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Tips from Our Design Department #4: Beginner Afghans
By: Lion Brand
Looking for beginner projects that look spectacular? Jackie Smyth, our technical editor, has recommendations on three easy-to-make, high impact afghans that are perfect gift projects.

LBY Newsletter: What are gift ideas for beginner knitters and crocheters?
Jackie: A classic handknit or hand-crocheted gift is definitely the afghan or throw. You many not realize it, but some of our favorite afghan patterns here in the design department are actually beginner patterns. "Beginner" just refers to the different skills required to make an item, not how it ends up looking. I've picked out three really beautiful beginner afghans -- that all look more advanced than they really are -- to share with you today.

Knit Glowing Colors Afghan
Knit My Blankie
Crochet Squares Afghan
Glowing Colors Afghan
My Blankie
Squares Afghan

LBY Newsletter: Can you tell us a little about them?
Jackie: The first pattern is our Glowing Colors Afghan for kids. It's made in pieces and each piece is simply made with two different strands of yarn, worked in stockinette stitch. The two contrasting colors work up together to look like tweed, which gives it more depth and interest. The second pattern is called "My Blankie" and it's also a great gift item. The stripes are also each done in two strands of contrasting yarn, which gives it a tweedy look. Both items are simple, knit blankets perfect for kids because they're made with washable yarns -- the first with Jiffy and the second with Vanna's Choice.

LBY Newsletter: They're both really beautiful patterns. What about a beginner afghan as a gift for an adult?
Jackie: I'd like to recommend our crocheted Squares Afghan in Vanna's Choice, because it has such vibrant colors and coordinates with any decor. Like the Glowing Colors Afghan, this project is made in pieces that are later sewn together, which makes it portable and easy to make when you're on the go.

LBY Newsletter: So what are the key take-aways for our readers?
Jackie: Beginner patterns can be beautiful. Look for patterns that use multiple strands of yarn for visual interest, and look for patterns that are made in pieces for portability.

Join us again next month for more Tips from Our Design Department.

For more afghan patterns, visit our Pattern Finder.

Authored by Lion Brand

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