Welcome to week nine of the 2014 Geek-A-Long, a mystery blanket knit-along (or crochet-along for you rebels out there)! If you’re new to the GAL craziness, check out the Geek-A-Long FAQ page for more details and information. Then, meet us back here when you’re ready. For the seasoned pros, let’s talk about the X-Men.
Jac and I put a lot of thought into which superheroes would grace the nerd-scape of our blanket. I mentioned before that I could easily fill all 48 squares with heroes. We also could have easily done two blankets: one for Marvel and one for DC. Ultimately though, we felt like we wanted this project to at least touch on all of the “classic” fandoms. That meant imagery from TV, film, literature, video games, table top games, and comic books all needed to find a place. That’s a tall order, especially when you consider that some licenses can only be done justice with multiple squares like Harry Potter and Avatar the Last Airbender. So with all of those niches to fill, only a handful of the heroes I love made it onto the blanket.
To rate a square, the hero (or team of heroes) had to be:
- Extremely Prolific
- Personally Significant to Jac or I
- Really Cool
X-men fulfills all of those categories without even trying. I spent the majority of my childhood wrapped up in one form of escapism or another. When I wasn’t sitting in my closet waiting to arrive in Narnia, I was pretending that I attended Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters. Then I grew up and they cast Patrick Stewart as Professor X, and I moved on from fantasizing that I went to school there to fantasizing that I taught there. It’s no accident that my Mr. Llama has a very Patrick Stewart vibe. ;)
I had a love hate relationship with the square itself when I was making it. I was worried that the classic “X” symbol would be too plain next to some of the other squares. Luckily, I was totally wrong about that. I love the way it looks in the blanket. Having a few squares more on the minimalist side kept it from looking too “busy”.
© Megan-Anne of Lattes & Llamas, 2014
Needles: Size US6
Yarn: Cascade 220 in two sharply contrasting colors. Half a ball of each is plenty for each square.
Gauge: 10 sts over 13 rows = 2″ x 2″ square. Final square is 45 sts by 57 rows. Please note that in the written pattern I instruct you to knit the rows above and below the active color chart. These rows are shown on the chart as solid color rows above and below the design.
Download PDF of the color chart xmen.
Cast on 45 sts for each side of knitting (with two strands held together CO 45, for a total of 90 sts on needle).
Work 3 rows of double sided knitting (knit the facing sts and purl the back sts across). The first row is a wrong side row, so knit with the color you want in the foreground and purl the color you want in the background. You may choose to work the opposite color for the first stitch of each row (I do this), which will keep the edges closed. Alternately, you may choose to knit them without doing this and seam the sides when putting the blanket together. There is no “right” way to do this. It is really just what you are more comfortable with.
Follow color chart over next 51 rows in double sided knitting.
Work 3 rows of double sided knitting. BO.
Don’t forget to post links to your finished squares, so we can all ooh and ah together and if you’re having trouble with double-knitting, Jac and I recently shot a how-to video on the subject. You can find it here. There is also a Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry where we have prizes! ::insert eyebrow wiggle here:: As always, please hop on over to Child’s Play and show them your love*!
Oh my stars and garters!
*”Love” in this instance means donating money to benefit sick children.