Saturday, May 2, 2015

It's Great to Be a Grenadier! Slanted Shell Afghan - Free Crochet Pattern

When I was in high school, I was a proud Marching Grenadier. As an alumni, I am still happy to attend the school's football games, band concerts and other band functions. They have two concert band concerts scheduled this year, and at both, they will be having a silent auction. I have offered to make a few items to donate. One of them being this "It's Great to Be a Grenadier Slanted Shell Afghan". The other blanket has yet to be worked up, but I did purchase the yarn and am excited to get started.

In the meantime, find a free pattern below!

And enjoy this photo of me holding my Tuba! This was a special senior event at our last home football game - hence the flowers and sash. You can't really see it on my in this photo, but there is a thin white strip on the bottom of my jacket and separates the black pants and red jacket. This uniform was my inspiration for this afghan.

Materials:
     - 2545 yards of *Worsted Weight Yarn - I used Hobby Lobby's I Love This Yarn, approximately 2.33 skeins of Black, 3 skeins of Red, and 1.5 skeins of White
     - M13/9mm Hook
     - #18 (or #16) Tapestry Needle for Weaving
     - Opt. Small Crochet Hook, such as an F5/3.75mm, to help weave in ends

Material Notes:
     This pattern is worked holding two strands of yarn together to create a chunky/bulky weight, however, you could easily use a chunky/bulky (5) weight yarn in it's place. I didn't have much luck finding the yarn colors that I needed in a chunky weight, and didn't want to go with a super bulky weight yarn.
     
     Yarn Alternative/s (if using the worsted weight): Red Heart's With Love.
     
     You could also use a lighter weight worsted weight yarn such as Lion Brand's Vanna's Choice, Cotton Ease or Wool Ease, Deborah Norville's Everyday Soft, Caron's Simply Soft, Hobby Lobby's I Love This Cotton... but you may need to go up a hook size, or hold three strands together. Gauge isn't important in this project though, so it's completely up to you.
     
     I used a #18 tapestry needle and weaved in each strand individually, but it would be better to use a larger eye needle such as a #16 so you can easily fit both strands through at the same time and weave together. Alternatively, you could use a smaller crochet hook such as an F5/3.75mm to help weave in the ends. You can see a photo example of this in my Adult Chunky Beanie with Visor post.

Time Spent:
     This blanket was completed in approximately 11.5 hours. including the border and weaving.
I've included my suggestion for construction down in the Pattern Notes section.

Measurements:
     With border: 42" Wide x 46" in Length

Gauge:
With I Love This Yarn, and M13/9mm Hook - 5" x 4.5"
     Chain 13, DC in the 4th chain from the hook and each stitch across. (11)
     R2-R6: Chain 2, turn. DC in the 2nd DC and each DC across.
     Fasten Off.

Abbreviations:
     SC - Single Crochet
     HDC - Half Double Crochet
     DC - Double Crochet

Pattern Notes:
     I used Red, Black and White and am going to refer to them as such in the pattern below, but feel free to use your own color combinations! 

     Work color changes in the final yarn over of the last stitch. I have a photo tutorial for this technique - How to Change Yarn Colors in Crochet the EyeLoveKnots Way.
Work color changes at the end of the respective rows. This will eliminate the need to weave in ends as you can crochet over the tails.

I suggest leaving the color changes on even rows, as I have, otherwise the sides of your blanket will have a funny little visible yarn change thing going on - I learned this the hard way on another project I worked. It's not real obvious, but was obvious enough for me not to try it again.

You have three options for  the tails of the color change: fasten off and weave in ends, fasten off and work over tails or carry yarn up the side and work over the tails.
I chose to fasten off and weave in my ends. Yes, it is quite a bit of time dedicated to weaving in ends (about 30) but I don't like carrying my yarn up the side because of the tangling that usually happens within the skeins from turning at the end of each round, plus you don't know what the yarn is going to look like when you try to crochet over as one may be too dark or light and show through your stitches, and I don't like to work over my tails because it creates a puckering on that one side, and makes the blanket more rigid on that side. Working over one tail such as working over the beginning tail when working the border on the opposite side of the foundation chain is nothing and can be done care free, but when I get into several ends as on the one side of the blanket, I weave. It's also more secure.

     I worked the final join as an invisible join. I do have a photo tutorial for this technique - Slanted Shell Coasters

Suggested Maximum Daily Crochet Plan for this Blanket:
     Day 1 - Crochet 8 Rows (Black) - R1-8 (66mins)
     Day 2 - Crochet 8 Rows (3 Black, 4 White) - R9-16
     Day 3 - Crochet 8 Rows (Red) - R17-24
     Day 4 - Crochet 8 Rows (3 Red, 4 White) - R25-32
     Day 5 - Crochet 8 Rows (Black) - R33-40
     Day 6 - Crochet 8 Rows (3 Black, 4 White) - R41-48
     Day 7 - Crochet 8 Rows (Red) - R49-56
     Day 8 - Crochet 8 Rows (3 Red, 4 White) - R57-64
     Day 9 - Crochet 8 Rows (Black) - R65-72
     Day 10 - Crochet 8 Rows (3 Black, 4 White) - R73-80
     Day 11 - Crochet 8 Rows (Red) - R71-80

     Day 12 - Crochet Border & Weave in Ends (45mins)

Since I like to crochet non-stop, though I did not limit myself on this blanket, I will on my next of the same. Not only to give myself a break but also so I don't get bored (not that I did, but I may). If you don't have as much time as I do (4 hours-ish + a day), but do have about an hour-ish a day, then you will have this blanket finished in about 12 days if following the same plan. Sounds crazy long, but blankets take lots of time.

Pattern:
With Black: Chain 87, (SC, DC) in the 3rd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC, DC) in the next stitch] across. (43 clusters)

R2-R10: Black: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R11-14: White: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R15-R24: Red: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R25-R28: White: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R29-R38: Black: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R39-R42: White: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R43-R52: Red: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R53-R56: White: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R57-R66: Black: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R67-R70: White: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

R71-R80: Red: Chain 1, turn. Work (SC, DC) in the 2nd stitch, [skip next stitch, (SC,DC) in the next stitch] across.

Border - Adds 1" to each side:
R1: Chain 1, turn. Work 2 SC in the 1st stitch, SC in the next 85 stitches, 3 SC in the next stitch - corner - evenly SC down the next side, working 1 SC in the side of each SC, and 2 SC in the side of each DC, 3 SC in last stitch - corner, SC 85 along the opposite side of the foundation row, 3 SC in the next stitch - corner - evenly SC up the next side, working the same as the first, 1 SC in the last/first stitch. Join.

R2: Chain 1, DO NOT turn. Work 2 HDC in the 1st stitch, HDC in the next 87 stitches, 3 HDC in the next stitch - corner, evenly HDC down the next side, 3 SC in the last stitch - corner, HDC in the next 87 stitches, 3 HDC in the next stitch - corner - evenly HDC up the next side, 1 HDC in the last/first stitch. Join - I did so as an invisible join.

This would look nice with an extra round of half double crochet. I was on a time crunch, and didn't have time to add another round. It still looks great as is, it's completely up to you!

Please feel free to make and sell your own Slanted Shell Afghan, but please DO NOT claim this pattern as your own nor should you sell my pattern, and DO NOT re-publish my photos as your own. DO NOT copy and paste my pattern anywhere, link to it instead.

*If you would like a PDF version of this post, you may get one through my Etsy shop for a small fee. This fee is to compensate for the view/s lost once you no longer need to return to the blog for the information, as you will have your own copy. Plus! It helps fund supplies for new projects to share with you!
Shop EyeLoveKnots - It's Great to Be a Grenadier! Slanted Shell Afghan.

What a fun blanket that you've just been made!

With so many size, yarn type and color options, I would love to see them! Please share your photos on my EyeLoveKnots Facebook page!

*I am now on Ravelry! The Slanted Shell Afghan is available on there. Now you can add it to your que, and photos of your WIPS and finished projects!

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Don't Crochet but Interested in Purchasing a Slanted Shell Afghan?
     I will slowly be adding new color combinations of these Slanted Shell Afghans, and in different sizes to my EyeLoveKnots Etsy shop. Feel free to send me a message with a custom request. 
Color Options: I Love This Yarn (acrylic), With Love (acrylic).

3 comments:

  1. I love it! And I am sure your donation will raise top dollar for auction! Love the picture you posted with your TUBA! Have a great weekend!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Kim! I had a lot of fun, both playing the Tuba and working on this blanket. I am a little sad I won't be able to make it to the concert, but I am glad I was able to help a little. I have another free pattern coming next week for a second blanket, as my second donation.

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    2. That is sad :-( but your donations will put a smile on someones face for sure... I will be waiting for the second pattern also! I will Pin it as well..Thanks for all you do!

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