February, 2015 Crochet Specialty of the Month: Tapestry Crochet

Welcome to my themed blog series, Crochet Specialty of the Month! Each month in 2015, I’ll feature a specialized crochet technique, stitch pattern, or project type through several posts.

Underground Crafter Crochet Specialty of the Month Tapestry February 2015

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Although I grew up seeing tapestry crochet projects (bags, especially) on the streets of New York, my first introduction to tapestry crochet patterns was through Carol Ventura.

Purrfect Kitties Go Round in Tapestry Crochet by Carol Ventura, from Leisure Arts' Afghans for All Reasons and All Seasons.
Purrfect Kitties Go Round in Tapestry Crochet, pattern by Carol Ventura, from Leisure Arts’ Afghans for All Reasons and All Seasons.

I was lucky enough to interview Dr. Ventura in 2012 as part of a series of posts I did about Crochet Master Class. If you are interested in learning more about tapestry crochet, check out her books, Tapestry Crochet, More Tapestry Crochet, and Bead & Felted Tapestry Crochet. This past fall, I also interviewed Andres Nevarez, another crochet designer who specializes in tapestry crochet.

Tempo Crochet Caps, tapestry crochet pattern by Andres Nevarez, published by Skacel. (Image (c) Skacel.)
Tempo Crochet Caps, tapestry crochet pattern by Andres Nevarez, published by Skacel. (Image (c) Skacel.)

So, what is tapestry crochet anyway?

Tapestry crochet is a method of using multiple colors in the same row by working over the unused color yarn rather than carrying or “floating” it. Because you are working over the unused color(s), you don’t have to weave in a lot of ends when you finish your project. At the same time, working over the colors can create a firmer fabric, so tapestry crochet makes great bags, bowls, and other projects that need to hold their shape.

What’s special about tapestry crochet?

Tapestry crochet uses basic crochet stitches (typically, single crochet) so it’s suitable for beginners. You can create stunning multi-color motifs using graphed/charted designs, and in many cases you don’t need to be able to read pattern abbreviations.

To see more examples, check out my growing Tapestry Crochet Pinterest board!

Follow Underground Crafter’s board Tapestry Crochet on Pinterest.

Free Tapestry Crochet Tutorials for Beginners Roundup

  • If you’d like to try tapestry crochet for the first time, I recommend starting with Carol Ventura’s website, Tapestry Crochet. Dr. Ventura has several videos and free patterns available that are perfect for tapestry crochet beginners. You can also find special tapestry crochet graph paper that will help you create your own designs!
  • Amy Solovay shared a photo tutorial on About.com. She included a free beginner checkerboard pattern.
  • Tamara Kelly has a video tutorial that explains the basics of tapestry crochet. The video demonstrates how to make a tapestry crochet project in the round or flat.
  • Kristin Omdahl has a video tutorial on the Red Heart Yarn YouTube channel that shows the difference between tapestry crochet and changing colors with floats. The patterns she works on in the tutorial are Sunset Throw and Desert Pillows, both by Marianne Forrestal .

I hope you enjoyed this post! I’ll be back later this month to share more tapestry crochet fun!

Have you tried tapestry crochet? If not, do you plan to try it now?

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