I'm sharing my progress working through the Chain Reaction Afghan Project. It's been great fun so far to really expand my repertoire of crochet techniques. Each square in the blanket is designed by a different person using different techniques/skills, and is only 12x12", so I'm never bored.
First of all, thanks so much for all the encouraging comments on my crocheted square posts! It's nice to have a big of a blogging backlog, although I hope no one is getting overwhelmed by the feed or anything. Lord knows I've been at that place where you have to hit "mark all as read" on more than a few occasions, so I can relate.
So with regard to this square, it's called Intertwining Loops (for obvious reasons). There is a lot of chaining and putting chains in front of / behind other chains here. As you can see the final product is still a little uneven after being blocked; mine came out a bit on the big side so I blocked gingerly. This would be more attractive if I had been able to pin it out with some tension, but hopefully being sewn into the middle of a blanket will help. If I did this again I would definitely go down a hook size or two. Gauge is given in the pattern for each square in the blanket, but since each one was made by a different designer you essentially need to measure anew on each square. That's not so hard of course, but this is one of the many squares I made on our roadtrip across the country this summer, so let's just say I was playing fast and loose with gauge. (THE HORROR)
If you click through on that link at the top of this post to the afghan pattern on the crochetme site, you'll see that the photography on Interweave's final blanket is definitely not doing this square any favors (this square is in the top row, second from left). The white is weirdly blown out so it looks like some strange void, or like there's some fuzzy novelty yarn involved in there. But honestly I find the color component of this one to be a bit of a mystery: why is that center ring in a completely different color from the rest of it, and a darker, more saturated color at that? (I'm obviously working with a different color scheme than Interweave's sample blanket, but I am keeping consistent to what colors they call for in which places.)
There is the issue of fabric density (AKA the fact that this square is full of HUGE GAPING HOLES). Apparently the way these squares were selected for the blanket was by having users vote on entries on crochetme. I think that is a great idea, and I wish I had time to be a more active user of that site. However, the thing about a blanket designed through consensus is that it doesn't really account for consistency or any kind of cohesion throughout the final product. I'm glad that people at least voted for some simpler patterns, so every one isn't a focal point in and of itself. As you'll see from my posts though, there are a lot of "round flower thing in the middle of a square" designs that all look fairly similar. And there are a couple designs, this one included, that create a completely different type of fabric. Now, the intertwining chains are neat, but I can fit an entire foot or hand through some of those holes. It seems strange that this square would be in the same blanket as one that is completely solid, right?! Let's just say I'm curious to see how this will work when it all comes together.