Daily Archives: 22 July, 2007

Baby Blankets: An Average

So I’m working on designing a blankie for my cousin Becky’s baby, and as usual I am stumped by the fact that I’m not sure what size to make it. Nothing I’m crocheting looks quite right, and I don’t have any receiving blankets on hand to base it off of, like I usually do.

Brilliant me decided to go to Crochet Pattern Central’s baby afghans page and see what was there. This somehow morphed into the idea of getting the measurements off of all the blankets with measurements and then averaging them.

I left off patterns that required registration, and anything that was obviously not a “normal” size (there were a couple that purported to be for car seats). After I assembled my list, I knocked the highest & lowest values off both measurements. This left me with 63 numbers, ranging from 25″ on the width side on up to 50″ on the height side. (Yeah, that’d be an interesting-looking afghan!)

Anyway, a little time with the calculator later, & this is what I came up with for an average baby blanket: 33″ wide by 38″ long (both rounded off).

I am publishing this because I know that the question of what size to make baby blankets has popped up many a time on Crochetville. My number, of course, is as arbitrary as any other, but it does seem like a handy size just by looking at it.

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I’m not a bitch.

I think I stepped through the looking glass, and somehow wound up in a world where it’s an insult to be called a lady but it’s great to be called a bitch.

I kind of rolled my eyes at Stitch & Bitch when it came out, as the name just reeks of trying too hard to be cutting edge; nonetheless I own that book as well as Stitch & Bitch Nation and the design journal (which I’ve never actually used, sadly enough; when I go to designing stuff I grab a spiral notebook by reflex).

I know there’s a neofeminist magazine called Bitch, but I’m no more a neofeminist than a neoconservative. Rather, I am distinctly old-school in both respects. (And in regards to feminism, I mean old old school. Susan B Anthony rather than Gloria Steinem.)

Being that my best friend is gay, I’m well-conversant with the concept of conscripting insulting words in an effort to remove their sting. Be that as it may, I have to draw the line somewhere; I’d no more use the word bitch in reference to myself than I’d use the word nigger in reference to my black friends and acquaintances, or fagot in reference to Mark.

I have nothing to prove when it comes to hipness and craftiness. I’ve been crafting since before it once again became au courant, and I will continue to do so long after it leaves popular culture. I feel no need to declare myself hip and edgy by using a curse word to describe myself any more than I feel the need to declare myself hip and edgy by knitting a Hogwarts scarf.

I’d like to join a crafting group, but I’m not going to hook up with anyone obviously trying to declare themselves to be Really Really Different (and face it, these days a craft circle with the word bitch in it is about as counterculture as your average mall Goth). I like my tea cozies without irony, thank you very much, and although I have the deepest respect for folks who reconstruct clothing (witness the Wardrobe Reconstruction button in my sidebar), craft from found objects et cetera, I am forced to note that it really isn’t anything new, although this drive towards proud self-deprecation certainly seems to be.