Sunday, March 13, 2016

Hensfoot


Hello, friends. I've been back in insurance/medication hell this week and I feel like I can finally breathe today, maybe because it's Sunday and all the doctors' offices are closed. I won't bore you with the details, but I'm exhausted by it all. I can't stand the sight or sound of my cell phone anymore. Anyhow, I've missed being in this space, and I've missed having time in my day to sit down and read blogs too. This week, it just wasn't in the cards. I want to say thanks to everyone who joined in with the Winter Project Link Party. I hope I've gotten around to all the participants to leave a comment. I'm so pleased with the participation in my party. It's really nice to know you want to be part of it and I hope it helps provide a little motivation for those long-term projects.

Today, I'm excited to share my winter project, a blanket I call Hensfoot. This is a big crocheted afghan that I created using the Larksfoot crochet stitch pattern (I learned how to do it by watching this video by Crochet Geek). It's a fun pattern to crochet. You can memorize it easily and it crochets up pretty quickly, especially if you use thicker yarn (my blanket is made in worsted-weight yarn). I think it looks a little more complicated than it actually is; if you're a crocheter, watch the video and you'll see what I mean.


Hensfoot is a big blanket and as such, difficult to photograph. (I sometimes climb up on the furniture to take photos of blankets on the floor, but I've been trying to get out of the habit, at least when my children are around. Monkey see, monkey do and all that). I love the stitch pattern in this blanket. I first saw Larksfoot blankets on Ravelry last summer, when I was still trying to decide how I wanted my next blanket to look. I knew I wanted stripes, because I really like them, but I had never seen Larksfoot blankets before. I was really glad to come across them; the design is a little different from the more common Granny Stripe but you still get the granny cluster effect which makes a nice, dense blanket texture. I named this blanket, like I usually do. I gave it the name Hensfoot, in honor of my two sweet chickens, the birds I currently know best.


I made this blanket for our family room, to be used for couch-snuggling, TV-watching and tent-building just like all the others I've made. Blankets get used (and maybe slightly abused) around here. To that end, I wanted this one to be pretty rugged like the rest. I'd pondered lots of different options for a border and in the end, came back to one of my old faithful border plans - plain, solid, no frills whatsoever. I do similar ones on most of my blankets, just because they're simple, easy and neat-looking. This one consists of a round of double-crochet stitches around the whole blanket (I put two stitches in each post down both sides) in gray, with a round of single-crochet in blue next, followed by a round of gray single-crochet on the outside edge. I started doing another gray round with a picot pattern but I ripped it out. It was curling weirdly and it looked a little silly in the thick yarn. Straight and simple then, fine with me.


This was my longest project to date, and my first real dedicated stashbuster. I hardly bought any yarn for this blanket, just one or two neutral colors to help blend some of the bolder tones. I used lots of gray, as I often do, as well as lots of blue, since the blanket is meant for a room with blue upholstery on the furniture. I like lots of color, but I like to tie a blanket to a room as well. The colors are used "randomly," and I tried to use each at least twice. I think the colors are used between two and five times each. I wasn't being meticulous with it, though. I think that kind of stuff takes the fun out of crocheting. I'm happy with this blanket and I'm glad I tried something new. One thing I really like about it is the way the stitch pattern seems to change depending on the way you're looking at it - up or down, front or back. There's a sense of optical illusion, actually, because one side sort of puffs out, looking a little less neat but more interesting than the other side which is tidier but flatter. It's a good design, you really ought to give it a try.


We moved the blanket into the family room as soon as I was finished taking photos in the living room, which has the largest open floor space for blanket-paparazzi action (I took some on my bed too). Before I moved Hensfoot to the family room, I came into the living room and found the above scene. I had a dog once who would lie down on anything he found on the floor, whether it was a towel, a tarpaulin, or a big sheet of paper. Everything was a sleeping mat to him. The children are no different; they saw the blanket on the floor and made themselves comfortable immediately. Hey, I love to see my blankets enjoyed by the family. Why make a blanket if people aren't going to use it, that's what I always say. I myself had a chance to use it for the first time this weekend, while watching Midsomer Murders (my new favorite show) on Netflix. It's a good blanket, warm but not too warm, since it has open spaces, and plenty long enough for full head-to-toe coverage - for me, anyway; Tall Bear has exposed ankles with this blanket, but he's not complaining (he got his customized six-footer last winter).


Hensfoot 
Size: 68 inches long by 56 inches wide
Hook: I/9 (5.5mm) Clover Amour
Yarn: I Love This Yarn worsted acrylic in the following colors - Old Rose, Graphite, Iced Violet, Stonewash, Linen, Greybeard, Dark Denim, Rosy Cheeks, Ivory, Graymist, Cranberry, Sungold, Dark Olive, Coffee, Antique Teal, Lavender Smoke, Mid Green, Navy, Burnt Pumpkin, Glacier, Sea Blue
Started: September 1, 2015
Finished: March 7, 2016

42 comments:

  1. lol, i also climb to take insta photos, i like the knit, very neat
    http://www.melodyjacob.com/

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  2. I am sorry to hear that you have been having a tough time of it with the insurance companies. I do hope it is all sorted out soon.

    Your blanket is wonderful. I am not suprised that your children lay on it, it looks really cosy. I really want to learn to crochet so I can make beautiful blankets like yours.

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  3. Hi, your new blanket looks great and it looks as if your kids think it is really cosy too. I am currently making a blanket for my daughter but progress is pretty slow because I keep on getting distracted by all the other tempting crochet projects on my to do list. I also like the simple border, I tend towards simple designs too.

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  4. I love the way your kids took to their new blanket. It looks very warm and cozy. I have not yet figured out crochet, but I'm going to do a blanket when I do. Knitted blankets take way too long.

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  5. The blankie looks amazing, Jennifer. I do love the photo of your children testing it out! :o)

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  6. Hope you manage to sort out the insurance. We are often guilty of moaning about our National Health system but in truth it really is good. Love the blanket and the great mix of colour, it looks to be already becoming a favourite for the family.

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  7. Sorry it's been such a tiresome week, I hope it is all sorted very soon. You've made a beautiful job of the blanket, I can imagine it will be very well used. Wishing you a better week. CJ xx

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  8. like ducks to water....if Fred was visiting, he would have been right in the middle of the mix! A blanket and he's on it, too!!! Great addition to movie night!!! :)

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  9. Your blanket is gorgeous and I'm sure it will be very well used. The border complements it beautifully. Hope this coming week is better for you. xx

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  10. I've enjoyed following along on this project. It turned out beautiful, and what a great way to use up your stash!

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  11. The blanket looks amazing!! I love it.

    Sorry it has been a tough week, I hope it all gets sorted out soon.

    Enjoy a lovely start to your week Jennifer. xo

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  12. I really like the Hensfoot design, one I have never seen anywhere else. I used to crotchet a lot, and always it was a combination of the same old patterns. Your blanket is popular already, and rightly so. The kids remind me of our old cat who did the same thing - everything was a mat, even something as small as an envelope.

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  13. I'm sorry to hear that you've had such a bad week I hope yo can get it all sorted. Your blanket is absolutely wonderful, well done you. My blankets are made to be used too & whilst my children are too old for den building I hope to have amassed plenty of home made blankets when they start providing me with grandchildren. xx

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  14. I hope this new week is more restful for you. The hens foot blanket its gorgeous, it would look good in my living room, too. x

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  15. That's fantastic, you have done so well with, my blanket still stands at about 10 rows but I'm hoping to try to do a row a day and see how it goes! I do hope that things will be a little calmer this week and that you are able to get things sorted out! Hugs. x

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  16. It's really lovely, turned out so well. I love the colours together and the stitch is a little more interesting that a normal granny stripe, I'm sure you'll all enjoy using it.

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  17. It is a total winner, It looks really substantial and cosy. Thank you for hosting a motivational blog party now snuggle under it and get better soon! Jo x

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  18. Hensfoot looks amazing Jennifer! Wow! I love the colours and the pattern. Simple borders appeal to me more too, although it's fun to knit/crochet fancy lace edgings. If this blanket is going to see a lot of action, the plain border will stand up to it. Love the shot of the kids on the blanket. My dog does the same thing when my husband tosses my lovely knitted cushions off the couch, the dog will quietly sneak over and get all comfy against them ... ugh, dog fur.
    Wendy

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  19. Hey Jennifer,
    I'm so sorry to hear of your continued medical/insurance battles. I'm also very aware that I owe you an email, and will get round to it asap. If you knew the battles that I have with this crappy computer.....
    I simply adore your blanket. It is gorgeous. The colours. The design. It would look perfect in my living room ;) I love the picture of your kids snuggling up on it too.
    Here's to a better week, my friend.
    Leanne xx

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  20. very beautiful! well done on getting it finished, love the border, think it sets it off just right!
    i like it when items that have been made with love get used too, feels all warm & fuzzy :))
    thanx for sharing

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  21. lol, Midsommer Murders is one of my favorites too .. along with old Morse episodes.
    I absolutely love the blanket .. I am ashamed to admit that I took knitting lessons twice ! and still cannot get the hang of it. But I can crochet ! lol ... stay warm and well.

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  22. Brilliant. It looks big enough to fit my three children, two cats and dog on too :-)

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  23. I have loved watching your blanket grow, and honestly thought that the lovely colours had been picked especially. I am currently working on a stash buster granny blanket, and my colours clash terribly! Is it weird that I am sad that you have finished this wonderful blanket?!

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  24. What a gorgeous blanket! Stripes are my favorite pattern, too. Even when I'm shopping for new tops, I'm always drawn to stripes and I have to remind myself, "enough with the striped tops, Melanie!"
    So sorry to hear about your insurance hell problems. I know how aggravating that can be. Hope this week is better for you!

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  25. thanks for sharing your pics and the pattern. I have never crocheted it and like the looks of it. I will have to give a try in the future. Thanks again!

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  26. That is one beautiful blanket Jennifer and I do send you warm healing hugs from way over here in Oz oxoxo

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  27. Such a beautiful blanket Jennifer. I love all the pictures of it, it is a lovely textured pattern. Sorry about the insurance admin stress...hope it will get sorted out very soon.
    Happy week to you and yours.
    Helen xox

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  28. With you on the blog, it is really so beautiful !!!
    snowy greetings
    Antje

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  29. Wow -- it's beautiful! I love all the pretty colors. AND that fun picture of your children "claiming" the blanket LOL!

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  30. Lovely blanket. I'm working on a knitted one for the sofa at the mo. So sorry to read that you've been unwell- I hope all is ok now x

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  31. that picture of your kiddos is so cute!

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  32. that picture of your kiddos is so cute!

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  33. Hi Jennifer! Your blanket is wonderful! Well done! The kids are so cute, lying on in and showing off it's size! Wow!
    Poor you, having to deal with all that insurance/medicine junk. I hope it straightens out soon. I bet the wind blew at your house today! I needed my puffer jacket!

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  34. Sorry about all the medical stuff Jennifer. Your blanket is gorgeous...it looks so warm and cosy and the colours are so complementary. It will become a much loved blanket in your home, I'm sure of it.
    Marianne x

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  35. Your winter project is finished and it looks gorgeous! I like the combination of colours and the size and thickness are just right. Enjoy using it, and also I hope all the insurance and medical stuff are sorted soon.

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  36. Hensfoot is a triumph, Jennifer, and I loved reading about her creation. I, too, am sorry you had an upsetting week dealing with medical insurance tangles, and I hope the tangles are sorted out now. Wishing you a happy week and thanking you for posting :) xx

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  37. Gorgeous blanket Jennifer, I especially like the photo of the Bear's on it, perfect! They must love it too!
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  38. It's a triumph. I love that pattern and you are right, it really shifts and changes depending on the angle it's viewed from. The colours are so harmonious too. I love the photo of the Bears lying on it. :-)

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  39. Congratulations on the finish Jennifer it is one beautiful blanket! xx

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  40. Many congratulations on finishing your Hensfoot blanket, it really looks fantastic. I like the plain border, it goes well with the dense stitching of the blanket. Much nicer than a granny stripe, more interesting to look at. X

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Thank you for leaving a comment. It's so good to hear from you! I don't always have time to reply but I try to answer questions when I can.

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