The Start of a Blanket Project
It is a very sad time indeed when an approach is made about a blanket. It means a Mumsnetter and her family are having to come to terms with the devastating loss of a child or partner. In a very heartwarming way, the Mumsnet community rallies behind them showing strength, love and support.
Initially a first contact with the family is made, this approach is not easy, for both sides really, and has to be made with great sensitivity, and not all offers are taken up, for many different reasons. Where an offer is accepted, the family will be asked about particular colour themes and if there is anything they would like to be included. In addition to initials, in the past these have included lions, bears, Octonauts, boats, stars, birds and peanuts. Personalisation of the blanket is very important, they are very much created for the individual mumsnetter.
And so a project is launched, each one has its own thread on Mumsnet, an OP will be written explaining what has happened, and outlining that particular project and detailing wool to be used. These threads start in Chat, but are moved in time to Arts and Crafts so that they can remain safely for the families for the time to come. A new project is linked to on MNWoollyHugs Facebook and Twitter, but is run through Mumsnet. In addition to the Blanket threads there may well be a support thread in Arts and Crafts too.
Spreadsheets come into their own at this point as everyone is asked (independent crafters, those needing wool and donors alike) to PM in with their offers of support. This helps us get an overall picture of how the project is going. In these very early stages of a project it is not uncommon to receive a few hundred PMs a day, and it is absolutely vital to keep on top of it!
We use only certain types of wool to ensure they combine well, for consistency and that the blankets will be washable and quite robust.
- Rowan Cashsoft DK
- Debbie Bliss Cashmerino DK (not the baby one)
- Sublime Extra Fine Merino Wool DK.
- Artesano Superwash Merino DK
You will get at least two squares from each ball of yarn, and the style of the square is up to you, plain and patterned, simple and complex are equally valued and all warmly received. We are often asked about how many squares should an individual send in. The blankets have never been about how many squares you can produce, or how fancy you can make them. The heart of the blankets, the amazing thing that gives them their uniqueness, is the thought behind each square
Recommended retailers include - McA Direct, many use Cucumber Patch, Fingers and Thumbs and Deramores. There is also an eBay Shop. Warning: Hobbycraft do not generally stock the required yarns but John Lewis do. It’s not the cheapest, but if you like to look/feel before you buy, it’s the easiest!
You will get at least two squares from a ball, and we need plain squares as much as fancy. So please feel free to knit a garter/stocking/moss one to see how it goes before embarking on a complicated design, they will both be appreciated and used.
Each blanket will have its own thread on Mumsnet and in general where two are being worked on simultaneously we run a support thread as well. These will all be in the Arts & Crafts topic on MN. Help is also available via PM, on Facebook and right here!
- You will need 4mm knitting needles or a size 4 crochet hook
- Squares need to be 6 inches, find a ruler!!