A friend calls you and tells you she's having a baby. Your mother called and isn't feeling well. Another friend calls you and tells you she's getting married. Whatever do you do? Crochet a blanket! But before you can crochet a blanket, there's a few tips you need to know that will help you satisfactorily create a loving blanket which will last the person a lifetime.
First, think about who the blanket is for. If it's for your friend's new baby, you'll be making a smaller blanket, roughly 36" by 36". If it's for your mother, you might want to make a lap blanket so you're thinking of a blanket that is about 36" wide by 48" or 60" long. You might want to make a square blanket so make it 60" by 60". Or it's for your friend who is getting married. You might want to make a blanket for their bed so you'll need to know if they have a queen or king sized bed. Maybe you just want a simple throw blanket for their couch.
Second, once you know who it's for, look for an easy and relatively quick pattern. There are plenty of sites online where you can find patterns. Some patterns require you to go from the bottom to the top. Some go from one corner to the other. Some start at the middle and go outward. The patterns where you start at the middle and go out are sometimes easier. Once you get to the size you want, you stop! The ones where you start at one end and go until the other end can sometimes feel as if it's taking forever. But you know once you get to a certain measurement then you're done!
Third, you need to buy the correct yarn. Going to a yarn store can be daunting. For most blankets, an adult would be fine with an acrylic yarn. You can buy the skeins in bulk and usually pretty cheap. But babies like nice soft yarn, so a cotton or baby yarn is best. The key to to buy more yarn than you think you'll need. You don't want to run out and not be able to find the yarn again! Yarn also comes in different weights. A smaller weight will be thinner so you'll use a smaller hook and, to be honest, it'll take more yarn to create a larger project. It might also take longer. Bulkier yarn uses a larger hook which makes larger stitches which means it will go faster. So keep that in mind as well.
Fourth, be sure to start and leave yourself plenty of time to finish your blanket. You shouldn't start a blanket which will cover a king size bed the week before the wedding. Unless you can crochet for twenty-four hours a day, you will never finish. Give yourself plenty of time. For a baby, you know you have at least six months so get started now! And unless your friend is eloping, you probably have almost a year to complete your project.
These are some basic tips for crocheting a blanket. If you have any others, feel free to post them in the comments section. Good luck!