Friday, August 14, 2009

Easy Lacy Baby Blanket

This lacy baby blanket pattern is great for your first lace pattern, or any advanced beginner.

This pattern was originally found on the Bernat yarn site, but they didn't give the option to make a smaller, newborn size blanket. After a bit of work, I finally figured out you can adjust the size by using a pattern multiple of 10 + 7

For this blanket I used Naturally Caron "Spa" bamboo blend yarn in Ocean Spray (or choose something similar sized for 4 mm or 6 US needles.) I pulled from two balls of the yarn at the same time for the entire blanket and needed less than 4 balls total, which are 251 yards each. I knitted on size 10.5 US round needles.

k = knit
yo = yarn over
sl = slip stitch
k2tog = knit 2 stitches together
psso = pass the slipped stitch over
sts = stitches

Cast on 87 stitches

Knit the garter stitch for the first 5 rows (knit every row)

Row 1 ~ (rs) k4, * yo, k3, sl1, k2tog, psso, k3, yo, k1 * to last 3 sts, k3
Row 2 ~ k3, purl to last 3 sts, k3
Row 3 ~ repeat Row 1
Row 4 ~ knit

Continue pattern until blanket measures approx. 27"- 28" long and end with the second row of the pattern.

Knit the garter stitch for the last 5 rows (knit every row) and cast off knit-wise.

Assemble / weave in tails. It's a good idea to block any lacy pattern as well to open up all of the holes and show off the details. Check the links for a how-to.

Final blanket measures approx. 19" wide x 27" high

Monday, August 10, 2009

Create your own Hang Tag

Adding your own Hang Tag to your finished knit gift is a great way to personalize it and make it feel like an expensive high-end item. It also gives you a chance to let the receiver know about the care instructions as well as the yarn contents.

First decide what size and shape your tag will be. The tag shown is 4" wide by 1.75" high. You can set your tag layout up on your computer, or just create something by hand.

Things to include on your tag might be your name, that the item was hand-knit, who it is for, the washing/care instructions as well as the yarn or material content.

Once all of the information is in place, you can print and glue (ideally a PVA glue so it won't wrinkle the paper) your front side onto a fun printed paper for the back of the tag. This adds personality and also thickens the paper to make it more durable. Below are some sample paper patterns found at a local paper store.

After you have mounted your paper to the back of the tag, you might want to use a corner rounder to curve the corners which is available at stores like Paper Source in a variety of sizes. You can either punch a hole and place a grommet (the metal ring) also available at Paper Source or Michael's, or cut a slit with an exacto blade to insert your ribbon or string.

To attach the tag, use a thin piece of ribbon, maybe in a fun coordinating color, or even a piece of twine or embroidery thread. Now your ready to give your beautiful knit gift!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Basket Weave Baby Blanket

This simple basket weave baby blanket a perfect gift for an expecting mom. It's soft and washable making it easy to keep clean.

For this blanket I used size 10.5 (usa) round needles with Snuggly double knitting yarn. Any soft Nylon/Acrylic blend will work, but make sure it indicates size 6 (usa) needles since you will be pulling two pieces of yarn at a time. You will need two colors (I used a seafoam green and cream) and about 450 yards of each color.

Cast on 72 stitches.

Knit the garter stitch for the first 6 rows (knit every row)

Rows 1-4 ~ K4, *K4, P4* to last 4 stitches, K4
Rows 5-8 ~ K4, *P4, K4* to last 4 stitches, K4

Repeat this pattern pulling from both balls of the green (first color) yarn for 24 rows. Switch to one strand green (first color) one strand cream (second color) for 20 rows. The center portion is two strands of cream (second color) for 40 rows. Next use one strand of each color for 20 rows, finishing with the green (first color) for 24 rows.

Finish blanket with 6 rows of garter stitch and cast-off.

Assemble / weave in tails.

Finished blanket should measure approx. 18" wide x 25" long
Pattern is a multiple of 4 + 8 to adjust size.