Wednesday, August 1, 2012

My Granny Craft: A Project Finished After 4 Years!

I'm not sure if I have ever mentioned my unique hobby on the blog before. It's called Swedish Weave and I refer to it as my Granny Craft :) I'm sure most of you are thinking, "What the heck is Swedish Weave?" and you would not be alone in this. I learned how to do this at a church girl's camp when I was about 14 years old and I think I was one of the only girls there who really took to it and became addicted. I started looking for pattern books and I made my relatives things like table runners and pillow covers for Christmas that year. I also started a blanket that would become one of my big projects for my Young Womanhood Recognition Award. The blanket was big enough to fit my twin sized bed and it took me 55 hours to complete (I only know that because I had to keep track to use it for my award).

Anyway, pretty much as soon as I learned how to do this craft, I became aware of how uncommon it is. I couldn't find a single pattern book in any craft stores that I went to. After I had looked all over, I I asked the lady who taught me where she got her books from and she had gotten them out of state years before. She was so happy to see me so into the craft that she gave me one of her books and I still have it to this day (thank you Sister Samuels!). I eventually found other books that i had to order online, and I have seen a few other ladies from church who do Swedish Weave but even on the internet it is hard to come across. Because of this, I am planning on doing a How To on Swedish Weave in the near future. I have taught classes on it before, but I've never made a full on internet tutorial and I would love to see others give it a try.

Anyway, back to the project at hand. While my husband and I were dating (back in 2008), I got on a big Swedish Weave kick and I started making him a blanket. I let him pick the main colors and I would work on it while I was at his house and he was sleeping - I know that sounds weird, but he worked 3rd shift full time and went to school and still managed to find time for me, so often I would just let him sleep and I would work on my various hobbies.

Over my years of doing Swedish Weave, I have gotten to where I like a more full look of work on the projects. Lots of patterns you will see have large spaces between the motifs where there is just plain fabric and I really like it to look more complete. I also started experimenting with some of thee more decorative yarns available - I used some yarn that has two black threads on the edges and has rectangles of shiny thread that are spaced out on it and the color variegates from silver to black. So, I got this blanket 99% finished by that Christmas, but just before the holiday I lost my skein of the decorative yarn! I had no idea where it went and I just kept the blanket it my bag until I found the yarn. Flash forward to a week ago - 4 years later. I was cleaning out part of my front room and I found the yarn! I was so excited to finally finish the blanket. Ironically, it only took me about 15 minutes to complete it. Isn't that just ridiculous?
I deliberately made it a good size for your lap but that you could still curl up in. I have a serious pet peeve about 'lap quilts' that are hardly big enough to cover your lap - I want to wrap up!
This is what the pattern looks like up close. Because this pattern is literally covering the entire blanket, I'm gonna estimate that this blanket took about 60 or 70 hours all in all (not counting the years it spent sitting in a bag unfinished). Isn't that shiny stuff cool? I'm not sure what it's called or if you can even get it anymore, but it really is perfect for Swedish Weave - the rectangles of color are perfectly spaced so the show up on the top of the project every time.
So, finally after 4 years, my honey can use his gift :) And the sweet guy that he is, he still says that he loves it :)

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