 64" with all the borders, oh well! When all was said and done, me and my “J” sized crochet hook used ten skeins of Mustard (1,700 yards), one skein of Fisherman (170 yards), and just over one skein of Taupe (~190 yards), which meant I returned 18 skeins to the various stores!

I decided to give my sister-in-law the blanket at her baby shower, and ended up pairing it with a children’s book called The Biggest Story - How the Snake Crusher Brings Us Back to the Garden by Pastor Kevin DeYoung[2] (my husband and I read through the book together and loved how DeYoung presents a uniform story of God’s plan for the world from creation, through Christ’s death and resurrection, to today and Christ’s eventual return; plus the writing is very witty and the illustrations are beautiful!). When receiving the blanket at her baby shower, my sister-in-law seemed to really enjoy it and appreciated all the work that went into it. Hopefully they enjoy it for years to come. In the end, I would say all the trips to the store and all the hours of work were worth it!

  1. The Complete Book of Crochet Stitch Designs - 500 Classic & Original Patterns, Revised Edition by Linda P. Schapper, published by Lark Crafts ↩︎

  2. The Biggest Story - How the Snake Crusher Brings Us Back to the Garden by Kevin DeYoung, published by Crossway ↩︎

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