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Monday
Mar232009

Joelle's Giant Granny Square

This beautiful blanket sat unfinished and crumpled in a forgotten corner of Joelle's craftroom for at least two years. One day it somehow got unearthed, poking itself out from under a pile of fabrics. Page, Molly and I were simultaneously riveted by the vision of this amazing blanket that we'd never seen. Molly demanded to know, "Where has this been?!" I reprimanded, "Why haven't you finished it?!" Page yelled, "Can I have it?!" Why didn't I think of that?

Joelle was less impressed with herself than we were with her. She just kind of shrugged and said that she'd gotten too busy to finish it (true, she is busy). So I offered/got enlisted to crochet the last round and to sew in the ends.

It was a pleasure to spend time in the mind of Joelle's color sense. To me it's a marvel how she dreamed up these colors. Soft grays and creams blur behind sharp bursts of vivid pinks and rich browns, all mingling together in beautiful rainbow magic.

It's a simple notion - a granny square that goes on and on and on - but because the pattern is so pleasantly meditative, the mind is free to just wander from one color to the next, creating beautifully symphonic color music. There's no better instrument for such composing than Koigu's KPM. The hand-dyed colors strike every note perfectly!

This blanket is 30 x 30-inches and takes at least seven skeins to make. Joelle used more skeins in order to use more colors. Here's what they are:

For this warm toned version (from top to bottom):

Colors #2389, #1303, #2360, #1111, #2231, #1411, #1135, #1110, #1209, #2180, and #1201

Here's another color idea if you want to explore cooler tones (from top to bottom):

Colors #2411, #2171, #2409, #2405, #2416, #2403, #2360, #0000, #1201, #2100, #2180, #1230

Remember that tracking down exact matches of Koigu colors can be a little tricky at best, and impossible at worst. Luckily, Koigu makes so many gorgeous colors that substituting one of these colors with your own choice is bound to bring its own rewards.

This blanket has been on quite a journey. I think Joelle's love for it has been rekindled, and Page may have to make her own! If you'd like to make your own and want to learn how to make a granny square, please visit our Granny Square Tutorial!  --Whitney

Reader Comments (74)

This is totally gorgeous!!! Love love love it.
March 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMorgan
Very very beautiful indeed.
Andi :-)
March 23, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterandi
My mom makes these huge granny square blankets:) I got one when I graduated from high school and 20 years later, it's still going strong. It feels like a hug.
March 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLizzie
Wow! The shifts are so subtle, but the overall effect so is dramatic!
March 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNadia Lewis
This is the coolest thing I've seen in a really long time. Oh, now I want to make one of these so bad.
March 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMelly G
Oh this is so beautiful I want it too. I am really trying hard to teach my self to do this, thanks again for the inspiration, I love it!!
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCate
That is so beautiful! And BIG! I don't think I could make one that great looking.
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCerise
I made a giant granny last year, and it's very nice, but this post inspires me to try one out of luxe yarn rather than the usual Granny acrylic (urgh). This project is really pretty!
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLeah
Stunning! It's amazing how great color selection can make a granny square blanket look like a work of art. Of course, I will be yet one more that will try to capture that look!
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTammy
LOVE this blanket, I want to learn crochet & this is the perfect project to learn on - great color choices as well
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermeg (kiss my style)
Amazingly beautiful. I really want to make one.
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGudrun
Knittting Kit ?
Why don't you prepare kit in those gorgeous choice of colours ? or any choice for that matter.. For one, I would buy it in a sec..
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSamLaTricoteuse
Is one skein enough to go all the way around the outside edge?
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSans
Gorgeous! This may be the push I need to FINALLY learn how to crochet.... what size hook did Joelle use?
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEmily
Not sure if my comment went through..
Anyhow, what about having some kits ready - or other colour combination - pre-set for selling. I, for one, would buy right away..
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSamLaTricoteuse
wowowowowow!
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered Commenteryvette
Hi Everyone with questions, here you go!

I used a 3.25mm/US D crochet hook for the koigu

1 skein is enough to go around the outside edge

We don't have kits put together for this project but would be happy to assemble some colors for you. Please contact us at the link below and let us know what you'd like color-wise. And maybe we'll consider putting together some kits for this project in the future.
http://www.purlsoho.com/purl/contact

Thanks for all of your kind comments! --Joelle
March 24, 2009 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Ok - I have the same blanket in the same status in my stash! My colors are not nearly as beautiful as Joelle’s, but this post has inspired me to dig it out and finish it! Thank you!!
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKelli
what a wonderful and beautiful idea! i love it!
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterdanielle
I really want to be able to make things like this! Will have to have to a go. Pretty pretty colours. Well done team effort *high fives*
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterQalballah
How many rounds were crocheted in order to make a blanket this size?
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSara
How pretty!! It reminds me of a few projects I did as a kid :)

I love the simplicity and endless possibilities of granny squares!
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLyanna J.
The blanket is so awesome! This makes me want to try to crochet again. I've never really taken to it, but I love this. Thank you!
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDebbie
Ok. This inspired me. I have been working on an afghan for a friend for months now and am not satisfied with doing it in pieces. I love the colors, love the high-quality yarn, but the thought of piecing it together has been bugging me. I look on here today and AHA!! do a giant granny square! Or four of them. I may do something like that.

Thanks for being my "lightbulb" today.
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterG.
That is so beautiful! The colors are incredible.
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterStephany
wow! colors are amazing --huh? the right ones can make a simple granny square so lovely...
March 24, 2009 | Unregistered Commenteraurora
WOW I love this, it is gorgeous!!
March 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLetty
I counted 43 rounds including the final round. Looks like 2 rounds per color, some colors repeated twice, since there were only 12 colors used throughout. Having been a long time crocheter myself, I think you did a wonderful job!
March 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterPat H
I made two giant granny squares recently for two sweet new babies and their mamas love them too! I need to make one for my own bed now. This is so pretty and looks inviting.
March 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTracie
Wow, this is just gorgeous. I wish I had the time to sit down and complete a project such like this.

I love your work :)
March 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterHelena
Yes! Yes! I want to make one! I've been tinkering with individual granny squares and have been slightly annoyed with the idea of eventually having to piece them all together. This is my answer. Thanks for posting.
March 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJanna
Wow! I love this! I have made a couple of granny square blankies myself, and have recently thought of making another one... What an inspiration! I'm going to start one this week for sure after seeing this! Awesome work! The colors are quite stunning. I love the color-vibration it gives. Simply beautiful.
March 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSteph
Most beautiful great-granny(that's what I call it) I've ever seen! Very inspiring!
March 26, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJo
Love it, the colors are really amazing and I imagine it s quite long to do, I am not sure I would be patient enough to do that, this type of knitted blanket is very popular in my country too but this one is really a success!
j adore vraiment, que de belles idées ici!
March 26, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterrosine greyfell
It is fantasting, I love it!
March 26, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterIvana
Thanks so much for posting this. I've been making these like crazy - fun to work up and I love coming up with colors. Haven't tried the KPM, but I'm looking for more variations (I use everything from Flickr photos to photos of my boy's colorful clothing combos as inspiration) and hand-dyed seems to be the way to go! Again much thanks! I hope everyone tries this. If you need a readymade version, let me know! I love making them.
March 26, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterChristi
Absolutely stunning, and I'm so glad it's been outed............... it looks as though it was very satisfying to do, and the colours! Being covered in that blanket must be like being covered in a delicious rainbow.
March 27, 2009 | Unregistered Commentervanessa
II have been making these since I was 18..(61 yrs ago today) There are so many things you can do with granny squares.. I put six tohgether,(2x2x2) then do many rows around them and deliver them to the local nursing home for their Geri-chair patients... Also make smaller square (19") afghans from fine baby yarn, for the local N.I.C.U..(Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) and also knit little hats for them. donated 27 afghans last week.. also sew & put hand smocking on little gowns (for Baptism,dedications, or Naming of the little 1-2-3 lb babies. It is a rewarding pastime. If anyone lives in the Poughkeepsie,Wappingers Falls, Hopewell Jct area, contact me. I also teach at the East Fishkill Community Library each Thursday....c'mon down.. The Purple Crone..
March 27, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterpurplecrone
Yes, yes! I want a kit also; will send email. I've been crocheting my first granny squares with the tutorial - what great fun!
March 27, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLaurie
Aww, Happy Birthday, Purple Crone! Thanks for taking the time to make the world beautiful with your handiwork and your kind heart!
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSans
It's very beautiful, I am unable to do that -:( bravo et un grand bonjour de France !
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterClaudine
This is so cool--our church receives boo-coo yarn so I'm sure I can make one or two of these for the bazaar (if that's okay). This is a great carry-along, mindless project for wait time at the doctor's or for needlework club (which can be very noisy and distracting at times). Thank you for sharing your patterns. This website keeps me inspired.
March 30, 2009 | Unregistered Commenternorthwind
Hi Northwind,
Of course that's okay, we definitely do not own the copyright on granny squares! Enjoy!
March 30, 2009 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Heck, what else is hiding in there??

(And yes to the kits, please!)
March 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEmily
Ohh... Beautiful ! I love it ...
March 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBinoo
We love granny square blankets too .... my mum has lovingly done one for each of my 5 children- all very individual to their personalities. As well as my kids she makes one for any child of a friend or family.
March 30, 2009 | Unregistered Commentercalico and chintz
Ahhhhhhhhh, I feel like I've come home. It's awesome and beautiful.

Cherry x
March 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCherry Menlove
You are so right, the colours in this is amazing. I think I might try and make my own version of this as my next baby blanket. :) Thank you for all the inspiration.
March 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCamilla
I am so happy to see this finished blanket. I was inspired to make one in a similar fashion a couple of years ago - http://thatsillygirl.blogspot.com/2007/09/it-is-done.html
I get several hits a month with people looking for a pattern for a giant granny square blanket. I never wrote out the pattern because it was kind of pieced together from other sources, so I am so glad to see your pattern. I am going to add a link to my post so that people will find your pattern. Seeing yours in all its beauty makes me want to try another. :0)
April 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRobyn
These are the projects that make me SO GLAD I can crochet. I can't knit a stitch, but I can crank these puppies out in no time. Beautiful color scheme!
April 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermelissa

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