Let’s push the boundaries: four colour grannies!
You might know techniques that reduces the need for fastening off each round and weaving in the ends but we wanted to push it a little further.
Although this technique can be applied to hexagons with six separate colour changes, we’re going to focus on a four-colour block here. The difference to a normal granny square is that we turn the work in order to avoid cutting the yarn, meaning there are right side and wrong side rows on each side. We’re also going to be doing a little bit of joining as you go to make one larger block, reducing the need for fiddly work at the end even more!
To achieve the clean lines in the corner of each block, you need to make sure you’re neat and tidy when it comes to working the stitches into the corners, ensuring you hide the colour of the chain underneath where necessary. That’s why we’re starting in a magic ring, rather than a 4 ch loop as we might usually for a granny square – it means we can pull it super tight and get the cleanest lines!
Let’s have a go
Working into a magic ring and A, 3 ch, 2 tr into ring, *1 ch, change to next colour, but do not fasten off previous, rather leave it to the back of the work, 1 ch, 3 tr in ring; rep from * twice, 2 ch and sl st into beg 3 ch.
Though every other corner has 1 ch in each colour, you’ll be working over these chains, so won’t see when a corner has two ch the same.
Rnd 2: Turn your work, 1 ch, then sl st into the corner ch-sp.
3 ch, 2 tr in same ch-sp, 1 ch, 3 tr in next ch sp, ensuring you don’t work over the working end of the next colour you left to the back (now front) of your work, 1 ch
With your hook, pick up the next colour and draw up a loop to the height of your last tr st, yrh and pull through.
1 ch again. The yarn running up from the rnd below should be ignored going forward, and won’t be too noticeable when you’ve worked your next sts.
3 tr in same corner ch-sp.
Repeat this around, and for each rnd going forward, working the granny square as normal bar the colour changes in the corner ch-sps. We worked ours for 4 rnds, using a DK yarn and 3mm hook. Joining as you go. To make a larger motif of four blocks together, we used a simple join as you go technique.
Work up until the first 1 ch of the corner of the next colour you need to join in.
Pull up a loop from the rnd below as before to the height of a treble, and sl st into corner ch-sp on block you’re joining to.
1 ch, 3 tr in next ch-sp on current block, 1 ch, then sl s into next ch-sp on bloc you’re joining to. Continue as set across.
If you’re joining into more than 1 block, as you will do when joining the fourth and final block, work as set up until the first 1 ch of the corner of the next colour you need to join in. Insert hook through all 3 corner ch-sp, then pull up loop to height of treble as before, 1 ch and then 3 tr in same ch-sp on current block. This gave us the tidiest join across all 4 corners!
Continue to finish last rnd as set in join as you go style, and there you have it, your first join-as-you-go motif is finished!
Now you’re equipped with the skills, you can search out your own inspiration! Quilting patterns which use ‘quarter squares’ may be a good place to start.
Send in pictures of what you have made with this stitch on our Facebook page.