Traditionally, the gift for a five-year anniversary is supposed to be something made of wood. The closest I can get to that is maybe the Tree Hugger set of Twinkle Toes. And while I think all of you should knit Megan-Anne’s free sock pattern of the same name, not every one likes to knit socks. Crazy, I know. But it’s true. So, we spent the better part of 2017 deciding the best way to celebrate.
We went back and looked at past blankets for inspiration. The first blanket in 2014 was an eclectic mix of beloved geekery:
The second blanket, which was all about scientists, was split into two. A knit version:
And a crocheted version:
In 2016, the third Geek-A-Long blanket featured our favorite video games:
And this year, the blanket pitted DC superheroes against Marvel heroes:
We threw around a lot of idea for the theme, one of which will be featured in 2019, but nothing felt right. And then, on our road trip back from the Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival last March, it hit us. A victory lap! When we released the very first Geek-A-Long square in January of 2014, we never imagined it would’ve grown the way it has, so we wanted to do something special to say thank you for coming on this wild ride with us.
The 2018 Geek-A-Long
Instead of doing a traditional 48 square blanket, we’ll only be doing 24 squares this year. Before you sharpen your pitchforks, let me explain. We want YOU to decide which fandoms will make it onto the blanket this year. In the past, we’ve let you guys fight for your fandom on a smaller scale, but not this year. You will be nominating and voting on which 24 squares we’ll be commemorating in yarn this year.
Here’s how this works:
- Go to the Geek-A-Long Ravelry group to nominate or vote for your favorite pieces of nerdom in the Fight for Your Fandom discussion thread.
- If your nomination wins, we’ll give you bragging rights by quoting you when we release the square. Nominations and voting ends November 11, 2018.
- Every other week, when it’s time for me to sit down and design the next square, we will pick from the top three. I’m putting that disclaimer here, because sometimes, inspiration doesn’t come knocking. Or, there’s just no nice way to represent it on the square. It’s happened before. (RIP Luke Cage!)
- The first square (chosen by you!) will release on January 7, 2018. Our plan is to release a square every other week and on the off weeks we’ll either take a trip down memory lane and release an updated version of a square that we’ve already done as a bonus or share a brand new, premium pattern inspired by one of our favorite fandoms. That means 24 squares, 12 bonus squares, and 12 patterns.
- The premium patterns will cost $6.00 USD on Ravely with a portion of the proceeds going to Child’s Play Charity, but will be free to our Geek-A-Long peeps. All you have to do is show up here on Sundays like always and use the provided coupon code when you hit the “buy now” button on the post.
Last, but definitely not least, the yarn. Since we’ll only be knitting 24 squares for the sample blanket that will go to the annual Child’s Play Charity auction, Megan-Anne and I decided that we need to use a heavier weighted yarn. We don’t want to rob them of being able to auction off a huge blanket. We developed a new, springy and bold yarn: Fandom. We tried to make a diverse color palette to handle whatever you guys throw at us this year, and we added a few complementary speckles, because why the heck not! Sometimes a hat or a sweater needs a little flair, am I right?!
For those of you planning to tackle a 48 square blanket in 2018 with the help of prior year squares, I suggest staying with Geek-A-Long Yarn. It’ll make your yarn-y venture more manageable. But, if you’d like to knit a monster of a blanket, Fandom is a gorgeous choice.
Who knows, maybe this will be the year I manage to knit a Geek-A-Long blanket for myself!