As a crocheter and knitter I love yarn and hate wasting it, so as well as a significant stash of gorgeous new yarn I have a growing bag of oddments which are far too precious to throw away.   Many of these oddments are remains from projects I made, many were gifts, and each has memories entwined in the yarn.  How many of you have similar bags?   You don’t need to answer me – because I know a true yarn addict will have huge amounts just like me!

So for this year’s blanket CAL I had the idea to design a blanket that could be made from these oddments.   Imagine being wrapped in a blanket with all those memories, it’s just too luscious a thought to ignore!   I started designing using Stylecraft Special DK as I had lots of part balls, but the design needed something to draw it together so I used some new balls in one background/joining colour – in this case cream.  I designed 7 different square motifs and ended up using 13 colours – they were all one-colour motifs except for the thread of cream running through them.  However, the motifs can be made in several colours to use up smaller amounts.

Once my DK blanket was made, I started a blanket using my 4ply scraps. I have a lot more of these and in many different yarns and colours.  Some are traditional sock yarns and multi-coloured, some are single coloured 4 ply yarns and some are semi-solids.  The yarn bases are also a wide range – traditional wool/nylon sock yarns, merino, Bluefaced Leicester, silk, alpaca and even baby camel!  They were also from many different producers – West Yorkshire Spinners, Natural Dye Studio, Nimu, Triskelion, Yarns from the Plain to name a few.   This meant the motifs needed a good blocking before joining as the different yarns were slightly different thicknesses; but that also gave the blanket a lovely texture.    The background colour I chose was a pale grey which was much less of a contrast than cream and helped all the different colours blend together.   As there were many luxury yarns in the blanket I picked Drops Baby Alpaca Silk as the base which is also a touch of luxury!

The beauty of this blanket is that it can produce a different effect depending on how you choose your colours, as is demonstrated in these contrasting sneak peek photos, on the right the DK version and on the left the 4ply version.

If you want to join in the blanket CAL then I suggest you start rummaging in your yarn cupboards now!  The only conditions are that you should choose the same yarn weight throughout and have a background colour that will draw the design together (you may need to buy more yarn for this).  In the pattern I’ve given examples of the size of squares in DK and 4 ply, together with an estimate of how much yarn is needed for a square.   I also include the quantities of background DK and 4ply I used in my blankets but, of course, you may need different quantities depending on your own blanket size.

The CAL starts on Friday 2nd February 2018 when the first square will be published.  A new square will be published each week thereafter and finally the joining instructions together with border instructions will be published on Friday 16th March.

If you want to join in the CAL then you will find the introduction to the pattern here.  It provides basic information on the yarn I used, the stitches that you can expect and the layout of the DK blanket I made in case you prefer to follow a plan rather than choose your yarns and squares randomly.    If you purchase the pattern before 1st February you get it for only £2 (no code needed, discount is automatic).   As squares are added the pattern will be updated for you.

I can’t think of a better way to stashbust those favourite oddments of yarn and tidy your cupboards!

Oh, and the name of the pattern is Wrapped in Memories.

Happy crocheting xxx