This project took 160+ hours of my time; some of it at home, some on the road. It was a race to the finish to get it all done in time for Christmas 2014, as a present for my daughter-in-law Kim! I’ll start with a bit more information, and then post pics of it in progress.
Project: The Great American Aran Afghan
Pattern: Can be hard to find now, but you can usually get it on Amazon.com here:
Yarn: The pattern specifies a yarn called Plymouth Encore: 75% acrylic, 25% wool. In Australia, I substituted this yarn: 10-ply 100% wool Luxury (machine washable) from the Bendigo Woollen Mills. The yarn is in 200g balls, and I ordered 11 balls (working on 2 squares per ball, and 1 ball for the edging (it actually takes around 1.5 balls, but there’s enough left over from the squares to finish it.) I bought it in classic cream, but there is a wide range of colours – note, though, that not all colours are available in 10-ply.
Here is the Bendigo Woollen Mills website: http://www.bendigowoollenmills.com.au/
And here is the direct link to the yarn I used:
Luxury 100% Wool
Needles: The pattern book specifies the needle size for each square – it varies. I use KnitPro needles (great for knitting in the car – I don’t drop them!) and I learned how to cable without a cable needle (again, easier in the car). You will need a set of 5 double pointed needles for some of the squares that are worked in towards the middle rather than from bottom to top.
Here is a link to KnitPro needles (for you convenience – Google KnitPro for more options). An excellent choice for travel, since you can knit projects in the round or straight, and you always have the right-sized needle in a compact case. (You don’t have to buy the set in a case – I just liked it.)
Here are a few photos of the finished project (and places where I knitted the squares!)
The finished afghan
Assembling the completed squares
The pattern book gives you patterns for 24 squares – 20 for the afghan, 4 for optional cushions.
I used some of the patterns for the cushion squares in the afghan.
These are the squares I chose: