Broomstick Lace: Brooms Aren’t Just for Sweeping
Broomstick lace, also known as jiffy lace or the peacock stitch, creates a lacy fabric that can be used for just about anything. In the case of the Oakley Top from Interweave Crochet Spring 2018, Natasha Robarge used broomstick lace to design a lacy tee that’s perfect for spring and summer. Even if you’re new to this technique, you’ll be able to create a garment that’s perfect for layering any time of the year (and if you’re not yet familiar with Natasha’s fabulous design prowess, here’s a link to many of her designs in the IW store!).
If you’re a broomstick lace beginner, it may seem a little intimidating, but you’ll be able to pick it up in no time! Before starting the top, I recommend working a swatch to both make sure you understand the technique and ensure you like working it before creating a whole garment with it. Let’s walk through the steps together so you can get the hang of this method.
Step 1: Work the foundation chain (ch 23) and set-up row as stated in the Stitch Guide (22 sc). Note that I’m using a slightly larger yarn, hook, and needle than called for to make everything easier to see.
Step 2: Remove the last loop from the hook and place the loop on the needle. (All of the loops you place on the needle should slide easily over the wider part of the needle.) *Skip the first stitch, working through the front loops only (flo), insert the needle in the next stitch, yarn over the needle and pull loop through. This step may be a little trying because the yarn wants to slip off the needle, but stick with it. Draw this loop up to the height of the previous loop; repeat from * across until you have the correct number of loops on your needle (22), turn.
Step 3: Now comes the tricky part: working the loops off the needle without allowing them to shrink. Making sure all your loops are even may take a few tries—I definitely didn’t get it on the first attempt! To work your loops off the needle, work as follows:
Place needle in left/non-primary hand, hold hook in right/primary hand, bring yarn to top of needle just above the first loop (prevents first loop from shrinking), insert hook in first loop at the top, yarn over, pull up loop, chain 1, take large loop off needle.
*Insert hook in next loop, yarn over, pull up loop, take large loop off needle, yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook (single crochet made).
Repeat from * across, making sure all loops remain about equal height.
Step 4: Work Row 3: Chain 1, single crochet across, single crochet in beginning chain, drop loop from hook and place loop on needle, turn.
Step 5: Repeat Steps 2–4.
See? Broomstick lace isn’t as hard as you thought it was going to be. If you’d like a little more visual instruction, Natasha has created a video that demonstrates how to work Step 3. It shows you exactly where to put your hook, how to work the loops off, etc. And after you’ve mastered the stitch, you can join her CAL for the Oakley Top.
So, what do you think? Have we convinced you to try broomstick lace? Let us know in the comments! We can’t wait to hear from you!