August 5, 2014

32 Afghan Away! -- Finished Rowan Mystery Afghan KAL 2014






Finishing a 3407.6 yard afghan has been one of the greatest pleasures of my life!  Why yes, it's really all about the RELIEF.  It's like finishing a thesis -- you revel in the fact that you are most certainly not going to be doing that again, no way José, and that is just so dang comforting.  48 squares (all in the same color of Rowan Pure Wool Worsted), an unending length of trim and 80 gajillion mattress stitches later and we're done!  And even better, we are extremely satisfied!




For those of you who don't know, this is a free pattern that was offered by Rowan, a Mystery Afghan KAL designed by Martin Storey.  The pattern will continue to be available even though the KAL is over, and you can always access it here.

Rumor has it that Martin designed the afghan after a vintage patchwork quilt he owned.  As I'm not a patchworky girl, I just went for a single color, the inimitable Hazel.  Is it army green?  Is it brown?  Is that orange in there?!  You decide.




All of my notes on sewing and making a modified trim are in this blog post.  Have a look especially if you want to learn how to use short rows to turn corners in a trim.

But THIS post is about this little baby's trip 'round the world!  Alright, not really around it, but if the afghan had a passport, it would have 3 shiny brand new stamps: England, USA and Canada.




First stop was England.  Specifically, Holmfirth, the home of Rowan.  





Ok, let's stop for a moment and think about how cool this is.  You make an afghan from a Rowan pattern in Rowan yarn, and then you bring it back to the Rowan mothership?  Oh, but that's not all.  THEN you pose with it and the designer of the pattern, of course!




It was such a pleasure to meet Martin.  I love his style.  If I were more daring, I would have cat burglared some of his shirts from his nearby hotel room for my husband.  Every day, a fabulous shirt on that man.  Respect.

Here I am, American bear-hugging him in over-excitement.  This blanket is in his original color scheme.




I had this crazy idea to pose my afghan all over the place in England, like the gnome in that French movie Amélie.




But I really got sidetracked by, well, visiting Rowan, duh.  :)  I'm saving that for another blog post, though.




Next stop, Maine!  My husband had a conference there, so I decided to drop him off there and rent a cottage by the sea.  (You may have seen some of the pictures in my Booknits KAL post.)




What I didn't tell you was that the entire cottage was decorated in lobsters.  V.v.V






Now, it's very likely I'm moving to Maine, so I just want to put this out there:  when you live somewhere with an iconic object, you shouldn't overly showcase that object while you live in that state.  Seriously.  If I were to decorate my Montreal apartment completely in lobsters, I would be very cool.  In Maine?  NO.

I had, oh I don't know, 18 different lobster wall hangings to choose from for my prop?




Later, I had the realization that the very odd color of my afghan was actually identical to the seaweed and stones that revealed themselves every low tide.  It's pretty uncanny, don't you think?








A long time ago (as in that's how long ago this KAL has been going on) I showed you this photo, and how I wanted to replicate it with my afghan:


Gaston Ugalde's "Colorado X"


Well, I would need to knit 480 squares to do it, sheesh, that thing must be enormous!  So I posed my dad, who I think looks awesome.  Especially with the beer.




Hey, put that prop down dad!






The truth is that in addition to its travels, this blanket has been used for everything, all the time.  And do you know what??  The thing looks just as perfectly blocked as when I first laid it out, even after visiting 3 countries in 2 months.  I think Pure Wool Worsted might be perfect for an afghan, hey?

KEEP THAT IN MIND... because I happen to know that another Rowan KAL is coming soon to a website near you!  /devilish laugh/


See my Keepin' It Square on Ravelry




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32 comments:

  1. Another stunning Dayana knit. I didn't realise Rowan was in Holmfirth. I love Yorkshire and go there every few years. I must add Holmfirth to my travel plans next time.

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    1. Yes, you must! I'm not sure if they are always open to the public, but they have regular workshops so it you should coordinate for a weekend in Homfirth.

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  2. It is lovely knit you made :) <3
    Love from Iceland

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  3. Maine? There are worse places to live!!! Dayana, your afghan is absolutely gorgeous!!! The photos are perfect and I LOVE how you look starstruck with Martin. Looking forward to reading about your Rowan visit.

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    1. Yes, I know! I can think of MANY. Thanks about the afghan, I was so skeptical at first but now I must admit, it's pretty damn fine!

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  4. That's like, 3 sweaters' worth of knitting in one afghan -- you SHOULD be relieved! It really is stunning, and I like it in one color. I didn't take part in this one, but I am very curious about the next Rowan KAL...

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    1. It IS 3 sweaters, oh man, I never thought of that! KAL Hint: it will involve another famous designer!

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  5. Aww.. you seem to be having loads of fun!!! Lovely !! :)
    Must have taken quite a lot of time to complete that ! Hats off !
    Although i love the coloured blocks more :)

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    1. Ha -- yes, you can love those more, some are fabulous! I just saw this one and I LOVE the colors: http://www.ravelry.com/discuss/rowan-yarns/2966363/651-675#661

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  6. Gorgeous well done. I am still very slowly plodding through mine and am now wishing I had done one colour as yours looks fabulous

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    1. We need a serious Rowan KAL cheerleading squad, don't we? Best of luck, go go go!

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  7. The Magical Mystery Afghan Tour! Love it! The pictures are fabulous; can't wait to see more of Rowan - and of Maine (or will it be Singapore?)
    -- stashdragon

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    1. No, it will be Maine. Though pictures in Singapore would be fab. Someday? (but not of a wool blanket, lol).

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  8. Awesome work. Wish I could do the same.

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  9. Congratulations on finishing! What a huge effort! Seriously, you deserve a reward. Love the wacky photo with your hair standing up the best. It is kind of amazing how similar the color is to the ocean rocks.

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    1. I didn't even really get it until my husband started his Camera Thing. He wouldn't let me get involved at all, he said "This is MY photo shoooooooot!"

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  10. Great photos of great work. Please tell me the app you use to write on the photos.

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    1. Thanks so much! I use Adobe Illustrator to mark my photographs. It's $$$$ though. Have you tried Picmonkey?

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  11. I am using your afghan as inspiration for one I've started--in Plymouth Select Merino Superwash, in a color sort of like what you used--their basil. It's a special gift for my brother. He looked at many versions on Ravelry and he like yours so hopefullly you feel that imitation is at least an OK form of flattery! I'm using many of your tips as well. Thanks so much for being so generous with your advice.

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    1. Noreen, thank you! Your afghan is going to be wonderful, that's a great yarn from what I hear. If you need any help, just shoot me a message. :)

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  12. Hi Dayana, your afghan is the best looking version I've seen and I love the colour you chose. Stunning work. Susie xx ps I'd have to bribe my husband with beer to pose for me ;-)

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    1. Susie, you are not far from the truth there. The men always require bribing!!!

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  13. Where in Maine? I'm in Phippsburg!

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  14. Your afghan is gorgeous - I really like the placement of the blocks. And the photo of your hair standing up is fab - your photo shoots always make me smile. I'm seaming and doing the trim on my afghan at the moment and hoping to finish it all by Sept. 1st. Can't believe how long it is since we all cast on!

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    1. I can't believe how far you've gotten... using SOCK YARN. Mad respect from over here! It has been awhile since we cast-on but getting an afghan done in this amount of time deserves some serious back-patting.

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  15. That afghan is stunning! It is a work of art! I love all your photos of it, except maybe the one with your dad, and the bottle of beer sitting next to it. I worried that the bottle might get tipped over and ruin your beautiful blanket! :-)

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    1. Ha, true, good point. HOWEVER, that would have been a good opportunity to find out how "washable" this stuff really is. ;) I'm sure I'll be able to find out soon enough as I am sure to spill something on it when it is used so much!

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  16. I love your afghan, I love the single color, the color and design are marvelous

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  17. I agree with Jany: I love your afghan. The design, the color and mot of it the SINGLE color result.
    Well done!

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Thanks for your comment! :)

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