Each stitch is a piece of woven intention, a slip of yarn looped around another to bind your healing, nourishing thoughts into the blankets you create. They are tapestries of a happy life you conjure every time you pick up your needle and yarn.
Your first was a monstrous purple affair crocheted with only a series of what you now know are half-stitches. But you and your sisters were set on crocheting your own infinite blankets after watching the heroine in Like Water for Chocolate knit an endless blanket and ride off into the sunset with her creation blazing behind her. Yes, you needed blankets like that, and so you rustled together old crochet hooks from your mother's stash and bought spools and spools of yarn and crocheted and crocheted for years and years. Together you crocheted hopes for love and adventure and deep living into the folds of your blankets. After two or three years of busily working on your infinite blankets while watching old movies or over long conversations, you decided your masterpiece was finished. It sits folded at the foot of your bed now, twice the size of any normal blanket, and twice as full of history and love.
Your second infinite blanket came to you in graduate school. This one was your one and only attempt at knitting a blanket. It was a wish made of mustard and cranberry yarn, a series of stripes to keep you warm and of the living in the land of the cold and the gray. Like your graduate school experience, knitting was less forgiving of your mistakes as you fumbled your way through these more sophisticated stitches. There was no do-over, as with your trusty crochet hook, no re-knits to iron out the kinks. Your only option was to start over completely if you lost a stitch or to keep blazing forward.
You chose the latter. Looking back had always seemed like a waste, perfection seriously overrated. No, you preferred these flaws and holes in your blanket, the better to let bad spirits escape according to an old legend native to your beloved Southwest, learned from your mother. Three years down the road, this one was three times the length any proper blanket should be; you could almost trail it along the perimeter of your apartment twice over if you wanted, although you'd much rather snuggle into the all encompassing folds of that deliciously imperfect but utterly complete blanket.
You are working on a new one now, this one moving slower than the others. Almost four years in the making and still only a fraction of it complete. But you want to take your time with this one. A bright turquoise and crocheted (yes, you want the forgiving stitch) in a series of shells. It is longer than the others, and it will be the strongest, the most infinite. It is your New Mexico blanket, each stitch infused with your love of the desert, begun with the intention of weaving together a life you always imagined embodying: teaching, writing, living in the Land of Enchantment. Yes, this one is still in progress and may always be. You work on another infinite blanket too, though this one is not for you. It is the bold pink synonymous with your desert aesthetic, a plucky color bound together in a generous crocheted stitch, so that your niece may live and love and be in the world fearlessly, boldly, and know that she is surrounded by warmth and affection. It is for the new generation of women in your family, a new generation that, like you and your sisters did together so long ago, will crochet and conjure.
Enchantment Learning & Living is an inspirational collection of musings touching on life’s simple pleasures, everyday enchantments, and delectable recipes that will guarantee to stir the kitchen witch in you. If you enjoyed what you just read and believe that true magic is in the everyday, subscribe here.