Sunburst baby blanket

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DSC_3350Behold, a completed baby blanket!

If you recall, I started this project armed with Elizabeth Zimmermann’s brilliant and elegantly simple pi shawl “pattern” and a vague inspiration of a sunburst. For the non-knitters among you, this basically means that I had a rough idea of the construction but no specific plan, of my own or someone else’s devising. I also had a very finite amount of yarn.

As you might expect, this led to some interesting trial-and-error knitting and re-knitting. But it was also wonderfully freeing, and meant that at each stage of the project I was busy dreaming up what would come next, which turns out it is a really good way to keep up your interest. (Well, almost. I may have used the word “drudgery” to describe finishing the edging. There was no more blanket planning to be done so my mind moved on to scheming a new sweater. But it’s done so all is forgiven.)

In the end, the central starburst and concentric rings are exactly what I imagined they would be. My original plan was to transition directly from the plain rings to a wide edging with much deeper points and more pattern. I swatched several options but couldn’t find a compromise between the amount of yarn I had and a design that I liked, so I ended up ditching that idea and revising the plan. By the time I conceded defeat on the wide edging, I was out of patience for dreaming up ideas and ready to make some quick progress, so I opted for borrowing a couple charts from a similar shawl pattern.

It wasn’t my favorite option at the time, but I am happy with the look of them, so I think it was a good decision. And I was still able to do a simple edging to satisfy my firm conviction that it should be finished with points rather than any kind of smooth edge. Also, in a most gratifying way, my math worked out so I successfully finished with enough yarn that I never seriously worried about running short but not so much that I felt like I could have squeezed anything more in.

One of the three skeins was noticeably darker than the other two – not shocking for a hand-dyed yarn, but I didn’t notice until I had knit the entire outlier into the center of the shawl. So we’re calling that sharp line of contrast just beyond the outermost ring a design element. I wouldn’t have chosen it, but I didn’t hate it enough to do the major ripping required to change it. Side note: yes, that means that the outer part of the blanket that is lighter is twice as much yarn as the entire center. Circular geometry sort of blows my mind. Still.

Perhaps the only thing more mind-blowing is the fact that this babe isn’t expected for nearly three months yet. I’m feeling seriously smug about that kind of time management. (Note to universe: not that smug, please be kind.)

2 thoughts on “Sunburst baby blanket

  1. That is beautiful, what a great color for a baby.

    The happenstance of the dyeing worked out wonderfully.

    1. Thanks! Yes, I almost forgot that the red is not exactly a classic baby choice, because it just feels so perfect for this mama and her little one.

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