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Comfy & Cozy Heirlooms!

In the second episode of Knit and Crochet Now! there are gorgeous afghans for you to knit or crochet, just in time to get ready for the holidays. Either one of these cozy throws would make a welcome gift; although, if I'm honest, if I did that much work I'd be hard-pressed to give it away. I would want one of these lovely throws for myself!

The Autumn Blaze Afghan is constructed of panels of leaves and berries. And although it's named for fall, the rich red hue and the natural motifs have a definite holiday feel. Each panel is constructed individually and then seamed together.

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The free pattern for the Autumn Blaze Afghan is available on the Knit and Crochet Now! website. Gorgeous red King Cole Comfort Aran yarn is held double to make a super-cozy throw. Plus, holding two strands together makes the afghan a quicker knit!

Knitting guru Kristen Mangus takes us through knitting each panel, demonstrating the specialty stitches to make those beautiful berries and leaves. Then she helps us learn to seam together the strips to make up the finished blanket. Doing the afghan in sections keeps you from having way too many stitches on the needles to handle, and it makes it easier on your hands!

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The breathtaking Irish Lace Afghan is just the thing to turn me into a very selfish crocheter. If I worked up this beauty, I'm pretty sure I couldn't bear to give it away! Each of the beautiful squares in this throw is only three rounds of crocheting, so it's way easier than it looks. It's perfect for the beginner crocheter who wants to show off what crochet can be!

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The floral squares in the afghan are worked one square at a time, and then joined into long panels for the afghan. Crochet maven Ellen Gormley walks us through all the steps needed to complete this throw that will soon become a family heirloom. The joined panels are finished with a lovely fringe.

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My favorite tip for working fringe: If you want to make sure to use up as much of your available yarn as possible, cut the fringe first! That way all the fringe is cut and set aside, and if you want to make your project larger or longer, you know that you have exactly enough to finish it off in style.

The free crochet pattern for the Irish Lace Afghan is available on the Knit and Crochet Now! website. The lovely machine-washable Caron One Pound worsted-weight yarn used for this project is soft and durable, and is available in a wide variety of beautiful colors.

The Knit and Crochet Now! website is up and running, and all of the season eight patterns are available as free downloads. Keep watching this fall for handy tips and tricks to help you work up all these amazing projects. If the show isn't viewable on PBS in your area, the DVDs are available now as well! There is a wonderful range of projects for knit and crochet at any skill level!