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Wednesday, September 20, 2017

I Love Accidental Afghans

slideshow (20)
I keep a dedicated size I-9 Susan Bates hook and a small scissors, in an old sewing basket where I toss all orphan yarn such as discontinued colors and/or otherwise random odds and ends. What do I mean by a dedicated hook ?  It is your favorite size hook, your "go to" size hook and always stays with the squares.  I have many.  

I was never huge fan of granny squares but when I only have a few minutes or if I am bored with my current project, I make granny squares.  Oh we "love" making them but most of us really, really, really hate joining them.  I make many styles of grannies, the only rule is "never mix different weights of yarn" then if a dedicated hook is used, all the squares, with the same number of rounds, automatically become the same size.  Completed squares get tossed back in the basket.  I did not realize how quickly they accumulate as I don’t usually pay that much attention to the basket. But now I am taking a closer look at them because you can make so many different things with them. I find I can create 6 or 8 extra afghans a year this way and who does not want to have an accidental afghan or two around just for donations or impromptu gifts ?

Assuming you already have a collection of granny squares, there is no material list for this item because much of it came straight from the odds and ends basket. The amount of additional yarn that you need would depend upon how large you wish to make your afghan.   
But this is how I did so anyone can make it.   

As always with your project it's your choice of colors.  I searched the basket for matching or identical, 4 round granny squares.  To create this afghan I needed squares of a neutral color yarn so I selected Red Heart Super Saver yarn in an off white color.  Always choose a "NO DYE LOT YARN" when the amount needed is unknown.  Then you can buy one skein at a time if you run out.  When buying no dye lot yarn, I found the yarn I bought in another state perfectly matched the yarn I brought from home.  I love no dye lot yarn.

To create this afghan you must have the same number of a plain color squares as you have of the multi-colored squares.  While creating the off white, squares, I attached the matching squares to them, diagonal to each other, in the “Join as you go" method.  This turned the 4 individual small squares into one large square block. I felt joining fewer large blocks would be easier than joining many small blocks.  

Learn Join As You Go    this is an off site link.

When all the blocks are finished I always lay them out before I begin to join. When I get an arrangement I like I take a digital photo of that layout.Then I stack the blocks in the order in which they will be joined so can check the photo as I work to be sure I am following the pattern.  For this afghan you can see I alternated the large blocks so  each multi-color block would be surrounded by 4 plain blocks.

To join this particular afghan I used a 5 chain flat braid join.  Again I chose a neutral color of Red Heart Super Saver No Dye Lot yarn.  I call Green neutral because if you look in your garden you will see every color blends with green.  There are many videos on how to do a 5 chain flat braid join on your tube as well as written tutorials on the internet so I will not cover that here.   As always in my patterns, you may chose the join you like.

10 different ways to join granny squares  this is an off site link

After I created this afghan I discovered the continuous join method.  The best part about the continuous join is I can join a whole afghan in one night.   The other best part is after you join a whole afghan in one night you only have two (2) yarn ends to work in, 1 where you started and 1 where you ended.  I highly recommend it.  

Here are the off site links to the continuous join videos.

Part 1  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoBG9W9rpog&t=9s

Part 2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=foQB6X8q2a0&t=6s

If you wish to see what the continuous join looks like on a completed afghan


 http://idealdelusions.blogspot.com/2013/04/35-squares.html