Blanket Coverage

I’m usually up for a creative project, so when a friend asked if I’d help her make something for her dad’s birthday, I asked “When?”

Julie’s dad is a big Milwaukee Brewer’s fan, so she bought three yards of official Brewer’s fleece to make a fleece throw. After deciding she preferred a contrasting color for the back, she bought a couple yards of a solid neutral, too.

We finally carved out time in both of our busy work schedules and got crafty earlier this week.

First, we lined up both fabrics on her kitchen floor and cut them to roughly the same length, about seven feet; she wanted it extra long since her dad is tall. Next we smoothed the wrinkles out. Fleece-on-fleece doesn’t shift too much, but since the floor space was limited I knew we’d be moving this around a lot to make the cuts and tie all the knots, so I used a needle and thread to loosely baste a giant X to hold everything in place. (After we finished, we pulled the basting threads right out.)

IMG_0783Once we trimmed off the selvage edges we were ready to start cutting.

There are tons of patterns and instructions online for making tied fleece blankets. Measurements may vary, but it’s a pretty basic process. In our case, the directions said to start by cutting 8-inch squares out of each corner.IMG_0784

Next, it said to make 8-inch long cuts every two inches along all four edges of the fabric.

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My rotary cutter and cutting mat with its handy-dandy measuring grid really sped up the process.

Once I had several strips cut, Julie started knotting. After I finished cutting I knotted, too. Instead of tying the two strips together like shoe laces, we held both layers together and tied it as if making a knot at the end of a single piece of thread.

We soon realized two things:

  1. Tension matters. Tight knots can cause the fabric to bunch up. But if knots are too loose, they might come untied. Aim for uniform tension.
  2. The pattern we were following wasn’t clear on what to do at the corners. Do you make two knots right on top of each other? Or do you tie the abutting knots together? It’s a subjective decision, so just make sure you use the same process for all four corners.

I wasn’t watching the clock, but I’m pretty sure it took the two of us less than three hours to make the extra-long blanket. Neither of us had made one of these before, but I imagine the work goes faster with each one you make.

Julie (who’s standing somewhere behind the blanket in the photo below) said she and her husband will go over the blanket to make sure all knots are tied with a similar tension before giving it to her dad this weekend. I hope he likes it!

 

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Have you tried your hand at a tied fleece blanket or throw? How many have you made?

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About Paula Hendrickson

I'm a full-time freelance writer with an addiction to yarn, cooking and all kinds of crafty things. I come from a long line of creative and entrepreneurial types on both sides of the family, making creativity almost like competitive pursuit.

Posted on October 31, 2015, in crafting with friends, fleece, Friends, gifts, Projects and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. omg, Paula, it’s great!

  2. Paula Hendrickson

    Thanks Ann. Julie gave it to her dad last night…so of course the temperatures will be unseasonably warm this week. Before long I’m sure he’ll be able to get plenty of use out of it. Of course, now Julie’s mom will probably want one of her own, too!

  3. I love to make these but I am horrible with the spacing in between the cuts. It’s a good thing the kids don’t care about that stuff.

    • Paula Hendrickson

      My cutting mat has a one-inch grid, which helped, but I wasn’t too exact. The good thing is how forgiving the pattern is once you tie the knots.

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