52 Projects is an adventure in discovery. Every week, for 52 weeks, do something. Something you’ve never done before. Something you’ve always wanted to do. Something that scares you. Something that inspires you. Something that inspires others. Something that tickles your fancy. Something that caught your eye. Something that just popped into your head. It can be big. It can be small. It can be whatever you want it to be. Find out how doing something can lead you to discover things about yourself, your world, your God. Then, come here on Sundays and share it with others. I'll write about mine here, you write about yours on your blog, then use the tool in my post to link to your something. Please feel free to jump in and participate anytime throughout the year!


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Week 30: A hand knit patchwork afghan

This week I started a very big knitting project. One of my favorite knitting books is Kids Knitting by Melanie Falick:

I've had this book for years and I've always wanted to try my hand at a knitted blanket. The skills are easy but the amount of time it would take to knit all of the squares always made me shy away from it. The project that has me inspired is the patchwork afghan that you see here made for a llama:

I'm making one about four times the size. To digress for a moment, the idea came strongly to me the other day that I'm supposed to knit a prayer shawl which I've never done before. I started researching prayer shawl patterns until it eventually took me full circle back to the blanket for the llama. I'm knitting 48 squares which will be whip stitched together to form one big blanket. Each square consists of 30 stitches across by 56 rows. Each square is built around a specific prayer, mantra or intention. With each stitch that I knit, I say that prayer, mantra or intention. By the time I finish 48 squares, we will be wrapping ourselves in over 80,000 blessings. The task of knitting each square no longer feels monotonous. Each square takes me about an hour to knit and I look at this as one hour of meditation/prayer/quiet time. My goal is to knit one square per day for 48 days. I will have this blanket done on September 26th, which is also my daughter's birthday. I've already stayed on track with my goal since I purchased the yarn on Tuesday. I'm working on my 6th square today.

This project has also taught me some lessons about yarn. I have to say that I have always been a bit of a yarn snob. All of my projects to date have been scarves and hats. They haven't required that much yarn so I'm much more willing to purchase expensive skeins that feel luxurious to me. I also prefer natural fibers with a sweet tooth for alpaca. With this project, I will need at least 2,200 yards of yarn. It simply isn't in my budget this time around to spend hundreds of dollars on this blanket. But I do want the best quality I can use for a reasonable price. After a lot of research, I decided to go with Patons Classic Wool which is 100% lambs wool and comes in a fairly decent range of colors. At $4.99 for a 223 yard skein, this stuff is a good buy and really nice to knit with.

I can't wait to show you the finished blanket in September!

What have you done this week?


  1. What a beautiful idea, Jane! Also a perfect post for Sacred Life Sunday. The prayers and blessings will be so wonderful.

    I always say different things to justify the cost of things to myself. Like that it's not just the cost of the blanket per se, but also that you're providing yourself with "entertainment" (not the best word, though) in the form of relaxation and prayer.

    Anyway, this will be an heirloom bathed in prayer that your family will treasure forever.

    Love, O

  2. That is going to be so beautiful, and the idea behind it is wonderful. So is giving yourself an hour a day like that AND making a fabulous hand-made gift for your daughter. Your colors look great together, too.

  3. ~oh dear jane...i HAVE this same book...i bought it for the boys a few years ago and it is what i used to teach myself how to knit...and you want to hear something funnier...in the winter i started the same project!! motivating me to start working on it again as winter will be here one day!! i love the colors you chose...especially the chocolate brown...can't wait to see it finished! warm wishes and brightest blessings~

  4. What a wonderfully divine project. A fantastic thing to be doing. To wrap yourself in such lovely prayers everytime you snuggle up will be so lovely. And the hour meditation each day will surely reap rewards. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished result.