A few months ago I jumped on the bandwagon and bought myself a couple of Caron Cakes from my local Hobbycraft – they were on offer, that was my excuse! There was a really great selection of colourways available but I settled on this one – Funfetti, with shades of purple, pink and warm orange in between I was really happy.
If you haven’t had a chance to play with one of these cakes before they are a lovely thick aran weight yarn and because of the acrylic/wool mix (80%/20%) they are perfect for blankets – still soft but super warm!
I got the cakes home (I bought two of them) and squished them for a while, admiring the delicious colours and had a think about what I could make with them – nothing, my mind was completely blank! I knew that they were perfect for scarfs but it was May and not really the time of year for making winter accessories. I realised they were destined to become a blanket but the sudden colour change you get with them (it literally changes colour within 2 stitches) scared me. I didn’t like the idea of not knowing when my yarn was going to change colour so after a bit more thinking I put them on a shelf in my craft room where they sat and looked pretty!
A month or so later I had a hankering to make a new blanket. I had just started a rainbow v-stitch blanket and it reminded me how much I love that stitch – simple but beautiful. I went shopping in my yarn stash (had a look through all of the draws and boxes!) and the Caron Cakes caught my attention – sudden brain wave! I had an idea and I had the yarn, it was perfect.
To make the blanket I decided to use a 5mm hook and alternate stripes between the Caron Cake and some Paintbox Simply Aran (Champagne White) that I had in my stash.
Starting from the center of the cake I hooked up a chain to give me the width I wanted for my blanket (for a detailed v-stitch pattern go and check out The Patchwork Heart www.thepatchworkheart.co.uk ) the first row was also using the cake and from then on I alternated with cream every other row.
I was unsure how I would feel about the sudden colour change but fortunately for me I’d chosen a cake with a couple of fairly subtle changes. The first was dark purple to light purple, it happened mid-row and I decided to roll with it, I hated the idea of frogging it (undoing it) and forcing the change by cutting the yarn! I made the choice to let the colour changes happen as and when they liked – not an easy choice believe me!
The yarn then changed to a gorgeous pink (my favourite of the 5 colours) then into a warm orange and finally a mustard yellow shade. When I came to the end of the mustard yellow section I decided to stop. The blanket was a good size and I thought I could use the rest of the cake for the border.
Once I had finished sewing in all the ends I decided on a simple border. I neatened the edge with a foundation row of granny clusters – 3 trs (US dcs). I then used the cake to finish the border, I chose the dark purple colour for the first round of dcs (US scs) and then the light purple for the second row of dcs (US scs). I added my gorgeous leather name tag from JSLaserCraft and voila!
I am so pleased with this blanket and hope to make more in the future. It was a relatively quick blanket to make and I think that you could use any of the Caron Cakes in this way and they would all produce wonderfully colourful blankets. If you fancy giving this a go you can buy Caron Cakes from various yarn stockists including Wool Warehouse and Hobbycraft.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my first yarn cake experience, please let me know if you make your own version. Feel free to send me a message or leave a comment below with any questions you may have.