Winter Colorwork in Love of Crochet

As I look outside, the sky is a flat grey. Soon the ground will be covered in white and the beautiful burgundy and yellow leaves will have all fallen from the trees. The pale blues, browns, and white of winter are gorgeous, but sometimes I crave bright, saturated hues.

In Love of Crochet Winter 2016 I found just the cure to battle my winter blues. The Tulip Gauntlets found an immediate place in my queue, and I really want to play with the crochet fair isle of the Blooma Cowl. Not only are there plenty of colorful patterns, but project editor Susanna Tobias has also included some great color changing methods to make your color changes crisp.

Here is Susanna to share three crochet color change methods.

Color Changes

Tulip Gauntlets from Love of Crochet Winter 2016

Color adds so much personality to crochet projects—in fact, it may be what got you hooked on this craft in the first place. (Yes, I deliberately punned.)

Often patterns explain exactly where and how to change colors. But if you want to color outside the lines with your own modifications, this brief tutorial provides some essential tips.

First, where should you change colors? Unless you’re working in a specific colorwork pattern, it’s best to change colors at the end of the preceding row or at the beginning of the row that uses the new color.

Methods to Consider

Now for the methods. One way: complete the last stitch of the row with the new color. For instance, if you’re working a double crochet, work until there are two loops remaining on your hook. Yarn over with the new color and draw through the last two loops on your hook to complete the color change. Then continue the pattern with your new color. You can practice this technique with the Plaid Scarf.

Another method involves fastening off at the end of the last row of the old color, then joining the next color using a stitch. If you join with a slip stitch, chain up to the height of the stitches in this new row before continuing with the project row or round. The Tulip Gauntlets use this procedure to incorporate new colors.

If you join with another stitch (single crochet, double crochet, etc.) rather than a slip stitch, there’s no need to chain up; simply make a slipknot on the hook and work the indicated stitch as normal. This technique is known as the Standing Stitch.

It creates rather less bulk than the slip-stitch-join method because it involves the actual stitch for the new row in the new color. This method also creates a more seamless look.

To try this technique right now, check out Hexagon B of Marly Bird’s Baby Hugs Charity Blanket or the Curlicue Poncho.

Whether you’re trying one of the projects listed or working on something all your own, the next time you’re making an unscheduled color change, try one of these methods. No matter which one you use, the pop of color will liven up your project.

— Susanna Tobias

Best wishes,

P.S. Share your best color changing tip in the comments.