Many crocheters will take on the task of crocheting a blanket as a gift for a new baby. Crocheting a baby blanket is a large scale project and can take a lot of time, effort and yarn. A common problem crocheters can run into is an uneven look to the shape of the blanket. This can be caused by a number of issues, each of which has a specialised solution.
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A common problem you may run into when crocheting a larger piece like a baby blanket is missing stitches at the ends of rows. This causes the piece to shrink as you work the pattern. Often, a stitch is missed either by skipping one too many stitches at the beginning of the row or turning and beginning the next row a stitch too early. The only way to fix this is to remove the stitches up to the missed stitch and add the stitch back in.
Another common problem akin to missing stitches at the end of a row is accidentally adding stitches at the end of a row. This happens when the first stitch is not skipped at the beginning of a row. Some patterns call for a stitch in the first stitch of the row, but most call for a combination of chain stitches and skipping the first stitch. Not skipping that stitch will cause the piece to grow larger as you crochet it. If you notice that you have added a stitch, remove the stitches up to the beginning of that row and skip the first stitch when you rework the row.
Changes in Tension
Sometimes when crocheting a larger piece, crocheters will unwittingly change yarn tension which causes variations in stitch tightness. If you notice your stitches getting tighter, try to pull on the tight stitches to pull some extra yarn into them, then focus on crocheting a bit looser. If you cannot pull the stitches enough to loosen them, undo your work and crochet the rows again. Some slight tension changes in a baby blanket can also be solved by wet blocking, though continuously tighter stitches will have to be redone to repair the blanket.
More complex patterns with ribbing, shells and lacy rows will often have rippled, uneven-looking edges when the blanket is finished. These edges will be evened out by wet blocking the piece. To wet block your finished baby blanket, soak the blanket in warm water for a few minutes to let the water penetrate the yarn. Soak it longer if you are using a yarn containing silk. Gently press all the excess water out by rolling the blanket in a towel and stepping on it. Using straight pins, pin the corners of the blanket to a plastic-covered piece of foam or cardboard. Make sure the corners are pulled to the desired size of the blanket. Pin along the edges in 1/2- to one-inch increments, making a straight line all the way around. Allow the piece to dry completely to set the stitches.
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