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Phases of the Moon ~ 
Celebrate the actual 1st nine months of life with this easy crochet baby blanket pattern!

Easy crochet baby blanket pattern shows Phases of the Moon for the 1st nine months of baby's life~in the womb!

This custom crochet baby blanket pattern chronicles the Phases of the Moon for the time that your wee one was growing ~ but you couldn't kiss his face! Celebrate your special pregnancy (they are all special!) with this simple, yet personalized, baby blanket!

The idea behind this easy crochet baby blanket pattern

As I admired the full moon one night, the idea of stripes for the phases and circles for the full moons began to develop. This new and unique baby blanket concept had to be super simple yet contain many possibilities for personalization. The design evolved and this is the first Phases of the Moon crochet blanket. It symbolizes the time my delightful new granddaughter was developing in her mommy’s womb.

Close-up of intarsia circles

It's all single crochet!

Easy peasy!

The moon is an action diva!

A lot happens with the moon! Besides phases, there are supermoons, blue moons, black moons, solar eclipses, lunar eclipses, blood moons, and cool names of full moons. Not to mention the pull it has on the tides! You can reflect most of these occurrences in your Phases of the Moon blanket.

During the last full month of my granddaughter’s gestation, November, 2016, the moon was closer to Earth than it had been since 1948. It won’t be that big again until 2034. So I presented this event in the Phases of the Moon blanket by making that circle larger than all the others. I also added two white rows to that full moon section.

How to figure in what moon phase to start the blanket ~ Use the moon's quarters

I used the 4 basic phases: New moon, 1st Quarter, Full moon, 3rd Quarter. Each yarn color represents a particular phase.

Since every infant’s development starts and ends during some phase of the moon, this concept blanket can be individualized for everybody you know. Besides the date of actual birth, you need to have knowledge of the conception date so you know in which phase to begin. 

You can figure that out in one of these ways:

     1.     Use the estimated due date from the doctor. Then count back 40 weeks on the calendar.

OR

     2.     If you know the first date of the last menses before pregnancy, then add two weeks for an estimated conception date. Then count the weeks to the delivery date.

After determining the dates, do a few minutes of research. I used this website to determine week by week which moon phase was dominant. I created a PDF to help you with this (see next section).

Each stripe (4 rows sc) of the blanket represents approximately one week. Four colors represents one lunar cycle. Naturally, for precious preemies, you'll crochet fewer weeks on the end.


PDF to help plan your Phases of the Moon baby blanket

Here is a chart is to help you plan this personalized baby blanket. Make any notes of special lunar occurrences. That will remind you to use an alternate color to highlight them.



Materials

Oh, how I searched for yarn that evoked a feeling of night sky! I finally decided on these and a 10.5 - K hook:

·       Red Heart With Love Metallic – black (6.5 oz.)

·       Red Heart With Love Metallic – white (6.5 oz.)

·       Caron Simply Soft Party – Violet Varg (6 oz.)

·       Caron Simply Soft Party – Silver Sparkle (6 oz.)

Your colors can be whatever you like, of course! Just keep the same color for each phase throughout.


Is metallic yarn safe for babies?

I looked all over the internet for the answer to this question. I also emailed a certain yarn company (with no response). So I decided that it is probably as safe as any other yarn used for baby items. If you have proof to the contrary, please share with us in the comments!

All of these yarns are a medium (4) weight, but the Caron looks and feels a bit thinner than the Red Heart. So I used a 10.5-K size hook and crocheted a little tighter with the RH and a little looser with the Caron. Seemed to do the trick!


Baby blanket dimensions and the how-to

The final blanket measures 38x45 inches. This includes the border.

I chained 120 to begin because I wanted a blanket a bit larger than the usual hand-crafted baby blanket. This way, my granddaughter can use it through toddlerhood, if she likes. If you would like yours smaller, just chain 100 stitches instead. Your full moons can be placed wherever you like!

Full Moons are Intarsia crochet ~ easier than I thought!

The Phases of the Moon baby blanket is my first foray into intarsia crochet. It’s so simple! And I didn’t have a ton of yarn ends to weave in. Some, yes, but not a ton.

Intarsia crochet uses bobbins or small yarn balls so you don't have to carry your colors and risk them showing through.Intarsia crochet uses bobbins or small yarn balls so you don't have to carry your colors and risk them showing through.

Simply put, intarsia is using different colors in the same row to make designs. It’s similar to tapestry crochet but without carrying yarn. And best of all, it makes a reversible baby blanket!

I found that using the yarn bobbins as pictured above made the crochet easier. I still used smaller lengths of yarn, but on bobbins they didn't roll all over the place.

This youtube video helped me to understand intarsia crochet. Jess at Make and Do Crew also explained it quite well without ever mentioning the word intarsia.

The design graph

My biggest problem was getting the full moons to appear round. Once I got that pattern down, the rest was, as they say, a piece of cake! (I get cake down pretty easy, too! ;-P )

This graph is for a full moon so that you can place one anywhere you like in your baby blanket pattern. The stripes for the moon's phases remain the same throughout.

Suggestions for presenting various occurrences of the Moon

Yellow row on this Phases of the Moon baby blanket swatch is an example of how another color may be used to represent the August 2017 total solar eclipse. Choose any color or even change the stitch!

The yellow row on the front of this Phases of the Moon swatch is an example of how another color may be used to represent the August 2017 total solar eclipse. Of course, you could choose any color! Or even change the stitch!

This is the reverse side of the Phases of the Moon swatch showing the color pop that represents the total solar eclipse. I'll give this one to grandbaby Belle with a baby doll.

·       Supermoons can be a larger circle and/or more rows for that full moon.

·       Eclipses could be one row of a color not already representing a phase.

·       Blue moons could actually be a blue circle or some bluish color not already representing a phase.

To bobble or not to bobble? 

Phases of the Moon blanket with basic single crochet edge ~ No bobblePhases of the Moon blanket with basic single crochet edge ~ No bobble
Phases of the Moon blanket with no edgingPhases of the Moon blanket with no edging
Phases of the Moon blanket with Bobble Edge!Phases of the Moon blanket with Bobble Edge!

The edging is very simple.

**Work Rows 1 thru 4 with your right side facing you. Work Rows 5, 6 (Bobble and final row) with your wrong side facing you.**

Row 1 (white):  (Right side facing) Single crochet in each chain and row all around the blanket. In each corner space, SC1, Ch1, SC1. Join with slip stitch. There is no need to turn your work at this point.

Row 2 (black):  Ch1, SC 1, [Ch1, Skip 1, SC1]. Repeat [Ch1, Skip 1, SC1] all around the blanket. In each corner space, SC1, Ch1, SC1. Join at end with slip stitch. Do not turn.

Row 3 (silver):  Ch1, ...

Row 3 is just like Row 2, except you SC in a Ch space and Ch/Skip over a SC from the previous row. In each corner space, SC1, Ch1, SC1. Do not turn.

Row 4 (silver): Ch1, ...

Row 4 is another silver row, just like Row 3. Remember to SC in a Ch space and Ch/Skip over a SC from the previous row. In each corner space, SC1, Ch1, SC1. Do not turn.

If you like the effect of the single crochet edging so far, you could call this baby blanket done. Yay! But if you like a bit of textural interest, keep on for the Bobble row!

Front of crochet Bobble edgeFront of crochet Bobble edge
Back of crochet Bobble edgeBack of crochet Bobble edge

Row 5 (white):  (Wrong side facing) This is the Bobble row. Bobbles look rather like full moons to me, so I edged the entire Phases of the Moon baby blanket with full moons! For this you need to double crochet.

Using white, work SC1 into the left side SC in a corner (There are 2 SC in each corner.) Then SC2 more [These 3 SC are worked in the previous row SC, Ch, SC].

For the bobble: In the Ch space that should be next, *[YO, insert hook, YO, pull through, YO, pull through 2 loops on hook]. Do this 5 times in the same Ch space. You will have 6 loops on your hook. YO, pull through all 6 loops. This is your first bobble! Snug it tight and poke it out away from you.

SC 3 in next (SC, Ch, SC) from previous row.

Repeat *[Bobble stitch, SC3] all around the edge.

Row 6 (white):  This final row is all slip stitch. Its purpose is to even out the stitches in the bobble row for a finished look.

And there you have it!

A unique yet easy crochet baby blanket that commemorates your sweet bambino's actual first 9 months of life!





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