This was my first attempt:
Ian looked at this and said,
You're not going to use that are you?I looked at it and I had to agree with him. Still, it demonstrated the principle that crochet can be incorporated into knooking work. I was really taken with the crocheted shell shapes that I'd just learnt, so I had another go:
I have to admit it's still a bit wibbly, but I wasn't about to scrap (frog?) another one, so I kept it. After that, I thought maybe I should try learning from someone with a bit more experience, rather than making it up as I went along. Taking inspiration from Ronda's All Twisted Up design, I tried alternating rows of knit and crochet, with some twists on the crochet rows. I've no idea how close it is to the orignal pattern - Ronda's working in 21st century American whereas my terminology, such as it is, is 19th century European. Anyway, I was very pleased with the result:
Finally, I decided to add some crochet decoration to a knitted square, which I suspect is quite common practice amongst people who've never even heard of knooking, but I used the knooking hook throughout.
My original idea was for a bunch of balloons, but when I showed it to Ian, he said, "Oh, I thought they were weeds." Weeds? OK, maybe they don't look very balloon-y. I'll settle for flowers, then.
I made other squares, too, and ended up with:
You may notice that many, if not all, of these squares are not actually square. In fact, it's possible that no two are exactly the same shape. Fitting them together could be a challenge. But never fear - I had a plan!
Using funky coloured tapestry wools found under sundry embroidery, darning, and other threads (mostly inherited), I would construct small sections of fabric to fill the awkward gaps.
The putting together of this blanket involved much rearrangement of squares, ponderous looking at it and going, "Hmmm." Pebble helped.
Eventually, I got this (with apologies for the fuzzy photo):
It was all going so well, right up to the end, which is where the yellow square with weeds meets the pink one at the edge - as if you couldn't tell where the problem is! I really should have unpicked the last bit and done it again. I nearly did. The only thing that stopped me was the nagging feeling that I'd probably introduce another problem, just as bad. Instead, I put it in the washing machine - mainly to check that it is indeed machine washable, as it's pretty useless to my sister if it's not - and tried to persuade it to be a bit flatter as it dried. That didn't make a huge amount of difference, so the finished baby blanket is not entirely blanket shaped.
I'm more worried that the tapestry wool sections will be too scratchy for the baby. The rest is lovely soft fluffy baby wool (most of which is not wool at all) but those bits are actual wool and the contrast in textures is striking.
I do hope it's usable and the baby likes it, but if not, I don't suppose my sister will be too disappointed. I don't think she really expected me to finish it anyway.