The Traveling Afghan is by far the biggest collaborative project I’ve ever been a part of, and I’m so thankful for it. One of the things we talk about in the maker’s community is unity and community over competition. Well, this project definitely brings many, if not most, makers together. Not just those who were a part of the actual project, but including those who can knit and crochet along as this ever-growing afghan travels across the world. But if you ask me, this project took on a deeper and even more meaningful sense when 2020 came around. I’m thankful for it.
Before I dive into the free pattern and my story behind my square contribution #23, I want to share all involved and make this all possible quickly. Thank you, Alexandra, of Two Of Wands for conjuring up this project. Alexandra is a staple in the community, and her work is so distinctive, forward pushing, modern, yet nostalgic. So when she asked if I wanted to be part of the Traveling Afghan project and 49 other awesome knitwear and crochet designers, it was pretty much a no brainer. There are two Traveling Afghan blankets out there in the wild at the time of this blog post! A crochet variant, and a knit variant, This was an opportunity for us all to share a bit of uniqueness and storytelling through our craft, and everyone could participate and share their story too. How cool is that? We cannot forget one of the major yarn companies also made this possible and stands pretty much behind all makers supporting the craft and equality, Lion Brand Yarn.
How can you participate?
You can purchase yourself a kit today. Crochet or knit. Whatever cozies your fiber heart. By the time you’re reading this, it’s already started, but don’t worry, it’s not over. You can create your own story using whatever yarn you like and create an afghan that has many stories behind it. You most likely have stash busting yarn lying around your home waiting to be worked up. The kits are a great way to start you off with all that you need. Get your maker friends and or family involved and create something that can be passed down for generations.
Once you get started, head on over to Alexandra of Two of Wands website to see a master list of all the contributors, each maker has their pattern listed on each square design. You can also find the route this beautiful afghan has been on continues to go on its final lap. If you’re reading this post, we can almost see the finish line! Okay, so just below, you’ll find the FREE pattern on my square #23, the story behind it, all of the amazing makers and links to their contributing squares, and the destinations that this storytelling afghan has taken.
My square went through three different design changes. Indecisive, yeah? I knew I wanted something with texture, character, and simplicity. I think these three things speak the most in my fiber work. So what does my square remind me of, or what’s its story? When I take a long look at my square, it reminds me of rivers with the knit stitches flowing over rocks with the purl stitches. No matter where you’re headed all things seem to merge into one. At times we can be shallow and as transparent as clean water. We are powerful and we crash and burst over rocks and even strong enough to shape these boulders that stand before us. Smoothing them down from their sharp edges, a river is everywhere at the same time. Though we may not be able to physically be like the river, we leave parts of ourselves everywhere we go. Our words, our energy, our clothing, that may be a momento, and our footprints. It starts at the source, us, then we leave a bit everywhere we go. Collectively, we are powerful. We are full. Oh, how we wish to be everywhere like the river, not knowing that we already are.
Lion Brand Wool-Ease Worsted Yarn 197 yards per skein (1) or any other worsted weight (4) yarn
US 8 | 5mm Needles
10″ x 10″ | 25.5cm x 25.5cm
CO – Cast On
K – Knit
P – Purl
St – Stitches
BO – Bind off
CO 48 stitches. This pattern is worked in multiples of 12 for your information. Free downloadable PDF version in my shop.
Rows 1 & 2: K6, P6 across.
Rows 3 & 4: P1, K5, P5, K1 across.
Rows 5 & 6: K1, P1, K4, P4, k1, P1 across.
Rows 7 & 8: P1, K1, P1, K3, P3, K1, P1, K1 across.
Rows 9 & 10: (K1, P1) twice, K2, P2, (K1, P1) twice across.
Rows 11 & 12: P1, K1 across.
Rows 13 & 14: K1, P1 across.
Rows 15 &1 6: (P1, K1) twice, P2, K2, (P1, K1) twice across.
Rows 17 & 18: K1, P1, K1, P3, K3, P1, K1, P1 across.
Rows 19 & 20: P1, K1, P4, k4, P1, K1 across
Rows 21 & 22: K1, P5, K5, P1 across
Rows 23 & 24: P6, K6 across.
Rows 25 & 26: P5, K1, P1, K5 across.
Rows 27 & 28: P4, (K1, P1) twice, K4
Rows 29 & 30: P3, (K1, P1) 3 times, K3 across.
Rows 31 & 32: P2, (K1, P1) 4 times, K2 across.
Rows 33 & 34: (P1, K1) across.
Rows 35 & 36: (K1, P1) across.
Rows 37 & 38: K2, (P1, K1) 4 times, P2 across.
Rows 39 & 40: K3, (P1, K1) 3 times, P3 across.
Rows 41 & 42: K4, (P1, K1) twice, P4 across.
Rows 43 & 44: K5, P1, K1, P5 across.
Repeat rows 1-44. *Note you will reach 10″ | 25.5cm before you finish your second repeat. Measure as you knit.*
Traveling Afghan Itinerary
#1 – 1/1-1/13 – New York City, USA – Alexandra Tavel of Two of Wands
#2 – 1/15-1/28 – Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria – Sandra Gutierrez of Nomad Stitches
#3 – 1/29-2/11 – Dublin, Ireland – Katie Moore of The Queen Stitch
#4 – 2/12-2/25 – Nova Scotia, Canada – Kelly Brooks of Knitbrooks
#5 – 2/26-3/10 – Alberta, Canada – Stephanie Lau of All About Ami
#6 – 3/11-3/24 – Alberta, Canada – Chantal Miyagishima of Knitatude
#7 – 3/25-4/7 – BC, Canada – Christie Bodden of Christie Bodden Designs
#8 – 4/8-4/21 – Oregon, USA – Makenzie Alvarez of Hanks and Needles
#9 – 4/22-5/5 – California, USA – Phanessa Fong of Designs by Phanessa
#10 – 5/6-5/19 – California, USA – Angie Bivins of Whistle & Wool
#11 – 5/20-6/2 – California, USA – Jane Tsou of Gorilla Knits
#12 – 6/3-6/16 – Nevada, USA – Chenoa Wilcox of jellyKNITTING
#13 – 6/17-6/30 – Utah, USA – Rachel Misner of Evelyn & Peter
#14 – 7/1-7/14 – Colorado, USA – Jessica Potasz of Mama in a Stitch
#15 – 7/15-7/28 – Kansas, USA – Jerica Tompkins of Yarn Hook Needles
#16 – 7/29-8/11 – Kansas, USA – Mary Lee of Fifty Four Ten Studio
#17 – 8/12-8/25 – Minnesota, USA – Kaitlin Barthold of Originally Lovely
#18 – 8/26-9/8 – Minnesota, USA – Julia Anastasi of Northern Loop Knitwear
#19 – 9/9-9/22 – Winona, MN, USA – Trista Ziemendorf of While They Dream
#20 – 9/23-10/6 – Illinois, USA – Heidi Gustad of Hands Occupied
#21 – 10/7-10/20 – Illinois, USA – Jewell Washington of Northknits
#22 – 10/21-11/3 – Michigan, USA – Destiny Meyer of Knifty Knittings
#23 – 11/4-11/17 – Virginia, USA – Nathan Bryant of Loop N Threads
#24 – 11/18-12/1 – Rhode Island, USA – Jake Kenyon of Kenyarn
#25 – 12/2-12/16 – New Jersey, USA – Vanessa Coscarelli Black of Vanessa Knits