A Stitch Along is a great way to meet other crochet lovers and work with people from all over the world on one awesome project. It’s this sense of community and involvement that has me looking for and even organizing some of my own crochet alongs.
In case you haven’t heard, throughout the month of October I will be participating in the Bernat Blanket Mystery Stitch Along hosted by Joann’s Fabrics and Crafts and will be blogging about my experience!
On Monday, I anxiously awaited the release of the first clue. I couldn’t stand the wait! Fortunately, the clue one section of the pattern was released first thing in the morning. Each “clue” represents one section of the mystery pattern. As we complete each section, we slowly begin to see what the overall pattern will look like. I love this approach to a crochet along. It brings in a new element that challenges our sense of creativity in a whole new way.
Here is my experience with the Bernat Blanket Mystery Stitch Along, clue #1.
Which Colors Should I Use?
Even though my four colors were already selected and in my craft room a few weeks before the mystery stitch along began, I really struggled deciding which of those colors to use first. You can read about my color selections in my previous post here:
My color options were:
- Lilac Leaf
- Country Blue
- Vintage White
- Pale Gray
Not knowing how the overall pattern will look really challenged my perfectionist nature. I saw many people using vintage white for the big circle and accenting with a variegated colorway. I thought long and hard about taking this approach too but felt the urge to be a bit different.
Not many people were using variegated colorways for the circle and so I decided to go with lilac leaf for the first section of clue one. I’m very happy with my choice now after seeing this section completed but I was iffy about it for a while. The lesson I learned here: sometimes it’s better to just go with your gut and stop trying to be perfect.
I really love how lilac leaf worked up with the pattern. Doesn’t it look like a little section of purple flowers?
Choosing the second color was just as difficult as the first. I had all good options with my other three colors. I decided to use the country blue as the accent color here to create a bold outline. The vintage white and pale gray would have blended more instead of creating a boundary around the center circle.
In placing the lilac leaf and country blue skeins together, I was fearful that the purple and blue would clash with each other. Again, I threw my perfectionism to the side and just tried it out. I’m glad I did, because I really like how it turned out and it continues to grow on me the more I look at it!
Count, Count, Count…and Oh yes, Count
I’ve been crocheting for a while now. I’ve followed many patterns and created dozens of my own. After that kind of experience, crochet patterns become intuitive and require less focus and attention.
So why am I mentioning this here? Well, this is the first pattern I’ve followed in a while where I had to stay laser focused on the written instructions, diagram and yes, counting my stitches.
It’s not a difficult pattern but I think because we alternate between solid rounds and open stitch work rounds, this section of the pattern requires more thought and attention.
I’ve been following along with the Bernat Blanket Mystery Stitch Along Facebook Page as well as my own posts on Facebook and Instagram and found that several other people were struggling with this too.
My best advice is to slow things down, follow the written instructions word for word and count your stitches at the end of every single round. Don’t assume that you have the pattern memorized yet. That’s what my problem was.
I mentioned earlier that this stitch along has challenged my perfectionist nature. Once I was finished crocheting clue #1, it was a little wavy around the edges and I wanted it to lay as flat and round as possible.
I use wet blocking on a regular basis to enhance the look and shape of my finished projects. It works so well and I can’t recommend it highly enough! If you want to learn more about blocking your projects, have a look at my all inclusive blog post and video demonstration of the different types of blocking here:
I had never tried wet blocking Bernat Blanket yarn before so this was a bit of an experiment. I pinned it to my blocking boards, saturated it with water and let it dry overnight. The results were wonderful.
If it weren’t for blocking, this circle wouldn’t be nearly this neat. Blocking took care of the wavy edges and helped to even out the points created where the increases are located.
If you’re a perfectionist like me and want your circle as perfect as possible, I definitely recommend wet blocking.
Clue number one was a lot of fun. It challenged me in more ways than one which is how we learn and grow. I’m very intrigued with this design and I can’t wait to see how it progresses in clue #2 on Monday.
- Clue #1 – 12 rounds
- Used Color A and Color D
- Measures approximately 23″ in diameter
- Used almost an entire skein of yarn
I had many people ask me how much yarn clue number one used. Here is a look at my skeins used for my mystery project:
You may notice that my circle ended up approximately 7″ shorter in diameter than the pattern recommends. I am notorious for having a very tight crocheting style. I could frog it and go up a hook size to compensate for this but for the sake of time, I’m going to see how it plays out.
If you want to join the Bernat Blanket Mystery Stitch Along, it’s not too late!
- Purchase 7 skeins of Bernat Blanket Yarn, 2 for color A/B/C and 1 for color D
- Head over to the Bernat Blanket Mystery Stitch Along webpage to get the pattern for clue #1
- Visit the Bernat Blanket Mystery Stitch Along Facebook Page to share your photos and experience
Clue #2 will be available on the Bernat Blanket Mystery Stitch Along page from Joann’s on Monday, October 10th. I’ll be waiting patiently until then and will update you with my experience next week!
This post is sponsored by Yarnspirations