Here is my interpretation of the stitch pattern used in many of those shawls and ponchos worn by celebrities these days. This is one of the stitches used in my Celebrity Poncho pattern. I've seen variations referred to as Flower Stitch, Petal Stitch, Delta Stitch, Daisy Stitch, Triangle Stitch, etc.
I scoured the web, searching for Jessica Simpson Shawl, Newlyweds Shawl, delta crochet, flower crochet, celebrity shawl, celebrity crochet, mini crochet poncho, etc. etc. I spent much time reading different people's interpretations, blogs, newsgroups, message boards and such, looking at dozens of pictures, poring over stitch dictionaries and books, swatching and ripping out and swatching and ripping out over and over again. It took three days of my vacation to come up with a method that worked for me. So, if you've tried those other web sites but are still having trouble, or you landed here first in your search, please give these instructions a try. It's taken almost as long to type them up into words as it did to get hang of the pattern stitch. :)
Basically, this fabric is a triangular grid of Double Treble Crochet clusters that end up looking like six petalled flowers. It _looks_ easy enough. :) Truly, it's not bad at all once you get the hang of it. My apologies if I get a bit wordy, but I've found other interpretations lacking in some areas. I like 'landmarks', where you can count loops or sts or look at shapes, etc to be sure you're doing it correctly before continuing on, so I've included lots of those.
It's important to note that you absolutely _must_ swatch, first and foremost to practice, and secondly to determine the hook size required to get the gauge that feels right to you - too loose is better than too tight. Work _at least_ 3 or 4 rows on 30 sts (24 plus 6) sts. Make note of your stitch and row gauge when done. I've found it's easier to count 'flower centres' or horizontal petals rather than actual sts.
I highly recommend a medium or loosely spun cotton or mostly cotton blend, preferably varying in thickness. This will most closely duplicate the look, texture and drape we're after.
- worsted weight cotton or mostly cotton blend yarn - check out the yarn at joann.com.
- 4.0 mm hook (Can 8, US 6/G), or size needed to give you loose fabric
- Note: Work very LOOSELY.
- Note 2: Work INTO chains, not around them.
- Note 3: The image refers to the Petal number as described below. Number 1 does not show, as it this is actaully a swatch from the middle of a row. Red numbers are worked right to left, as shown. Blue numbers are worked after fabric is turned, so looking at the back as in this image, they're in order from left to right. Click on it to open a larger copy in a separate window.
- Stitches Used:
- Dtr (Double Treble) - Wrap yarn around hook 3 times, insert hook into st and pull up a loop, (yarn over hook and pull through 2 loops) 4 times (just like a Double or Treble Crochet, but with the yarn wrapped around the hook 3 times).
- Dtcl (Double Treble Cluster) - (Dtr into same st, stopping one step short of completing the st) 3 times - 3 loops on hook.
- Complete Dtcl (usually several Dtcl's at once) - Yarn over hk and draw a loop through all loops on hk (usually 6 or 9 loops), work one final chain tightly to hold them all together.
- Note: All references to left or right presume the crocheter is right handed and is working from right to left across the row.
- Reminder: These instructions are for flat fabric. Working in the round will be slightly different. See my Celebrity Poncho instructions for how to join rounds.
- For starting chain, chain 30, or another a multiple of 6 (you need 12 sts per complete 'flower', but it works fine on multiples of 6, ie 30 sts).
- Row One:
First Two Petals -
Complete these 2 Dtcl's by drawing a loop snugly through all 6 loops, then tightly working one more ch to hold them together. This chain forms your first 'flower centre'. First 2 petals complete. They should form an upside down 'V' attached to your starting chain.
First Petal - Chain 6. Work 2 dtr into 6th ch from hook, stopping one step short of completing each st (first 5 sts count as first incomplete dtr of this first dtcl) - 3 loops on hook. This petal will (eventually) point up and to the left from your starting chain.
Second Petal - Ignore your first completed petal for now. Skip next 5 ch of starting ch. Work Dtcl into next ch - 6 loops on hook - 3 from each of these first two petals. This second petal will point down and to the left towards your starting chain.
- Next Three Petals -
Complete these 3 Dtcl's at the same time by drawing a loop snugly through all 9 loops, then tightly working one more ch to hold them together.* This tight chain forms your next 'flower centre'. Next 3 petals complete. They should form 2 triangles whch are attached to your starting chain, upward pointing on the left side, downward pointing on the right side.
*Third Petal (aka Horizontal Petal) - The first of the three is worked the same as your very First Petal (above): Ignore your first two petals. Chain 6. Work 2 dtr into 6th ch from hook, stopping one step short of completing each st (first 5 sts count as first incomplete dtr of this dtcl) - 3 loops on hook. This petal will point straight across to the left.
Fourth Petal - The second of the three is worked as follows: Do not skip any chains in starting ch. Work Dtcl into same ch where the previous petal of the row (in this case, the Second Petal) attaches to your starting ch - 6 loops on hook - 3 from each of Third and Fourth petals. This petal will point down and to the right towards your starting chain.
Fifth Petal - The final of the three is worked as follows: Ignore your previous petals. Skip next 5 ch of starting ch. Work Dtcl into next ch - 9 loops on hook - 3 each from the Third, Fourth and Fifth petals. This petal will point down and to the left towards your starting chain.
- Repeat from * to * til you reach the end of your starting chain. Turn.
Note: Further instructions (below) refer back to these 5 different petals. Where directions above indicate to skip a number of chains in starting chain, you should skip over to the next 'flower centre' from the previous row if you're not currently working into the starting chain.
- Row Two:
Continue to work Third, Fourth and Fifth Petals til you reach the end of the row, but _do not turn_ yet. Work Third and Fourth petals once more. Turn.
- Work First Petal as above, _but_ this time it will end up pointing up and to the right.
- Work Third, Fourth and Fifth Petals as above. (Yes, you skip Petal 2 altogether.)
Note:: The Horizontal (Third) Petal in this Second Row is sometimes worked as a chain of 6 or 7 sts, especially if the following row is a different stitch pattern, and is to be worked into sts other than the points of the Petals, as in my Celebrity Poncho pattern (which is where I got the image).
When finished, be sure to take a gauge measurement, of each flower, of how many Horizontal Petals or flower centres per however many inches, etc., and write it down somewhere.
To Produce a (Relatively) Even Fabric
Repeat Rows 1 and 2 til fabric is desired length. Break yarn and work in ends. This produces a fabric that is consistent in width, though the left and right hand edges are slightly zig zagged.
To Produce a Fabric That Gets Wider as You Work
Make your foundation chain as long as you want your narrow end to be (should be at least 12 or 18 sts).
Repeat Row Two for fabric that gets wider as you go.
To Produce a Fabric that Gets Narrower as You Work
Make your foundation chain as long as you want your wide end to be.
Repeat Row One as directed above for fabric that gets narrower as you go.
- I plan to put some more images up here as soon as I can, once I start another project and have 'in progress' photos to share.
- Once you've made a few practice swatches (or are very good at interpreting these written crochet directions) you will probably notice there are really only two different ways to make a cluster. One cluster is made from a length of chain plus two incomplete dtr's, the other is made from 3 incomplete dtr's. The trick is remembering which one to use and where to 'anchor' it.
- As you become more comfortable with this stitch pattern, you may find yourself wanting to do things like work in the round, make your starting chain out of 'petals', create other irregular shapes, etc. It's really quite rewarding once you figure these things out, so I'll leave that to you.
- And please send me any images of garments you've completed and I'll post them here for all to see. Thanks!
- You can try variations, such as working only 2 dtr's per cluster, or working a single chain for the horizontal petal (Petal 3). It'll use less yarn and work up faster, but you'll miss some of the richness of the original stitch.
- If you just can't get the hang of it, you can buy those designer shawls and ponchos ready made:
Do a search for celebrity shawl, celebrity poncho, jessica simpson shawl, bucourt shawl, designer poncho, designer shawl or similar terms. You'll find lots of results (at least in Spring 2004!).
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