Thursday, February 3, 2011

Show and Tell: Granny Square Afghan

By-Jenny2
My turn to do a little show and tell!

As you can expect, I have been spending a lot of time AWAKE in bed lately, nursing a hungry little baby in the middle of the night or at dawn. This has given me some time to inspect and admire what lays ON my bed this winter: a handmade crocheted granny square afghan we got as a wedding gift all those years ago (not that many years, really, but factor in two cross-country moves and two kids, and it seems like almost a lifetime -- in a good way!).

All babbling aside, I thought I would show you this afghan.

Jenny: Show & Tell: Granny Square Afghan
Jenny: Show & Tell: Granny Square Afghan

As you can see, it's a crazy hodgepodge of granny squares, every single one in a different yarn -- some solid, some varigated, some with multiple yarns, etc. The whole thing is assembled randomly and features a continuous binding.

Jenny: Show & Tell: Granny Square Afghan
Jenny: Show & Tell: Granny Square Afghan
Jenny: Show & Tell: Granny Square Afghan

It may seem incredibly ungrateful to admit this, but I've never thought this afghan was particularly beautiful. My perception of beauty tends to parallel my love of a controlled, uncluttered environment. And this blanket seemed a little too crazy or perhaps unstructured to put me at ease. However, this afghan is both handmade AND incredibly warm -- which makes it so special and thus put to good use as soon as the temperatures drop.

Jenny: Show & Tell: Granny Square Afghan
Jenny: Show & Tell: Granny Square Afghan

Having it in sight so often recently -- and in sight while I'm hovering in that half-sleep state -- has made me realize the amount of work that went into it and start to appreciate its lack of creative structure. There is a certain art (or maybe it's culture?) to that kind of randomness, you know? It has also gotten me thinking about crochet, a crafty activity I haven't tackled since, oh, 4th grade? Turns out we have a few crocheted blankets around the house, made for us by grandmothers and other family friends.

Jenny: Show & Tell: Granny Square Afghan

All this thinking (and dreaming) about granny squares made me do a bit of poking around the crafty blogosphere and it turns out crochet is pretty hip these days. I guess I knew that already, since discovering the fab Dottie Angel a while back. But, it seems all things crochet and granny squares are experiencing a resurgence in hipness lately -- or maybe I'm just becoming hip to the hipness...

Just last week, The Crafty Bird (aka our lovely sponsor Amy of Magpie Patterns) posted about her new-found love for granny squares. Whip Up seems to feature crochet projects in almost every round-up. And look at the amazing inspiration you find on Flickr... (Click on each picture to go to its owner's Flickr page)

Finished: The Sunburst Granny Square Blanket! Granny Square Rainbow Blanket
First babette blanket Detail granny square blanket

So. I've been thinking about this crazy afghan that lives on our bed. And I've been getting the itch to either take up crochet or make a hodgepodge blanket, or maybe both.

Then, I happened upon the cover of the Dec 10 Anthropologie catalog while cleaning my desk and it reminded me of the bunch of miscellaneous, colorful cotton yarn in my stash. Hmmm. Perhaps I shall start making a blanket, square by square or maybe row by row (a la Purl Bee baby blanket). This would be the perfect winter evening project for a sleep-deprived mama. Not too much to think about as the needles click, a productive yet relaxing crafty activity before bedtime... I'll keep you posted.

Have you crocheted anything? What are some of your favorite crochet patterns? Any cozy inspirational blankets around your home?

3 comments:

  1. I crocheted both of my kids giant granny square blankets for Christmas! Instead of making lots of little ones, I just kept going and made them into giant ones! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Lucy at Attic24 makes the most beautiful, colorful crocheted blankets: http://attic24.typepad.com/weblog/

    Right now i'm crocheting a very simple blanket to de-stash after I realized how much random cotton yarn I had laying around. Just DC back and forth. . . boring, but somehow relaxing. . .and easy to pick up and put down if you get interrupted. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I also really like Attic 24. I crochet a lot of baby blankets and hats for all the new babies in my life. I learned three years ago and it is my favorite craft these days. Right now I'm trying to finish up a bunch of WIPs (hats for the family, a baby sweater made from my stash, the list goes on) before starting on a new blanket.

    ReplyDelete

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