Monkster has something he’d like to show you:
That’s my Sleepy Monkey Blanket which I designed for the Spring 2009 edition of Twist Collective.
No, that’s not a second blanket – it’s reversible!
My 3 boys aren’t babies anymore. These days, they’re far more apt to take a touchdown pass than a nap. But as I was knitting this blanket, it was fun to think of how they would have enjoyed it when they were little. I imagined naptime, when they might have “read” the blanket as they sat on my lap: “Look! There’s that silly winking monkey! And there’s that sweet little kissing monkey! But where did my sleepy monkey go?” Surely, they would have named each of those monkeys. Hopefully, they would have picked a favorite – a funny little friend to guide them off to Dreamland.
We’re still not sure if those are Life Savers, Jelly Rings or Fruit Loops on the back. But, I am pretty sure it would have been fun to pretend my monkeys and I were gobbling them up.
With any stranded project I do, one of the hardest things to get past is picking just one colorway to knit first. Since this was designed for a publication, there were other opinions to consider, too. First and foremost, it seemed only right to start with a unisex colorway. I’ve always adored monkeys and I kind of suspected there might be some calls for some more “girly” options. (I think the first one came about 15 minutes after the new edition went live!) So here are a couple of my favorites:
The final, chosen colorway used Valley Yarns Superwash Merino. The “virtual swatch” on the left used colors from Valley Yarns Sugarloaf Merino/Acrylic. Both of those yarns are available through WEBS. The “virtual swatch” on the right used colors from Dale of Norway Freestyle 100% washable wool. That yarn is available from…hey, that one’s from ME!
Wow! In no time at all, I’ve had quite a few requests for more Freestyle colorways. So, at the bottom of this post, I’ve added a few more “virtual swatches” (colorized charts, not knit samples) based on Freestyle colors.
If you like to knit in the round, you might like to steek your blanket, as I did. (There’s a mini-tutorial on this topic within the blanket pattern. You can also read my detailed article on steeks here.) If you’re using a soft, superwash yarn, you’ll want to machine-sew your steeks – soft yarns are too slippery for crocheted steeks. If you’re using the same motif layout shown in the example, you’ll want to use worsted or aran weight (4 to 4.5 sts/inch) yarn so that your squares’ circumferences will be large enough to wriggle through the machine. (Of course, if you add a(n) extra repeat(s) of the monkeys across your blanket, you can get away with steeking a finer gauge yarn.) If you choose to knit your squares flat, by machine or by hand, there’s no circumference to reinforce and open up, so you can use any gauge your heart desires.
Whatever your choice, I hope you and your mokeys have endless fun. And in case those rings on the back turn out to be Jelly Rings, save some for me!