Solid rows, mixed stripes, color-blocking, oh my! Adding new hues to your Tunisian crochet projects can give them an immediate upgrade. These three techniques are sure to color you happy.
Solid stripes are created by completing a forward and return pass in the same color, changing to the new color just before the end of a return pass.
Start by completing the forward pass in the main color. Complete the return pass until there are two loops left on the hook.
Drop the main color and yarn over with the new color.
Pull through the two loops on the hook with the new color.
Complete forward and return passes as normal with the new color. Continue changing colors with this same method as many times as you like. Change color every row for subtle, simple stripes, or create blocks of striping for a bolder look. Carry yarn up the side of the work to avoid creating additional ends to sew in.
Mixed stripes give the illusion of multicolored yarn and result in a fabric that is unique to Tunisian crochet. These stripes are created by completing a return pass and a forward pass in different colors, changing color just before the end of the forward pass.
Start by completing a forward pass with the main color until there is one stitch left. Insert your hook in that stitch and drop the main color yarn.
Pick up the new color and yarn over and pull up a loop, completing the stitch.
Chain one and complete the return pass as normal. The vertical bars will be in the main color and the horizontal bars behind will be in the new color.
Repeat this process for every row for the effect featured above. Carrying yarn up the left side of the work is easy and prevents additional loose ends.
Changing yarn color in the middle of a row is useful for color blocking as well as other colorwork techniques, like intarsia. This method can be a little trickier and requires more attention.
Start by completing the forward pass in the main color to the point where the color change will happen.
Pull up a loop in the next vertical bar with the new color.
Finish the forward pass with the new color.
Complete the return pass until the second loop on the hook is in the main color.
At this point, drop the new color and complete the next stitch with the main color. This ensures that the vertical bar and horizontal bar of this stitch are the same color.
Pro Tip: When changing color in the middle of a row, it's imperative to lock the yarn to avoid unsightly holes in the work. Locking the yarn is simply wrapping the old color around the new color and pulling the loops tight.
The photo above shows the return pass, changing from the linen color back to pink. Start by dropping the linen color on top of the pink color, and picking up the pink color to continue crocheting. Pull the first pink loop snug against the hook to keep from leaving a hole.