Way back in January 2014 I set myself a challenge to learn more about crochet and I figured the best way to do that was to take part in a BAMCAL (Block A Month Crochet Along) over on Ravelry. I joined a group called ‘Crochet a block a month in 2014’ and I was excited. Super excited!
I chose my inspiration – Living by the sea I have come to love all the colours of the beach. The sand, the sea and the beach huts! This photo of a row of beautiful huts was taken by my my cousin over at Sam and Louise on our local beach and I love it. So I decided to use pastel beach hut colours with some sea and sand as the base for my colour palette.
I chose my yarn and colours – After following Attic24 and seeing her beautiful blankets I knew I wanted to use Stylecraft Special DK for my creation. And with so many colours to choose from the perfect selection was there somewhere. I went through the Stylecraft collection and settled on these beautiful colours for my blanket. Next step was ordering them so that I’d be ready to start come 1st January 2014.
And that was it. I didn’t need to choose the squares or patterns to use. Each month in the group we were given links to free patterns for two 12-inch squares and two 6-inch squares (I made a few of these and joined them together as a 4-patch). So, at the end of every month I would have three gorgeous large squares to add to my blanket. And in 12 months the blanket would be beautiful!
However, this was where I learned about weights of yarn and that different weights make different sized squares. It was only after the first month that I realised most of the patterns given in the BAMCAL were made in Aran yarn, which is thicker than the Double Knit yarn I’d chosen. This meant that my squares were coming up smaller than the 12 inches stated and my blanket wouldn’t be the right size. I wanted my blanket to be the size of a double duvet – A huge project! I needed more squares.
To sort this problem I turned to a book I received for Christmas 2013 called “200 Crochet Blocks” by Jan Eaton. I planned to add in squares from this book to make the blanket large enough. Success! I was back on track.
There is more detail on the blanket and all the patterns I have used (and am still using) over on my Ravelry project page, so I won’t bore you with all of the details here. But I will say that in total I’ll need 64 squares for my blanket and as of today I only have four more squares to make, sew together the last row, sew in the last few ends ends and then the border … I am so close!
I hoped this blanket would be finished within the year, but almost halfway through year two and I know that a year was too optimistic. I can only work on the squares when I feel well enough to do so and trying to do a complicated square mid ME flare is downright impossible. It just leads to me throwing a strop and declaring myself useless … cue yarn and hook flying across the room and my partner telling me to take a break. Some squares got me in a right mess, but strangely enough they have turned out to be my favourite ones.
So the project took me a little longer than I hoped, but I’m still working on it and it’ll be finished soon. Plus, when it’s all done I’ll have something to show for my time off work. It’s almost there now, but I’ll keep you updated on it’s progress. I can’t wait to show you the completed blanket! I hope you’ll LOVE it as much as I do 😀
My favourite part of this project has been all the new stitches and techniques I have learned. It definitely gave me the confidence to try out lots of new projects last year and continues to inspire me. I thoroughly recommend a BAMCAL to boost your crochet confidence, with so many people taking part there’s no such thing as being stuck … there’s loads of people there to help with every problem.
Have you ever taken part in a Crochet Along? I’d love to hear about what you’ve made 🙂