I started this project in March 2016 with no particular purpose. I had gotten the idea of a mitered square scrap afghan where every other square was white (-ish). It seemed like such a fun project that I gathered appropriate yarns and cast on immediately. In some ways this is a really impractical afghan; it’s all wool, not superwash, so it will have to be dry-cleaned. It’s way too big for a lap robe because Younger Son commented that the problem with most afghans is that they are not long enough to use as a blanket on the couch. No such problem with this one!
Given that I wanted it to be big enough for a couch blanket, I figured that if I made each square 5″, a 9×15 grid would be just about right. So, that became the goal. Each square is 21 stitches on a side, plus one stitch at the center.*
The five color groups that I used. The only colors I avoided were light ones — not enough contrast with the whitish squares. Except for the variegated squares, nearly all the squares were Knit Picks Wool of the Andes or Cascade 220. My Ravelry page lists everything (I think).
They were the most fun — and nerve-wracking — squares to knit. The vareigated leftovers I was used were all very small balls. With every square I would wonder, Do I have enough yarn for an entire square? The Noro square at lower right had to be finished with some solid blue, and the first one in the third row had two different yarns, but mostly I won at yarn chicken.
I almost ran out of whitish yarn. Towards the end I was improvising by double-stranding thinner yarns: a couple different sock yarns and a DK yarn plus a laceweight. I even made one square of white Plymouth Encore. When I was in Park Rapids for my class reunion in September I picked up a skein of white Cascade 220, just in case. It came in handy at the end because I was anal about never putting a new whitish square near another one with the same yarn, and I was running out of choices.
My postal scale was in use all the way through. After knitting the first two or three squares I weighed the thing and figured how much the average square would weight: 19g (I think; the memory fades so quickly). There were still a couple of losses at yarn chicken, the two detailed above and one white square. But mostly it worked out.
All the time I was knitting this thing the small voice in the back of my head kept wondering what I was going to do with it. Did we really need another afghan? Maybe, maybe not. I could give it to QGD2 when she went to college this fall, but as I mentioned before, it is a dry-clean only item; probably best not entrust it to a poor college student, no matter how responsible she is. I could donate it to our county party’s annual silent auction, but would it bring enough $$ to justify my year-and-a-half’s work? If it went for anything less than several hundred dollars I would feel slighted, and I was pretty sure no one would pay that much.
The problem of what to do with this massive project was solved when I voiced the possiblity of giving it away. Smokey immediately said he would like it. Yay! It stays in the family as his TV-watching companion!
* Smokey asked how many stitches were in this — 100,000? Not quite, I told him. 21 x 21 per square, times 9 times 15 = 59,535 stitches. Approximately.