Email not displaying correctly? View it in your browser.
DesigningVashti pretty logo
"Pull Up a Long Loop" 

Until lately, I didn’t think of “pulling up a long loop” as a stitch. I generally thought of it as either special spice or special medicine for other stitches. 

DesigningVashti Palmetto WristcuffAs “stitch spice,” pulling up a long loop puts the spike in spike stitches, the puff in puff stitches, and the love in love knots. I suppose one could say it also puts the lace in Hairpin Lace & Broomstick Lace. (Spike Stitch 'Palmetto Wristcuff'; 2nd photo: Laurel-like puffs in one of my early freelanced designs, 'Pick a Pretty Pair'

Grecian Katrina/'Pick a Pretty Pair'

As “stitch medicine,” it’s an option for adjusting row gauge issues, especially for double crochets (dc; in UK, tr). For example, when I yarn over and pull up a loop in a stitch to begin a dc, I could pull up that loop a bit longer, then complete the dc as usual. This strategy has been called ‘lifting’ (as I first heard from Dee Stanziano), or what Jean Leinhauser called the “golden loop.” It makes a dc longer with more flexible legs, which is nice for wearable drape. As Pauline Turner points out, it can make all the difference in whether a doily cups, ruffles, or lies flat. (More on this at my blog: How to Take Control of Double Crochet Stitch Height & Row Gauge

This week I looked more closely at what I had assumed were love knots in a few books and online sources. Turns out there are several kinds of pulled loops.
Acacia Stitch and Variation
Sometimes, simply pulling up a long loop can add the same breezy drape and transparency to crochet that love knots do, without the “locking stitch” that turns an elongated chain stitch into a love knot. Here are two examples, in blue cotton. The top one is usually called Acacia Stitch; bottom one is a variation of it. I pulled its loops a bit longer, but the variation also exaggerates my small increase in loop size. I've already made a project page for this swatch because I want to make something summery with it in a different yarn.

You can also pull up long loops as if doing broomstick lace, without the stick, and not necessarily a whole row of them. After all these years, I finally noticed this kind of stitch, called "lacy loops" in the Harmony Guides 300 Crochet Stitches Vol. 6 (p. 13 of my 1998 edition). 

Go a step further with 'lacy loops' and don't even bother holding the loops on any kind of tool. I discovered this fun with the blue photos in the right column. 

Nakshatra Wrap One cool thing about pulled loops is that you decide how long (i.e. summery) you wish the loops to be. In my Acacia Stitch variation, those longer loops will be fabulous in a fancy yarn!

Uh we're in that sketchy eyeballing territory. 

About Having to 'Eyeball It'

Kind of sounds like a bad thing, huh? I've been thinking about this because my Love Knots class is for all skill levels. This eyeballing is considered solidly Intermediate. (Although that Acacia Stitch is published in a book of easy stitches.)

Several easy strategies make eyeballing unnecessary. For example, choose the size of what's always 'at hand'--the width of your thumb. Just pinch the long loop with your thumb to measure. (Pinching also makes Love Knots easy to complete.) Another 'handy' measure I use is the one-inch distance from my fingertip to nearest knuckle.

When I purely eyeball a loop length, I can do it quickly and evenly if my goal is no longer than an inch. There are other tricks for longer loops.

I think part of the problem is psychological, at least it was for me. Here's how I look at it now: when I pull up a long loop, I am temporarily breaking free of the gauge limits set by the hook size I'm using. The really cool thing about this is that a new kind of art can happen.
BonefishLace can be sculpted right into any crochet fabric at whim. The coexistence of tight stitches and superloose stitches in the same row is dramatic and rare, as if two different crochet hooks were used. (Gets trickier with Tunisian Crochet LOL.) Pictured is my 'stitch game' Bonefish, in progress.

Speaking of pulling up long loops, see Lianka Azulay's Good Intentions Wrap: . Acacia Stitch Bracelet by Griffith Gardens: 

Also: See Anne Rabun Ough’s use of a “Long DC” of any length needed at the end of a row (New Directions in Crochet, 1981, p. 19, 156. In Amazon, ) Lily Chin uses lengthened loops in her Crochet Tips & Tricks classes.

That's it for #40! If you know someone who would enjoy this kind of newsletter, please forward this to them so that they can subscribe. (Click here to subscribe: ) If you have any comments or suggestions, please email me. Thanks!      --Vashti
NO Love Knots? None?
From Japanese "Let's Knit Series" book, c2005
I was sure this lacy tunic featured Love Knots until I looked closely at its stitch diagram. (It's on p. 33 of a Japanese book from 2005, 
ISBN #978-4-529-04096-9. At, title translates as Let's Knit Series #30 crochet knit lace yarn with a refreshing.)

Check this out!
Vignettes Lace Loop pattern swatch
This is my understanding of the stitch pattern used in the above tunic. Like Love Knots but more lyrical. Or like flickering flames? Fountains?

Quasi-Broomstick Lace Loops
Lace Loops stitch pattern
Top of photo: the set up row. No loops were retained on a hook or stick. They're surprisingly snug and easy to crochet into later. I think crocheting into an entire row of them is what makes it suddenly feel like Broomstick lace. (Note-I made longer loops in the lower swatch.)

Links I Enjoyed This Week
Annette Petavy's newsletter issue on her design process with beautiful handspun yarn:

Bruna Braghini's blog post, "Losing Prejudice: Crochet" (as Google-translated from the Portuguese) has gorgeous images of fashion runway crochet:

Laurie Wheeler of Crochet Liberation Front on direction of stretch in granny squares and other crochet fabrics:

Irregularexpressions, a jewelry crocheter in Etsy:

DesigningVashti News
Blogged "How a Calligraphy Passion Inspired 'Lovepod' Love Knots"

Celebrating this newsletter's archives: I began a new adventure when I sent out the first issue on September 2, 2010. After 1.5 years and 40 issues, I'm proud of how far it has come! I've always wanted all past issues to be easier for new readers (and search engines) to find than they are. I've figured out how to convert them to blog posts. Each issue will be reprinted on this blog, in their original order, and also tagged by topic. The inaugural issue is scheduled for May 21.

Another coincidence happened with Doris this week! (Remember my recent issue on leaning stitches and her Spirals Top I asked Doris, "Hey, pulled up any long loops lately?" and it so happens she has: her Swirly Skirt in the Spring 2012 Interweave Crochet magazine uses long loops as stitches for a flowing skirt fabric. ( but see her project page in Ravelry for the stitch close up: )

I also asked friends in Facebook: pulling up a long loop made Deb think of spike stitches. Becky said: “I have pulled up a long loop for elongated stitches. Most recently while swatching the stitch pattern in Doris' Swirly Skirt in IC Spring '12. I like how it made a tall stitch without the ‘bulk’ of yarn overs”.

About my 4 croche
t classes in June: They have ALL SOLD OUT. Remarkable and exciting! If you are unable to take them, here are 4 alternatives:
1. I'll be teaching 4 more classes in September
2. I'll be leading a weekend crochet retreat in Illinois in October. See this blog post for more: "Summer-Fall 2012 Crochet Class Schedule"
3. I'm creating book-length drafts for most of these class topics while I prepare these classes. I have a lot of material, so whatever doesn't fit into a class can go into a book! (Now you know why the class prep has been taking so much of my time and has been delaying newsletter issues lately).
4. Watch this space for announcements of: more classes scheduled at more places; the books as they become available; new designs based on these topics.
I'm excited to see those of you who will be in my classes!

Here's my Wrist Scorpion of freeform Love Knots 'n stuff:
Wrist Scorpion
Like Crochet Inspirations Newsletter: #40 Pulling Up a Long Loop on Facebook
You received this email because you opted in at my DesigningVashti website.

Unsubscribe <<Email Address>> from this list.

Our mailing address is:
DesigningVashti Crochet
680 Fox Street
Longboat Key, Florida 34228

Add us to your address book

Copyright (C) 2012 DesigningVashti Crochet All rights reserved.

Subscribe to this newsletter. Vashti Braha is a professional crochet designer & teacher who resides in Florida (USA). She writes 100% of each issue and emails it to subscribers
every other Thursday (except when she's designing classes!).

Forward this email to a friend
Update your profile

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp