The mud and dust, the soil and sands of Africa

Yarn Elle Cotton On DK print 051 Ash, Photo of Rhino by Christine & Michel Denis Huot

Hello!  The kids and I arrived in Doha with a suitcase and one piece of cabin luggage each. We are light travelers and since I am the boss did the packing, I distributed 4 kg yarn between the suitcases before I even considered how many pairs of shoes we have space for. 

I have just started working on a new blanket using my lovely yarn from South Africa. I initially planned a colour palette in rich reds and purples, but I reconsidered and settled on a palette of white, beige, taupe, grey and coal in 25 different shades, featuring no less than 9 different types of yarns! The palette is stunning, inspired by the mud and dust, the soil and sands of Mother Africa.
Images: Pinterest Raw Rustic

When I think of my childhood, vivid images of digging my hands through the cool earth, sinking my feet into the soft soil, boring with my big toe through the cracks of dried mud prevail. The picture of a White Rhino charging through dusty plains, cemented the idea for using a palette that represents the Mother Continent.

I am deviating from the initial idea and pattern, but decided to do a separate posting later in which I will be discussing crocheting techniques and personal likes/dislikes. 

Pattern: Hexagon from loopknits
Hook size: 5mm

Vinnis Colours Bambi Bamboo/Cotton mix in White, Natural, Clouds and Midnight
Vinnis Nikkim Colours Cotton in Blue-Grey, Aluminium, Steel Grey and Midnight
Vinnis Serina Bamboo in Natural and Silver
Imagine Bamboo/Cotton mix by I Love Yarn  in Windswept, Abyss and Monet
Elle Premier Mercerised Cotton in Grey and Taupe
Elle Rustica Wool/Acrylic/Tweed mix in Charcoal, Aran and Natural
Elle Marco Cotton/Tweed/Wool/Acrylic/Nylon mix in Charcoal and Aran 
Elle Cotton On in Ash
Elle Pure Gold Acrylic in Pepper, Ivory, Silver and Titanium 

All the yarn is available from I Love Yarn in South Africa. They also ship internationally.

Thank you for visiting and enjoy the rest of your week!


  1. The colour scheme is just... magical.... I cannot find another word for it.. Seeing the combination of colours just makes me feel calm. Looking at the photos above, I can understand how you feel this will be your "african blanket"
    Just beautiful, Magda !

  2. I'm speechless, too !!!
    xxxxxxxx Ale

  3. No words are needed!!!!!!!

  4. I do love tonal colour palettes, I find them so calming and grounding - the greys and taupes and creams of nature are the best to my eye. I will enjoy reading more about this blanket - all of your projects seem more like works of art than mere blankets! Wonderful! Chrissie x

    1. Ah, "tonal" is the word that escaped me when I wrote the posting.

  5. I love the entire project already - the colours, the inspiration, the Africa-relation. A blanket full of wonderful thoughts and memories, that is marvellous.
    Can't wait to see the progress!
    Happy crocheting!

  6. Such a lovely colour palette! Simply stunning...

  7. Eye candy, pure eye candy...
    Your collages have become art in their own right. Beautiful.
    I'm loving the variation in texture. (Working myself on a scarf right now, using two different hooksizes plus a combo of cotton and bamboo.) Love your description of your childhood memories. - Sooo recognizable. Always been a sucker for mud! ;-)
    Anyways, do post a lot of progress pics on your gorgeous project.
    PS. Thumbs up for your packing priorities.

  8. You packed the yarn first....glad to see you have your priorities in order! ;-)
    I do enjoy your artistic photo collages very much. I also admire your ambition with your projects and you always carry them off with such flair. The notion of so many tones and fibres in one project is quite daunting to me. I would have to be very disciplined in maintaining 'the big picture' because it would be easy to feel overwhelmed by so many choices. A blanket is so appropriate for a 'Mother Africa' project as it can wrap around you with comfort and warmth like a mother's hugs. I can't wait to see your big picture of the finished blanket.

  9. INCREDIBLE -- these images are truly stunning. You sure know how to make a girl want to travel...

  10. I love the photo of the rhino and the matching shades of grey.

  11. Magda, you are so stylish and this is just beautiful! So glad we have a peak into your life every week or so! We at I Love Yarn are going to miss your visits!

  12. Magda! I really enjoy your pages!! Just one question. When you use eg elle gold and then vinnis, do you double your strands of vinnis?

    1. Hi Tatiana, I am using a hook size 5 throughout and am not doubling any strands at all. I might block all the squares to ensure the same final size throughout before assembling as the Vinnis Serina motifs are smaller. It is not necessary though as the stitches are looser than the Elle Gold ones and the motif will stretch to fit the thicker yarns. Because it is only a three round pattern, it is OK to be workingmwith many different thicknesses. When I did the Raw Rustic Throw, I hooked the Serina with a much bigger hook than the bambi as it gave me an interesting texture http://pigstails.blogspot.com/2013/06/throw.html

  13. Hele mooie kleuren weer! Ik heb gekeken bij I love yarn (prachtig!) en gevraagd naar de verzendkosten naar Nederland. Best wel hoog. Ik ga nog eens zoeken of het dichterbij te krijgen is.

  14. Your work is stunning! Would you mind if I copied you & tried making a blanket myself? I would never have thought of the different colour and texture combinations but they are inspired and it looks like it will be a very restful palette to work with

    1. Hello! You are most welcome to copy, this is turning out to be such a fun and rewarding project! Cheers!

    2. Thank you so much! Can I just ask though - how do you join so many small shapes and how many balls of each yarn are you using? i can't wait and now have an excuse to get myself over to I Love Yarn! Never been before!

    3. Hi Kelly - I am using about 2,4 kg yarn and bought 2 each of the 50 gr balls and 1 each of the 100 gr balls (44 balls in total and I am now adding another 200 gr from yarn I picked up in Doha to lighten up the palette). You can see a photo on Ravelry, the second one from top - showing you the entire loot! http://www.ravelry.com/projects/PigtailsCrochet/crochet-hexagon-blanket If you go to the I Love Yarn web, you will see they sell kits for the Heirloom blanket http://iloveyarn.co.za/patterns/34-crochet-heirloom-blanket.html I asked them initially to put together a kit in reds and purples and wow it was absolutely stunning (and it might still be available for sale in the shop) but the day before I went to buy it, I realised I wanted something in these colours to portray the soils of Africa and we quickly put together these colours. I did not add any pure wool to my selection as I live in very hot places and don't like touching wool (personal quirk). I am not using the 2 round hexagon pattern but a 3 round one. The Heirloom kit pattern is join as you go but I am going to slipstitch my hexagons together as I prefer the process of first hooking, then assembling. Lucy from Attic 24 also has a great tutorial for join as you go hexies http://attic24.typepad.com/weblog/hexagon-howto.html Hers is a bigger hexagon than the one I am using. With slip stitch assembling I will lay out the motifs and then join them row by row. First the top and bottom parts of the hexagons and then I will put the strips together - slip stitch in one continuous zig zag row. At least, this is the plan :D ! Have fun at I love yarn - it is a great shop. Since I left the country, they have acquired even greater yarns!

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