Earning Your Stripes: A Color Change Tutorial

comments (2) April 7th, 2008     

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LindaPermann Linda Permann, contributor
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For single crochet, complete the single crochet color change as follows. Insert your hook through the stitch, pull up a loop.
For half double crochet: Yarn over, insert hook into the stitch, draw up a loop...
You can change colors anywhere you like—it doesnt have to be at the end of a row. (Half-double crochet is pictured.)
Double crochet color change: Yarn over, insert hook into stitch. Pull up a loop, yarn over, pull
loop through first 2 loops on hook. Yarn over with red yarn, pull
through remaining 2 loops on hook.
For single crochet, complete the single crochet color change as follows. Insert your hook through the stitch, pull up a loop.

For single crochet, complete the single crochet color change as follows. Insert your hook through the stitch, pull up a loop.

Photo: LInda Permann

Today’s post is a mini tutorial about changing colors in crochet. When I first started crocheting I would change colors starting with the stitch that I wanted to be the new color, and it never worked out quite right. Then I came to the realization that you had to change colors before you made the next stitch, since the top loop of the 2nd color stitch is really the last loop pulled through your last 1st color stitch. Tongue tied? Here are some photos to illustrate!

Single Crochet
Complete the single crochet color change as follows: Insert your hook through the stitch, pull up a loop. Then close the stitch with a loop from the new color of yarn (red, in this case). Here I am changing colors at the end of a row. As shown, I pulled the last loop through with red yarn, then made my turning chain (chain 1). I can continue down the row in my new color.

Half Double Crochet
For the half double: Yarn over, insert hook into the stitch, draw up a loop. Then draw up the red yarn loop through all stitches (one hdc made).

Continue crocheting across the row. You can change colors anywhere you like—it doesn’t necessarily have to be at the end of a row.

Double Crochet
For the double crochet color change: Yarn over, insert hook into stitch. Pull up a loop, yarn over, pull loop through first 2 loops on hook. Yarn over with red yarn, pull through remaining 2 loops on hook.

If at the end of the row, make your turning chain (ch 3) and proceed.

If your pattern happens to use stitch clusters or lace patterns, the same rules apply: just make the last loop of the last stitch in the new color of yarn. To change colors when working in the round, change on the last loop, then join the round with the new yarn as well. Here’s a quick and simple double crochet hat pattern if you’d like to try striping in the round.

It’s that easy. Now you can add stripes to any pattern—from scarves to purses, or even vests and sweaters that you want to make more colorful. Striping is a great way to use up yarn from your stash—if you vary the height of the striped row and frequency of each color, almost anything will go together. Have fun!

 

See more of my projects on my personal blog, and look for my new book, Crochet Adorned, in stores August 11, 2009.

posted in: color

Comments (2)

LindaPermann writes: Connie- I weave them in afterwards (ideally, leave a long enough tail to weave the yarn in three directions so it really stays in there). Some people work over their tails as they go (which I do too), but it's still important to go back and weave them in the opposite direction later so they don't come loose over time.
Posted: 12:21 pm on February 5th
Conniencb writes: Hi Linda,
Being a knitter and crocheter I have never been able to attach a new color correctly. I don't have a problem attaching new color, it's what to do with the tails. For instance, if I were to drop the main color and attach contrasting color, what do I do with the tail of the main color? And the tail of the new color?

I've been told that you just weave them in or do I pick up both tails and work them in as I begin the new color row?

I hope this hasn't been too confusing.

Happy crafting,
Nina
Posted: 6:49 pm on January 23rd
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