Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Tunisian Uprising

So, sweater finished, it’s on to other projects.

First up, a set of new placemat. I’ve been using the same old raggedy placemats for too long. Time to knit new ones. But how?

Ever since seeing the video by my good friend Staci, I thought I’d like to try this crochet technique called Tunisian (or sometimes Afghan) stitch. Tunisian crochet uses these freaky frankenhooks that are basically crochet hooks, but really, really long and with a stopper on the end. In Tunisian stitch, you pick up stitches across the face of the fabric, and then chain back across. Here’s a one of Staci’s helpful videos that shows you how to do it.


Tunisian Crochet


Simple, right? Except I figured out how to make things difficult. Because I want to be able to wash these things, I decided I’d make them out of cotton. And it’s just not working for me. To start with, the cotton wasn’t very forgiving when trying to cast on – which involves picking up stitches from the spine of a crochet chain. And since then, I’ve just not quite gotten the hang of it.

Here’s what I have so far. It’s not bad, but it’s just not good. It’s hurting my hands, and it’s going very, very slow. Crochet is supposed to go fast. I still really love this technique, but I’m thinking it may not be the way to go with this project. I’d like to make at least six of these things, but I’m just not feeling the love.

I’m considering switching to knitting and using the twill stitch that I used when making my Whitfield Jacket. What do you think?


  1. hmm... I've wondered about Tunisian crochet, so thanks for linking to Staci's video. It might be worth buying one of those giant hooks just to play around with it.

  2. I've never seen Tunisian crochet before - that is pretty interesting! I think it would look beautiful on placemats... you just don't have the best yarn yet. Best yarn for YOU. Ahem... boyfriend knits a little on the tight side.

    The twill stitch is also lovely. Why don't you swatch the twill stitch in cotton, and do another Tunisian crochet swatch with a washable yarn that includes wool? Normally I'm not a big fan of those, but in this case...