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Knitting + Crochet = Love

Nov 15, 2010

Lacy Cable Scarf
Lacy Cable Scarf     
A couple of weeks ago I had the chance to spend some time with Marcy Smith, editor of Interweave Crochet. She's a lot of fun, and we had a good time talking about our yarny crafts.

One of the topics that always comes up when Marcy and I talk is how crocheters don't knit and knitters don't crochet. We can't figure it out, because the two crafts really love each other!

Marcy and I came into our crafts the same way, but from opposite directions. Marcy started with crochet and began knitting when she was pregnant with her second child and she was overcome with the need to knit a baby sweater. I started with knitting and, as I was exposed to crochet in knit shops and from my crocheting friends, I knew I had to learn some basics.

     Snow Queen Hat
Snow Queen Hat
Snowflake Sweater
Snowflake Sweater

I went beyond the basics as I discovered how easy and fun crochet is, and how great it is for afghans, baby blankets, and for finishing my knitting (I especially love reverse single crochet; it creates a picot look around necklines, cuffs, etc.). There are also some beautiful crocheted garment patterns out there, too. I've yet to tackle one, but I have a couple in the queue.

One thing that surprised me was how I fell in love with the classic crochet motif, the granny square—I've made giant granny squares for baby blankets and small grannies that I've seamed together to make scarves and shawls.

The fall issue of Interweave Crochet includes a special knit + crochet section and Marcy just happened to be working up one of the designs, the beautiful Lacy Cables Scarf (photo at left).

There are really some lovely patterns in the issue that organically combine knitting and crochet, taking the two crafts and merging them into one seamless design.

The Snow Queen Hat by Anastasia Popova is really pretty; smooth stockinette pairs wonderfully with the swirl motifs. I love the cream tone-on-tone, too.

I'm a big fan of snowflake designs—I use some version of them almost every year on my holiday cards—so Mari Lynn Patrick's Snowflake Sweater is right up my alley. I love the large, crocheted snowflake motif, and the knitted part of this sweater is really interesting. Mari Lynn has placed decrease sections strategically around the snowflake insert so the points are cleverly surrounded by knitting. It's really a showstopper.

And then there's the Lacy Cable Scarf by Annette Petavy that Marcy was making. I just love this! It combines two classic looks, cables and lace, and it's so classy. I can picture myself wearing this a lot. Marcy made hers two-toned, with a green cable panel and blue lace borders. It's really pretty.

I would make and wear any of these pieces, but I think my favorite project in this issue just might be a non-garment design: Annie Modesitt's Coco Holly Topsy-Turvy Doll. Annie is always so creative, and here she combines her creativity with a good dose of whimsy. Coco is a knitted "socialite" doll (she has pearls in her hair), and when you flip her over, Holly, Coco's crocheted boho buddy appears. In this project, knitting and crochet are—quite literally—friends!

Coco Holly Topsy-Turvy Doll     Coco Holly Topsy-Turvy Doll
Coco Holly
How cute are these little ladies? I have a 7-year-old on my gift list, and I think this might just be the perfect thing for her.

So how about it, knitters? Let's make like Coco and be friends with crochet! Check out Interweave Crochet for these and lots more patterns, instruction, and inspiration.


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Vonniea wrote
on Nov 20, 2010 1:52 PM

That is odd that you say crocheters don't knit and knitters don't crochet.  Most of the people I know do both.  I learned to knit when I was about 10 years old and how to crochet when I was 11.  I was taught to embroider before that and later, my grandmother taught me how to tat.  I also sew, do beading and plastic canvas needlepoint.  I love it all!!!  Why limit ourselves to just one craft when ther are so many wonderful things to make???  As joymoody wrote, each one is relaxing and satisfying.  If I see something I like I make it for myself, or someone I love.  (Usually the latter, I don't keep much for myself)  Again, why limit what I can make?  

If you only create in one craft, expand your horizons!!!!!!!

kardlady wrote
on Nov 20, 2010 9:19 AM

How do I get the pattern for the lacy cable scarf? Nancy (I just subscribed to the magazine - will it be in there?)

Marny wrote
on Nov 15, 2010 8:00 PM

Interesting that you're sharing that knitters don't crochet/crocheters don't knit - don't meld -- paraphrased, of course.

However, please know that *I* am always trying to do both on the same item ... and have done Swedish Weaving along with CCS on the same items, too.

It's fun and all that.

Janice@49 wrote
on Nov 15, 2010 3:27 PM

I taught myself to knit and crochet.  My mother is a knitter and a crocheter, so I grew up believing  anyone who crocheted, knitted as well.  It blows my mind to learn that there are two separate camps.

amandawayne4 wrote
on Nov 15, 2010 3:10 PM

I love knitting AND crocheting, they are not mutually exclusive arts, they relate to each other in so many ways!  I love the Coco and Holly dolls, I think I'm going to have to make some for my nieces! :)

Joyce@70 wrote
on Nov 15, 2010 1:33 PM

I have been all around the block and back again when it comes to knitting and crocheting.  My mother tried to teach me to knit as a young child (7 or 8 years old), however since she was a perfectionist I quickly learned to hate to knit.  Later I had someone teach me to hand embroider, cross stitch, and some basic crochet which I loved (probably because my mother did not know how and therefore no criticism).   I then had a friend that got me quilting which has been a ton of fun because it allowed me to use my own creativity in combining fabrics and altering quilting patters, etc.  In the past 2 to 3 years I started back into crocheting as I saw a simple but gorgeous afghan (a quilt in yarn) that I just had to make.  After making more afghans than I can count, I started looking at crocheting sweaters, however I was not able to make them to fit at all, which got me looking at knitted patterns.  After completing a very simple knitted sweater for my 8 year old daughter, I have gotten up the nerve to knit a couple of sweaters for myself and they actually don't fit too bad.

I love the idea of trully mixing knitting and crocheting as these two crafts are typycally kept very far apart except for crocheting a simple edge on a knitted item.  I absolutely love the Lacy Cable Scarf.  It is such a beautiful yet simple way of combining the crafts and in such a balanced way.  I hope more patterns start combining knitting and crocheting as I think we will have much more beautiful patterns to select from.  Thank you Katheleen for sharing...I really enjoy reading your daily blogs.

kaluoto wrote
on Nov 15, 2010 12:26 PM

I have to agree with joymoody.  I knit, crochet, do all kinds of beading and occasionally stray into embroidry and other crafty things.  Hearing about people that crochet vs people that knit is something I had only recently heard.  I'm glad I didn't know that before so that I never limited myself to one or the other!

kcrochet wrote
on Nov 15, 2010 12:25 PM

I agree that a lot of people do both.  For some reason, the two crafts have become separated in publications and online, but in "the real world" I don't find that much separation.   I loved the fall issue of Interweave Crochet with the combined projects.  I wonder if there are any plans to have similar patterns in Interweave Knits sometime soon?  

joymoody wrote
on Nov 15, 2010 12:17 PM

I don't know about percentages, but I for one knit, crochet, sew, embroider, weave, sculpt with gold wire & you name it! I bet there are more people who both knit & crochet than you think. I tend to fall into a period of one vs. the other for a while then switch, but for me they both have relaxing & meditative qualities which are equally as wonderful.