Monday, 30 September 2013

Blankets - a patchwork of error!

For my 30th birthday, my Mum crocheted a lovely blanket for me that now sits in pride of place on my sofa. Today, I moved one of the fleece blankets off the sofa, because with the addition of beautiful crochet blanket, we no longer need 2 fleece blankets out!

It was when I went to put this fleece blanket away in the 'board games and blankets' chest I realised, there are a few more blankets in there that haven't seen the light of day for a while.

These blankets are made up of all the knitting that doesn't quite make it to being a full scarf/cushion/jumper. These are usually pieces that have gone wrong due to machine/human/combination of both error, and I cannot stand to see them go to waste, so I collect them up and patchwork them together.

Here they are taking over the dining room...

From this it seems that the anchor, tape-measure and crayon scarves are the most prone to not getting to the end!

My favourite bit of these blankets is here, where I had 2 of the same cat cushion that had come off the machine in almost the same place so I made a mirror cat.

The story of the rest of the blanket that the mirror cat lives in is not so fun. It's made up of pieces that were destined for an exhibition, but never made it.

Because all my knits are made from lambswool, they need finishing after knitting, which means washing. For the sake of continuity, and speed, I use the washing machine. There is a quick cold wash cycle on my machine that works a treat.....most of the time! 

Apart from the time when the machine decided to HOT wash my knits and yes, you know what's coming SHRINK them. To this day I don't know what happened, the settings were the same as always but when I went to fetch the knits, the washing machine window  was steamy and the knits warm!!! You can see from the fuzzy texture they've gone from washed to felted...

There was no time to grieve the shrunken knits, I had to dry my eyes and jump straight back on the knitting machine. When I finally got round to putting this blanket together, I could appreciate that without that disaster I wouldn't have a lovely and warm knitted reminder of my first solo exhibition. I love finding/making positives around situations like this.

Although I haven't seen these blankets for a while (I'm sure they will all come creeping back out the chest when the weather is colder) I am really glad I kept all these bits and made them. They are a physical record of the designs and mistakes I have made over the years and act like a diary of my knitting. There are pieces from the witchcraft collection waiting patiently to be patch-worked together, I'll pop a photo up when it's done.