Finishing a hand knitted blanket is the final step in creating a beautiful and cozy accessory that can be cherished for years to come. Whether you are a seasoned knitter or just starting out, this step-by-step guide will help you complete your blanket with ease and confidence.
First, it’s important to assess your knitted blanket and ensure all the necessary finishing touches are in place. Check for any loose threads or stitches that need to be fixed, and make any necessary repairs. Once your blanket is in good shape, it’s time to move on to the next step.
The next step in finishing your hand knitted blanket is blocking. Blocking is the process of gently reshaping your knitted fabric to ensure it lies flat and evenly. To block your blanket, you’ll need a clean surface, such as a flat table or blocking mats, as well as rust-proof pins. Start by soaking your blanket in lukewarm water with a gentle detergent, then gently squeeze out the excess water. Lay your blanket flat on the surface and use the pins to stretch it into the desired shape and size. Allow the blanket to dry completely before removing the pins.
Once your blanket is dry, it’s time to add the final touches. This can include adding a border, either with a contrasting yarn or using the same yarn as the blanket. A border not only adds a finishing touch to your blanket, but it can also help with any curling edges. You can choose to knit or crochet a border, or use a different decorative stitch. Take your time and experiment with different techniques to find the one that best complements your blanket.
Finally, it’s time to secure any loose ends and give your blanket a final inspection. Make sure all the knots are tight and trim any excess yarn. Give the blanket a good shake to fluff up the fibers and remove any loose threads. Your hand knitted blanket is now finished and ready to be enjoyed!
Choosing the perfect yarn
When it comes to finishing a hand knitted blanket, choosing the right yarn is an important decision. The yarn you choose will determine the overall look, feel, and durability of the finished blanket. Here are some factors to consider when selecting the perfect yarn:
- Fiber content: The first step in choosing yarn is to decide on the type of fiber you want. Common options include wool, cotton, acrylic, and blends. Each has its own unique properties and advantages. Wool is warm, resilient, and great for cold climates, while cotton is breathable and ideal for warmer weather. Acrylic is budget-friendly and low-maintenance, while blends offer a combination of different fibers.
- Weight/thickness: Yarn comes in different weights or thicknesses, ranging from lace weight to super bulky. Consider the pattern or design of your blanket when choosing the weight. Thicker yarn can create a cozy, chunky blanket, while lighter yarn is suitable for intricate or delicate designs.
- Color: The color of the yarn is another important factor. Think about the color scheme or theme you have in mind for your blanket. Do you want bold, vibrant colors or subtle, neutral tones? Consider the recipient’s preferences and the intended use of the blanket.
- Texture: Pay attention to the texture of the yarn. Some yarns have a smooth, even texture, while others have a more textured or boucle finish. The texture can affect the visual appearance and feel of the finished blanket.
Once you have considered these factors, it’s a good idea to visit a yarn store or browse online to see and feel the yarn options in person. Seeing the colors and feeling the texture can help you make a more informed decision.
Remember, choosing the perfect yarn is a personal preference and depends on the intended use of the blanket, your knitting skills, and your budget. Take your time to explore different options and find the yarn that best suits your needs and desires.
Creating the perfect pattern
When it comes to finishing your hand knitted blanket, choosing the right pattern is crucial. The pattern you choose will not only determine the overall look of your blanket, but also affect the level of difficulty and the amount of time it takes to complete the project. Here are some tips for creating the perfect pattern:
- Consider the recipient: Think about who the blanket is for and what their preferences are. Are they more drawn to traditional or modern designs? Do they have a favorite color or theme?
- Choose a stitch pattern: Look for stitch patterns that complement your yarn and match the style you want. Consider the texture and thickness of the yarn as well as the complexity of the stitch pattern.
- Create a swatch: Before starting your blanket, make a swatch using your chosen stitch pattern to test how it looks and feels. This will help you determine the right needle size and gauge. It will also give you an idea of how the pattern will look on a larger scale.
- Plan the size of the blanket: Decide how big you want your blanket to be and calculate the number of stitches and rows required. Keep in mind that some stitch patterns are more stretchy than others, so adjust your measurements accordingly.
- Consider the complexity: Think about how much time and effort you are willing to put into the project. If you are a beginner, choose a simple pattern with basic stitches. If you are more experienced, you can challenge yourself with more intricate patterns.
- Add personal touches: Don’t be afraid to modify the pattern to make it uniquely yours. You can add borders, stripes, or other decorative elements to make the blanket more special.
Once you have chosen the perfect pattern, you are ready to start finishing your hand knitted blanket. Enjoy the process and let your creativity shine through!
Casting on and getting started
To start your hand knitted blanket, you will first need to cast on your stitches. Casting on is the process of creating the foundation row of stitches on your knitting needles.
Here’s how to cast on:
- Hold one knitting needle in your right hand, with the tip pointing to the right.
- Make a slipknot by forming a loop with the yarn, leaving a long tail.
- Insert the knitting needle through the slipknot from front to back, and tighten the loop onto the needle.
- Hold the needle with the slipknot in your right hand, and use your left hand to hold the yarn coming from the ball.
- Wrap the yarn around your left thumb, and use your right hand to pass the needle over and under the loop of yarn on your thumb, creating a new loop on the needle.
- Release the loop from your left thumb, tightening the new loop around the needle.
- Repeat steps 4-6 until you have cast on the desired number of stitches for your blanket.
Once you have cast on your stitches, you can begin knitting your blanket. Start with the first stitch on your left needle and insert the right needle through the front of the stitch. With the yarn in your right hand, wrap it around the right needle counterclockwise, and pull the new loop through the stitch. Slip the old stitch off the left needle, and you have completed your first knit stitch.
Continue knitting each stitch in the row, moving from the left needle to the right needle, until you have completed the entire row. Then, turn your work, switch the needles, and start knitting the next row. Repeat this process until your blanket reaches the desired length.
Remember to always keep your knitting tension consistent throughout your project to ensure an even finished blanket. Happy knitting!
Mastering the basic knitting stitches
Learning the basic knitting stitches is a crucial step in becoming a skilled knitter. These stitches form the foundation for many different knitting patterns and techniques. Whether you’re a beginner or looking to enhance your skills, mastering these stitches will open up a world of possibilities for your knitting projects. Below, we’ll go through the most important knitting stitches you should learn.
1. Knit Stitch (K)
The knit stitch is the most basic and commonly used stitch in knitting. It creates a smooth, flat fabric with visible V-shaped loops on the right side. To do the knit stitch, simply insert the right needle into the front of the stitch on the left needle, wrap the working yarn around the right needle from back to front, and pull the loop through.
2. Purl Stitch (P)
The purl stitch is the opposite of the knit stitch and adds texture to your knitting. It creates a bumpy surface with raised horizontal bars on the right side. To do the purl stitch, insert the right needle into the front of the stitch on the left needle, wrap the working yarn around the right needle from front to back, and pull the loop through.
3. Stockinette Stitch
The stockinette stitch is the combination of knit and purl stitches and creates a smooth, even fabric. It is commonly used for garments and blankets. To create the stockinette stitch, alternate between knitting one row and purling the next row.
4. Garter Stitch
The garter stitch is created by knitting every row, resulting in a textured fabric with ridges on both sides. It is a great stitch for beginners and is often used for scarves and blankets. To create the garter stitch, simply knit every stitch in every row.
Ribbing is a combination of knit and purl stitches that creates a stretchy fabric often used for cuffs, collars, and hems. Common ribbing patterns include 1×1 ribbing (alternating between one knit stitch and one purl stitch) and 2×2 ribbing (alternating between two knit stitches and two purl stitches).
6. Seed Stitch
The seed stitch is a textured pattern that alternates between knit and purl stitches within the same row. It creates a fabric with a bumpy texture and is often used for decorative borders or to add interest to a simple design. To create the seed stitch, alternate between knitting and purling stitches.
7. Cable Stitch
The cable stitch creates a twisted, braided pattern and adds depth and texture to your knitting. It involves crossing stitches over others to create the cable effect. Cable stitches are often used in sweaters, hats, and scarves to create intricate designs.
8. Decrease Stitch
Decrease stitches are used to shape your knitting and create a tapered or curved edge. Common decrease stitches include the knit two together (k2tog) and slip, slip, knit (ssk) stitches.
9. Increase Stitch
Increase stitches are used to add stitches and shape your knitting. Common increase stitches include the yarn over (yo) and knit front and back (kfb) stitches.
By mastering these basic knitting stitches, you’ll have a solid foundation for creating a wide range of knitting projects. Practice them regularly and experiment with different stitch patterns to expand your knitting skills and create beautiful, unique pieces.
Adding intricate details and designs
Once you have finished knitting the base of your blanket, you can add intricate details and designs to make it more visually appealing. This step requires some advanced knitting techniques and creativity.
Here are a few ideas to add intricate details and designs:
- Intarsia: Intarsia is a method of knitting in which different colored yarns are used to create patterns or pictures. You can use this technique to add beautiful motifs or geometric designs to your blanket.
- Cable knitting: Cable knitting involves creating raised patterns by crossing stitches over each other. You can incorporate cables into your blanket design to add texture and visual interest.
- Lace knitting: Lace knitting creates delicate and openwork patterns using strategically placed yarn overs and decreases. You can add lace borders or panels to your blanket to give it an elegant and feminine touch.
- Embroidery: If you have basic embroidery skills, you can use them to embellish your blanket. You can embroider flowers, animals, or other motifs onto the knitted fabric to create unique and eye-catching designs.
- Colorwork: Colorwork involves using multiple colors of yarn in a single row or round. You can experiment with different colorwork techniques like fair isle or stranded knitting to create elaborate patterns and designs.
Before you start adding intricate details and designs, make sure to plan your design on paper or with a knitting chart. This will help you visualize how the different elements will come together and ensure that your design fits well within the dimensions of your blanket.
Remember to practice any new knitting techniques on a small swatch before incorporating them into your blanket project. This will help you become familiar with the technique and ensure that the finished results are what you envisioned.
Blocking and shaping the blanket
Once you have finished knitting your blanket, it is important to block and shape it to ensure that it looks its best. Blocking helps to even out the stitches, smooth out any uneven edges, and set the final dimensions of the blanket.
1. Gather your materials:
- Blocking mat or towels
- Spray bottle filled with water
2. Prepare the blocking area:
- Choose a flat surface where you can lay out your blanket.
- If you are using a blocking mat, place it on the surface. If not, you can use towels.
3. Wet your blanket:
- Fill the spray bottle with water.
- Gently spray the entire blanket with water until it is damp but not soaking wet.
4. Pin the corners:
- Take one corner of the blanket and pull it gently to stretch it.
- Pin the corner to the blocking mat or towels using the pins.
- Repeat this step for all four corners of the blanket.
5. Shape the edges:
- Start at one edge of the blanket and gently stretch it to smooth out any unevenness.
- Pin the edge of the blanket to the blocking mat or towels using the pins.
- Repeat this step for all edges of the blanket.
6. Arrange the stitches:
- Using your hands, gently arrange the stitches to make them even and create a uniform appearance.
7. Let it dry:
- Leave the blanket in a well-ventilated area and let it air dry completely.
- Do not remove the pins until the blanket is completely dry.
8. Enjoy your finished blanket:
- Once the blanket is dry, you can remove the pins and enjoy your beautifully blocked and shaped blanket!
Blocking and shaping your hand knitted blanket will give it that professional, finished look and enhance the overall presentation. It may take some time and patience, but the end result will be well worth it.
Finishing off with a beautiful border
Adding a border to your hand knitted blanket is a great way to add a finishing touch and create a polished look. There are various types of borders you can choose from, depending on your preference and the style of the blanket.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to finish off your blanket with a beautiful border:
- Measure and plan: Start by measuring the width and length of your blanket. This will help you determine how many stitches you need to cast on for your border and how many rows you need to knit.
- Select your border pattern: Choose a border pattern that complements the look of your blanket. You can opt for a simple garter stitch border, a ribbed border, or even a lace border for a more intricate look. Take into account the overall size of your blanket and the desired width of the border.
- Prepare your yarn: Make sure you have enough yarn to complete the border. If you don’t, you may need to purchase additional yarn in the same color or a coordinating color.
- Pick up stitches: With your knitting needles, pick up stitches along one of the edges of your blanket. The number of stitches you pick up will depend on the desired width of your border and the gauge of your knitting.
- Knit the border: Once you have picked up all the necessary stitches, begin knitting the border pattern. Follow the instructions for your chosen border pattern, knitting each row until the border reaches the desired height.
- Bind off: When you have completed the border, bind off the stitches to secure the edge. You can use a regular bind off method or choose a more decorative bind off for added flair.
- Weave in ends: Lastly, weave in any loose ends from changing colors or joining new yarn as you worked on the border. Use a darning needle to thread the ends through the nearby stitches to hide them and ensure they don’t come undone.
Once you have finished the border and woven in all the ends, take a moment to admire your beautiful hand knitted blanket. Your finished project will be cozy, stylish, and ready to keep you warm for years to come!
Final touches and care instructions
Once you have finished knitting your blanket, there are a few final touches you can add to make it truly special. These finishing steps will ensure that your blanket looks professional and lasts for years to come.
Blocking is an essential step in finishing a hand knitted blanket. It involves wetting the blanket and gently stretching it to its final shape and size. This process helps to even out the tension and gives the blanket a polished look. To block your blanket, follow these steps:
- Fill a basin or sink with lukewarm water and add a small amount of gentle detergent.
- Place your blanket in the water and gently press it down to wet it thoroughly. Avoid squeezing or wringing the blanket.
- Let the blanket soak for about 15 minutes, then carefully lift it out of the water.
- Gently squeeze out excess water by pressing the blanket between your hands.
- Lay the blanket on a clean, dry towel and roll it up to remove even more moisture.
- Unroll the towel and transfer the blanket to a flat surface, such as a blocking board or a clean floor.
- Use pins to secure the edges of the blanket, gently stretching it to your desired size and shape.
- Allow the blanket to dry completely before removing the pins.
Weaving in loose ends
After you have blocked the blanket, take the time to weave in any loose ends of yarn. This involves using a yarn needle to thread the ends through the stitches on the back of the blanket, securing them in place. By weaving in the loose ends, you will prevent them from unraveling over time and ensure a neater finish to your blanket.
To keep your hand knitted blanket in the best condition, it is important to follow the care instructions:
- Hand wash the blanket in cold water using a gentle detergent.
- Avoid twisting or wringing the blanket.
- Do not bleach the blanket.
- Gently squeeze out excess water after washing.
- Lay the blanket flat to dry, away from direct sunlight.
- Do not hang the blanket as it may stretch out of shape.
- If needed, iron the blanket on a low heat setting.
By following these care instructions, you can ensure that your hand knitted blanket stays soft, cozy, and beautiful for years to come.
How do I finish the edges of a hand knitted blanket?
To finish the edges of a hand knitted blanket, you can use several techniques. One option is to add a simple crochet border by single crocheting around the entire edge of the blanket. Another option is to use an i-cord edging, which involves knitting a narrow cord and attaching it to the edges of the blanket. You can also add a decorative edging, such as a lace pattern or a picot edge, to give your blanket a more intricate finish.
What is the best way to block a hand knitted blanket?
Blocking a hand knitted blanket is an important step to give it a polished look. The best way to block a hand knitted blanket is to first soak it in lukewarm water with a wool wash for about 15 minutes. Gently squeeze out the excess water without wringing or twisting the blanket. Lay it flat on a clean towel and roll the towel up, pressing gently to remove more moisture. Then, lay the blanket on a flat surface and shape it to its desired measurements. Use T-pins or blocking wires to secure the edges and corners in place. Leave it to dry completely before removing the pins or wires.
Should I weave in the loose ends of my hand knitted blanket?
Yes, it is important to weave in the loose ends of a hand knitted blanket to ensure that they do not come unraveled over time. To do this, thread the loose end onto a tapestry needle and weave it through several stitches on the wrong side of the work. Make sure to weave it in different directions to secure it properly. Once the end is woven in, trim any excess yarn. This will give your blanket a neater finish and prevent any loose ends from poking out.
Can I add tassels to my hand knitted blanket?
Yes, you can definitely add tassels to your hand knitted blanket if you want to give it a decorative touch. To make tassels, cut several strands of yarn that are double the desired length of the tassel. Fold the strands in half and use a crochet hook or tapestry needle to pull the folded end through the edge of the blanket. Then, pull the loose ends of the strands through the folded end, creating a loop. Pull the loose ends tight to secure the tassel in place. Repeat this process at regular intervals along the edges of the blanket to add as many tassels as you like.
Do I need to wash my hand knitted blanket before finishing it?
It is highly recommended to wash your hand knitted blanket before finishing it. This helps to remove any dirt, oils, or chemicals that may be on the yarn, as well as relax the fibers and even out the stitches. Washing the blanket also allows the yarn to bloom and create a softer, more cohesive fabric. Follow the care instructions for the specific yarn you used and gently hand wash the blanket in lukewarm water with a wool wash or mild detergent. Rinse it thoroughly and squeeze out the excess water before blocking and drying it.
What can I do if my hand knitted blanket is too small?
If your hand knitted blanket is too small, there are a few options to consider. One option is to add a border to the blanket to increase its size. You can choose a complementary yarn and knit or crochet a border around the edges of the blanket, making sure to evenly distribute any increases to maintain a smooth edge. Another option is to attach the blanket to a fabric backing, such as fleece, to add width and length. Sew the fabric backing to the wrong side of the blanket, leaving a small seam allowance. This will not only increase the size of the blanket but also provide extra warmth and stability.