Color: part 1

I like working with color, especially in crochet. There are so many different ways in crochet to achieve an interesting color design without resorting to fancy techniques. My favorite is striping many colors to achieve an imitation of fairisle in knitting.

Because crocheted stitches dip into the previous row, they don't exactly make straight stripes, meaning that you can achieve the look of colorwork without doing anything other than striping yarns. If you use colors that are of a similar intensity or quality, the resulting stripes mimic fairisle. This is especially so when you use at least four colors, because of the possibilities that become available for color frequency.

In the case of the sample pictured above, I used what Practical Crocheter and I call "sweater stitch" because it makes a nice garment fabric. It consists of (sc 1, ch1, sk1) across in every row over an odd number of stitches (or an even number if worked in the round). In each row the singles are worked in the singles and the chains are worked over the chains. The only drawback is that it stretches significantly over time. In stripes, the rows almost make a ric rac shape.

The sample above was worked in the round, so the right side of the singles is always facing out. When this stitch is worked in stripes in rows, the right and wrong side singles change direction in each row and the wrong side singles show the row below through the stitch.

I think this way of doing it almost looks like a hounds tooth pattern. It also allows for better blending of colors if you want a graded look, because the transitions between colors are less distinct.