When Ellis was born, my partner's mother and sister made us several amazing flannel receiving blankets with hand-crocheted edging. We loved them.
I've been wanting to try my hand at making my own. They seemed like they would have a high effort to satisfaction ratio. As in, I would feel really pleased without working too hard. It turns out that they are a bit more labor-intensive than I would have thought at first glance, but they are totally worth it. And of course the first time you try something, it's always a bit harder and takes more time. Which is another way of saying the first try will always suck more than the subsequent tries.
I used some flannel we had in our stash, but I had to buy new yarn because I didn't have anything in the right weight. And since I was going to JoAnn's anyway and flannel was on sale for $2.48/yard (cue the choir of angels singing for that), I figured why not pick up extra? So I have enough for three blankets.
Sidebar: Why is it that although I have a difficult time photographing detail on stitches or fabric, the few bits of dog hair show up beautifully? Perhaps I should take my camera off the "Crappy View" setting? Although in all honesty, my camera is a few years old and that might be the only setting that works anymore. And although I have been taking pictures since my sweet pink Kodak 110 in the seventh grade, I still pretty much feel like a novice.
These blankets involve a lot of steps, which is what makes them a bit tricky. I had to cut the flannel into a square, hem the edges, blanket-stitch all around, weave in the ends from that, single-crochet all the way around, and then do the fun edging. Still, I would call them a beginner project. I'm thinking of doing a tutorial because I had some trouble actually finding good instructions for making them. Perhaps because they are so easy, nobody thinks they need to explain them. Or perhaps I'm the only one who thinks they rock. But a tutorial is tough because it involves taking pictures as you go along and most of my working time is at night when the light is, you know, darkness. So I'm not making any promises on that.