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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Inspiration: Whimsy Throw


The Whimsy Blanket, in the Nov/Dec issue of Crochet Today is one of the few projects where the Editor and I actually talked on the phone to discuss the plan. Generally, if a buyer has something in mind, they send a sketch via email.  In this case, Theresa Gonzalez and I had the chance to talk on the phone and strategize.  Theresa and her staff had an idea for the blanket and asked if I would do it.  We talked about the random and spontaneous mood she was going for.  To achieve the Bohemian feel, I designed some of the motifs with odd numbers of sides. In nature, flowers are usually found with odd numbers of petals or they are slightly asymmetrical in some way.  From left to right, the left most motif has 5 sides. Rarely in a project do I get to make a motif that has an odd number of sides because they don't "tile up" with each other neatly the way other polygons do. Similarly, the second and and fourth motifs from the left have 7 sides!  What fun!  So nice to break out of the square/hexagon/octagon mindset.  I wanted motifs with a variety of sizes and color configurations to add to the randomness. I wanted them to have varying degrees of "openness" or lacy-ness.  Probably the most spontaneous feature of the blanket though is the application of the motifs.  Since my book, I have been on a "join-as-you-go" kick. Sometimes sewing motifs is the right joining method, but lately I have been interested in designing motifs that join to it's neighbor as the last round of the motif is stitched.  So, of course, I wanted to join-as-you-go for this blanket.  I made a Filet mesh netting as the background. I made all the motifs except for the final rounds. I laid out all the motifs and pinned them to the blanket with locking stitch markers to help me get a general idea of where they would go and how many of each were needed.  Then I went and stitched all the final rounds and when I got to the corners, instead of slip stitching to an adjacent motif, I slip stitched onto a convenient spot on the background.  What do you think? Is this too "free-form" for your nature or is it just the right amount of "guidance vs. freedom"?

Let me know if you'd like to hear the inspiration story of any other of my projects. I'll tag these posts "Inspiration". If you like it, I may make it a new series.

4 comments:

April Garwood said...

I think it's a great blanket Ellen! I love how each one will be a custom creation. Great job!

Haley said...

I love the inspiration stories!! Looking forward to a series - like Inspiration Wednesday :o) I think this blanket is really cool - love the freedom that is incorporated into the design.

crazymotheringchick said...

I love this blanket. I love the freeform of it, and how it's just a little different than your other crochet.

Sherri said...

I think you made the right choice in using the "join-as-you-go" technique to join the motifs. It not only simplifies that step but also attaches each motif firmly.

Great job on a beautiful design!

Sherri