March 19, 2011
Two Great Tastes that Taste Great Together
Ever since I started working on seaming my mitered blanket, I've been dreaming about the next blanket that I'm going to make with all the leftover Tahki Cotton Classic I have. It has to be something that will utilize A LOT of color - after all - I used 85 different colors in the mitered blanket and I have leftovers of everything, not to mention a bunch of colors that I never used at all!
I've always known I was going to do a much more structured blanket - at least colorwise. My fantasies have always been about a blanket that is laid out in the ROY G. BIV rainbow and has always had some kind of play on close color tones that sit next to each other.
And after seeing a few quilts out in the Internets, both knitted and sewn, I knew that the background palette for all the color would be an off white.
At first I was seduced by hexagons - lots and lots and lots of hexagons. My idea was to do a pair of colors - two blues or two reds or two oranges - just a bit off from each other - and then surround them in white. I started knitting it a few different ways but never loved it and I was too involved in all that seaming to really commit.
Then I saw a gorgeous Log Cabin blocks by Julie and the hexagon blanket was suddenly dead to me! I would do four sides in different colors - again all similar in color but off in tone - and then frame them in white! Perfect! Once again, there was a lot of planning involved and I was still deep in the seaming madness of the miters and I didn't fully commit.
Then Kay, my guru in all things quilt-like and knit, posted about this fabric log cabin cross quilt and how she was going to turn it into a knit blanket and it was like being hit in the face - in a good way! I was completely entranced. I had to knit this - it was PERFECT for what I wanted to do! Each "arm" of the cross would be in a different yet similar color and the background would be white and I would do each block in it's own ROY G. BIV fabulousness and WHAM! There it was.
How to knit it though. I preordered the book figuring by the time I would have it in hand I might be closer to starting to knit (still a TON of seaming to do!) But this blanket would NOT shake me and after a couple of comments to Kay about being super psyched to knit this, I couldn't contain myself anymore and called to beg for the pattern. How happy am I that I did!
Kay has released The Mitered Crosses Blanket pattern just today! The pattern by itself is fabulous, but to make it extra fantastic, all proceeds from the sale will go to help Japan as they recover from the earthquake and tsunami.
Now, I know my talents and my limits and while I can put colors together like nobody's business, I don't have the skills to figure out how to knit shapes and put them together and construct them and make them fit like they were meant to be. But Kay does. I'd like to think that my part in all of this was to say how do I knit this and then her brain took off and knit it!
I was lucky enough to knit a block along with Kay and it's just a flawless pattern. Miters are knit on to each other (no seams!!) and then you log cabin a frame and it's beyond perfect for what I want to do with my left over yarn. Beyond perfect. What could possibly be better than miters AND log cabin?! It's the Reese"s Peanut Butter Cup of knitting! As you can see in the square above, I'll be using four similar colors for the cross, framed by linen white.
The fun part now is to go through all the colors and put them together in groups of four. There may or may not be some other rules - like the last miter in one square will be the first miter in the next square. Not sure I want to repeat any colors though. I will definitely be supplementing my colors - there are not enough yellows or oranges or reds. I'm thinking it will be a twenty block blanket - at least two blocks for each ROY G. BIV color with some neutrals thrown in as well (a block of browns in between the reds and oranges and maybe a block of grays after the violets.) They will be laid out in rainbow order as well.
Hopefully soon I'll get some time to go through the yarn and organize it and try to figure out some color numbers and such. My test block is almost perfect - once I was finished I decided I needed to reknit it on 5s instead of 6s and I think I'm going to be much happier. I'm going to love planning this, knitting this, finishing this - everything about it! And it fits perfectly into the knitting I'm able to do right now - small, portable - perfect for what will most likely be a long summer.
I'm still working on the mitered blanket! I have one strip completely seamed and I'm working on the next row:
The picture does not do this blanket justice. Even with only one strip done, I can't believe how gorgeous it's going to be! And big. Very, very big.
I'm sad it's been over a month since I blogged last. Life has been kicking my ass. Sleep deprivation (no, my kids still don't sleep through the night and yes, my oldest just turned 3!) is killing me and my anxiety lately has been in overdrive. I'm taking steps to get them to sleep - especially the 3 yr old - and things are looking promising. But I still feel pretty lousy. It just invades your life in ways you wouldn't expect. Pushes all my buttons. And today our computer died. Just as I was about to start processing a new job. Fun times. At least now I'll have plenty of time to knit.
The mitered blanket is going to be one hunk of gorgeous! I like the new squares idea too!
Posted by: Kay L at March 19, 2011 11:10 PM
Beautiful blanket. See, I'm not usually swayed by blankets. They're nice and all, but I'm in the desert, we don't have a lot of use for lots of wool blankets. I'm not sure why I clicked the ravelry link, but I did...and read these small words: "Would love to see this in other yarns, including a teeny sock-yarn version" and I was hooked! I have a sock yarn blanket (shelly kang's version) and I love it. Love it so much that I started another, now I'm a bit bored w/it, but love the bursts of color that the blankets make...so yeah, bought this one... :D Thanks for sharing! ;)
Posted by: Tammy at March 20, 2011 12:49 AM
I'm sure you'll get lots of unsolicited advice on how to help Meli sleep through the night, so here's mine.What worked for me was making those interlocking construction paper circle things (a chain). I made one ring and taped it to the ceiling. Every time DD slept through the night, I would add another ring (so it hung closer and closer to the floor.She understood that the goal was to get so many rings on the chain that once it touched the floor, she would get a reward. We only made the chain once, and it worked great. Good luck!
Posted by: Jocelyn at March 20, 2011 10:25 AM
I'm not a fan of the Noro, so I am thrilled to see your version in cotton. I love cotton for blankets! Fascinating how this simple pattern of crossed works with your desire for roygbiv color inspiration. And the "wrong side" is also attractive. Do you think you will sew your blocks together? My mitre blanket sprouted many holes so I think I need reinforced seams - maybe single crochet?
Posted by: Angela at March 20, 2011 11:38 AM
Kay's new blanket is just what you wanted! I can't believe Meli is 3!!! Seriously, where did the time go? love you!!
Posted by: margene at March 20, 2011 12:23 PM
I love your iteration of Kay's new pattern- the tonal cross is just wonderful. And the mitered on is so beautiful, it makes me want to knit another one.
(and, sorry you'r not feeling great. That no sleep thing is awful)
Posted by: gale (she shoots sheep shots) at March 20, 2011 12:58 PM
So good to "hear" from you, however intermittent. The Mitered Crosses Blanket pattern grabbed me too when I saw it on Kay's post. I'm sure yours will be spectacular - you have a way with color. Looking forward to reading about your progress.
And good luck w/the kids sleeping. It will change your life.
Posted by: Elle at March 20, 2011 01:40 PM
longtime lurker emerging to say that I've missed your blog, so happy to see that you are updating it again! I love your blankets and I love TCC and I love Kay Gardiner and I especially love garter stitch so this has been a great day so far! I've already bought the pattern, caught up on your bloglife and can't wait to get started on my own blanket!
Debbie in Charlottesville
Posted by: Debbie at March 20, 2011 02:17 PM
Is this a difficult knit?
Your mitre is incredibly gorgeous. So glad you're finishing it. It should go on tour as an example of a beautiful use of color! Bravo.
Posted by: Sandy at March 20, 2011 02:40 PM
I can't wait to follow you as you knit another blanket. This is a gorgeous one.
Posted by: Joan at March 20, 2011 03:56 PM
I love it when you get a new obsession. Lately mine has been beads instead of knitting but when I read this and Kay's post, I start wanting to make another blanket. I, too, have leftovers from the first mitered square blanket and need to use them. Keep posting. You'll get me going yet.
Posted by: SallyA at March 20, 2011 08:01 PM
Love your posts even if they are intermittent. I was so happy to see that you have returned to the blog; I (and many others, I'm sure) have missed you!
Love the new blanket and the combo of miters and log cabin. I did not need a new obsession but I think I've just found one.
Posted by: Lynn at March 21, 2011 12:06 AM
Not getting emails. This is a test!
Posted by: Cara at March 21, 2011 10:43 AM
Love it!! That is going to be one GORGEOUS blanket when it's done! I am so sorry that both your comp died AND you are sleep deprived... i hope you find your "zen" in knitting!! AND I have an extra BR in case you want to escape to SF!! ;-) COME!!
Posted by: margaux at March 21, 2011 10:24 PM
LOVE the knitted crosses! And you started with PURPLE. Be still my heart.
Posted by: Juliefrick at March 23, 2011 09:18 AM
Quilt bonanza! They are both going to be beautiful. And thanks for mentioning Kay's pattern to aid Japan. The more she sells, the better.
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