Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Front Post Double Crochet Afghan

So there's a young man at work who is expecting his second baby boy this fall.  When I crocheted a baby blanket for him the first time, I crocheted with 2 skeins at once for double thickness in yellow and white.  It turned out lovely, but it was gender neutral.  This time I waited till he found out that he was expecting a boy and I set out to create a very manly blanket for this new little man.

I didn't want to make an uber-thick blanket this time around, and I wanted something that I could make up quickly without having to constantly consult the pattern.  I settled on this easy repetitive pattern that gave a nice bumpy texture on one side with front post double crochets, and a smooth flat surface on the other side.  However, the blanket ended up being uber-thick.  Again. 

Above you can see the overall pattern, and in the picture below you can see how the side facing up is textured with bumps while the bottom facing side is smoother.  Either side makes a wonderfully soft play mat for baby to lounge on while relaxing under the shade of a tree with mom.  And of course that's what all babies do is relax and lounge, right?

For this project I used Loops and Threads brand Charisma in a taupe, chocolate brown, royal blue, navy blue, and variegated blue and brown. Here are the pattern instructions if you want to create your own super-thick and nubbly-soft blankie:

How to work a FPdc stitch, per CrochetMe:  " The front post double crochet (FPdc) is worked like a regular double crochet, with the exception of where you place the hook. Yarn over, then instead of inserting the hook under the top two loops, slide the hook from front to back to front behind the post of the stitch. This pushes the post of the stitch you are working around to the front. Yarn over and pull up a loop, then yarn over and draw through two loops on your hook two times just as you would for a regular double crochet. "

Ch an even number of stitches to desired width, turn.
Row 1:  In 2nd ch from hook *dc,  then sc in next ch,**  rep from * to ** across to end.  Ch 1, turn.
Row 2:  *Work FPdc over next dc, sc over next sc,* rep from *  to ** across to end. Change yarn color, ch 1, turn.
Row 3:  *Dc over previous sc, sc over previous dc,** rep from * to ** across to end. Ch 1, turn.
Row 4:  Repeat rows 2 and 3 till desired size is reached.

By working the FPdc only on the even numbered rows, you create one smooth side on the back and a textured side on the front.  By alternating the dc stitches on top of the sc stitches, the afghan is kept in relative balance and the rows are straight and even.


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