Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Touques have left the building . . .

The touques & socks have gone to new homes! And I got three giant balls of some sort of yarn - none of them the same color of course - towards the next batch. But, I'm not gonna think about HATS anymore, I'm thinking about those Squares instead. The nice thing about a square is that you can make a whole lot of things with it. You might nee
d a triangle here or there or need to crochet a little, but essentially, you can use squares to make just about anything. I've even seen socks made out of squares!!! Not that I'm thinking about anything other than blankets though!! Blankets are great. One size fits most. If it's too small - just add a couple more squares! If it's too big, hey - you kidding?? A blanket is never too big . . . They provide somewhere to hide. And somewhere to cuddle with your honey. And bring a sense of security. And colors that nature never meant to be together - they just WORK in a blanket! Leftovers work with new yarns. They can be knitted, crocheted, woven or sewed, cheap or expensive, pink or blue or some ungodly hue, but blankets are forever.

Back in the early 80s, my man of the decade traded a Mustang with a great pai
nt job for 4 gold claims in Atlin, BC. He had the Fever soooo bad . . . he was told he could only stake 2 in his name so I gave permission for him to stake 2 in mine as well. He had to tramp into the bush to find the corner posts & put our tags on them & register them in town. Since he was going to do this while traveling to work a Placer mine in the Yukon for the summer & leaving in April, I decided to make him a wool blanket. I'd been spinning up some local dark grey fleece - probably Romney - & had crocheted several nice squares with the intention of making a blanket for the couch. Instead, I put the finished squares together & crocheted around them until the blanket almost fit a queen-sized bed. It weighed a ton!! We argued over that blanket. He refused to take it. He said it was too heavy. And people would laugh. He didn't want to get it dirty. He said he had an arctic sleeping bag. He found all kinds of reasons not to take it. But, at the last minute, he found room for it just to shut me up. I'm sure he saw Death in my eyes when I told him it better come back with him 'cause I just knew he would toss it off the truck the first chance he got . . . He called several weeks later & thanked me for making him take that blanket. Seems he just about froze that first night in Atlin in the tent until he remembered that unwanted blanket on the truck. 'Arctic' in Vancouver apparently doesn't mean the same as 'Arctic' on the Yukon/ BC border in April.

Over the years, I've crocheted a lot of blankets for other people. Usuall
y they're the ubiquitous Granny Square or a version of it. Since I hate to sew things together, I often make ONE GIANT Granny square like the blue one or sew three Granny Squares in a strip & then crochet around them in one giant rectangle. I even have one Giant Granny on the back of my couch - first thing I made when I moved into my basement! It's in multiple rainbow shades using all the balls I could find in the Thrift Shops at the time. It's the sort of thing I've often made to cheer up newly Single friends in their empty apartments. I also knit blankets. My favorite is this Log Cabin construction created so I didn't have to do any sewing. I knit a big rectangle, cast off, turn it 90 degrees, pick up the stitches along one of the long sides & knit until my yarn runs out or I get tired of that color & cast off. Then I turn it 90 degrees, pick up stitches along that side & knit again. I keep knitting & turning & knitting until the blanket is the size I want. The blocks kind of spiral out from the middle, building one on top of the other. I often crochet around the entire outside edge in a solid color to finish it off. One big, wild, snuggly, blanket. No sewing.

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