That Rainbow Pinwheel Baby Blanket

Leftfootdaisy-rainbow-pinwheel-baby-blanket-blocked

I keep meaning to post about the rainbow blanket I knitted recently, but then I get sidetracked by something else and it goes completely out of my head.

This week I’ve been a little distracted by Chester Bennigton’s suicide.  I am unashamedly, a Linkin Park fan and have always had a bit of a thing for Chester (what’s not to like?).  For me, the year 2000, was an emotional roller coaster and the music of Linkin Park, Papa Roach, Incubus, Puddle of Mudd, System of a Down and Marilyn Manson, to name just a few,  helped me through.  When I look back at that time in my life, I’m not entirely sure how I managed.  Everything seemed impossible, the bottom had completely fallen out of my world and I thought life would never be the same again.

Like many of us, I can plot my life by the soundtrack that’s always playing in the background.  I’m usually more known for listening to old Motown hits, cheesy American rock or softer more melodic tunes.  It would be impossible for me to list a top ten of my favourite music artists, but if pressed, it would include the great sound of Stevie Wonder, Crowded House and Fleetwood Mac.  All very different to that Nu-Metal sound.

I played the Hybrid Theory CD constantly when it was released, usually with the volume turned up loud and often sang and rapped at the top of my voice.  Fortunately, the hubby and the kids loved it too, maybe not my version though.  Things change and the gut-wrenching sadness I experienced in 2000, subsided, I had another baby and life eventually became a new normal.  The CD’s from that time have never really been played since, perhaps as an unconscious form of self-preservation.

Leftfootdaisy-rainbow-pinwheel-baby-blanket-Linkin-Park-Hybrid-Theory

So, this week I dug out my well used, dusty copy of Hybrid Theory, played it loudly, listened to the lyrics properly for the first time in ages and drank in a bit of nostalgic sadness.  Sadness at my very raw loss then and at how dark the world had become, for Chester to have taken his own life 😢

Leftfootdaisy-rainbow-pinwheel-baby-blanket-allontheboard

Did you see the post I shared on Instagram from allontheboard, which is the Poem Board from North Greenwich Station?  There’s an official Instagram page @allontheboard and I think there’s also a Twitter account and Facebook Page.

Sums it up in a nutshell. It’s ok to ask for help.

In a complete change of subject, let’s get back to the happiness that is the rainbow blanket. (phew)

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 

I wanted to write a piece for Olann and about the new yarn cake trend, concentrating on the brands more readily available here and in the UK.

Leftfootdaisy-rainbow-pinwheel-blanket-sirdar-colourwheel

We were sent several samples to review and I instantly fell in love with the happy rainbow shades of Sirdar’s Colourwheel, 202 -Follow The Rainbow. It’s unlikely that I’d wear a shawl knitted up in the vibrant colours, but being bang in the middle of a knitting slump, knew that if the yarn was calling, then I needed to find something for it, fast.

Those rainbow shades, made me think of little people and after a quick search of Ravelry for inspiration, I settled on the Pinwheel Baby Blanket.  I have a vague recollection of making one years ago in Burgundy yarn, but I don’t recall ever finishing it.  I’ve no idea where it is now, maybe I ripped it back.  (note to self, see if you can find the project or the yarn)

Beginning the blanket, is an exercise in juggling.  The instructions tell you to start by casting on five stitches and placing them on dpns, to join in the round.

Total Nightmare!

Instead, I worked five double crochet stitches into a magic loop and then threaded my dpns, through these stitches.  It’s still fiddly, but you’re less likely to twist your stitches.  By your fourth row, you’re working with ten stitch markers, to indicate where to make your increases and things can feel a little awkward, but as your knitting begins to grow, it becomes much easier.

The colour changes of Sirdar’s Colourwheel are lovely and long, which meant I changed colours pretty much every evening.

Leftfootdaisy-rainbow-pinwheel-baby-blanket-navy-robin-border

The blanket is for a friends grandson and I was slightly worried, it might be a little on the girly side for mum.  So I added a plain navy garter stitch border, using Robin DK, just to masculine it up.

Confession time:  Whilst I have always loved the colours Robin Double Knit comes in, it would have been my least favourite 100% acrylic yarn to work with.  It’s always been one of the best selling budget yarns in the UK and Ireland, but I suspect sales had begun to drop off slightly, with the increase in popularity of some of the other well known brands.  Those folks over at T. B. Ramsden, have taken the bull by the horns, so to speak and given their yarn a complete overhaul.  It’s now made from Dralon Acrylic, which produces a super soft feel and a better stitch definition.

Perfect!

Leftfootdaisy-rainbow-pinwheel-baby-blanket-blocking

The Pinwheel Baby Blanket is one of those projects that just sings, when blocked.  There were no shortcuts though and I was on my hands and knees for sometime, measuring the radius from the centre for each section, before I added another pin.

It dried pretty quickly because of all the lovely sunshine, we’ve been experiencing here in Ireland of late and will be heading to it’s new forever home, some time this week.

I’m fully immersed in my knitting again and I’m still spinning.  Actually today is the last day of the Tour de Fleece, so from here on in, it’s up to me to keep myself motivated.  First thing’s first though, I need to finish the last little bit of the Irish Guild Merino Top, from my last post.  Time to turn up the volume again.

Hope you’re having a lovely Sunday?

Happy Making

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