I finally finished it! My Gray Domino Star Afghan is finished a little late but done. My cousin was here a couple of weeks ago so I let her peek at the work in progress and she was really excited about it. As she’s moving here to Austin in a couple of weeks, I’m holding it here for her to use in her new home. For those that want the pattern, I used the Domino Star Stash Buster Afghan pattern by Anita Grahn which I purchased from the designer on Etsy. The pattern is designed to use up those sock and fingering yarn leftovers you have in your stash because, like me, you can’t part with them. Finished size for the afghan made as written, in sock yarn, is 46″ diameter.
This is the third article describing this project. If you’d like to read the first two here they are: Next Project – Domino Star Shades of Gray Afghan and Domino Star Shades of Gray Afghan. The second article includes the color layout graph I used.
Basic changes to the pattern
Really all that I changed was the size and quantity of yarn used and needle size. The finished diameter was also considerably larger at 74″.
Yarn used for my Domino Star Afghan
I used Cascade 220 which is 100% wool. As this is a gift and it took a lot of time (and love), I wanted to use heirloom quality yarn. This yarn is very commonly found in most local yarn stores as well as online. Craftsy.com had the best price on it though and it ended up not being much more expensive than using a decent acrylic yarn. I don’t use acrylic because it pills. I would suggest that if you want an easy care yarn that Cascade 220 is also available in a superwash for a bit more money.
Final yarn color count:
Each skein is 100 grams and 220 yards so I’ve included that information to make yarn substitution easier.
- Cream/natural: 4 skeins; 400 grams, approximately 800 yards
- Silver grey: 4 skeins; 400 grams, 880 yards
- Charcoal grey: 7 skeins; 700 grams, approximately 1500 yards – I actually bought 4 from Craftsy and ended up running up to my local yarn store, Hill Country Weavers, and bought 4 more of which I used 3. Since each domino is knitted separately an exact dye lot match wasn’t needed.
- Jet (almost black): 3 skeins; 300 grams, 660 yards – I would have needed at least another skein to add the tassels shown in the pattern. since I don’t have it, I’m skipping the tassels.
Tips for working the design
- I used size 9 needles. This project was perfect for my interchangeable needles as the Jet/black rows are knitted in the round and are very long. I ended up needing to connect to cables, in this case 60″ and 36″ for it to be long enough to work the last rounds.
- I also bought an extra set of tips and used a shorter cable to knit the larger dominos (star pieces). These could have been knit with standard straight needles but I don’t have wooden straight needles in this size and circular needles work equally well on straight edges. These pieces are knit flat and not in the round.
- I used my Knit Picks Options Interchangeable Rainbow Wood Circular Knitting Needle Set and since I didn’t have the longer cables or connectors handy, I ran up to Hill Country and bought the needed parts and extra tips there. Knitter’s Pride is compatible with Knitpicks needles. All of these can also be purchased at Amazon.com.
- You will need a set of double pointed needles in the same size to knit the center star and they can be used to knit the dominos as well. I used a circular needle on the larger two sizes of dominos as my size 9 DPNs are only 6″ in length and were too short to knit them comfortably.
- You will need a lot of yarn markers. I think 48 or so. I didn’t count them. I don’t like markers that get in my way so I used scraps of sock yarn (more stash busting and free too). I found it helpful to use a different color for the inside V between stars than the peaks of each star as you increase on the peaks and decrease in the V.
- Block the center star after the first row of dominos. It will be easier to do now as it needs to be blocked to be shaped correctly and you’ll like it better if you can see the shape. Plus blocking this huge beast is hard enough without having to hard pin the center at the end.
Blocking this baby
This afghan is pretty heavy so the idea of soaking it, rolling it in towels and wet blocking it seems like a nightmare. It’s actually a bit bigger than the top of my queen-sized bed and using the floor is out of question in my pet-friendly home so I don’t really have a large enough surface to block the entire thing at once. So I decided to steam block it in sections. I already own the Bissell Steam Shot and the cloth steamer accessory for it. This worked out really well as it also dried a lot faster than it would have if I’d wet blocked it.
To tassel or not?
Since I bought fewer skeins of Jet I didn’t have enough to make the tassels so that made the decision for me. I think it’s pretty as is and tassels don’t always wear well over time. That’s it. This baby is done. Total time about a month. I can’t wait to do it as a stash buster in multiple colors. What do you think? Are you going to tackle this project?