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Mystery Baby Blanket Club 2019/20: post 6, February

HELLO AND WELCOME TO THE PENULTIMATE BLOG OF THE MYSTERY BABY BLANKET CLUB! And with five out of the remaining ten squares revealed this month, it means that we are very close to the end of this project. The February squares are repeats of what you have knitted before, but some of them have small changes – just to keep you on your toes! Next month in the final instalment you will be given the final five squares (plus the edging), which will include the centre square. Any guesses as to what that might be?...you’ll have to wait until next month to see!

AND SO I BEGIN WITH THE FEBRUARY PATTERNS (MAIL OUT 6) WHICH WERE EMAILED TO ALL OF THE MEMBERS ON 1ST FEBRUARY. The printed patterns for those members who opted for them were posted on the following dates: overseas on the 23rd January and the UK on the 29th January.

Don’t forget that you can also download the patterns from our website when you log into your account (this is only accessible for members who made payment for their membership through our online shop).

AFTER THE 2020 MYSTERY BLANKET CLUB SOLD OUT IN DECEMBER WE STARTED A WAITING LIST. So if you didn’t manage to secure a membership for this Club you can be added to it.

Above: 'Dunes' from the 2020 Mystery Blanket.

There are usually a few cancellations each year, so there is the chance that a place will open up and you will be able to join. Simply email Sue at sue@debbieabrahams.com and if a membership becomes available she will let you know. The 2020 Mystery Blanket Club begins on 1st February.

AT THE END OF THIS MONTH APPLICATIONS FOR THE 2020 MYSTERY CUSHION CLUB WILL OPEN IN OUR ONLINE SHOP, offering you the opportunity to take part in a brand new Debbie Abrahams Mystery project. And there’s good news for 2019 and 2020 Mystery Blanket Club members as they get a discount on their 2020 Mystery Cushion membership!

Below: 2013 Mystery Cushion, 'Tropical Paradise'.

This year is the tenth anniversary of the Mystery Cushion Club – I know, I can’t believe it either!!! – and to celebrate this momentous occasion we are producing a fabulous 2021 Mystery Cushion Club calendar! The first fifty people to sign up to the Club will receive a free calendar. But if you are not fortunate to win one it will be available to purchase in our online shop. The calendar will feature beautiful photographs by Sara Hazeldine of my Mystery Cushion designs from 2011 – 2020 and will be available to buy from 15th November 2020.

Above: 2014 Mystery Cushion, 'Sugar Rush'.

The Mystery Cushion is a much smaller project than the blanket, lasting for five months from June to October.  It works in the same way as the Mystery Blanket, with a knitting kit sent out to members at the beginning of the project and monthly emailed patterns. I write a separate blog for the Mystery Cushion as well so you can get all the help and support you need as you knit along.

Below: 2018 Mystery Cushion, 'Eastern Promise'.

I am always very cautious about giving too much away about the design of my Mystery projects. However, I am able to give you a little bit of information about the 2020 Mystery Cushion design without giving the game away. It’s knitted in Rowan Baby Cashsoft Merino – although it is NOT a baby themed project. It’s just that the colours are perfect for the theme, and the yarn knits up so beautifully that it had to be this yarn! The colour palette is vibrant and colourful and ranges from bright fuchsia pink and orange to deep jade and charcoal, with black and cream details and a glimpse of neon. And not only will it have plenty of sparkling beads, but it will also feature some beautiful rhinestone studs – just to up the sparkle!

The Mystery Cushion Club is on sale in our online shop from Friday 28th February. We will send out a newsletter to let you know as soon as it is live, which will include the discount code for your promotional offer. Come join me – it will be another fun-packed knitting adventure!

I HAVE DECIDED TO REVEAL THE TITLE OF THE MYSTERY BABY BLANKET NEXT MONTH IN THE FINAL INSTALMENT, so for anyone who is still guessing, you’re in luck as you get another month to mull it over. This month the letter I am giving you is “O”:

_  O  _  E  / _  O  U  /  T  O  /  T  _  E  /  _  O  O  N  /  _  N  _  /  B  _  _  _

Hey! – with that final letter we are almost there! Do you know what it is? Have a final guess and send your answer to Sue at sue@debbieabrahams.com to see if you are right. There are no prizes for the correct answer – it is simply a bit of fun until the grand reveal next month.

THESE ARE THE FIVE SQUARES THAT YOU WILL KNIT THIS MONTH:

Square 24: Loveheart – intarsia motif with textured stitches:

Below: Colourway 1

Above: Colourway 2

Square 25: Galaxystriped lace pattern:

Below: Colourway 1

Above: Colourway 2

Square 26: Moonshine 2 – intarsia motif:

Below: Colourway 1

Above: Colourway 2

Square 27: Lullabye – cable pattern:

Below: Colourway 1

Above: Colourway 2

Square 28: Baby Stripe – striped pattern with textured stitches:

Below: Colourway 1

Above: Colourway 2

In addition to the Pattern notes and tips in your mail out, here are a few bits of advice about this month’s squares…

SQUARE 24, LOVEHEART: this is the same as the heart motif in Square 12 from Mail Out 4. So here’s a reminder about how to knit this one. I prepped my yarns before I started knitting and wound off two bobbins of yarn A and two bobbins of yarn F. I cast on/picked up using the ball of yarn F and then introduced the first bobbin of yarn F on chart row 10 (when the heart motif is three stitches wide). Then on chart row 34 (when the top of the heart splits into two), I introduced the second bobbin of yarn F. The first bobbin of yarn A was introduced on chart row 8, with the second bobbin on chart row 36. You may choose to work slightly different to what I have suggested to you here. However, as this is an intarsia pattern it is important to keep any carrying across of yarns at the back of the work to a minimum, only carrying them when it is absolutely necessary.

SQUARE 25, GALAXY: this is the same as Square 11 from Mail Out 3 – for Colourway 1. But beware as the coloured stripes for Colourway 2 are slightly different to Square 11. The Denim and Lily have been swapped round. Be sure to do this correctly so that these two squares on either side of Square 18 (the centre square), balance each other with the stripe pattern.

SQUARE 26, MOONSHINE 2: this is almost the same as Square 10 from Mail Out 3, but the moon motif has been flipped the other way round. This is a reminder of the advice I gave about this square in a previous blog:

this is an intarsia square, so no yarns should be carried across the back of the work, unless absolutely necessary. This means that the background colour needs to be wound off into separate balls, introducing a second ball of it on Chart row 8. On Chart row 15 however, I would suggest that you take the background colour across the pointed tip of the moon, but I would use a separate short length of Cream to knit Chart rows 15-17. I would Chart rows 31-33 in a similar way.

The colours on the chart for Colourway 1 are quite pale and might be hard to see. So if you are struggling with this you can read the pattern from the chart for Colourway 2 but use Baby Blue in place of Turquoise.

SQUARE 27, LULLABYE: this is an exact repeat of Square 9 from Mail Out 2. Remember to keep a close eye on the cables as they twist in different directions – to the left (c6f) and to the right (c6b). It might be a good idea to hi-light these instructions on the page so that you can see more clearly where they are.

SQUARE 28, BABY STRIPE: this is an exact repeat of Square 8 from the very first Mail Out – some time ago now! So here’s a reminder of the advice I gave for this square in the very first blog:

this stripe pattern has rows of textured stitches at regular intervals between the stocking stitch stripes. Rows 5 and 11 and their subsequent repeats use the fairisle technique but in a very basic way. Simply alternate knitting stitches using the two different colours, making sure if you can to pick them up and drop them back in the same way so that the yarns do not becomes twisted around each other (ie, one yarn on top and one yarn underneath). 

All of the slipped stitches are slipped purlwise, with the yarn taken back and forth between the needles on alternate stitches to avoid any strands occurring on the front of the work. While you are working these rows keep the yarns pulled up as tightly as possible to keep the stitches neat.

THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO SENT IN THEIR PHOTOS FOR THE MEMBER’S GALLERY – which is now live on the website! It is so good to see so many Mystery blankets and cushions completed, as well as many other Debbie Abrahams inspired projects.

Below: Lucille Tut's fabulous cushion inspired by, 'Casa Battlo'.

Above: Caroline Evan's cute Mini Christmas Stockings.

At the beginning of 2021 I will create another Member’s Gallery so please keep sending in your photos to us, we love to see what you are doing: debbie@debbieabrahams.com

The countdown has really begun now, with the final reveal of the Mystery Baby Blanket in a month’s time. It will be the end of one Mystery project, but the beginning of a new one this month as we start the 2020 Mystery Blanket. And with plans for some new kits in our webshop and the 2020 Mystery Cushion launch in March, we’ve got plenty in store to keep you busy! Happy knitting this month and see you back here at the beginning of March for the final piece of the puzzle! Debbie x

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