March 28, 2009
After a year...Snowflakes in Cedarwoods!
Blankets and I have a history...if things are going smoothly, I can finish them rather quickly. If something happens along the way, they get squished into a bag or box and hidden for a while. This is Snowflakes in Cedarwoods by Anne Hanson. I first saw this on Anne's blog while she was designing it and liked it immediately.
Let me back up and talk about the yarn...I had 5 cones of camel hair yarn from Colourmart that were waiting for the perfect project. I bought them (years ago) with the intent of knitting some kind of cabled cardigan for myself. After knitting one sweater, I realized that I'm not much of a sweater wearer and started looking for a new project for all of this really soft yarn. Along came the Snowflakes in Cedarwoods shawl. The pattern is written as a shawl, but I thought that I had enough yarn to knit it as a blanket. I used the camel yarn doubled and everything went really smoothly through the first few charts. Square shawls are started in the center, so the beginning really sucks you in since it goes so fast.
After reaching the halfway point in the blanket, I realized that I wouldn't have enough yarn. ACK! At that point, I looked around and couldn't find anymore of the camel yarn. Colourmart's stock varies with whatever is available to them. Sometimes things never come back. I even looked on ravelry to see if anyone had it for sale in their stash. No luck there. I gave in and ordered some cashmere in natural. Cashmere natural is a very different color than camel natural. I tried blending them together by holding one strand of each. Yuck. I tried tinking back, but that was taking a loooong time. At that point, I was frustrated with it and stuffed the whole thing in a bag and tried to forget about it for several moths.
And then I saw this beautiful blanket knit from another of Anne's patterns. It turned out beautiful and motivated me to let my sad blanket out of the bag. I knew what I had to do and pulled the needle completely out of the blanket. Thank goodness the yarn is a little sticky because of the oil. After painfully ripping out many rows, I decided to stop the blanket after Chart J. That would leave off the last chart and the border. Instead of those, I just knit 10 rows of seed stitch with the cashmere yarn and called it done. Surprisingly, it took only one night of ripping and recapturing the stitches and one more night of knitting the border. The blanket had to sit in a time out again after that. Why? Because Colourmart yarn comes oiled. To properly wash it, it needs to be done in a machine, with lots of soap, and with warm or hot water. Let me tell you, it takes a lot of guts to throw your hand knit item in the washer and dryer.
I do have a front loading washer and I sat there watching the blanket go round and round the whole time. Laugh all you want, but I wanted to be sure that it didn't shrivel up to a tiny thing while it was in there. I did put it in the dryer, but only for 10 minutes. After that, I laid it out on a bed and let the ceiling fan dry it. I didn't even have to pin it out. The border just needed a little stretching at the corners, but I pulled those out and it stayed.
I'm so happy with the way this blanket turned out! Dwight liked it too and asked if it would stay on the bed. Ummm, no. I want it to be where I'll see it a lot and that would be in the computer room where I knit, read on ravelry, and do lessons.
Final details and a few more pictures...
Pattern: Snowflakes in Cedarwoods by Anne Hanson (Knitspot)
Yarn: 4 ply camel from Colourmart (4.5 cones) and 4 ply natural cashmere (.5 cone)
Needle: size 4 Knit Picks Options
Notes: Ran out of camel yarn, so I stopped after Chart J, knit 10 rows of seed stitch with natural cashmere to add a border
Unblocked size: almost 6x6 foot square
Blocked size: 64 x 64 inches
Start: May 9, 2008
Finish: March 22, 2009