Today we have a real treat for you -- a how-to video and free pattern for the most amazing blanket project from WEBS - America's Yarn Store (www.yarn.com). If you liked the Babette Blanket by Kathy Merrick that has been popularized on the Internet, you're going to love the Illusion Cube Blanket--a journey in color for the knitter! WEBS has been a sponsor of Knitting Daily TV on public television since its very first season, and we're thrilled to introduce you to their spokesperson and owner, Kathy Elkins, who demonstrates the blanket in the new Series 300. Without further ado, here's Kathy...
As a yarn shop owner, one would think that my days would be filled with plenty of knitting time. Unfortunately, this is not the case. When I do find time to knit or crochet, be it for myself, the shop, or for a gift, I am always inspired by projects that are simple to create, yet beautiful when completed. Our Illusion Cube Blanket fits the bill perfectly. I was thrilled when I had the opportunity to showcase this incredible design by Kirsten Hipsky for our Valley Yarns line.
The blanket is constructed by creating a series of garter stitch hexagons, each of which uses two of the eight required colors. Each color is used twice, once as the main color and once as the contrast color. Color changes occur every two rows, which allows for the unused color to simply be carried along the side, minimizing the number of ends that need to be woven in at the end. The hexagons are created in three sections and then stitched together to form the cube. The shape of each hexagon emerges from a series of increases and decreases, along with picking up stitches to start the next section.
Download the free Illusion Cube Blanket pattern, as seen on Episode 310.
Once all fifty-six hexagons are completed, the assembly is based on a chart, which creates the gradient of colors both horizontally and vertically across the blanket for a stunning finished look.
I love this project for several reasons, but if I had to pick my top two they would have to be:
It’s portable, which is always a bonus for me. Between travel, waiting to pick up my kids or attending one of their many events, having a project that I can tote around easily with me is crucial.
The color change, increases, decreases, and picking up stitches are relatively basic skills, but here they’re combined into a very complex-looking result.
Watch this video to learn more about the techniques you'll use in the blanket's construction:
The Illusion Cube blanket was knit in our Valley Yarns Northampton, a 100-percent, worsted-weight wool available in forty colors. Color palettes for this project are endless and by simply reducing the number of strips you could easily have a gorgeous shawl or even a scarf. You can see all of the colors of Northampton and check out all of our other great yarns at http://www.yarn.com.
I hope you have as much fun knitting this blanket as I did! Be sure to check out some of our other free projects from the past three seasons of Knitting Daily TV (highlighted below). To watch more video how-to's from these projects' demonstrations, plus knitting tips and yarn reviews from our appearances on Knitting Daily TV, go over to WEBS' Yarn Store YouTube.com Channel for a complete archive. And don't forget to check out other product reviews and announcements on the WEBS' blog. --Kathy Elkins
Velvet Curtain Cabled Gauntlets, as seen on episode 106
Sublime Soya Cotton Scarf, as seen on episode 107
Vermont Felted Bag, as seen on episode 112
Valley Vintage Vest, as seen on episode 205
Nantucket Felted Rug, as seen on episode 311
Firmaments Lace Shawl, as seen on episode 201