Skip to content

Dear Ann,

I bet it’s just eating you alive, not knowing the answer to the burning question: What Is Kay’s Temperature Blanket This Year?

For a project as long-term as a this—a whole year’s worth of knitting, and weather—a knitter wants to make the right choice.  I’ve been blown this way and that in my decision making process.

At the start of my quest, all I knew was that I wanted to use the same yarn (my great love Felted Tweed) and the same shade card that I used for my 2022 blanket. Winter, spring, summer, or fall, I never tired of this palette of juicies and blahs.

I also knew that I wanted a modular project this year. The Garter Stripe Throw I made last year is magnificently seamless, but by late spring it was too large a project to stuff into a go-bag and take with me. And stuffing things into go-bags is an important part of my process, I’ve learned. Snacky, bite-sized knitting is knitting that gets done, in the happiest way.

For all of January, I waited for an idea to fall into my lap. Then, last week, Amy @ms._ellaneous came roaring onto my Instagram feed with this banger: The POP Blanket by Tin Can Knits.

In the original, aran-weight version of the POP Blanket, the individual circle/squares are 6.25 inches square—which would make for a supersized blanket of 361 squares (close enough to 365 that we’re going to allow it), almost 120 inches long on each side. Amy brilliantly re-gauged the POP Blanket to a 3.5-inch square, which will yield a blanket that is about 66 inches square.

Amy used a consistent cream background for her circles, which really does POP—pun intended! But what’s exciting to me about this circle-in-a-square format is the ability to record both the high and low temperature for each day. I’d use the low temperature for the background and the high temperature for the circle.

My first Pop square in Felted Tweed. The circle is Vaseline Green and the background is Fjord.

I’m currently searching my soul, wondering if I am made of strong enough stuff to work 4 short-row corners on each and every one of these little squares. Amy is doing it with ease, and reports that each one is taking her about 45 minutes to make. She also reports that she has set up a little wet-blocking station near the sink so that she can block her daily square overnight and get it attached immediately. This shows a dedication to best practices that I deeply respect.

But we have to consider the possibility (likelihood! certainty!) that Amy is a whole lot better at short rows, and best practices, than I.

Thinking all this over, I turned to a little pile of abandoned joy: a set of log cabin squares I made in January of 2022. Several knitters made glorious blankets last year using these wee squares. The formula is so familiar and natural to me: each center is 9 stitches and 9 garter ridges, and each framing strip is 3 garter ridges.  Beep-bop-boop and it’s a square, and they’re easy to whip-stitch together as you go.

Also at play here: the Sunk Cost Fallacy (which has got to be my favorite fallacy): I’ve already got a whole month’s worth of little log cabins. It would be a shame not to use them!

As Robert Frost famously did not say: Two blanket squares diverged in a wood, and sorry i could not travel both and be one traveller, long I stood.

What would you do, Ann Shayne? I’ll be sitting here knitting short-row corners and interrogating my emotions while I wait.




Are you in? Let’s knit a temperature blanket in 2023!

Check out the temperature project topic in the MDK Lounge, where there is always a wild and wooly (and weather-y) discussion happening.

Share your temperature blankets in the Lounge, and also on Instagram using the hashtag #mdktemperatureblanket, which is a wonderful source of inspiration for all temperature blanketeers.


  • Oh, boy, what a dilemma. I know you didn’t ask me, but my two cents is: if it were me knitting this temp blanket, I would go with the log cabins and make something else(i.e., something smaller) out of those beautiful circle-squares, since I know I would never finish a whole blanket of them, no matter how beautiful. But if I were Kay, who knits like lightening compared to me, I would go for the circle-squares and make them into something else if I couldn’t get a whole blanket done. One of the many great things about squares is they can always be made into something else. (Maybe not worth two cents, even.)

    Hope everyone in NYC is ok with the snow; here in Maine it’s just getting going.

    • Oops, just learned NYC is only getting rain showers. Probably for the best in the Big City. But here most people are ok with some (or even a lot of) snow, after such a warm winter. Good for the gardens, wildlife, tourism, kids and those who depend on plowing for extra income. Also good for a couple of quiet days of knitting!

  • Keep knitting those short row corners. At the end of the year you will have a gorgeous blanket.

    • I don’t know what this says about me (and I’m pretty sure I don’t want to know), but when I just glance at those circles in the squares, all I see is boobs.

  • That many short-rows give me the heebie-jeebies so I would go with something square, too. So whip-stitching is strong enough to secure a blanket? I have been avoiding the modular ones because of the joining issue. Hmmm….Chloe

    • Same!

  • More power to you doing another temperature blanket, whichever one you decide! 2022 was my first temperature blanket, and was much enjoyed. However I cannot bring myself to do another this year. Instead I am doing a temperature scarf!

  • I ordered my temperature blanket starter pack yesterday. A blanket for my best friend who is celebrating a special birthday this year. I think the log cabin squares are more your thing. Good luck with your decision!

  • Knitter, know thyself. A temperature blanket is a commitment, a marathon. Challenge knitting (short rows, process commitment) is great for a sprint, but for a marathon I would want comfort knitting. The log cabin squares have all the elements of snackable, yummy, comfort knitting. Quick, familiar, easy to seam. But if you look at it as a year of conquering technique, choose the POP circles. Happy Knitting!

  • I love both the POP and the LC’s together. Especially your colors! Couldn’t you make a log cabin the same size as the POP Circle and use them together in the blanket?

    • Love this idea!

      • I too had this thought, you could play to your strengths Kay: log cabins on weekdays and POP circles for the weekends. Just sayin…

        • I had the same thought! Maybe choose your favorite day of the month, or a special number to you- and make that the circle. And the rest log cabins. Or make it totally random. Make POPs when you want to or have more time, and the rest squares. The randomness of it would be special. It’d be wonderful.

  • Make it easy on yourself. You know many other projects will capture your fancy this year and you will need some time for them — and sleep — too.

  • As I look at the pictures of those beautiful knit squares, my first thought is that crochet squares would be beautiful too and so much quicker. And then I realize I may be missing the whole point, an excuse to knit every day. But, honestly, I know I will probably knit every day regardless.

  • Team short rows here! Those circle squares look beautiful. And it seems a pain now, but by April or May you’ll be cranking them out without thinking. I once knit a shawl with entire rows of purl through the back loop, which always seems the most difficult, fiddly stitch. But I wanted the result so I gritted my teeth and did it, and now back loop purls are no harder than a knit stitch. #practicemakesspeedy

  • I’ll just say, 360 log cabin squares last year was a lesson in discipline last year. You couldn’t get too far behind but it was a delight to work on this almost daily. This year I’m trying out NellKnits experimental temperature sweater.

  • You know damn well the log cabins are going to win. It’s always the log cabins for you . . .

  • Quite a dilemma Kay! I mean, the familiar rustic charm of the beloved mini log cabin squares vs the sleek sophistication of the POP Blanket squares. Too bad you can’t mix up the squares and the circles in one blanket, like XOXO hugs and kisses, especially since you like log cabins, but you also like polka dots. Why not plan a log cabin for 2023 (since you already have some made), then plan a POP Blanket for 2024? To paraphrase an Audrey Hepburn quote: “to plan a temperature blanket is to believe in tomorrow”.

    • I’ve been thinking about that combo too. Pop for special days – birthdays, etc.

      • You gave me an idea — a pop for special birthdays, red/white/blue for July 4, red and green for Xmas, pastel for Easter….

  • I love your idea of using both the high and low temperatures! I’m tempted each year when I see people starting their temperature blankets but the reality is that I live in Florida and except for a blip here and there, we don’t have much range. We do, however, have some interesting dips between high and low and I think that would be make a fun little blanket. For next year. Must finish the embarrassment of WIPS first.

  • I love the circles! On my Pop blanket I subbed in German short rows (making the DS on the stitch that should have been wrapped. Easy peasy.

  • I am sooo enamored of the circles that I would (approaching WILL) have to go with them. And with German Short Rows, they ain’t nothing but a thing. Easy peasy. Your unending love affair with log cabin likely demands at least some of those — you could do log cabin most days and circles for special occasions, vacations, birthdays, or weekends?!?

    • I love this idea! I’ve been debating doing a temperature blanket, maybe that will be my version. But I’m wondering if I could do the circles in crochet… I think I need to stash dive and swatch.

    • I actually love this idea. The blanket then becomes not only a review of the weather but also a review of your life. A lot going on = log cabins, more time to focus =pop circles.
      Beautiful either way. But I the circles.

  • For me, as important a factor as time is “can I knit this in the company of others”…or do I have to shoo family and friends away while I knit my daily squares, every day, 365 days. Taking on a long term project that demands focus and that much solitude isn’t worth it for me. —-Nevertheless the circles are so cute and would bring a “pop” of joy to knitter and others vicariously enjoying the knitting.

    • I love Dawn’s idea of using the POPs for special days. Gives you the easy log cabin and the challenge of mastering something more challenging.

  • For this, go with what your know, have the time for, and love to do!

  • I LOVE THIS. And also Amy’s!

  • Yes!!!! I’ve been in love with your little squares since their debut last year and hoped that you would return to them this year! I stalled a bit when I got to the stage you mention with my felted tweed stripe blanket – so bulky UGH! But with the cooler weather, I’ve picked it up again and giving myself permission to forget that missed deadline – only 3 months to finish up. This year I had thought to do another using my birth year and would love to do the squares!!!! Like you, I really want to incorporate the lows into this one .
    I’ll do it if you’ll do it!!! PS – really love that Pop Sqare too though….‍♀️

    • Not sure where that symbol came from – freaky!

  • Log cabins, hands down!

  • I vote for the log cabin squares. First, I think their texture is much more interesting than that of the circles. And second, when they are all set together, the squares within squares within squares “compound” (?) each other. And I love the way the little squares pop out of their frames. So, big vote for log cabins!

  • I love those circles. And I’m not a big fan of log cabins.
    But, 45 min per circle square means getting behind on certain busy days and the panic of catching up while eyeing other projects your knitting.
    45 min could easily turn into hours a night just catching up. And the fun becomes chore.
    So, I’d go with the log cabins. But that Pop design is incredible.

  • Team Log Cabin here. Several years ago I started the Pop Blanket. Absolutely love the look of it. After 2 squares I came to the conclusion that I didn’t enjoy knitting it. Way too much knitting in a blanket to not enjoy the process.

  • I regret to say that I started a POP blanket but, as happens with not a few knitters, I could not get a square to lie flat. As I did not want a nippletacular blanket, I switched to this crochet pattern for the same circle-in-square effect:
    A granny square works better in crochet than it does in knitting.
    Go with the log cabin.

    • Same concern about the squares resisting staying flat. Sure do like the look of that yarn in stockinette stitch, though. Perhaps use intarsia to make the circle-in-square blocks and add log-cabin frames around each block for subtle structure and simplicity of seaming?

      • I love intarsia but I go weak in the knees thinking about all the ends, and I love the visual effect of the circles being worked in the round, with the stitches radiating instead of going back and forth.

        There are pros and cons to everything, but my trial square blocked nice and flat and nipple-free, and I see from Amy’s blanket, which she is joining (with crochet) as she goes, that the grid formed by the joining seams also makes for a smooth, flat surface.

        To those mentioning crochet circles, I agree that circles definitely want to be crocheted, if they have a choice in the matter! I am not far enough along in my halting crochet journey to go that route.

  • What did Amy do to re-gauge the squares? Those pop circles are pretty cute!

  • Here’s a radical idea – how about crochet? I’ve seen some nice ones, including CrochetObjet’s. Would definitely require some resizing, though.

  • Thosecare both such fun ideas. Can’t wait to see what you do.

    I’ve started a 22-23 scarf based on Tarabl13’s blanket, which shows the highs and lows and also the length of the day as it changes. Hers is enormous and fabulous. But bigger than I’d ever want to do. Mine is in knitpicks palette, 20″ wide by about 70″ long, starting from the September equinox last year. This is such a satisfying nerdy project

    • Thank you for the link! Vicki Knitorious is doing an amazing version of the same concept. Her Instagram photos are so inspiring. When I get up the gumption to keep track of daylight, I’ll definitely incorporate this idea in a future blanket.

  • Chugging along on my temperature scarf. I’m glad to know there are true warriors out there!

  • I started my temperature blanket in Jan., 2023. So far so good. I’m knitting in k2,P2 rib. We’ve had a lot of 40s, and 50s temperature in Md. so far. Today the weather is predicted to go to 80 degrees. That will add an interesting row of a different color not used yet.
    I agree that the log cabin squares are probably faster, but I do love the circle squares.

    • Fellow Marylander here! Considering we did hit 80 today, and Saturday is a chance of snow flurries, I’m really thinking this might be the year I finally do a temperature blanket. We’ve sure had plenty of variations in temps already!

  • Kay might have a long wait for Ann’s opinion. Foodlady took a week off, and Ann is trying to fill in for her. Kermt says the first attempts at Lobster Thermidor were slightly charred….

  • You are very brave to start another temperature blanket, Kay. I’d say go with the log cabins. They have a very cool graphic vibe that doesn’t get diluted by different color borders. The pop circles seem to work best with a unifying single color. Save the pop circles for another day!

  • I started a Pop Blanket, and never completed the first square. My corners were ugly messy. I switched hexagons – the pattern had you pick up however many sides were available on neighboring hexagons, and work towards the center of each one. I have NO idea where that mostly finished WIP is. I used wool yarn, and the plan was to lightly felt it when it was done. I should really find and finish that, shouldn’t I?

  • For me, the dilemma is, will I ever undertake a temperature blanket???

  • I’ve started 2 temperature blankets in the last few years and didn’t finish either of them. A year long project is a big commitment and I get distracted by new shiny projects during the year. I have found a temperature blanket design I think I could complete. It’s one square for each month with that square having a row for each day. Maybe next year. This year I’m busy knitting for a new grand baby due in July

    • Now there’s a concept I could go for! I’ll have to remember the one square per month theme. Only thing, you’d have to add rows for shorter months to make the monthly squares equal.

  • Gorgeous, Kay!

  • I had to show this to my Hubby, i’ve been doing this with a lot of my older yarns. Ones I’m no longer fond of or were donated to me by fam & friends.. I’m doing a shorter version, part knit part crochet. Making senior lap blankets for a senior center near me… Hope they are liked… if anyone wants a pic of one let me know..

    • Hi Lauren, I work with seniors, who are often very grateful to be remembered. Even better if accompanied by a short visit when possible. I would would love to see a picture of the lap blankets you have made, such a kind and caring project.

  • Love the squares. But but but how can you use last year’s for this year’s temp blanket? Like anyone is going to check your accuracy . . . Aw, heck, throw in a temp from July or maybe you went on vacation somewhere warm but it was freezing in NYC in January. I think I might start a temp blanket that reflected where I’d RATHER be on any given day. Yeah.

    • This needs a “like” button. Let’s all go on a temperature blanket vacation!

  • Definitely the log cabin! Knitting one like that is my dream for when I retire which will also be the year I turn 70. Log cabin all the way.

  • Well, this is beautiful!!! I’m going to use my leftover 2022 Temperature Blanket yarn and make some baby blankets!! Thank you for this!!! I think you should go for it and make your 2023 temperature blanket as you envision it in your post. Whatever you decide will be fun!!!

  • You could make the log cabins match the size of the circles, and then use circles for bright, sunny days, and squares for cloudy or rainy days… I’d love to see how that would look, but maybe it would become too busy. Using circles for ‘special’ days as others have suggested might be a better way to go, where they would ‘pop’ out just here and there.

    I love the tenacity it takes to do two years in a row. I think a temperature scarf will be more my speed.

  • I finished a temperature blanket using the RowanTweed and garter stitch. I am very intrigued by the pop circle but would have no idea have to resize the pattern to the smaller size…is Amy’s tweak available anywhere? If not, I may go to the log cabin….also fun!

  • Oh, this is a toughie! I think the pop squares are increasingly fun to make! What if you did some combination of log cabins and pop squares? Maybe a border of pop squares? That might involve some math to determine how many you would need but it would be beautiful!

  • I think I am going to crochet a temperature snake

  • Oh I just had an idea. We live in New Orleans and our daughter is in college in a cold climate. The dot for her and the outer our temp! Now I’m motivated but honestly will crochet these pops up way faster than knitting them.

    • Forgot to say I love the scarf idea as well!

  • This reminded me of my stash of “pot cloths”. Before I purchased the MDK Log Cabin booklet I didn’t even know what a pot cloth was. They became my go-to knit on long boring journeys. By Christmas I dis overd I’d made 40.
    Just recently my 4-year old granddaughter helped me arrange them into a pattern. With the addition of some 3- needle bind off and an icord border, here is the resulting blanket:
    I think this makes me a year late on last year’s challenge.

  • Sigh. Living in South Florida would provide a rather monochromatic blanket (unless changing colors for, say, 3 or 4 degree increments?).

  • You’ve inspired me to make my first temperature blanket! I’m using your colorway, adjusting the temps a bit for the SF Bay Area. I’m pretty sure I’ll be going squares with daily low and high temps, but will probably crochet the squares together, rather than whip stitch.

    • By squares I mean log cabin squares, not the pop squares.

  • I adore the pop blanket but I know I don’t have the patience to make one. Knitting is supposed to be fun so if you’re doing it for 365 days do what’s fun for you!

  • I made a Pop blanket a few years ago. I was worried about the short rows, too, but once I got going, it started to flow.

  • If would go for the pop blanket since circles add joy to our lives and everybody needs more joy! (This is not just my own musings on circles and joy. Ingrid Fetell Lee talks about this in her book Joyful: The Surpising Power of Ordinary Things to Create Extraordinary Happiness.)

    • The combo idea is also great if you can get the sizes to match without making yourself crazy…

  • Great artists

  • I was slogging through my first temperature blanket in garter stripes and I gave up. I saw your post, immediately got the Pop pattern and started my squares! Brilliant idea. But I am just going to make 52 larger pieces- one with the high and low for each week of the year. Thanks! PS I am using German short rows.

My Cart0
There are no products in the cart!
Continue shopping