Sunday, 12 September 2010

I'm Ready for Autumn!

The Great Canadian British American Aran Afghan (with a few squares from other sources) is finished!  Hurrah!

As Fleegle commented Aran blankets tend to be quite heavy  - and this is no exception - it is definitely one for cold nights.  21 skeins of Rowan Pure Wool Aran add up to a substantial afgahn! It's about 4.5 ft x 5.5 ft, perfect for wrapping up on the sofa.

After finishing up the 'squares' (as I commented previously they weren't square and they weren't the same size!) - I wet blocked them  - and hurrah - like magic suddenly I had 20 12 x 12 inch perfect-ish squares.

I used crochet to seam the blocks together into strips.  I then joined the strips together.

The original pattern has a cable border but I wanted to include the accent colours in mine so I opted for a simple garter stitch. 

The first obstacle with the border was finding a circular needle long enough to fit around the blanket.  A 120cm KnitPro needle was just a that bit too short - making the knitting a bit uncomfortable.  My second concern was running out of cream yarn.

Easily solved, I thought, that's what shops are for. 

I was wrong.

What should  have been a simple 1 to 1.5 hour shopping trip became a 6 hour epic journey as Transport for London, my local-ish yarn shop, and John Lewis conspired against me.  It ended well though with a visit to Loop in Islington where I got what I needed (and a bit more!)  I hadn't been to their new location and it's lovely. 

The endurance test passed I knit the garter stitch border, 4 rows of cream, 2 rows each of the colours and 10 rows of cream to finish.

I love the afghan and I loved making the afghan.  It is a really great project and I recommend it to anyone who wants to get into some cable work.  Beginners shouldn't be frightened away - there are some simpler blocks to give you some confidence and if you take each block one stitch at a time you will be fine.

16 of the squares are from the Great American Aran Afghan booklet - and four I sourced from other places.  I've compiled a list of the squares I used in the post below.

(Apologies for the picture above -- I tried to 'blur' out the messy bedside cabinets in Photoshop.  It would have been faster, easier and made a better picture if I'd just moved the books and odds and ends!)

18 comments:

janiannie said...

Wow...how brilliant is that, so autumnal and cosy looking. The colours go together so well and the border finishes it off perfectly, I love it..well done!

LittleBerry said...

It is stunning and the colours are great together - well you can't go wrong with green.

My favourite is the bottom right hand corner of the photo - those two squares I think they're beautiful

fleegle said...

Gorgeous! And you are ready for an Arctic winter :)

Helen @ Fuss Free Flavours said...

It is utterly lovely. I love the little sweater square.

The Caked Crusader said...

Yay - it's finished! What a triumph - I love the green panel with the bobbles in the middle (possibly my pompom love shining through!)

minniemoll said...

What a fantastic blanket! It looks great, and warm and cosy too.

Thanks for the details about the squares you used, if I do ever get round to making one I'll be back to look at your ideas :)

Heather said...

This is a gorgeous afghan and I'm inspired and encouraged by it! Well done and do enjoy it this autumn! :-)

teacosy said...

wau die sieht aber gut aus.
That is lovely I love the one with the jumper. Nice work.
Liebe Grüße Sylvia

lv2knit said...

This is fantastic! I love it!!

Barbara said...

Absolutely beautiful. I can't imagine how much work you put into it!

knittinbrit_in_wi said...

Your afghan turned out beautiully. Definitely motivates me to get cracking on finishing up my afghan.

Just discovered your blog and am thoroughly enjoying it. You do such beautiful work - very inspirint.

Evelyn said...

Oh man, that is awesome! And what a testament to the powers of blocking. The "before" picture doesn't look very hopeful, but the end results are fantastic! Gorgeous knitting and a lovely design.

Ivete said...

What a gorgeous blanket! Great job!

Batty said...

It's stunning! Way to stay warm in style!

Lucette said...

I am so very impressed and inspired by your afghan. You have inspired me to keep working on mine.

Shirley Grant said...

I love it! I knit a lot of Arans, but some of these squares look very complicated. Well done you!

Anonymous said...

Hi there I was wondering if you can help me??? I just bought the pattern for the GAA thinking oh how difficult could this be.Well I consider myself quite a good knitter but this pattern is throwing me for a loop!I attempted 4 different blocks and got so frustrated I pulled them all out.Is there any advice you could give me in knitting these blocks.I have been knitting for years and have never felt so frustrated!! I really want to make this afghan.Any input you could give me would be much appreciated.Please e-mail at your convenience with your thoughts and or ideas!! I am ready to pull my hair out over this....thanks Christian at smithjango@aol.com

Agnes said...

This afghan pattern never fails to amaze me ... every time I see a new version, I feel myself falling in love with it all over again! Very thoughtful of you to incorporate the colors into the border.