Blocking a large knitted blanket requires a bit more space and patience. Start by laying the blanket flat on a clean, dry surface. Then, use a spray bottle to dampen the blanket, being careful not to over-saturate it. Next, gently stretch the blanket to the desired size and shape, being sure to smooth out any wrinkles or bumps. Finally, use rust-proof pins to hold the edges in place and allow the blanket to dry completely before removing the pins.
Blocking a large knitted blanket can be a daunting task. But, with the right steps and supplies, it doesn’t have to be so hard!
With this guide, you’ll learn how to block your blanket by:
- soaking it in water
- squeezing out the excess water
- laying it flat on a surface
- pinning or shaping the edges while it dries
You don’t need any special equipment – just some patience and time! So let’s get started!
What You'll Learn
Preparing the Blanket
After taking it out of the bag, you’ll be ready to start prepping your cozy creation by giving it a good soak and gently pressing out the excess moisture.
Before you begin, take a moment to check the yarn tensioning and fiber content of your blanket. This will determine what kind of water temperature is best for soaking it and how long you should let it sit before moving on to the next step.
If you’re using an acrylic or polyester blend, try to use lukewarm water since these fibers can’t withstand high temperatures. For wool or cotton blends, warm or cool water will work just fine. Just make sure that whatever temperature you choose is comfortable enough for your hands as well.
Once everything is set up, carefully place the blanket in the tub or sink filled with your chosen water temperature and let it sit for about 10 minutes or until all of its fibers are fully saturated.
Gently squeeze out any excess moisture without stretching or wringing out the blanket too much, then lay it flat on a clean surface like a towel-covered table so that air can circulate around it evenly during drying.
With each corner pulled tautly over an edge of the towel and secured with pins if necessary, you’ll have blocked your large knitted blanket perfectly!
Soaking the Blanket
Before you can begin beautifying your knitted masterpiece, it must first be immersed in water to prepare it for success.
Soaking the blanket will help to relax the stitch tension and allow the fibers to settle into place.
It’s important to choose a water temperature that is appropriate for your fiber choice. Wool, alpaca and other animal fibers should be soaked in cold water while plant-based or synthetic fibers should be submerged in warm or hot water.
Once the desired temperature has been reached, carefully lower the blanket into the basin of water and let it soak for up to half an hour.
Ensure that all parts of the blanket are covered before leaving it unattended – if any parts remain dry, they won’t have a chance to relax properly.
If necessary, use a gentle washing product such as wool wash or baby shampoo on particularly dirty areas of your knit fabric.
When finished soaking, lift out gently without squeezing or wringing out any excess liquid – this could cause damage by stretching or distorting some of your stitches.
Instead, lay out towels so that they are ready when you need them later on during this process.
Before placing your knitted creation onto them however, make sure to give one final check over and remove any dirt particles that may have become trapped during its bathtime adventure!
With everything prepared and ready to go, now is the time move onto squeezing out any remaining moisture from within your precious piece of work – but only after taking special care not to stretch or distort any stitches!
Squeezing Out the Water
You’ve come so far – now it’s time to delicately squeeze out the remaining moisture, taking special care not to stretch or distort your hard-earned stitches! How much water you can handle squeezing out will depend on how absorbent the yarn is. Measuring the absorbency of your yarn in advance will give you an idea of how much water you can take out without risking a misshapen blanket.
Additionally, keep in mind that hot water has a tendency to dull colors and stretch fibers. Excessively warm temperatures may also damage delicate yarns, so be sure to use lukewarm or cold water when cleaning.
Once you’ve decided on a temperature and measured the yarn’s absorbency, it’s time to start squeezing out as much excess moisture from your blanket as possible. If needed, wrap the blanket in an old towel first before wringing it out gently with your hands.
As tempting as it might be to twist and stretch the fabric while wringing it out (in order to get more water out), resist this urge! Twisting and stretching too hard can easily cause distortion, which is why gentle pressure should always be used when removing any extra liquid between washes.
After all excess moisture has been removed by hand, lay your wet blanket flat on top of an old towel or other absorbent material such as a bathmat or shower curtain liner. This will help pull away any additional drops of water which weren’t able to be squeezed out by hand alone.
Leave for 10–15 minutes until most of the remaining dampness has been soaked up by the towel beneath before continuing onto pinning or shaping its edges while drying completely.
Now that most of the residual moisture has been removed from your blanket, it’s ready for pinning or shaping its edges while drying – giving you a finished look that’s sure to impress!
Laying the Blanket Flat
With the moisture removed, it’s time to lay the blanket flat and let it dry, ensuring a neat and tidy finish.
To begin, you’ll want to iron out any wrinkles or creases in the fabric, as well as check for any loose stitches or damage in the stitching pattern. While this is an important step for keeping your blanket looking its best, be sure not to press too hard on the fabric – you don’t want to flatten out any of your hard work and ruin its shape!
The next step is to spread out your blanket in a large open area that’s free from dust and other particles. If possible, use a smooth surface such as wood or linoleum flooring – carpet can cause lumps or bumps while drying which can lead to unevenness in the finished product.
Once laid flat on the surface of your choice, check once more for wrinkles before allowing it to dry completely.
Finally, if there are still some areas that are slightly damp after laying them flat, use towels underneath and around each side of the blanket until they’re completely dry. This will help reduce excess moisture which could lead to mold growth later down the line. In addition, by using towels you’ll also be able create a barrier between any dirt particles on surfaces like carpets so they don’t stick onto your wet blanket while drying.
With everything now good-to-go and ready for drying, it’s time move onto pinning or shaping the edges of your newly blocked large knitted blanket!
Pinning or Shaping the Edges
Now it’s time to give your masterpiece the perfect finishing touch by delicately defining its edges.
To do this, you’ll need some threading needles and yarn for stretching. Thread your needle with the yarn and stitch a running stitch around the entire edge of the blanket. This will help keep it in shape as it dries.
Once you have done this, lightly stretch out each end of the yarn along the border of each side of the blanket. This will give it extra definition and help make sure that all sides are even when dry.
You may also want to use pins to hold any parts together while they dry, especially if they seem loose or uneven when stretched out with yarn. Be careful not to pull too hard on either needle or yarn; otherwise, you may end up with an overly stretched out blanket.
Use gentle pressure instead, so that when your masterpiece is finished drying, its edges remain sharp and defined but still look naturally soft and inviting.
To give your work a professional edge (pun intended), consider using blocking wires along with pins to create truly crisp corners that won’t budge no matter how much wear and tear your new blanket gets over time!
With these steps complete, your large knitted blanket is ready for drying – a process that will set in place all of the detailed shaping from before.
Drying the Blanket
Gently squeezing out the excess moisture, you carefully lay your masterpiece flat and let it dry.
Now that the blanket is laid out, there are a few timing strategies to consider for drying. You can leave it out until it’s completely dry or you may accelerate the process with steam pressing. This method requires a clothing steamer or an iron set to the lowest heat setting. Steam press each section of the blanket one at a time, making sure not to linger too long in any one spot as this could cause damage. Once all areas have been steamed, allow the blanket to air dry completely before unpinning or removing any weights used in blocking.
You can also choose to use alternative methods such as using a fan to help speed up drying time if you don’t have access to steam pressing tools. Setting up fans in front of and behind your blanket will create airflow that helps move moisture away from your project faster than just leaving it on its own. If you’re pressed for time, this is an effective way of speeding up drying but take care not to point them directly onto your knitted fabric as this could cause shrinkage and distort your hard work!
Another option is taking advantage of sunny days by hanging the damp blanket outside in direct sunlight; however, keep in mind that too much sun exposure can fade colors over time so use caution when deciding how long it should be left outside. You may also want to cover part or all of it with a sheet while still allowing some light through so that colors won’t fade as quickly from overexposure.
No matter which approach you take for drying your knitted blanket project, remember that patience goes a long way! It’s important to give yourself plenty of time and make sure everything is completely dry before unpinning or removing any weights used during blocking – otherwise your efforts won’t pay off!
Blocking a large knitted blanket may seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be! With some simple steps and a bit of patience, you’ll be able to transform your blanket into something that looks like it was made by the gods themselves.
You’ll never look at your old, lumpy blanket the same way again! So go on and give it a try – you won’t regret it. Who knows – after seeing the final product, you might even find yourself wanting to block every single thing in sight!