Sunday, November 9, 2014

Jacob's Ladder Afghan

This afghan pattern is called “Jacob’s Ladder” and when I saw a photo of one, I instantly had to find out how to make one.  Here is the pattern I used to get me started: 

I deviated a bit from it as I didn’t like so many bump-parts of the design.  I wanted those to be the accent of the finished afghan.  (If you follow my work at all, you know I RARELY actually follow a pattern the way it is written.  I almost always make my own design changes in about everything I make!)

This is a blanket for my niece who is expecting her third child.  I felt pretty safe using these colors because there are no girls in their family.  She already has 2 sons and her husband’s brother is expecting their first baby …. a boy.  Wouldn’t you know it that when I’m over half done with this, she finds out it is a girl!  Oh well.  As I tell people, “Girls wear blue all the time!” 

I used one skein of the blue (with lots left over), 4 of the white and 8 of the multi-color.  However ….. I used 2 strands of yarn when crocheting with the multi-color so if you used just a single you won’t need near as much.  Size “H” crochet hook.

There are some things about the pattern I just love and some things you have to think about.  I love that I can easily figure out how many beginning stitches to make and still have the pattern come out right.  (Don’t you just hate it when you have 3 or 4 extra stitches at the end of your first row because of miscounting or miscalculation?).

The bump part of the design is actually 10 chains that are twisted together and braided.  The instructions in the pattern were pretty easy to follow.  

Knowing that, I was able to easily count my stitches for length.  The wide parts of my afghan are 30 stitches, so I just counted off 10 for the first solid section + 10 for the chain-10-braid + 30 for the next solid section +10 for the chain-10-braid  …….. and so on. 

The part you have to think about is the blanket will shrink in actual size once you do the twisting/braiding part.  The chain-10 are about 2-1/2 inches wide but once they are twisted they are only ½ inch wide.  You will lose two inches in width for every braid in your design.

But spend a few minutes thinking it through and you will be fine.  This is illustrated very well in these two before-and-after photos of the afghan laid out on the bed.  Notice how much extra bed is exposed in the after-photo.

The "before" measurement was 48 x 58.

The "After" measurement was 48 x 43.

I was concerned the bump in the design would be hard to lay on but was happily surprised to find it is just as soft as the yarn being used.  No worries after all!

This pattern is very easy, even though it may look a little complex to beginners.  So beginners ….. give this one a try and your family and friends will rave over your expertise and talent!!

It is about to become my Go-To pattern.  I’m planning one where I make the afghan all one color and the braids a different color.  Can’t wait to see how that turns out!

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