I knew it would have to be reblocked, and that it would be a long job, so I left it for Saturday in the end. On Friday I was querying about what to do on the super-helpful knitting forum over at Angel Yarns and my friends there gave me an excellent tip about drying blankets. The tip went: thread a long string through the edges of the blanket, pull taut and leave to dry, giving a nice, crisp edge.
Now, the thought of a nice, crisp edge appealed to me. Looking at the blanket with its many stripes and cubes, with not one crisp edge amongst them, I made a slightly crazy decision: I would run strings through the entire blanket, vertically and horizontally. Wherever a stripe appeared, or the edge of a cube, a string would run through to neaten it up. I also hoped that creating a kind of grid of strings for the wet blanket to sit on would help me flatten down all the excess fabric that seemed to have appeared in the middle.
So - yesterday (Sat.), I ran strings through the blanket. It took a VERY long tme and there wasn't much of Saturday left by the time I'd finished stringing. I laid it out nice and tight on a piece of board with lines to show where the strings needed to hang. Then I used my fingers to press down all the bumpy bits and went to bed. Came back to look at it this morning to find it worked!
It is still not the flattest piece of knitting I've ever produced, but it's a miraculous improvement. Here are the pics.
Would I use this method again? I would have to think twice before doing a whole blanket. It was a laborious process putting all the threads through. But it did do the job I wanted this time, and I will definitely use it again in future for achieving sharp outside edges on things.
Me, I'm just glad it's finally a Finished Object. It looks good enough to make me happy and now I can go back to my Grandiflora shawl (*don't* want to think about what fun that will be to block!). We'll cross that bridge when we come to it.
Today's motto: the larger the surface area of a knitted object, the longer it will take to pin or string out and block. This is true even if the design of the fabric is deceptively simple.