Finger knit a throw blanket with loop yarn, no knitting needles required. This criss cross pattern is fun and easy to work into a throw blanket that you can complete in a weekend.
I had a couple of comments inquiring about the afghan pattern on my bench from my Hydrangeas and Lemons Monday Morning Blooms post.
I’m back as promised to share the DIY details of how to finger knit a criss cross pattern blanket!
I’m not a knitter, so I was excited to discover Bernat Alize Blanket EZ yarn last year, as the yarn loops are designed for easy finger knitting!
There are several brands of loop yarn on the market. Bernat Alize Blanket EZ yarn is the brand I used and is a microfiber chenille yarn that’s machine washable. I purchased my yarn from JOANN fabric and craft store and it’s also available online. It’s so soft and fluffy and comes in a variety of variegated as well as solid colors. The Alize Blanket EZ yarn is considered a jumbo size #7 gauge yarn and comes in 18 yard skeins or balls. You’ll need (7) 18-yard skeins (126 yards total) to make a criss cross pattern throw blanket, approximately 41 x 54 inches.
The criss cross pattern is an easy pattern to work into a throw blanket and suitable for beginners! It’s more of pattern than the previous loop yarn blankets I’ve made, which are composed of basic knit stitches. You can see completed variegated yarn throw blankets, HERE and HERE for comparison.
The criss cross pattern looks more complicated than it is, but once you work the first 3 rows, you’re on your way to finger knitting a blanket in a weekend. It’s so satisfying to watch your blanket come together so quickly!
As the pattern name ‘criss cross’ suggests, you cross yarn loops to create your throw blanket. When working a row from left to right, you cross loops to the right. As you work a row from right to left, you cross loops to the left. You hold your crossed stitches in place as you pull your working yarn behind the loops to create your knit stitches. Your foundation row establishes the pattern and then the second and third rows are repeated throughout the blanket.
To begin, count out 64 loops for your foundation row, with the loops facing up and the yarn end on the left.
Mark your 64th loop with a safety pin or clip of some sort. I use a plastic Christmas ornament hanger to mark when I stop and make it easier to find where to pick up again.
Here are the directions, don’t be intimidated as they sound more complicated than they are:
1st row: Working from right to left, cross 64th loop in front of 63rd loop. Pull next loop of your working yarn up from behind through 63rd loop. Pull the next loop from working yarn up from behind 64th loop. *Cross the next loop of foundation row in front of 2nd loop of foundation row. Holding the crossed loops in position, pull the next loop from your working yarn up from behind through the next loop. Pull next loop from working yarn up from behind through next loop. Repeat from * to end of row. Do not turn work to complete 64 stitches in a row.
2nd row: Working from left to right, skip first stitch of row just worked. Cross 2nd stitch in front of 3rd stitch. Holding crossed stitches in position, pull loop from working yarn up from behind through 3rd stitch. Pull next loop from working yarn up from behind 2nd stitch. *Cross next 2 stitches. Holding crossed stitches in position, pull next loop from working yarn up from behind through next stitch. Pull next loop from working yarn up from behind through next stitch. Repeat from * to last stitch. Leave last stitch unworked. Do not turn work.
3rd row: Working from right to left, cross unworked stitch in front of 2nd stitch. Holding crossed stitches in position, pull next loop from working yarn up from behind through 2nd stitch. Pull next loop from working yarn up from behind through first stitch. *Cross next 2 stitches. Holding crossed stitches in position, pull next loop from working yarn up from behind through next stitch. Pull next loop from working yarn up from behind through next stitch. Repeat from * to end of row. Do not turn work.
Repeat 2nd and 3rd rows until blanket measures approximately 54”, ending on a 2nd row.
There are a couple of ways to join a new skein of yarn. My preferred method is to hold the last loop of your previous skein and first loop of your new skein together and work as if they are a single loop. Treat them as a single loop again when you come back to them on the next row. I like to mark the double loops with a clip or safety pin, so I make sure to pick up both loops together until I work them into a row.
Another method to join your skeins is to snip the threads of the last two loops and your first two loops on your new skein and tie the tails together. You’ll weave the loose tails back through your knitted stitches when finished.
When you get to end of your final skein, you’ll bind off your stitches to complete your blanket.
Bind off row: Working in same direction as last row, pull 2nd stitch through 1st stitch. Pull 3rd stitch through 2nd stitch. Pull 4th stitch through 3rd stitch. Continue in this manner to end of row. Cut thread at base of loop (thread used to create the loop) to create a yarn ‘tail’. Tie to secure and weave in ends.
Things to remember:
🧶 Right side of work is facing at all times.
🧶 Always cross your stitches in front, the direction you are working.
🧶 Loops from working yarn are always pulled through stitches from back to front of work.
The binding off directions sound more complicated than they actually are; I found it helpful to watch a video, here.
Pull the tail through your last loop to secure it, then weave the tail through the back of your stitches to secure and conceal it.
You can use a tapestry or darning needle to secure any loose yarn tails. I used a bobby pin to weave my yarn tails through to secure them.
Too late, I realized I dropped a loop after I was already several rows ahead. . .
I used my bobby pin again to weave the loop back through back of the throw to secure it. The fluffy yarn is forgiving so an extra loop can be camouflaged by threading it through the loops on the back without it being too obvious.
Here is a comparison of the front and back of the blanket.
My indoor photos look more muted and appear more gray blue color due to my lighting indoors, than those of the blanket photographed on the porch.
The photo above shows a more accurate color of the country blue yarn.
🧶 Keep your working yarn with the loops facing up behind your current row of loops. The loops from your working yarn are always pulled through the previous row of loops from the back to the front.
🧶 Check your work every 10 stitches or so to make sure you haven’t dropped a loop. Straighten your working yarn and untwist the “squiggly” loops to prevent skipping or dropping loops in your rows.
🧶 If I stopped, I clipped my next set of loops together to make it easier to find and pick up where I left off.
🧶 Look for coupons available from JOANN to buy online and pick up at your local store or order with free shipping. I purchased my yarn online as my local store didn’t have enough skeins.
You can find the printable pdf directions from Yarnspirations, HERE.
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