FREE CROCHET PATTERN
A Great Granny Square Blanket Crochet Tutorial
In thirty-six easy steps
Where it all began
In April of 2014, I experienced some turbulence in my personal life. My mother sought to remedy this disturbance by volunteering me to make a crochet blanket for the as-yet-to-be-born baby of one of her neighbors, and while I appreciated the fact that she was finding me distractions, I was actually up to my eyeballs in crochet projects, and I didn’t really need another one.
Until I did.
February 16, 2017
I was waiting for a crochet strap I had soaked in water to dry, and there was nothing I could do to finish what was my then current project until the drying was done.
Like a pot of water set on the stove to boil, a piece of wet crochet dries more slowly if you are watching, so while I waited for the strap to dry, I moved on to what was next, and finally — after a nearly three-year delay — what was next was the crochet blanket for my mother’s formerly pregnant neighbor whose baby who was now a toddler.
The three rules I set for myself
As usual, I set some rules for myself:
- One: I could only use yarn from my stash
- Two: I could only use yarn from my stash
- Three: I could only use yarn from my stash
You might wonder why I had to list the same rule three times, and the reason is this:
I am always on quest for “the perfect color”
and because of this predilection to set off on color quests, I have amassed a huge selection of yarns in just about any color you could think of — a collection so large and unruly, I often dn’t even know what I have — and I knew that despite what I might come to believe, the truth was, I had enough yarn to make this project without buying any more.
Armed with a hook, a selection of yarns that tended toward what I think of as a “flamingo” palette, and a crochet tension regulator, I got a start on the now toddler’s baby blanket. Before the afternoon was over, the strap was dry, and I had finished the first three rounds of what would end up being a thirty-six round granny square blanket:
Three rounds might not seem like a lot to some people, but what the picture doesn’t capture is all of the colors I tried and then decided against.
For the next two-and-a-half weeks, I diligently worked on finishing the long overdue gift.
There were a few hiccups along the way where I had trouble deciding exactly which color use:
but eventually I got it sorted out, and before the toddler turned three, the great granny square was completed and ready for adventure:
If you want to make a blanket/play mat like this one for a toddler in your life, here is what I did:
Tools and materials
You will need:
- Worsted weight yarn in a selection of colors you like
- A bent-tipped yarn needle to weave in ends
- A pair of scissors to trim those ends once they are woven in
- A 5.0 mm crochet hook
- A crochet tension regulator
I like to use a crochet tension regulator so that I get a more consistent stitch and don’t have to unravel so much of my work and redo it because it was too tight or too lose, but it is not absolutely required.
The center of the great granny square
If you need a refresher on how to start a granny square, here is a first round photo tutorial.
If not, then with the color of your choice secured to the hook with a slip knot, Ch 4; join with a slip st in first ch to form a ring.
Round 1: Ch 3 (counts as dc), 2 dc in ring, [ch 1, 3 dc in ring] 3 times, ch 1; join with a slip st in top of ch-3. Fasten off
Round 2: Join next color in any ch-1 corner, ch 3 (counts as dc), work 2 dc into same ch-1 space as join, [3 dc, ch 1, 3 dc in next ch-1 sp] three times, 3 dc in first ch-1 sp. Fasten off.
Round 3: Join next color in any ch-1 corner;
ch 3 (counts as first dc here and throughout)
2 dc in same chain-1 space
[3 dc between 3-dc groups, (3 dc, ch 1, 3 dc in next ch-1 sp)] three times,
3 dc between 3-dc groups, 3 dc in first ch-1 sp, ch 1, join with a slip st in top of ch-3. Fasten off.
Rnds 4 through 36 (and beyond): Join next color in any ch-1 corner space; ch 3, 2 dc in same space, [3 dc between 3-dc groups, (3 dc, ch 1, 3 dc in next ch-1 sp)] three times, 3 dc between 3-dc groups, 3 dc in first ch-1 sp, ch 1, join with a slip st in top fo ch-3. Fasten off.
What became of the granny square blanket
The little girl for whom I made the great granny square blanket did not use it as a blanket the way I had envisioned. Instead she used as a play mat to define the boundaries of her realm, and I suppose any good gift is one where the recipient can see beyond what the giver of the gift envisioned and truly make the gift their own.