It may be several weeks past January 1, but if you're looking for a 2020 new year’s resolution it’s not too late to start. I recently discovered temperature blankets, and I'm totally hooked on the idea. The theory is pretty simple: Knit or crochet a set number of rows each day and correspond your yarn color to the temperature outside. Besides being great for your coordination and mental health (knitting can reduce depression, anxiety, and chronic pain), completing a row or two each day can also be a great way to learn how to knit or crochet if you’ve never tried it before. It's also a great way to use up extra skeins of yarn! The blankets can be made with a basic crochet stitch (like a slip knot stitch) all the way through, or you can follow a pattern and just mark off the rows as you finish them each day.
Determine how many colors of yarn you want to use and assign each color to a temperature range. For example, you could choose light blue for temperatures in the 20s, medium blue for temperatures in the 30s, green for temperatures in the 40s, and so on. Traditionally people use blue tones for cold weather and orange or red for warmer weather, but you can assign any colors you like. At the end of the year, you’ll have a colorful striped blanket that tells a story. Knitters and crocheters on social media are also pointing out that the colors of their finished blankets use color as a way to show the effects of climate change in their area.
While this isn’t a totally new idea, the trend has taken off in the last few years. Searches for temperature blankets have risen more than 1,000% since February 2015 according to Google, and there are more than 31,300 Instagram posts tagged #temperatureblanket.
It’s not too late to start making your own blanket: Start with today’s date, or research the daily temperatures from the past several weeks and knit a few extra rows each day until you’ve caught up. If you need inspiration, these are some of my favorite blankets from the past year.
Tori from TL Yarn Crafts crocheted a gorgeous 2019 temperature blanket using nine yarn colors in grey, blue, yellow, orange, and pink tones. Besides posting beautiful crochet inspiration on her Instagram feed, Tori is also a great resource for beginners: You can make this crochet temperature blanket with her free pattern and video tutorials on her blog.
We’re in love with the colors that Ally from Ally Makes Things chose for her 2020 temperature blanket. Since she lives in southern California, I have to say I'm a little envious of all the yellows and oranges (symbolizing warm weather) she used in the January portion of her blanket. She’s also using the free pattern from TL Yarn Crafts mentioned above.
Raimee from Knotes and Knots is a self-proclaimed crochet addict and sells her crochet blankets and patterns on Etsy. If you like the look but aren't up to making one yourself, she sells custom temperature blankets starting at $350 on Etsy (this one is 112 by 50 inches). Her finished 2019 temperature blanket is gorgeous, and we’re loving the muted yellows, pinks and blues featured in it.
One of my favorite things about the temperature blankets is that it’s so easy to incorporate as many colors as you like without having to follow an intricate pattern. This blanket features so many shades of warm and cool colors, and it’s easy to see where there was just one cold day or several days of sunshine in a row.