I come from a very crafty family–Every new baby could be sure to be welcomed into the world with a hand-pieced quilt, a knitted wardrobe, a handmade dollhouse with tiny hooked rugs, needlepoint crib bumpers, the works. Some of the quilters and knitters were so prolific that they did not limit them selves to babies in the family either–coworkers, in laws, friends of friends would all receive a little quilt or sweater set when a new person was on the way.
I remember the quilts the best; I’m one of the youngest members of my generation in this family, but I remember the birth of a cousin on my mom’s side when I was 6 years old. No-one on my mom’s side is very crafty, but I remember my Dad’s sister making a beautiful quilt, all in lilacs, pinks, and purples, for the new baby. So I learned early that every baby needs a blanket, and the prettier it is, the better!
Enter our New Traditions afghan. I designed this last year as an experiment in modular knitting–how to translate quilting motifs into knitting without having to sew the bazillion seams it would seem to require. I also designed this as a dead-of-winter piece, which in my mind requires two things:
1. Intense, saturated Color and
2. Warm snuggly wool.
I love this piece, but as soon as I began working on it, I found that I was thinking of my grandmother and my aunts and all those years of baby blankets. I thought of my own baby blanket (which is still in my office at home, so I can tuck it around my lap while I’m at my desk!) and I realized that the design I was working on could translate perfectly to that function.
So, I kept the geometry, and the modular instructions with minimal seaming. I dropped the bright intense colors in favor of some softer, cooler pastels. The original colors tend towards the very warm–rusts and oranges– but for this version I took it in the opposite direction so now it is pale greens and aquas which make up the bulk of the palette. And I dropped the heavy, warm wool in favor or a lighter gauge, machine-washable cotton blend, so that wee ones can use this blanket year round and it can be machine washed and dried as often as needed.
In short, terrific style,
A mix of craft traditions,
Now available in miniature. Enjoy!