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Knit a log cabin retro chic Rockwell blanket: The ’70s are back, baby!

by Fiona Stevenson

Nostalgia knitting

Happy New Year! Time to start the year out right by learning a new and fun knitting technique. When I saw the photo of this Rockwell blanket, I just knew I had to knit it! I’m a kid of the seventies, and this log cabin knit blanket filled me with nostalgia for my childhood in a small country town. My mom would cover couches and beds with blankets like these which she had made herself or had found at a local craft sale. Time travel along with me this week as I teach you how to log cabin knit this nostalgic Rockwell blanket with a free pattern from Lion Brand Yarn, Hue+Me yarn, and Lantern Moon Destiny needles. We’ll knit together this super cozy blanket, color block by color block, using the log cabin knitting technique. Bonus, it’s really easy to learn! The whole project is knit flat using garter stitch (only knit stitches) throughout. First, let me explain a bit about log cabin knitting, then I’ll provide a list of materials and links, so you can get your supplies to join in the fun of bringing a little of the seventies to 2023.

A cozy beige and color block blanket is draped over the back of a chair that sits in front of a roaring fireplace.

Log cabin knitting and Hue + Me yarn make this cozy retro Rockwell Blanket.

What is log cabin knitting?

Log cabin knitting is a technique that was adapted from quilting that creates a dynamic design. It starts with a single square or rectangle which is bound off. Stitches are then picked up along one side to build out the next block. When this block is bound off, a new block begins by picking up stitches along the edge of the two blocks that were just finished. Each block has the opportunity to change the color of the yarn, the direction of the stitches, and its size which creates interesting structures in the knit design. The finished project will be square or rectangular with blocks of color flowing throughout it. Think back to building a toy plastic brick house when you were a kid, and this has a similar playful result.

Snowy winter forest with the sun setting in the background. A dark wood cabin in the right of the frame has a porch covered in snow and light reflecting off the windows.

Log cabin knitting creates projects that are built block upon block like a traditional cabin.

Log cabin knitting is quite simply a method of building a knitted project block by block using a series of bind offs and picked up stitches. Over this week you’ll learn how to knit the log cabin method with photo tutorials that will help you follow the pattern of the Rockwell blanket to completion. This technique is an easy but impactful way to add color to any project.

A close-up of a Log cabin knit blanket in process. Blocks are connected to other blocks, each block a different size or shape, to create a rectangular shape.

Log cabin knitting builds block upon block.

Materials for the Rockwell blanket

Are you itching to get started? Then let’s get the materials and go! You’ll notice I used the exact same yarn in the same colors as the pattern. The only change was adding a single ball of Desert (8 instead of 7). I ran out of Desert before finishing blocks 19 and 20, and had to substitute the color Werewolf. I recommend using a long circular needle to knit back and forth to keep the weight of the blanket even as you knit it to reduce strain on your hands and wrists.

Two rows of skeins of yarn in blue, green, black, rust, peach, and mustard yellow are placed on a table with a skein of beige yarn on top and two in the back.

Rockwell blanket colors of Hue+Me yarn.

Free Pattern: Rockwell Blanket by Lion Brand Yarn

Yarn: Hue+Me

  • 8 skeins Desert
  • 1 skein Spicy
  • 1 skein Arrowwood
  • 1 skein Bellini
  • 1 skein Werewolf
  • 1 skein Magic Hour
  • 1 skein Juniper

Needles: Lantern Moon Destiny 9mm 32” Circular

Notions: UNIQUE Knitting round tip yarn needle, scissors, a locking stitch marker

Follow along this week to log cabin knit a Rockwell Blanket.

Now you’ve got your Hue+Me yarn, Lantern Moon Destiny needles, notions, and Rockwell blanket pattern downloaded from Lion Brand Yarn; I hope you’re as excited as I am to cast on! Tomorrow we’ll start the first block then work blocks 1-6 of the Rockwell blanket and you’ll see how to pick up stitches along the edges. Then Wednesday we’ll knit blocks 7-12 followed by blocks 13 -16 on Thursday. The last post will be about the borders (blocks 17-20) and finishing. I’ll see you tomorrow for the cast-on! LBY Hue+Me, Lantern Moon Destiny needles

This is part 1 of 5 in this series

Go to part 2: How to log cabin quilt a nostalgic ‘70s style blanket – block by block


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