#Crochet #TipsTuesday: How to design a beautiful blanket using granny square patterns from multiple sources

#HowTo design a beautiful blanket using granny square patterns from multiple sources on #Crochet #TipsTuesday with Underground CrafterIf you’re participating in the Mystery Lapghan Crochet-a-long (with 36 crochet patterns by 30 designers), or if you’re just a granny square lover like me, you’ve probably spent lots of time thinking about how to piece together a blanket using squares by different designers.

This post contains affiliate links.

One option is to make a folky, scrappy blanket. These “stash buster” blankets are often pieced together at random, or squares are joined to the larger project as they are finished.

But what if you want to use many different squares to create a blanket that looks more cohesive and planned? I’m sharing 5 tips for designing a blanket that has the look that you want while combining granny square patterns from different sources.

1) Start by selecting colors

For a scrappy look, follow the quilters’ adage and use 7 or more colors. Surprisingly, with this many colors, you don’t have to worry much about whether they all “match” as long as colors placed side by side look harmonious.

I used this approach with my Temperature Scarf. I started with seven yarns (and added an additional color later when I ran out of one).
I used this approach with my Temperature Scarf. I started with seven yarns (and added an additional color later when I ran out of one). You can find the free crochet pattern here.

For a planned blanket, choose a more limited color palette of 3-4 colors for the squares and 1 additional color for borders and joins. If you feel anxious about choosing colors, stick with one brand and one line of yarn since these colors usually work well together. Or, read this great post on color theory for crocheters on FreshStitches.

ILC October 2015 square

2) Pick patterns that connect easily

Your blanket will have a more uniform look if each row is the same size. The simplest way to do this is to select square patterns of the same size. 4”, 6”, 8”, 12”, and 20” square patterns are common options.

Another option is to choose sizes that can easily be combined. For example, the diagram below shows how you can connect nine 4″ squares (at right) to one 12″ square (at center) and four 6″ squares (at left).

#HowTo design a beautiful blanket using granny square patterns from multiple sources on #Crochet #TipsTuesday with Underground CrafterOf course, when you are working with patterns from multiple designers, you will may find that designs that are supposed to result in squares of the same sizes don’t always end up the same size due to differences in your tension, yarn choice, hook, and so on. You might choose to “square up” the smaller squares by working a border of stitches around the square (including 3 stitches in each of the four corners to keep the corners from puckering).

Craftsy3) Lay out the final blanket before joining

A blanket will look most cohesive if you lay it out and choose your favorite arrangement before joining squares together. You can lay out motifs on a large flat surface (like your bed), or you take a picture of each square and sample your virtual layout using PicMonkey collages. Moogly has a great tutorial on using PicMonkey to plan a blanket here.

4) Choose a join to create the right look

There are three major ways to join granny squares.

An invisible join on the wrong (back) side of the blanket is best if you don’t want the seams to be part of the blanket’s design. I have several tutorials for invisible seams available:

On the other hand, a more visible join, like using single crochet join on the right (front) side to create a dimensional sashing, or using a lacy join to create a more delicate look, might be the right fit for your project. You can find my tutorial for a single crochet join here.

A third option is to “join-as-you-go.” Unless you plan your layout before starting your squares (or if you are going for a scrappy look), this technique is more difficult to use when working with squares from multiple designers. You can find my tutorial for the join-as-you-go method here.

5) Unify the blanket with a border

Finally, pull all of the squares and colors of the project together with a border. Choose a solid color for a classic look, find a variegated yarn that includes colors like those in the blanket, or use multiple colors. My favorite book of crochet border patterns is Around the Corner Crochet Borders by Edie Eckman.

I hope you found these tips helpful. What are your favorite ways to combine granny squares from different designers into one project?

10 thoughts on “#Crochet #TipsTuesday: How to design a beautiful blanket using granny square patterns from multiple sources”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *