One-color projects are lovely, and there are many benefits to making them. However, you may be ready to break out of the one-color box, and if you are, we have some fantastic colorwork patterns, articles and instructions for you to use.
- Color Mix Afghan Stitch Potholders — Free Pattern
- Color Mix Afghan Stitch Dishcloth — Free Pattern
- Crochet lace scarf with bold shell stitches — You can crochet this design in stripes or as a solid color, but the stripes add significant visual interest to the design.
- Striped crochet Christmas pot holders — Stripes plus cross stitching make festive, colorful pot holders.
- Jumbo stripes knit scarf pattern
- Tie-neck knit top — You don’t actually have to work too hard at creating this striped pattern. The variegated yarn does the hard work for you.
Tapestry crochet is a colorwork technique in which the crafter can utilize two or more different colors of yarn, thread or fiber in the same row. It’s frequently worked using a modified version of the single crochet stitch, with the main difference being that each stitch has a strand of yarn hidden inside it.
To work this technique, you’ll have one active yarn at any given time, and one or more inactive yarns. You crochet overtop of the inactive yarn(s) to hide them when you don’t need them; then when you need one of them, you can just work a color change in the usual way, drop the active yarn, and pick up the new color you want to begin working with.
Want to see some examples of this? If so, check out the following projects and patterns:
Colorwork Patterns in Afghan Stitch
Colorwork Case Studies:
How Many Variegated Yarns Is Too Many? This mind-boggling question is answered through an examination of successful and not-so-successful projects.
Fair Isle Knitting and Stranded Colorwork
- The Big 3 Knitting Techniques Book — This book is a combination of knitting stitch dictionary, technique book and pattern book. It offers you insights on 3 of the most popular knitting techniques, two of which are colorwork techniques: slip stitch knitting and stranded colorwork. The third technique covered in the book is relief stitch patterns. This is one of the best knitting stitch dictionaries I own — because every single stitch pattern is practical, and could be used zillions of different ways.
- The Alterknit Stitch Dictionary — Stranded colorwork knitting is the exclusive focus of this fun knitting stitch dictionary. The stitch patterns are all two-color designs that make use of the stranded colorwork technique. The book also includes instructions for stranded colorwork and instructions for multiple finished projects you can make using this technique.
- Easy Fair Isle Knitting — This pattern book gives you bunches of easy Fair Isle knitting patterns by legendary knitting pattern designer, Martin Storey.
- Not Pictured: Winter Knits From Scandinavia — Get your hands on 26 amazing patterns for knitting mittens, hats, socks and a cowl. There are patterns suitable for women, men and children. This is a lovely book offering you the opportunity to “armchair travel” to Sweden in addition to knitting top-quality stranded colorwork patterns. The book offers you an unheard-of value for the money; there are way more than $64.69 worth of patterns included in this book, and the asking price is SIGNIFICANTLY less, especially when discounted.
- Field Guide to Knitted Birds — Colorwork techniques are the key to differentiating many of the cute bird patterns you’ll find in The Field Guide to Knitted Birds. This book is witty, fun and amusing — and the birds give you a fantastic means of using up yarn scraps that are hanging around in your stash.
- Martin Storey’s Afghan Knits — This book features distinctive pillow and afghan patterns knitted in a variety of different techniques — some of which are accomplished through stranded colorwork, some of which are other types of colorwork techniques, and some of which don’t incorporate colorwork at all.
- Arne & Carlos: Favorite Designs — This book contains a broad variety of different knitting and crochet patterns, many of which are colorwork patterns (although not all of them are). The lively, colorful sweater and scarf designs pictured on the front cover are an example of the types of projects you’ll find in this book.
- Jorid Linvik’s Big Book of Knitted Socks— Make spectacular knitted socks with so much personality that people will be staring at your feet or striking up conversations about your socks when you wear them. Design themes include animals, traditional Scandinavian motifs and numerous others.
- Jorid Linvik’s Big Book of Knitted Mittens— Knit mittens that will keep your hands warm and keep you looking remarkable, too. The patterns all have loads of personality and interesting design themes — animals, fish, birds and many others.
- Knit Yourself In — Make imaginative, unique, colorful and one-of-a-kind sweaters by manipulating pictorial design panels that suit your unique sense of style; choose from florals, animal designs and numerous other interesting design themes.
Crochet Pattern Books That Teach You Colorwork Techniques
- Crochetterie — This book is a thorough introduction to crochet, covering many techniques including colorwork techniques and others. This book is particularly remarkable for offering multiple appealing tapestry crochet patterns. This is one of the best resources I know of for finding really cool tapestry crochet tutorials and patterns.
- Fair Isle Tunisian Crochet— Learn how to incorporate interesting textile patterns into your fabrics crocheted using the Tunisian Knit Stitch. There is no other book that I know of exploring this technique in such depth.
- Fair Isle to Crochet — This short booklet gives you a variety of family-friendly afghan patterns for exploring the tapestry crochet technique.
Knitting and Crochet Pattern Books Featuring Easy Colorwork With Variegated Yarns
It’s possible to enjoy colorful knitting and crochet projects without having to do any color changes. The secret? Variegated yarns. With some sorts of variegated yarns, the yarn colors change on their own, without you having to do anything to make that happen. Check out the following pattern books to find knitting and crochet projects that are intended to work well with variegated yarns:
- Self-Striping Projects to Crochet by Bonnie Barker
- Ice Cream Baby Afghans: Spectacular Baby Blanket Knitting Patterns Made Using Variegated Yarns
This page was last updated on 2/8/2019.