HELLO AND WELCOME TO THE MAY BLOG! This month it’s time for a bit of revision with five squares to knit, all of which you have come across before - but watch out as there are some subtle variations.
Consequently there are no new technique videos to watch, but if you need some guidance then you can get all the help you need from the February, March and April blogs – there are now a total of twenty videos available for your perusal.
So, this month’s blog begins with a video intro by me and is followed by all the latest Mystery Blanket Club news, including an update on your second parcels. So it’s a good idea to give it all a good read (and listen!) before you start your May squares. Then you will be fully prepped and ready to go!
THE PRINTED PATTERNS ARE ON THEIR WAY – and should be with you very soon! The overseas patterns were posted on the 20th April and the UK were posted on the 26th April. Every member has been sent the patterns by email, but remember you can also download them from your Debbie Abrahams account.
THE SECOND PART OF YOUR KIT WILL BE ON IT’S WAY TO YOU SOON – BUT NOT JUST YET! Some of you who have joined the club before will know that the parcels are usually sent to arrive around the beginning of May. However, this year the parcels are being posted a month later to arrive at the beginning of June. So please don’t pounce on your postie just yet! You’ve got another month to wait…
AS WE BEGIN MONTH FOUR OF THIS YEAR’S CLUB, HAVE YOU GUESSED THE TITLE YET? A lot of you have, but there are still many of you who are still guessing. Congrats this month go out to Gini Driskell, Alison Allen, Viv Fox, Sheila Cole, Sylvia Borrows, Mara Warwick, Kate Nowak, Jackie Smith, Felicity Miller, Eileen Parker, Margaret Moran, Kate Plantholt, Bonita Preacher, Janet Whiteside and Helen Case who have all guessed it correctly. But for those of you who are still guessing, I am going to give you another letter this month and maybe, just maybe, you will work out what it is. So here goes…the letter I am giving you is “U”:
_ _ _ / _ _ _ U _ A _ D / A _ D / _ _ _ / _ I _ _ _ _
Please send your guesses to Sue at firstname.lastname@example.org. There are no prizes for the correct answer – it is simply a bit of fun each month. And if you do guess it right, with your permission we will include your name in the next blog. So go on, have another go!!!
THERE ARE FIVE SQUARES TO KNIT THIS MONTH (with no options):
Square 4, The King’s Palace (part 7) – striped pattern with a decorative beaded border and lace panel (same for both options):
Square 5, The King’s Palace (part 8) – striped pattern with a decorative slip-stitch beaded border and Swiss darned details (same for both options):
Square 30, The King’s Robes 2 – slip-stitch and hooked-in beaded pattern with chain stitch details (same for both options):
Square 38, Lady Zubeida Returns – cable pattern with hooked-in beads (same for both options):
Square 43, Sumptuous 2 – striped pattern with decorative braids, textured stitches and slip-stitch beads (same for both options):
On each pattern page there is a list of Pattern notes and tips that are worth reading before you start to knit each square. These bits of advice will help you and give pre-warnings as to what look out for in the pattern instructions. Also take note of the description under the title of each square as this tells you what the stitch structure is.
You have knitted all of these squares before but some of them have slight variations, so my extra tips this month will be brief. But if you need more help with the techniques then you can check out my tech videos which are available to view in the previous three blogs.
SQUARE 4, THE KING’S PALACE (part 7): this square is very similar to Square 2 from Mail Out 2 but there is a slight change to the sequence of the zig-zag beads in the border. Remember that you will need to pre-thread the beads for the first section, but the beads on chart rows 22, 24, 26 and 28 are hooked in.
In case you need a reminder, check out my February blog in which I show you how to place a bead (pb), how to hook-in a bead, how to knit basic fairisle (for Chart rows 20, 24 and 28) and how to knit Chart row 31 (and its subsequent repeats).
SQUARE 5, THE KING’S PALACE (part 8): this is exactly the same as Square 3 from Mail Out 2.
There are videos in my February blog to help you with the basic fairisle rows and Swiss darning.
SQUARE 30, THE KING’S ROBES 2: this square is similar to Square 16 from Mail Out 2 but there is a change to two things - the colour of the beads and the chain stitch around the Gold beads. Bright Green beads are swapped for Velvet and the Wine chain stitch changes to Electric Green.
SQUARE 38, LADY ZUBEIDA RETURNS: you’ve knitted this same cable pattern before in Mail Out 3, Square 10, but the Night Sky beads are swapped this time for Bright Green. Other than this everything else is the same.
Remember that you can get help with the cables in the Abbreviations section at the back of your mail out, and there are four individual videos too in the April blog if you need more assistance.
SQUARE 43, SUMPTUOUS 2: you will remember this busy square from Mail Out 1, but take care to follow the pattern and knit the colours in the correct order as they all swap around with each other.
There are video demos in the February blog to help you knit and attach the braids. The basic fairisle technique which is needed for rows 2, 11, 16, 23 and their subsequent repeats is also demonstrated in the February blog.
THERE ARE A FEW STORIES FROM THE MEMBER’S THIS MONTH, BEGINNING WITH LUCILLE TUT FROM LONDON, whose boyfriend has hand-carved her this unique and totally amazing bead holder!
Lucille says: “I thought that you and Debbie might like to see photos of the bead holder my boyfriend hand-carved for me. The design is based on the empty tablet blister pack that I’ve used previously but is larger and definitely more durable. These photos were taken while I was threading beads for square 36. The little bowls make it a lot easier to pick up beads with my fingers or a needle and I can lay them out in a particular order for hooking in if I need to. Based on the squares I’ve knitted for this year’s blanket already, I know this bead holder is going to get lots of use this year!”
This is an ingenious design and I can see just how useful it will be for the Mystery Blanket. It is not only practicable but it looks so stylish too. You are a very lucky lady Lucille to have such a generous and creative boyfriend! Thanks for sharing this with us.
TARA JAMIESON FROM HARWICH, MASSACHUSETTS, USA WAS THRILLED TO HAVE COMPLETED HER ‘LOVE YOU TO THE MOON AND BACK’ BABY BLANKET, which already has a very good home to go to!
Tara says: “I am very excited to share my finished blanket with you. It took a bit of time, so instead of it being for our eldest son’s second child it’s for their third. I lined the back with soft flannel. So blessed. Thank you for the creative blessing you are Debbie.”
I am so pleased you have completed your baby blanket Tara, and just in time for your son’s third child! I am sure it will be cherished and loved very much by all the family.
SANDRA VARGAS FROM STURKO IN SWEDEN HAS RECENTLY COMPLETED ANOTHER ‘DEBBIE MYSTERY’ PROJECT TO ADD TO HER EVER GROWING COLLECTION! Here she is with her super splendid ‘Winter Wonderland’ from 2019:
Sandra says: “I am very happy to be sending you these pictures of my super-pretty Winter Wonderland. This was my first time doing fairisle. It was not straightforward learning, and there is a lot of room for improvements. Nevertheless, I love the result and the blanket will have a place of honour on my bed!”
This is a great achievement Sandra, so no wonder you are feeling so happy! I am sure it will look splendid on your bed and will keep you nice and cosy too! I can see also see your ‘Orient Express’ Mystery Cushion in the picture – you’re getting quite a collection of ‘Mystery’ projects together now! Thanks for keeping us up to date with all your progress.
AND FINALLY FOR THIS POSTING, THE FOURTH 2021 MYSTERY BLANKET CLUB PRIZE DRAW!!! Each month a member is picked at random to win a Debbie Abrahams prize. So it is worth reading right the way to the end of each blog to see if you are that lucky member!
PRIZE DRAW FOUR (MAY): this month’s winner is member 343, Janet Whiteside from Silverdale, New Zealand. Well done Janet! Please choose a prize from the following selection:
- A signed Debbie Abrahams book: More Blankets and Throws To Knit/25 Beaded Knits/Kaleidoscope
- A Debbie Abrahams dvd: More Blankets/A Professional Finish
- Four packs of Debbie Abrahams Beads (size 8/0 or 6/0) from the selection on http://www.debbieabrahamsbeads.co.uk
- A £15 voucher towards a Debbie Abrahams Mystery Club: 2022 Mystery Cushion Club; 2022 Mystery Blanket Club
- Four balls of Debbie’s Rowan Merino Light DK (any colours).
After this month’s squares we will almost be at the halfway point of this year’s Mystery Blanket with many of the squares revealed. So, by now you can see how the design is beginning to take shape. Next month you will have your complete kit with all the yarns and beads you need to get you through to the end of the project, plus some new squares to knit too! – so there’s still plenty of excitement to come! But for the time being you can settle back and enjoy knitting up your May squares. And if you fancy getting another smaller project on the go then my Summer Bag kit might be the answer – just keep your eyes on your inbox! That’s it for this month, but I hope to see you back here at the beginning of June for all the latest club news, tips and advice. Until then, take care and keep knitting! Debbie x
I am absolutely LOVING this years blanket! The colours are all the ones I love and the knitting techniques just involving enough to help me cope with a stressful situation I am involved in! I am lucky enough to have knitted all but three of your previous blankets and, thriftily, kept all my left-over supplies – so no bead problems, yet! I also bought myself a complete set of the colours in your new wool, (just because I loved them!) but this has also enabled me to keep on knitting! Thank you, Debbie! 💗
I have found a use for the tiny jars of jam that you get with cream teas! They are perfect for holding your beads, one jar per colour.
So next time you have cream scones, slip the empty jar into your bag!