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What’s the Deal With Temperature Blankets?

New year, new project! Of course, I choose one of the most polarizing crochet projects – a temperature blanket. The concept was super popular years ago but has since fallen out of favor with makers. But can we breathe new life into this dated trend? I’m sure gonna try!

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Are crochet temperature blankets dead?! Find out what happened when I asked Instagram what they thought about temperature blankets. Get ready to make your own in 2019 with a few tips and ideas to jazz up this dated craft trend. | TLYCBlog.com

What Are Temperature Blankets?

The basic idea of a temperature blanket is to crochet (or knit) a number of rows on a blanket each day for a full calendar year. The colors used each day correspond with the temperature outside. Expectedly, the more colors in your palette, the more variance you get in your overall blanket.

Credit: Lion Brand Blog

A temperature blanket project typically starts with making a temperature gauge based on the climate of your local area. Above is a temperature gauge found on the Lion Brand blog using their Vanna’s Choice yarn.

For a more successful (and enjoyable) making experience, adjust the temperature gauge to better fit the weather of your region. The easiest way to do this is to find the average high/low of your city (resource) and divide that range by the number of colors you want to use.

Traditionally, temperature blankets were made with rainbow colors. Since their inception, color palettes for these projects have evolved. I’ve seen many on Pinterest using pastels, ombre colors, and even colors based on paintings. There are no right or wrong answers when choosing the colors for your blanket.

If the goal is to let your color palette stand out, choose a simple pattern for your temperature blanket. Rows of single crochet might be traditional, but that can get a bit tiresome for a year-long project. Mix things up by picking a different stitch – perhaps the granite stitch or granny stripe. Or have even more fun by trying a completely different pattern – like corner-to-corner, chevron, or a granny square.

So, The Internet Actually Hates Temperature Blankets…

Credit: @knitalieco on Instagram

I got the inspiration to start my own temperature blanket journey for 2019 after seeing a gorgeous blanket on Instagram. I was so inspired by the colors and the feel of this one photo that I mentally committed to a year-long project. Yes, I am that impulsive.

Like any responsible maker, I took to my Instagram stories to get a feel for the current state of temperature blankets. Learn from my mistake – when you ask The Gram how they feel about something, be VERY PREPARED for the response. And I was not prepared.

In a nutshell, temperature blankets have fallen out of favor with many makers. Whether it’s the time commitment, the unappealing rainbow color palette or the lack of temperature variance in some regions, there are plenty of reasons to dislike a project like this.

My suggestion: Let’s collectively take temperature blankets to the next level. The last few years have gifted us with the insight and the yarn options to try new things with this concept. Instead of traditional bright rainbows, build a color palette around your personality. Instead of feeling obligated to crochet every single day, batch your crocheting to one or two days at the end of the month. And if you feel like you’ll fall behind and never catch up again, get an accountability partner from the very beginning to keep you motivated.

My 2019 Temperature Blanket

In my normal Toni fashion, I committed to a temperature blanket at about 2 AM and had the idea fully fleshed out by the time I finished brewing my first pot of coffee. I now present my 2019 temperature blanket plan!

The Pattern

A while back, I designed the Tunisian crochet blanket above and I never did anything with it (don’t worry – I’m planning to circle back to it). It’s been sitting on a blanket ladder in my studio for weeks. I decided to re-work the pattern (there was A LOT of math involved) and I’m using that concept for my temperature blanket.

The Yarn

I’ve always adored the color range of yarn available from Knit Picks. I knew I wanted to go with a DK weight yarn and found the perfect match with their Swish DK collection. I went for a tropical sunrise theme with some signature neutrals. From left to right: Carnation, Rouge, Conch, Clementine, Allspice, Honey, Dove Heather, Squirrel Heather, and Camel Heather.

The Organization System

One of the biggest gripes I heard about temperature blankets had to do with staying committed and anxiety around falling behind on daily crocheting. I knew I’d have a similar issue (seriously, who has time to crochet EVERY DAY??!!). Instead of committing to working on my blanket every day, I’ve set aside one hour every Sunday to catch up on the week if I fall behind. And I’ll keep track of the high temperatures of the week in my monthly planner.

Let’s Make Together!

I haven’t been so excited about a personal project in ages and I hope this post has you excited too. If you’re up for it, I invite you to start your 2019 temperature blanket with me!

  • Use the Hashtag. Follow the hashtag #crochettempblanket2019 and share your progress with us using that hashtag throughout the year.
  • Join the Facebook Group. Join the TLYC Makers Facebook group so we can keep each other accountable. TLYC Makers is full of crochet fanatics who love supporting and encouraging one another. I’ll be there sharing my progress monthly.
  • Find an Accountability Partner. There’s nothing quite like having that go-to person or group to keep you motivated on such a big project. Find a friend or sip & stitch group you can check in with regularly. Or work your temperature blanket updates into your social media or blog calendar. Whatever you need to stay motivated, plan for it NOW!

I really hope you’ll consider starting your own temperature blanket this year. Tell us about your temperature blanket experience in the comments!

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39 Comments

  • Reply Summer

    I started a “mood” blanket when I was in college (8 years ago – wow) based on the temperature blankets. I did well with crocheting a stripe every day up until March, then I got bored with it. It was my first successful time doing a ripple stitch too! During the summertime, I realized I had no motivation to do it all year long. I finished it over the summer with a bout of anxiety and today it’s one of my most used blankets. Funny how things like that work 😊 I love your inspiration picture! I can’t wait to see how yours turns out!

    January 1, 2019 at 5:44 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      What an exciting journey you’ve been on with your temperature blanket! I’m keeping my fingers crossed my motivation will last all year, lol. Thanks for the encouragement!

      January 2, 2019 at 8:02 am
  • Reply Angela

    I am in..I am up for making something for me. We live in a land of temp extremes so I am going to work in highs and overnight lows too. -15 expected tonight, Jan 1….wooo hoooo, this will be fun!

    January 1, 2019 at 8:29 pm
  • Reply Stevie Juliano

    So I am new to the concept of temperature blankets. Are these typically done with one row for each day of the year, or one row for the average of the week, I’m just thinking 52 vs 365 how to make that work for a blanket that is reasonably sized. I LOVE this idea but am trying to figure out where to start!

    January 1, 2019 at 11:27 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      Great question! These blankets are typically done with one row per day, but you can easily adapt it for the week. You can do a series of rows for the week, or maybe make a chunkier blanket that only takes 52 rows. Or even a blanket made up of 52 squares. There are so many options!

      January 2, 2019 at 8:04 am
  • Reply Delah

    Hi Toni,
    Ive decided to make a temperature scarf/wrap. I found one I like on lovecrochet.com. It’s called Sigrun’s Weather Wrap: https://www.lovecrochet.com/us/sigruns-wrap-crochet-pattern-by-agrarian-artisan. It uses Malabrigo Lace yarn. I’ve purchased and downloaded the pattern. I’ve picked my colors and ordered. Just waiting for the yarn to arrive. I’ve made a chart in Excel to record the weather temperatures. I’ll post on the #CrochetTempBlanket2019 hashtag in Instagram as I make progress. Thanks for the idea!

    January 2, 2019 at 2:06 am
    • Reply Toni L.

      That is such a gorgeous project to work on – thanks so much for sharing that here. Can’t wait to see your progress!

      January 2, 2019 at 8:05 am
  • Reply Jan White

    This will be my third try at a temperature blanket. In 2016 I planned a granny square one with lows in the middle and highs on outside of each square, one square per day. But somewhere in February I decided I didn’t like the way it looked. I really wanted that flow of cold to hot to cold colors I’d seen from other’s blankets. So in 2018 I decided on a simple moss stitch to keep the length as small as possible and I did great with half the row highs and the other half lows and I love the look. But then in March I somehow was putting the highs on the low side and vice versa so I frogged about a month’s worth. Well, that just killed my motivation plus I was making it king sized so it was huge and heavy. So this year I’m doing a c2c, 30 little squares for each day using only the highs. I’m debating doing a separate blanket with the lows but that might just be a little to ambitious. I’ll be using Stylecraft Special DK for the first time (super excited about it) with 5 degree increments. Now I just have to wait for the yarn to arrived so I can catch up. I’m excited to join your FB group and post on instagram, hopefully to keep me motivated.

    January 2, 2019 at 10:19 am
  • Reply Adrienne Watkin

    I wanted to make a couple of blankets for my granddaughters last year who had recently moved to Nebraska and decided on the temperature blanket idea. I chose to use two strands of yarn representing the low and high for each day and a back-loop only single crochet stitch which gave it texture. One grand had lived in Hawaii for the first six months of the year of the move so her blanket was in yellow, orange, gold, and tan as the temps in Hawaii don’t vary much. The other grand had lived with us in Northern California while attending college so hers had a much bigger variety of color since her six months included their time in Nebraska at the end of the year. And since I used two strands of yarn per row, it turned out to be quite heavy which they actually liked since everyone is talking about the benefits of a weighted blanket these days. It was a lot of work, but it was worth it for them to have these meaningful blankets. AND my son-in-law liked the weight so much that he wanted one too! Instead of doing another one based on temperature, I just picked out 9 different colors (2 skeins of each) that transitioned well together and using two different colors at a time until the skein ran out ended up with a nice rainbow effect.

    January 2, 2019 at 3:27 pm
    • Reply Liz D.

      I’d love to see photos! What gauge yarn did you use? I’m interested in making my own heavy blanket, but I’m new to crochet. Thx!

      January 6, 2019 at 4:18 pm
      • Reply Toni L.

        So excited to hear that you’re interested in making a temperature blanket! There are great examples under the #temperatureblanket hashtag on Instagram. I’m using Tunisian crochet for my blanket and have details coming soon 🙂

        January 7, 2019 at 7:31 am
  • Reply Bonnie Favazza

    In 2013 I began a temperature scarf. Diligently, I tracked the daily high & low, using an excel color graph. My mode of construction was Tunisian crochet and the project was just beautiful… until about 4/24/2013 when I calculated the finished part was going to be over 10 FEET LONG!!! When I pondered what in the world I was going to do with this monstrosity, I thought maybe I would donate it to the court house here in town. Well… they declined! LOL Although I continued tracking my temperatures through the entire year, the work on the project stopped and was never started again.

    January 2, 2019 at 5:11 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      Oh no! Did you ever finish it? You could always do two blankets.

      January 3, 2019 at 6:12 pm
  • Reply Janeen

    Hi Toni, just curious if you’re going to do every day 365 days?

    January 2, 2019 at 9:15 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      Great question, Janeen. It’s tough for me to commit to doing anything everyday, lol. So I’m saving my crocheting for Sundays. How about you?

      January 3, 2019 at 6:11 pm
  • Reply Carrie Ferrier

    I’m totally in for making a temperature blanket. I’m still mulling around the details in my brain, deciding on color palette/type of yarn to use. I’m considering using 100% cotton yarn. The goal is get all those details decided and order my yarn in the next couple days. Ready, set, go! 😊

    January 3, 2019 at 2:02 am
    • Reply Toni L.

      Cotton is a great choice that I hadn’t thought of! I’d love to know how your blanket turns out.

      January 3, 2019 at 6:10 pm
  • Reply Naughtily

    Ill join the party! Digging out some yarn now. We can do this!

    January 3, 2019 at 5:28 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      Yayyyyy! I can’t wait to see your color palette!

      January 3, 2019 at 6:10 pm
  • Reply Carie Mueller

    I’m in! Sure, I have a ton of WIPs, but this is too fun to miss! Still picking my colors and think I’m going with a moss stitch🤷🏻‍♀️ Wisconsin has wacky weather, so I checked monthly averages.

    January 3, 2019 at 8:26 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      Moss stitch will make a gorgeous blanket! Be sure to share with us in the Facebook group 🙂

      January 4, 2019 at 10:56 am
  • Reply Carrie Ferrier

    From my calculations by completely 3 rows so far {Jan. 1,2,3}, if I do 365 rows, my completed blanket is gonna be around 109” high!!!! I’m using a J hook which is appropriate for the yarn I’m using. That’s a huge size. Does that sound right? Is it just a given that temperature
    blankets are super oversized in height?

    January 4, 2019 at 12:28 am
    • Reply Toni L.

      Hi Carrie. That might be a bit larger than you want. You may want to adjust your stitch to something smaller (maybe single crochet rows or the granite stitch?), or even break your project into two blankets, Jan-June and July-December. That way you would have two throw-sized blankets.

      January 4, 2019 at 10:58 am
      • Reply Carrie ferrier

        Hmmm…. I think the culprit is probably the size of yarn/hook I’m using because I’m using the granite stitch {all SCs}. 😳😊 The yarn is Yarn Bee Rustic Romantic, calling for a J hook. Time to pick out smaller yarn that calls for a smaller hook.

        January 4, 2019 at 1:52 pm
  • Reply Dawn McGregor

    I did a temperature blanket for 2018, but I knit, so looks different than a crocheted one. But I love it. I am just putting a black edging around it now. If it is ok to post a picture of a knitted one I will try to post on Instagram, but know I can def. do it on FB.
    My friend and I are now each doing one for 2019, knitted again, trying to teach myself to crochet, just not sure if I can do a whole blanket yet in Crochet.

    January 5, 2019 at 12:10 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      I’d love to see your knitted temperature blanket! Please do share it on IG and FB 🙂

      January 7, 2019 at 7:28 am
  • Reply Shannon

    Hello! I just finished my 2018 temperature blanket and I absolutely love how it turned out!

    January 5, 2019 at 11:59 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      So exciting! I’d love to see it! Feel free to share it with us on IG and FB 🙂

      January 7, 2019 at 7:29 am
  • Reply Jen

    I love temperature blankets. I probably wont make one again though. My first (2017) I made it into June and then… the stores in my area stopped carrying some of my colours. I was frustrated, frogged a bunch of it to change some colours and then gave up. Lost all my motivation for it. I decided to try again last year(2018) All I have left is December. Again the store no longer carries the colour I need for 16 of the remaining days. I’m going to order online and it will be completed this time.

    But I want to give a piece of advice – The first day of every month, I mark it. I’ve laid in a piece of white yarn on my row and crocheted around it so I can remove it (a friend of mine crocheted a row of white). Inevitably Ive lost my count on where I am and this way I only had to count from the month marker and not the whole blanket. I’ve also decided to put a white border on mine when I’m complete and do kind of like a spike stitch to show the start of each month in a subtle way.

    January 6, 2019 at 12:33 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      That’s a genius idea! I too am crocheting a row of white to mark the beginning of a month. Thanks for the tip!

      January 7, 2019 at 7:30 am
  • Reply Heather

    I have completed a temperature blanket the last two years. 2017 was a monster project & great for the whole Fam to snuggle under. For this last year I decided to take it down a notch & did smaller squares for each month & then stitch together. Much more manageable. I just keep one of those little prude calendars in my yarn basket & keep track of the daily temp in that. I used a half double crochet stitch but for all the holidays used a granny stitch so they stood out in the rows. I really enjoyed these projects. Have a great time with your blanket!

    January 8, 2019 at 11:14 am
  • Reply Chris Birch

    Hi Toni,
    I have just started a temperature blanket using a navajo pattern I came across on Pinterest. I am using Stylecraft Special DK and I hope to do a row every day. At the moment I’m also working on 2 baby blankets for babies due in March so my hook is on fire!

    January 8, 2019 at 4:36 pm
  • Reply Andi

    I have kicked around this idea for a couple of years. My problem is I live in North Florida and don’t have a large temp change especially in the summer. Maybe if I do it in 5° increments. What stitch/pattern are you doing?

    January 8, 2019 at 7:44 pm
    • Reply Toni L.

      Hi Andi! Doing smaller temperature ranges should help a lot. I’m doing my project in Tunisian crochet and I’m so excited! I’m sharing more about it every week in my Facaebook group and on Instagram. You can join my Faccebook group here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/tlycmakers/

      January 24, 2019 at 7:37 pm
  • Reply Lucille

    I’m doing the temperature blanket I decided to do it with Ap.Tears and also doing white for end of month and want to put something with a sparkle in the color for the main holiday temperatures. I think it will be fun and I to will do it on Sunday a week at a time so I can see a difference. Happy Hooking 😊🧶

    January 9, 2019 at 10:22 am
  • Reply Gay

    I have been working on mine since Jan1….but have started over 5 times as I was unhappy with look. I am currently on Jan 16(today is 2-6). So I am behind haha. Looking at my work sc ripple pattern using small hook..it is going to be 8 ft long…I am afraid I will stop as it will be so heavy to work on and bulky…anyone who has finished one give me your length. Thanks for help

    February 6, 2019 at 11:39 pm
  • Reply Alice

    I’m going to do a temperature blanket, and I’m starting a month and a half behind😁 I wrote down the temps for January and the start of February so I can catch up. I found a nice granny square pattern for a Maybelle flower square that uses two colours. I’m going to do the flower as the low temp colour, and the outer border in the high temp colour.

    February 8, 2019 at 2:11 pm
  • Reply Kathy Elmers

    So fun! A new idea for me and my mind is spinning! Can you imagine doing this blanket for the first year of your baby’s life? Add journaling to that and you’ll have stories for that child forever! Or your first year married? And then if it rains or snows you could do like a bubble stitch or something. And holiday stitches!

    March 2, 2019 at 7:15 am
    • Reply Toni L.

      So many opportunities! I absolutely love those ideas!

      March 4, 2019 at 8:19 pm

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