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Marley Blanket

March 21, 2017

OK so I’ve officially been obsessed with gigantic chunky blankets, for at least the last year.

After I made the Stashbuster tunisian crochet monster, I immediately thought MAN I NEED TO DO THIS IN A KNIT! And so Marley was born. With 4 yarn weights and 4 size options, this is a very versatile pattern. Also, since you knit it from end to end, you can pretty much work till you get to 1/2 of your total yardage, then you’ll know how much farther you can go!

The super-bulky version that I made is pretty crazy. Let me tell you, while it didn’t take me very long to knit, it ate up a fabulously large amount of yarn. Which for me and my mountain of odds and ends of stash was a great thing! If you don’t already have an unreasonable stash mountain that will never be made into more sensible projects, this may not be the most cost effective project. As the pattern is designed in multiple yarn weights, you can always knit a more reasonable version in aran weight!

This beautifully delicate version was knit in Ginger’s Hand Dyed Super Sheep Aran in the colourway ‘bourbon and water’.

I made the largest size given by the pattern, in super-bulky weight. The finished blanket measures 58″ wide x 83″ long, and it’s a beast! It weighs 4.6 lbs in total (that’s around 2100 g). If you break that down to 100g skeins, that is 21 skeins of yarn. That said, my rationale was that if I didn’t use the yarn, it wouldn’t be of any use! I enjoyed incorporating the odds and ends of dozens of finished projects and designs, and this made the experience a trip down memory lane as I remembered buying, knitting, dyeing, and enjoying each of the yarns which I added in to this special blanket.

unreasonably woolly

If you DO fall into the category of having stash beyond life expectancy (or some similar problem), then hey ho! I’ll share with you how I made this bad boy!

I used a US #19 / 15mm 47” long circular needle, and achieved a gauge of 7.5 sts & 14 rows / 4” in garter stitch. That’s less than 2 stitches per inch… these stitches are BIG.

I chose a marled ombre of various stash yarns, starting with deep purples through red, orange and yellow to white. I had previously done a bit of a stash purge, pulling out all the odds and ends and partial balls and things that I knew I would likely never cast on as newer and more intriguing yarn finds would take precedence. So I had a few bags of yarn which were arranged roughly by colour, and these are what I pulled my yarn from.

Stash Mountain

I started with the deep dark purples; and proceeded through to white. I held what ‘felt like’ the right number of yarns together, and found it was easy to adjust on the fly by adding or removing strands as it seemed necessary, or as I ran out of one yarn or another. See the detail photos below for a sense of how many and what weight yarns worked to create this super-bulky gauge.

Marley Blanket

One bulky, two aran weight, and two sock weight strands.

Marley Blanket

One DK, 2 lace, and 5 sock strands, including some angora which added a really magnificent halo.

Marley Blanket

One chunky, one DK, two sock, and two lace strands. The higher contrast in this section gave a more tweedy / speckly effect.

Marley Blanket

One aran, and three worsted / heavy DK strands.

Marley Blanket

Three worsted / DK strands, and two sock strands.

Marley Blanket

One aran, two sock, and four lace strands.

Marley Blanket

One bulky and 5 lace strands. I found that I had a lot of lace-weight yarn in my stash, and despite loving to knit lace, I don’t tend to knit it using lace weight yarn. So holding strands together to make up heavier weights seems like a good strategy for me to get these yarns out of the stash and into the world!

Now that Marley has featured prominently at both Knit City and the Edinburgh Yarn Festival, it will make its happy home on my couch, to keep me warm and cozy while I knit and watch TV.

Do you love knitting blankets? We definitely do! So much so that our latest book, Mad Colour, featured a total of FOUR blankets! They are such a fabulous way to use up odds and ends, and to create delicious multi-coloured confections!

Mad Colour Blankets

Mad Colour includes 4 blankets: Pop, Bounce, Polygon, and Marley.

Neve was so little and new when I finished this blanket!

We’re pretty in love with marling (holding 2 or more yarns together to get a speckled or blended effect). There’ll be more on that soon!

Polygon Blanket by Tin Can Knits

This is a marled version of the Polygon Blanket that I’ve been gradually working on since we released Mad Colour.

Badass Blankets from TCK:

Fly Away Blanket by Tin Can KnitsBonfire by Tin Can KnitsDogwood Blanket by Tin Can Knits


9 Comments leave one →
  1. March 31, 2017 4:34 pm

    I feel like this blanket is kind of incentivizing yarn hoarding…

  2. Emily permalink
    March 27, 2017 11:41 am

    I was inspired by this post to begin a Marley that will go through all the hues of the rainbow and then some! Thank you so much for writing this pattern to help those of us with Encroaching Stash Issues. My question for you is: did you block your blanket, and if so, how? I’m doing the second to largest size in bulky weight and the only way I can imagine wet blocking it is by taking it down to the river (which I would never do, given dye leaching) and enlisting several strong men to press the water out! Do you have any tips, or were you content to leave the big one unblocked?

    • March 28, 2017 9:45 am

      Hi Emily – We just blocked the edges for our blanket, to make the lace stand out a bit. You are correct, blocking that monster might have made it cover a house!

  3. March 24, 2017 5:40 pm

    The marling is fantastic! Great way to use yarns you are totally sure what to do with! Thanks for sharing

  4. knittedblissjc permalink
    March 23, 2017 5:23 pm

    This is so genius!! Love this idea, and I totally need to do something similar.

  5. kathleen patricia gardner permalink
    March 22, 2017 5:07 am

    They all look great !!

  6. March 21, 2017 8:16 pm

    Gorgeous! I also adore how much hair little Neve has :)

  7. March 21, 2017 3:17 pm

    Wonderful! Looks stunning handing on the wall with the little one down below. I tend more toward worsted weight blankets but the idea of stashbusting and figuring it out as I go (and getting it done quickly!) is intriguing.

  8. March 21, 2017 2:01 pm

    Stunning blanket! Thanks for showing how the different colours and weights all came together. A very inspiring and moving post.

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