What Is An Afghan Blanket: 6 Basic Characteristics

If you are curious about what is an afghan blanket, it is a knitted or crocheted blanket. Also, you can use either human-made or natural fibers to make one. 

 

It is yarn art and is primarily decorative. However, it is also helpful as a blanket. 

 

Does this pique your interest? If so, then please do read further. We will talk about what sets an afghan blanket apart from a regular blanket, along with its distinct traits. 

 

After differentiating it from a regular blanket, can it be used as a substitute? Is it as effective? You will find out more as you read on. 

 

what is an afghan blanket

What Is An Afghan Blanket And Its Difference To A Regular Blanket?

In reality, labels like throws, afghan blankets, and blankets have been interchangeably used over time. They do have differences, though. Here are some of the aspects wherein they are different.

 

  • Size – A blanket is bed-sized, be it queen or king-sized. On the other hand, afghan blankets are not limited to any size. 

 

They can be in the size of throws or even bed-sized. There are even lap-sized afghan blankets or lapghans that are perfect for your lap.

 

  • Materials – Blankets are made of one piece of fabric that is bed-sized. Also, their ends are bound as opposed to throws to prevent fraying. 

 

Meanwhile, afghan blankets are knitted or crocheted. They are hand-made, which gives them a distinct texture.

 

Moreover, they are usually colorful, but you can also opt to use one color in making them.

 

  • Construction – Blankets are usually made from wool blends or fleece. The most common material used for blankets is cotton.

 

As mentioned repeatedly, Afghan blankets are crocheted or knitted, meaning they are made of yarn. 

 

  • Use – Both regular blankets and afghan blankets are used for warmth. However, afghan blankets also have a decorative use.

 

Sometimes, you can see them draped over sofas or ottomans to give an additional flair to the room. 

 

Characteristics Of Afghan Blankets

 

  • Complexity – Afghan blankets are human-made and are done through hard work. They require different types and colors of yarns and skills to pull off a design or motif. In short, they require effort. 

 

That’s a good thing because crocheting afghan blankets help with memory. It is also called crochet therapy, and it helps those who have dementia issues!

 

  • Comfortability – More than personal projects and decor, afghan blankets offer warmth and comfort. Whether you are snuggling during winter or working on a project during summer, there is an afghan blanket for you. 

 

  • Sizes – an advantage of the afghan blanket is that it comes in different sizes.

 

A full-size afghan blanket is about 50” by 65”. A lapghan is about 35” to 40”. The baby blanket, on the other hand, is about 25” by 30”.

 

These are general measurements, so you can end up with a larger or smaller afghan blanket, depending on your pattern.

 

You can also modify the afghan blankets you made. For example, you can turn a baby blanket into a full-sized afghan.

 

It is effortless to modify them if they are striped afghan blankets. 

 

What makes afghan blankets unique? 

Afghan blankets are different from blankets and throws. That much has been established.

 

However, what makes it appealing to the public? Here are some characteristics of afghan blankets that attract people to it.

 

Different types and styles of afghan blankets

Considering how afghan blankets are used for decor, it is not surprising that there are different crocheting or knitting types and styles to make them. Here are some examples:

 

  • Single-piece – This one is a hit among beginners. They are not intimidating and complicated, and it is a good start if you want to dive into crocheting or knitting afghan blankets.

 

  • Mile-a-minute – This crochet technique is done in pieces. You work on different strips and then put them together. 

 

This way, you do not get overwhelmed by the amount of crocheting you need to do. The mile-a-minute technique is also advantageous if you do not like carrying your project around with you since you only need to work on certain pieces. 

 

  • Join-as-you-go – This crochet technique is also made up of pieces and is true to its name. You join different sides of the motifs you are working on as you go. It is fun to do, but it is a bit complicated for beginners. 

 

  • Motif – Like mile-a-minute, this type of crocheting is done in pieces – or in this case, motifs. The motifs can have similar or different designs. They can also be done in blocks, also known as granny squares. 

 

The motif is a popular crochet technique because you can take them anywhere and the designs you can pull off are versatile. 

 

  • Graphghan – In this crochet technique, you will crochet an image. The image can be a photo of your pet or something as simple as a symbol. It can even be a lettering!

 

Conclusion

People who like to keep warm and comfortable are blanket connoisseurs. Again, you might ask, what is an afghan blanket? The answer is that it’s a mix of design and comfort, echoing what has been discussed above.

how to bind a baby blanket

Learn How To Bind A Baby Blanket At Home In 12 Easy Steps

Making baby blankets is one thing; learning how to bind a baby blanket is another.

 

You can sew a baby blanket to bind it. The details are below, and we added other baby blanket-related topics after it as well.

 

You will learn a lot of things in this article, especially if you’re a new parent. Be sure to give the whole thing a read!

 

Step-By-Step Guide On How To Bind A Baby Blanket

 

Step #1. Prepare your materials

Here are the materials you need; for the fabrics, you need 1 and 1/4 backing/binding, plus 7 or 8 yards of contrasting fabric.

 

You also need a rotary cutter, a ruler, a mat, and an erasable ink pen.

 

Lastly, you need a sewing machine.

 

Step #2. Fabric

First, cut the binding fabric into 40”x40” squares. Next, cut your contrast fabric into 30”x30” squares.

 

Then, diagonally fold the squares to ensure that they are indeed square.

 

You can cut the squares smaller, but ensure that the binding fabric is 10” bigger than the contrast fabric.

 

Step #3. Find the center

Place the contrast fabric in the middle of the cotton square with the right side up.

 

Step #4. Pin

First, find the center of one side of your contrast fabric and your backing fabric. Then, pin the center and edges of the contrast fabric to the edges of the backing fabric.

 

Leave one inch of contrast fabric’s corners unpinned. You will have at least 5” space of fabric on either side.

 

Next, find the center on the other sides and pin them as well.

 

Step #5. Floppy

You should have floppy triangles on the fabric corners after pinning them.

 

Step 6. Mark

Mark a dot 1/4” from both edges on all corners. Use a ruler.

 

Step #7. Sew

Sew all the edges together with a 1/4” seam allowance. Leave an 8” opening on one side so you can turn the blanket with the right side out.

 

When you are sewing one side, pull the next one out of the way. Sew the seams until the 1/4” dot.

 

Lift the needle when you reach the dot and turn the blanket.

 

Pull the backing fabric from the side you were working on. Then, sew the next side of the backing fabric from the 1/4” dot.

 

The floppy outside corners would still be open.

 

Step #8. Mitered corners

Pull the center fabric away from the backing fabric to make mitered corners.

 

Begin from one corner and pull it, then match the raw outside edges and make a triangle.

 

Diagonally fold the center fabric in half, match it to the intersecting seams. This should have a 45-degree angle next to the triangle flap.

 

Mark a line from the seam ends using a ruler. Then, draw along the outside folded edge of the binding fabric.

 

Step #9. Trim

Sew from the 1/4” endpoint of the original seam to the edge of the folded binding fabric.

 

Then, trim the excess flap 1/4” away from the new seam. Discard the excess.

 

Step #10. Flatten and press

Flatten the new seam open, then press it. Press the other seams, too, and make sure they remain flat even when you turn them with the right side up.

 

Finally, flatten and press the remaining corners as well.

 

Step #11. Right side out

Turn the blanket right side out when all corners are mitered. Shape the blanket carefully, then press the outside edges.

 

Tuck the center fabric’s edges toward the outside or binding fabric. Pin the edges together.

 

Step #12. Top stitch

Top stitch along the edges of the center fabric. Close the opening for turning.

 

Top stitch the outside blanket as well. Do the same thing on the middle of the center fabric as well to prevent it from shifting when being washed.

 

What is a self-binding baby blanket?

The steps above tell you how to make a self-binding baby blanket. Here, we’ll clarify the difference between a self-binding blanket and a traditionally bound one.

 

First, the former uses backing fabric. This is to make a finished edge outside the quilt, which gives it an applied binding look.

 

A self-bound blanket also takes less time to finish.

 

You can self-bind your quilts if you do not use them extensively because the outer edges of quilts are prone to damage.

 

Since the self-bound blanket only has one layer, it is not as sturdy as traditionally bound ones.

 

What is a baby blanket?

There are numerous variations of baby blankets. However, there are four main types; these are receiving blankets, swaddling blankets, security blankets, and crib blankets.

 

The receiving blanket is the most versatile among the four, while the swaddling blankets are for swaddling only.

 

A security blanket is generally made of soft fabric and made to provide comfort for your newborn.

 

Lastly, crib blankets have different types as well, from sheets to bedding sets.

 

Nonetheless, choosing one should be based on safety and comfort first.

 

Conclusion

Learning how to bind a baby blanket by yourself is challenging, especially since it is for your baby.

 

Despite the challenge, we assure you that it’s worth it when your baby lays on it and loves it!

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