Cute Gingham Afghan-"Free Pattern"

I thought it might be fun to share a craft his week, rather than a recipe. This crochet pattern is super simple and incorporates those timeless granny squares. I bet you thought granny squares were a thing of the past. But nope, like everything else they are making a comeback once again. You know, kind of like bell bottom blue jeans. I can't believe bell bottoms are here again...only this time they have a shorter inseam and hug you above your waste. When we wore them, they were touching the floor and hung around the hip. We called them hip huggers. As much as things change, they truly remain the same...a recycled style...again with a few minor changes and a new name.

Gingham check has a new name also. It's now called "buffalo check". Like blue jeans, the design has changed from a small print to a large print and given a new name to update the style. Buffalo check is used in a lot of home designs now like the farmhouse style. Whether it's called gingham check or buffalo check, I've always loved the checked pattern. When I saw this afghan pattern I knew I had to make it.

Another Way to Make a Gingham Afghan
I also came across another version of crocheting a gingham check afghan made by "Daisy Farm Craft". I thought her design was beautiful. It's single crocheted throughout. This afghan is made in one large piece while carrying the different colored yarns behind your work throughout. 
I didn't want to make another gingham afghan, but I really wanted to try her method. So instead of making an afghan I made a sweater with the gingham pattern. I don't usually use patterns to make sweaters unless there is a difficult stitch. This one wasn't difficult. The back of the sweater has stripes rather than gingham. A really different look, but definitely me. 
A Very Special Little Purse . . .
My Grandmother taught me how to crochet. She could make anything. I still have a little purse that she crocheted for me when I was just 5 years old. I have a curio cabinet that I keep very special things in. That little purse is front and center in that cabinet. The amazing thing is my Grandmother immigrated from Poland in the early 1900's and never learned to read. So all her creations were done without any written patterns. She was amazing!
A Very Special Wedding gown . . .
Many years ago...50 to be exact...Oh my, where have the years gone! A friend of mine was getting married. It was her second marriage. She didn't want a crazy expensive gown, so she asked me if I could crochet her a wedding dress. She said it would be unique and one of kind. So, I sat down and figured it out, just like my Grandma would have done. The bodice was made of intricate granny squares and the remainder was made of shell stitches all the way down, increasing the shells as I went to make it full at the bottom. The crocheted gown was lined with a light yellow sheath strapless dress. I know the picture isn't great, but it's 50 years old. There were no phone cameras at that time. LOL!

Her wedding was in June and after the wedding I asked her if I could borrow it. I wanted to enter it in the state fair in August. I was pretty proud of the way it turned out and thought what the heck, why not.  So in August 1974 I it was entered and I got my first and last "blue ribbon". I never entered anything again. I just thought this dress was so unique and obviously the judges did too. 
Time to Make That Cute Granny Square Gingham Afghan . . .
So much for my life, it's time to make the gingham check granny square afghan. This blogging is like keeping a diary of your life. Fun to look back at things you've done and look forward to new crafts or recipes that you can share with others. The internet has changed everything! 
The above afghan was my inspiration for my blue and white buffalo check afghan. I loved the green and white, but the afghan I was making was for a baby boy.
This is a great beginner project. Crocheting is very therapeutic for me and might be for you also...especially when you make an afghan like this...225 granny squares... LOL!!! But the end result is pretty dang cute. The original pattern for this quilt was for a baby afghan (3 rounds) for each granny square.  I decided to make it a full size afghan (4 rounds) for each granny square.  By increasing it from three rounds to four rounds made the job a little easier and quicker.  I used regular worsted yarn for this afghan. Remember I made a full sized afghan, not a baby afghan.

For your convenience here is a chart for sizing baby afghans to adult afghans...
How to make a "Magic Ring or Magic Circle" . . .
Before you get started, I thought I would add this video. It is on How to Make a "Magic Ring or Magic circle" to start your project. This is the only way I start a project in the round. Most people are aware of this technique, but for those new people, it might be a big help.


Cute Baby Gingham Afghan Pattern . . .
Materials: 
  • 4 skeins Light Blue
  • 3 skeins Medium Blue
  • 3 skeins White
  • Size H crochet hook or size required for gauge)
Gauge:  
One granny square  = approx. 4"

Instructions for full size afghan:
Make 113 squares with Light Blue , 56 Squares with Medium Blue, and 56 squares of White. Total granny squares 225
  • RND 1: (right side): Start with a magic circle, chain 2, 2 dc in ring; *ch 2, 3 dc in ring; rep from* twice more, so you have a square; ch 2, join with a sl st in top of beg ch-2.
  • RND 2: Sl st in next dc and into ch-2 corner sp; ch 2, work (2 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in same sp; * work 3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in next ch-2 corner sp; rep from *twice more, join with a sl st in top of beg ch-2.
  • RND 3: Sl st in next dc and into ch-2 corner sp; ch 2, work 2 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in same sp; work 3 dc in next space; work 3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in next ch-2 corner sp; repeat around granny square, join with a sl st in top of beg ch-2.
  
Note: I changed Round 3. The pattern called for a ch 2, 3 dc, ch 2 in the center space between both corners that was created by Round 2 (see red circles in picture below"). I wanted a more uniform look without any huge spaces in the middle of round 3, so I eliminated the ch 2 on both sides of the middle space that was created in round 2. This kept the holes created by the chain 2 smaller and made the edge nice and even.
Arrangement chart

Granny Square D.I.Y . . .
Make a magic circle. See the video above on How to make a Magic Circle. It's very easy and creates a loop that can be closed when you have completed the first round. Round 1...ch 2, then make 2 dc in magic loop.
Ch 2 then 3 dc in magic loop and repeat 2 more times. When slip stitching, make sure your crochet hook goes into the first stitch that is horizontal, not the one next to it that is vertical. See picture above. The pencil is showing you which stitch it should be slipped into.
Pull the string of the magic circle and it will close up the gap in the middle. Slip stitch into the top of the next dc and then into the chain 2 space in the corner. Ch 2 again, then 2 dc, ch 2, 3 dc repeat to end.
            
Here is a completed granny square for this project. It should be about 4"X4". Mine ended up at 3 3/4"X3 3/4". I say that's close enough.

Now all you have to do is make a lot of granny squares. Actually it's kind of fun when you're watching TV or riding in the car. Before you know it, you'll have all the granny squares you'll need.

Assembling:
Position granny squares as per arrangement chart above (14 granny squares wide by 16 granny squares long) 56"X64" finished or whatever size you are making. There's a little math involved, but no big deal.  I single crocheted around the whole afghan in white to finish it off.

The pattern I used for this afghan said to connect each granny square by stitching them together with an overcast stitch in outer loops only.  I found it easier to slip stitch each square with a crochet hook. It gave more definition to each square.  There's also many other ways of connecting each square.  I found different ways on Pinterest, where else...LOL!

Finishing: A Great Video on Connecting Granny Squares
Here's another video for your convenience on assembling all those granny squares. It finishes off the squares beautifully. The contributor for this method is Elmacraft.com. You can view her method by clicking on the picture or the description below the picture

And Now My Granddaughters Create . . .
So my Grandma taught me how to crochet and now I have taught my Granddaughters how to crochet...and they love to do it and I'm so proud of them for carrying on the crocheting tradition in our family.  They are creating their own works of art. Our next generation will keep this very old art alive, which is wonderful. It's also a  really good way to get the kids to sit and concentrate on something other than their phones. 

They love working with the thick and quick yarns and are creating really cute and soft plush toys. 
Don't you just love this Unicorn? Jordan used pastel colors to make this plush toy that any little one would love to hold...it turned out so cute and is so very soft!
Ashley loves to create little whales and dinosaurs. They are so adorable. Again they both used very plush yarn for their creations and light pastel colors. They are so very soft. These would be a great present for a little kiddo.

Ashley just completed this cute little turtle. Her stitches are getting better and better. I love that my granddaughters love to crochet.
Yesterday my Granddaughter, Jordan sent me pictures of her latest project. A turtle with a sunflower on its back. How cute are these? Once again she used very plush yarn...so soft.  Again another great gift for a little one...or maybe anyone! 

I'm sure as they learn more about crocheting they will create more and more. I can hardly wait to see what they come up with next. This is one very proud Grandma!

Just one more thing .  .  .
I do hope you enjoyed this post. If you are looking for a hobby or possibly a new pattern to crochet, you might want to try making this cute afghan. There's nothing better than snuggling up in a comfortable chair and working on a project that you love...like a gingham check afghan...♥

Here's a quick little story on going from craziness to calm because of crocheting... My sister-in-law worked at an after-school program. When the kids got a little rambunctious, she would pull out many balls of yarn and crochet hooks. Within a few minutes the kids went from craziness to calm. Like I said before, crocheting is very therapeutic and calming!🙂

 




  


Note:  I used the Rick Rack Rainbow Baby Blanket (above)for this afghan. If interested just click on the picture or the link and you will be redirected to the website that has the pattern or click here to download the PDF pattern.

Grandma's Blanket by Michael Hofmeister . . .
My son wrote this for his son, Emmett when he was just a little baby...

Grandma's Blanket
Each night I cover you
With grandma’s blanket
And I wonder how long
It took her to make it
And I bet she was thinking
Of you the whole time
And how warm it would keep you
On your way to dreamland

Always remember..."Life's short, eat dessert first!"...words to live by!