MY HOOKY TREASURE
Top blogger and designer Kirsten Ballering shares a fabulous diamond blanket that she hooked on holiday in Spain.
Right now, my Spicy Diamond blanket is my favourite crochet make. There are a lot of happy memories attached to this blanket. It’s also special as it is out of my normal palette. Usually I gravitate towards projects with lots of colour. For this one I chose a more muted palette – way out of my comfort zone but I’m so happy with it!
I made this blanket on holiday in Spain. The first ‘real’ holiday I took with my then-boyfriend, now husband. We just got in the car and drove all the way down to Spain with me crocheting the motifs. I was working on joining this blanket on the beach there. It was hot and I was just buried in heaps of blanket, joining. People must have thought I was crazy! Little did they know it was a linen blend so I was pretty comfortable.
The yarn is Scheepjes Linen Soft. It had the perfect shade of mustard yellow to match my idea. Yellow is hard to get right, so I built the other colours around it. And it has a nice texture – a bit coarse at first, but it softens over time and drapes beautifully. Almost rustic!
I chose the colours based on a picture of baskets full of spices in Mumbai. Think earthy, rich tones. The yellow was a perfect fit for mustard seeds. The red resembled hot peppers. Pistachio green, well that one speaks for itself. I limited myself to a small number of colours. That’s so much harder to get right!
On holiday I had plenty of time, so the joining was finished by the time we arrived home. But I started making motifs long before that. It’s a fair sized blanket, 1.20 by 1.80m, so it took me two or three months.
The stitches are trebles and half trebles. What makes this blanket different is the lace motif in the centre of each diamond. The joining enhances the airy feel but trust me, it’s warm enough in the winter too!
I’ve seen gorgeous Spicy Diamonds made by crafters, some with the original palette, others incorporated more colours. People tell me it’s a nice project to take with you, as it’s made of motifs. It’s easier to carry just a few balls at a time!
I have a box of heirloom crochet pieces made by my great- grandma. She was the creative one in the family, always thrifty. I never got to see her crochet as she passed away while I was young, but I’m sure that’s where my interest in crafts originated. I’ve overloaded my family with handmade items, so I’ll keep this one to myself. That’s allowed every once in a while, right?