Friday, June 1, 2012

Beach Stripe Surf Blanket

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In a burst of Kaffe Fassett-induced color mania, I finished the last third of this blanket, and now it’s cold and pouring rain, so I’m just in time. 

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A big project like this seems like its going to last forever, until that moment where I hold it up and suddenly realize it’s almost finished, and I can count the remaining rows, and the remaining yarns will all fit in the basket together.  Then it kicks into high gear, and everything else falls temporarily to the side. 

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These stripes make me think of beach umbrellas, and rows of surfboards leaning against a palm-roofed shack.   Santa Cruz, and Cocoa Beach.  That coconut-scented Coppertone suntan oil we always bought at the grocery store when I was young, back when SPF was not a thing and nobody would have wanted sun protection anyway because we were all trying to achieve that sweet copper Farrah Fawcett glow. 

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As I work, each color decision feel so momentous.  I plan about five or six colors ahead, and those yarns go in the basket, and as I get near the end of those, I plan the next five, and the whole time, I’m keeping my rules in my head:  blue and pink never sit together, all three primary colors can’t be anywhere in any project at the same time, and there must be a few darks, along with a few neutrals now and then.  Beyond that, I go by instinct, and I second-guess every decision, and I change my mind and tear out a bad choice, and I periodically step back and study the whole thing at once, sometimes in a mirror, which turns out to be the best way to see what I’m doing—just looking at it on my lap never tells me anything.  I worry about these things, and I lie awake at night, thinking, Is that turquoise too close in value to the foam green?  Should I tear it out and try the mocha?  Where can I fit in another row of teal?

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It looks like a giant beach towel, which is making me badly want to go sit in the sand next to the surf and drink a fruity drink with a hibiscus flower in it. 

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This blanket is done in woven stitch (photo tutorial here), which is nothing more than sc, ch1 across, and then on the next row, the single crochets go in the ch1 spaces, and the chain 1s go above the single crochets.  For a whole blanket worked in single crochet, this went amazingly quickly, and I never got bored with it, ever.  I worked eight rows of each color, and I wove in my ends as I went.  The edging is just one round of single crochet, which wasn’t my original plan, and to which I might add a few other colors later, I don’t know.  But when I got to the end of it, the blanket sort of told me it was all done, so I stopped. 

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Wow.  I love that. 

If you’d like to make one of these yourself, I’ve written the whole thing down and made a PDF out of it.  You can download that pattern here, free, from me to you.  Thank you for hanging out here with me. I do appreciate it, so much. 

89 comments:

  1. Glorious! These colors are fab and I love that woven style stitch!

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  2. That's a fabulous blanket! I agree the woven stitch is very easy and pretty.

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  3. I love it!!


    I always have to take pictures of projects and look at them on a screen to see if the colors are *working* or not

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  4. It is fabulous! I did not follow your rules with color on working my bobble! I simply kept all 17 skeins in the basket and pulled them one by one to make the first 17 rows, completely by random choosing. But I love it.
    Hugs,
    Kris

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  5. Whatever your method for choosing your colours, it certainly works Kristen; beautiful.
    Karen
    xx

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  6. Its lovely, Kristen. It reminds me of little iced biscuits my Great Grandmother used to give me when I visited her. I am glad I am not the only one who obssesses about colour choice! Lily. xxx

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  7. Love it. Now I know it's time for me to crochet another afghan. Your colors are awesome.

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  8. Love it. Your projects are always an inspiration:)

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  9. Love it your work is wonderful! It so does remind me of the beach!

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  10. Beautiful! The colours work fantastically well together. Have fun using it!

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  11. Beautiful! The colors are great, and I love the stitch. :)

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  12. Lovely! The colors work great together and it does remind one of the beach!

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  13. a stripy blanket....!!!!! like soooooo much!!!!
    xxxxx Alessandra

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  14. I love your blanket wow you inspired me to make myself one. How long is it?

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    1. Thanks very much! I think it's about 45" x 90". Not very wide, but long enough to reach my chin and cover my feet. A napping blanket. :)

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  15. Love this blanket! the colors are great! Your blanket was inspiration for me, and I made a baby blanket with this same stitch. Love it! the drape and feel of this stitch is wonderful. And it is good to hear someone else struggles with their color choices. Did you use all the same yarn? the colors were lovely!

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    1. Hi Sharon, thanks very much! This blanket is comprised of my usual mishmash of yarns--they're all worsted weight wools and wool blends, but not all the same brand. There's a lot of Ella Rae, a lot of Cascade 220, and a few random leftovers without labels. :)

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  16. It caem out beautfully Kristen!
    Always interesting to hear how people chooose their colours. I tend to switch between cool and warm, and throw in the odd neutral every now and then. I also like to use white/cream every 5th row or so.
    Can;t wait for my blanket to be done! Working very slowly on it, its a car project and also nr4 or so on my list of things to be done :-)
    Thanks for this link, I love working on it.

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  17. I loooove it! I have been trying to decide if to make a ripple or just straight blanket (I'm making a granny square right now) and yours just gave me the inspiration... it's stunning beautiful!

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  18. Stunning blanket! You make it seem so easy. And now I have an urge to pull out my hooks... but what yarn to use? Hmmm. Enjoy snuggling in your blanket. :)

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  19. Freakin' awesome! Looks fab on the porch and on your model. I want one : )

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  20. I loves it.
    Gorgeous, sunny colours- you're right, it does look like a beach towel!
    Amazing stitches, too.
    Enjoy the weekend.
    Xx

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  21. I love it! The colour combinations work really really well- I'm going to remember your rule!

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  22. That is amazing!! How many ch across is it approx. It looks hugggggggggge!

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    1. I'd say it's about 95 ch across? Something like that. :)

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  23. Am liking the stripes. Am also a tad jealous of your verandah, I wish our house had one.

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  24. your blanket is so beautiful! I love the colours, really amazing work. I'm knitting a colourful blanket at the moment, I know what you mean about a project.that goes on forever.

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  25. I love it, I want it!! The colours are incredible and I love the edging, simple and doesn't take away from the colourful stripes. It's perfect. Now, sit back and enjoy it. BTW, our weather has turned bad too so I am madly trying to finish off my diagonal blanket. Enjoy the weekend. xx

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  26. Your blankets really are the best! Loving both the colours and the stitch pattern, both are really beautiful and together make a really wow! blanket.

    I've realised now that if I were to do my natural instinctive thing (sticking all my most favourite and pretty colours together), it doesn't work so well. You need a bit of different tone and value and yes that means putting in some colours that by themselves I might not be keen on. Your rules are really interesting to read. The only one I would find tricky is not putting blue and pink together as I love them. Would have no trouble keeping the primaries out though.
    Sara

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    1. Thanks, Sara! I always feel that a little neutral amidst the vivid is like salt in the soup. You don't want just salt, but it makes the soup taste better. I always have a ton of blue and pink, too, but if they sit beside each other, it lends a bit of baby flavor, which is fine if I'm making a baby blanket, but otherwise isn't what I'm after. So I stick a green or a neutral between them, which seems to keep the whole thing in the right age bracket. :)

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  27. I LOVE this blanket and now I'm going to HAVE to make one. The stitch and the colors are beautiful. Thank you for the inspiration!

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  28. I love your blanket and may have to make one as well.

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  29. Wow, lovely blanket!!! and sooo nice colors :-) Great work, really very nice! J.

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  30. LOVE it! What yarn did you use? About how many sc across? Now for some sun, a little coppertone and one of those fruit/vinegar drinks you mentioned in an earlier post....

    Jennifer

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    1. Hi Jennifer, thanks very much! This is my usual mishmash of different yarns--all the same weight (worsted) but a lot of different brands. I hope you like the shrub--I did a strawberry/rhubarb one this week and it was sooooo good! :)

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  31. It looks beautiful! It reminds me of a beach towel too but looks so much more snuggly :) I love your way with colors!

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  32. Thanks for sharing your rules for color choice. Your work is lovely and inspiring!

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  33. I really love your colour combination. It's a 'happy' blanket.

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  34. That is an absolutely gorgeous blanket. You have an awful lot of will power, to do an entire blanket in sc! It's a relief to know I'm not the only one to obsess over colour choices :o) Your entire blog is delicious, by the way!

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  35. Beautiful! I have a real problem with making decisions on color. Haven't tried that stitch but certainly is easy enough. For some reason, I actually have to think when I do a sc -- for me the dc works up so much faster. Doesn't make much sense. Hope your day is great. Tammy

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  36. What a lovely blanket. Very beachy!

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  37. What a delicious, happy creation, it makes me want to snuggle it and eat it all at the same time, the colours are so juicy and scrummy!
    I loved how you told about working the random colours, that's exactly how I do mine, excepting I don't have hard and fast rules about colours not appearing together. BUt the planning ahead 5 colours at a time, yeah I do that. I'm not accustomed to working in darks and neutrals but my goodness it's sooooo successful in your blankie. A real work of art ♥

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  38. Such a beauty!!!
    Seems to be so simple but the result is just perfect! Maybe "perfection" has to be simple or naturally in some way?
    xo Hilde

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  39. How the heck did I miss this post???? I stay away from my computer for a week and look what happens! Your blanket is so gorgeous I almost swore just now! I love that stitch - must try it soon. I can't keep up with your creativeness and speed. I still firmly believe you are bionic!!!

    Have a truly wonderful week hon.
    Leah
    xxxx

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  40. Gorgeous Blanket. Love your colour choices and the simplicity of the design. You make it look easy, but now we know you lie awake at night thinking about colours!!! And yes, it looks like a lovely beach towel. Beautiful.

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  41. Lovely blanket, I bet it's lovely and warm :)

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  42. Whoa! What a beautiful blanket. I think I'll need to make me one :)

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  43. What a wonderful blanket! I love the colors and I love it so!

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  44. love this one also.. do you have a link to your Raverly page (Facebook)?

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  45. Fabulous, I'm going to pass on the link to my niece as this might be an easy crochet project for her to try. She's just starting out but is very good and quick at the chain stitch so I hope she can be inspired by your work -- lovely!

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  46. I think this blanket is fabulous! What size hook did you use?

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  47. Sun, summer, beach, happiness....and your photos are amazing. Thank you for the inspiration.

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  48. Ohhh how I love this blanket! It so reminds me of the beach. I grew up in Florida but now live in North Texas :(

    This blanket is just what I need on days when I'm missing the sea! I'm definitely making it! You did a great job, thanks for the inspiration! Kate~

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  49. So pretty! Love this simple pattern and those colorful stripes. Linking up tomorrow at Tangled Happy. Wishing you a very happy Friday! :)

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  50. Hi there. I am stopping by from tangled happy! So glad I came! your blog is so amazing. I just love all your beautiful creations and had such fun reading too! I will certainly be back!
    Lisa

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  51. thank you for sharing this pretty pattern-- I have a knit blanket similar to this and am so happy that you came up with a pattern in crochet- love all of the colors, which you put together so well.

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  52. Oh, wow, stunning and gorgeous!

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  53. This just may be the most beautiful crocheted blanket I have ever seen! Love the simplicity of the design, but the bold colors. Perfection!

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  54. Oooh my! I LOVE This! What fab colors!
    Ha! I'm glad I'm not the only one that lies awake at night thinking about color and crafts. :)

    THANK YOU so much for the pattern!
    Genevieve

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  55. Gorgeous! The colours are stunning. Well done!!

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  56. Gorgeous blanket - I love all those colours, they are definitely summer. They remind me of typical British deck chairs on the beach :))

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  57. I just came over from Tangled Happy and I am smitten.WOW! What a beautiful blanket. Up to now I couldn't decide on a pattern for my nap time blanket to be but my choice formed quickly when I saw your blanket. Yes, that's the one I want to make. So thanks for the pattern and the inspiration. Love your blog, have been occupied reading since I came over. So much fun to read and look. Greetings from Germany

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  58. I really love your blanket, it inspired me for one of m latest projects! The wovenstitch is the perfect stitch for a blanket. I choose more dull fall colors and plan a wider frame in black!
    thanks for inspire me!

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  59. I absolutely love this. And it's definitely going on my "to make" list! Thank you so much for the free pattern! So generous of you!

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  60. I love your Beach Stripe Surf Blanket. I am not very computer literate. Cannot get the instructions to come up. Can someone please tell me the secret

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    1. It may be a compatibility issue with your web browser. I am able to view the PDF on both PC and Mac, in Google Chrome and in Firefox. Try opening the link in one of those? Hope that helps. :)

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    2. I'm a mac user. I clicked on the word "here" to download and got another page with the pattern. I then clicked on a little icon in upper right-hand corner that looked like a piece of paper with a down-arrow on it. Hope it helps.
      Linda
      lspstewart@hotmail.com

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  61. hi kristen
    I really like your blanket and it insprired me month ago to start also a blanket in the same pattern! as you told also it was so much fun, the pattern is so simple.thanks for sharing

    here you can see my blanket if you are interested in!
    have a nice day
    imke
    http://colourblog-ivn.blogspot.de/2013/02/wovenstitch-striped-blanket-ii.html

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    1. I love your color choices. Very Beautiful!
      Linda
      lspstewart@hotmail.com

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  62. Your blanket also inspired me to give this pattern a go. My stash usually runs towards neutrals and darker colors. But I have been craving COLOR. And, after seeing your blanket, I dug out all the brights I had and ran to the store yesterday and purchased all the brights they had on hand (ended up with 7 skeins).

    Thanks for the free pattern and the inspiration :)

    Marie

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  63. Thank you for giving us the pattern! I love the colors! I've made an afghan with these stitches before and it does go pretty fast, I think it's the chain stitch. ;-)
    Linda
    lspstewart@hotmail.com

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  64. This is lovely, can't wait to get started. THANK YOU!!

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  65. just AB FAB and your generosity in showing and sharing is inspiring. thank you!

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  66. That is really pretty and I love the stitch. I can't wait to try this with some of Redheart's Blacklight yarn. This will definitely be the pattern I use for my own blanket. I'm bound to get around to doing one for myself eventually. :)

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  67. It's positively beautiful! Thank you for sharing the pattern.

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  68. Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful pattern... my Granmommie did something similar when she was 99... :)
    ~Tess

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  69. Love it!! Thanks so much for the idea and the pattern :)

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  70. This is beautiful!! Thank you so much for the pattern, Im off to make some awesome gifts for family with it! Yay!! :)

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  71. Hi! I found this blanket on Pinterest and fell in love! I just learned how to crochet and made a few cowls. This is exactly what I had in mind for my first blanket. I'm 9 colors in and loving it! My friend has followed my lead and I'm showing my sister the Woven stitch so she can start one too! I'm always looking forward to the next color :) thanks so much for the inspiration!!
    Colleen

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  72. thank you so much for sharing this! I love it. I just started making it about 5 days ago and can't wait for each next color. I've never crocheted the woven stitchand I really like it. It almost looks like it's knitted.

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  73. I just found this via pinterest and love it!!! Have you had any washing issues with using different brands of yarn?

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    1. I haven't had any issues, nope. It gets hand washed and air-dried, and hasn't minded either one yet. :)

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  74. I've just found this via Pinterest too (hurray for Pinterest!), I was so excited to find I could download the instructions - thank you! I've only just learned to crochet and I think I could manage this.

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