Subscribe to the knitting blog RSS feed Like this knitting blog on Facebook
Follow this knitting blog on Twitter Follow this knitting blog on Google Plus


The Afghan Selection Process

I decided it was time to tackle knitting an afghan. After thinking about it for a while, I chose the characteristics I wanted:

1. Comprised of discrete chunks, ideally 10-12″ squares.

2. Each square different enough to keep me interested, but not so challenging that I would have to watch a chart. This was going to have to be “stupid TV-watching knitting,” or I know I would never finish it.

3. Minimum number of decisions to be made. A log cabin blanket would fulfill the first two requirements, but it would also need almost constant decisions on which color to use next.

Have you gone browsing for afghan-knitting patterns lately? Because I have to be honest with you, a lot of them are pretty fusty. Old-lady-ish, not to put too fine a point on it.

Two afghans made the final cut: Barbara Walker’s Learn To Knit afghan, and this one with OMG sheeps!

sheep afghan

Amazingly, Joann’s Fabrics had the pattern book for OMG SHEEPS (technically the pattern is called “#37 Sheep Afghan” but whatever). I bought it with my “50% off” coupon, then bought three pounds of Vanna’s Choice acrylic yarn for the knitting.

sheep afghan

And I was just planning to brag about how much my stash had dwindled! I was down to about 17,500 yards before my OMG SHEEPS purchase!

16 comments to The Afghan Selection Process

  • Slager

    Jeez, that is a lot of yarn! How is that Vanna’s Choice? I keep seeing it and wondering.

  • Erika

    It’s definitely one of the nicest acrylic yarns to work with! Faint praise indeed, but for something this size it absolutely has to be machine-washable.

  • I keep telling myself I need to make one motif-based blanket/afghan. I hope it happens some time. I worked with Vanna’s Choice once and found it squeaky.

    When I buy yarn against my judgment, I tell myself if I use it up fast it won’t count as part of my stash…

  • trifarina

    OMG! SHEEPS!!!! (I feel like such a follower, knitting all the cool things you find too, but how freakin apropos on this one!)

  • Does it count as stash yarn if you purchase it with a specific pattern in mind? I say no. OMG SHEEPS!

  • Michele

    I have also been looking at afghan patterns lately! Not sure how you feel about crochet, but lately I’ve been drawn to it (thanks to Pinterest). I haven’t crocheted in years but it goes pretty fast, part of the appeal. A couple I’ve been looking at lately: (This is a knit) (this is just a single granny square pattern but that’s all you need, right?!)

    I’m trying to look forward towards Christmas. I want to give each of my three adult, single kids an afghan, so I need to get started now. I’m an extremely slow knitter or crocheter (that last word always makes me think “crotchety” when written). Looking forward to seeing your choice and progress!

    Pattern at JoAnn’s, ya say. (Hmmm, JoAnn’s is only an hour away, well, maybe longer today since there’s a FREAKIN’ BLIZZARD going on, it being almost March and all. *sigh*)

  • That does not look like mindless tv knitting, Erika.

  • Jennifer

    I love it, but I also agree you’ll be watching a chart while you glance at the TV. I hope you enjoy it. I…I can’t do acrylics anymore. But I respect your choice. :)

  • Sara

    I like your name better.

  • Erika

    Not as mindless as I had hoped, for sure! But I’m one of those people who has a way easier time following intarsia charts than lace or cable charts.

    I wish I didn’t have to resort to acrylics, but for something this big it has to be machine washable – and all the superwash wools DK or thicker get this weird clammy feeling when the weather is damp (as it always is out here).

  • two silver cats

    OMG SHEEPS! OMG SHEEPS! (I keep walking around my house and chanting that to myself– complete with a happy dance!)

    And I agree with you on the acrylic. I would rather willingly chew on tin foil than use acrylic, but sometimes the pros outweigh the cons (especially when it comes to washing and the weird clamminess).


  • Xeres

    I have bought and given away at least four copies of the Barbara Walker book, in addition to the one I still have. Not that I have actually *made* that afghan :D … I bought the wrong size yarn and came out with pissy little squares that were never going to make an afghan. Sigh. But I think it’s a brilliant and thorough step-by-step knitting course, from the most basic (garter stitch, stocking stitch) and through all the sorts of knitting imaginable, and at the end you have a blankie!

    OMG SHEEPS is pretty cute, though. You made me giggle :)

  • OMG Sheep is the best name EVAH!

    I have been having vague thoughts about making an afghan for Matthew and Alex, and I think the Learn To Knit afghan may be perfect. Thanks! (but don’t hold your breath to see it on the blog)

  • Gitte

    I really want to make this afghan for a friend, but as I’m from Denmark, I’m having a hard time getting hold of the pattern. Can you help?

    Your sincerely