A coded “nap blanket”

My latest crochet project is complete: A “nap blanket” for my father using wool from my mother’s vast collection that I inherited over the summer.

Before I hauled all the wool away to Scotland, I offered to make a blanket for Dad. He selected the colours from Mum’s collection and then we worked out the size based on his current napping blanket.

The chosen wool is from a range called Caron Simply Soft. It certainly lives up to its name and was really nice to work with.

I wasn’t sure how far each skein would get me, so I wasn’t able to create a generic pattern for which colour to use at which time. Instead, I decided to get a little clever with the colour changes, knowing that there would be no obvious pattern. But I wanted to make sure that there was a pattern to the colour changes even if they seemed random.

Knowing that Dad wanted something warm, and without loads of holes, I opted for a sort of “popcorn stitch” (pattern at the end of the post) instead of a ripple afghan. It means the blanket is heavier and therefore warmer – which I think is perfect for napping.

In the beginning, when it was still easy to manoeuvre.

In the end, the row pattern was based on a simple numeric code and each row or set of rows has a meaning. To know the meaning, you need to see the full blanket and know how to “read” it. It doesn’t need an Enigma machine to decode the cypher, but a bit of family knowledge is almost certainly required.

I won’t share the code here, but I will say that I am pleased to have “discovered” little bits of unintended numbers-based meaning in some of the combinations of the different sets of codes. For example: There were 10 rows dedicated to my parents’ combined names (A Perfect 10); there were 42 rows dedicated to the names of their daughters (42 = the answer to life, the universe, and everything); and there were 84 rows dedicated to the names of their grandchildren (twice the value of 42). And it was all capped off with a set of rows signifying faithfulness.

Each colour grouping represents something of importance to our family.

This is the largest blanket I’ve ever finished and the first time I’ve stitched a border around a blanket. It’s also probably to fastest time I’ve ever completed a blanket, as I wanted to get it done before I travelled home for the Christmas holidays. And that also means I didn’t put off weaving in all the ends like I normally do!

The problem with patterns is they create more ends that need weaving in. Worth it though!

I am really pleased with the results, and I think Dad is happy with it, too, given he’s taking a nap with it just now. So, a winning creation altogether!

Now that my first project using Mum’s yarn is complete, it’s time to think about the next project. Either one of my own – using Mum’s supplies – or one of Mum’s unfinished projects that I want to complete for her. So many options… I don’t know what I will choose! But I will be sure to share the results of whatever I decide to make.

Finished and ready to be napped under!

Nap Blanket Stitch Pattern

  • Begin with chain 108 for a twin-sized blanket. (Or any multiple of three stitches. I lost count, but I think I started with a chain of about 180.)
  • Row 1: 2 dc in 3dr ch from hook, *skip 2 ch, 1 sc and 2 dc in next ch; rep from * across, ending with skip 2 ch, 1 sc ch in last ch. Ch 2, turn.
  • Row 2: 2 dc in first sc, *skip 2 dc, 1 sc and 2 dc in next sc; rep from * across, ending with 1 sc in top of t-ch. Ch 2, turn. Rep Row 2 for pat.3.
  • Repeat row 2 for pattern until desired length. (120-200 depending on if it’s for a lap blanket or for a bed. This was 208 as I needed 8 more rows to complete the code.)

2 Replies to “A coded “nap blanket””

  1. This is fantastic! I can’t wait to see what other things you create from your mom’s supplies! Much love xoxo

    1. Thank you! I really turned out well and I am so excited about that. When I get back to Scotland, I will be doing a full inventory of Mum’s unfinished projects I have to work on — one of which is a beaded “12 Days of Christmas” ornament set (actually, several sets!) that I want to finish for next Christmas. She was working on a set for each of us girls (me + 5 sisters) and I’m sure they’ll all enjoy to have them on next year’s tree.
      Happy Christmas to you and your family!! xx

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