Stripe Variations for the Easy Breezy Crochet Shawl Pattern
Stripes are another variation to add creative flair to a crochet pattern, and a triangle crochet shawl pattern has specific tips, too. Stripes can be created for you with self-striping yarn, but you can also control the color, frequency and patterning of stripes, too. You can choose from 2 colors for the entire project or up to as many colors as you have rows (which is a great stash busting option!)
Over the last couple of months, as the Easy Breezy Shawl crochet pattern has been featured for Shawls for Sharing for Summer 2022, I have shown this pattern with #2 sport weight, #3 dk weight, #4 worsted weight, and #5 bulky weight yarns. I have shown this crochet pattern with two different styles of self-striping yarn, and with various solid color yarns. Each of the shawl projects and swatches shown feature Lion Brand Yarn.
I want to crochet my shawl with color stripes, now what?
How many colors do you want to use in your crochet shawl pattern with stripes?
In order to create stripes, you will at least need two colors, but can use up to as many colors as there are rows in your project. The number of rows is determined by the gauge of your project (yarn weight and hook size) and how large you want your shawl to be. For example, if you want to use 2 colors and your shawl is 30 rows long, you can choose to either color block and do the first half of the stripes in one color and the second half of the stripes in the second color. Keep in mind that with a shawl like the Easy Breezy Crochet Shawl Pattern, a top down increasing shawl pattern, the rows grow. When the rows grow, the amount of yarn you use on row 1 is significantly less than the amount of yarn you use on row 30. So how much yarn you use on rows 1 – 15 will not be equal to the amount of yarn you use on rows 16 – 30. As a general rule, in a 2 ball shawl of this construction style, the first 2/3 of the shawl will use the first ball (rows 1 – 20), and the last 1/3 of the shawl will use the second ball (rows 21 – 30). So in order to evenly crochet half of the shawl in color A (rows 1 – 15) and color B (rows 16 – 20), you would need a second ball of color B, to complete the second section and would not use the entire ball of color A to complete the top section.
If you choose to add 3 or more colors, this same formula applies – so just be sure to always buy extra yarn just in case – and remember that the longest rows will always require a lot more yarn than the first rows at the beginning of a top down construction pattern.
What colors do you want to use for stripes in your crochet shawl pattern?
Color theory is a very interesting and multi-faceted subject. The short answer is you should choose colors that make you happy. But depending on how deeply you want to think about colors, it can also be easy to overthink color choices.
What colors does the yarn I want to use come in? What colors are in stock?
Do you want a tonal, analogous or high contrast color palette? Tonal would be 3 shades of the same color, analogous would be colors that sit next to each other on the color wheel, and high contrast would be colors that are opposite the color wheel.
Do you have a color inspiration? Perhaps it is a sport team’s colors? Or a movie’s or character’s colors? Or maybe you already have a strong point of view of the colors you know and love? If in doubt, I always like to think of Mother Nature as good color inspiration. Mother Nature beautifully combines flower colors with leaf colors – so think of shades of greens/browns with pops of other colors like reds, pinks, oranges, yellows, blues or purples.
How frequent do you want to use each color per stripe in a triangle crochet shawl pattern?
Stripes can be consistent or random depending on the number of colors and the number of rows you use for each stripe. For example, let’s say you are using 2 colors of yarn and want to alternate the color after every row. You could choose to cut the yarn after each row and this will allow you to choose whether or not you turn your work after each row of your crochet shawl. If you want to carry up both colors and just work each color on alternate rows, you can carry up the alternate color, however, you will have to crochet one row of each color with one side of your work facing before turning your work and then working two rows (one of each color) in the second color of yarn. You may prefer the texture of the work being turned after every row, and/or you may prefer the texture of your fabric when turning your work after every two rows of your crochet shawl. And you always STILL have the option of cutting your yarn after each row. The only downside will be the additional amount of ends to weave in.
There are always positives and negatives to each choice you make. Carrying the second color, especially if the yarn colors are high contrast), might be too much of an eye sore for you. If so, you still have more options: you could always come back and work a simple row of double crochet along the row-end stitches to cover this when the last row of your shawl is complete.
Do you want the stripes to look like a pattern or more randomly placed in a triangle crochet shawl pattern?
There are all sorts of ways to add randomness to your stripe sequence. Whether you want to pick a ‘random’ theme pattern like a temperature blanket, or Fibonacci numbers or other types of numbering formulas, you can also create more random looking stripes with intention, too.
As long as the number of yarns does not equal the number of sequences in your stripes, it will appear more random than if you choose the same number of colors and stripe sequence.
For example, let’s say you choose to work a sequence of 1-row, 2-rows, and 3-rows of each color, then repeat 1-row, 2-rows and 3-rows until you complete your crochet shawl pattern. If you do this in 3 colors in the same order, you would work 1 row in color A, 2 rows in color B, and 3 rows in color C. Then continue repeating 1 row in color A, 2 rows in color B, and 3 rows in color C. Each 1-row stripe will always be in color A, each 2-row stripe will always be in color B, and each 3-row stripe will always be in color C.
To make this pattern appear more random, use the 3 stripe sequence in either 2 colors or any other number of colors besides 3. For example, let’s crochet the shawl in 2 colors of yarn. You would crochet 1 rows in color A, 2 rows in color B, 3 rows in color A, 1 row in color B, 2 rows in color A and 3 rows in color B. Ultimately this will become a 6-stripe pattern in your crochet shawl. If you want your stripes to look even more random, try increasing the number of stripe sequences (1, 2, 3 and 4 row stripes with 2 colors) or increase the number of colors (1, 2, and 3 row stripes with 4, 5, or 6 colors).
How do I change yarn for color stripes in a crochet shawl pattern?
For the Easy Breezy Shawl crochet pattern specifically, this stitch pattern doesn’t allow for easy hiding of the other colors to be carried along while you crochet with one color. This technique (like in tapestry crochet) is better suited for stitch patterns with a more solid fabric without chain 1 negative space (holes).
For this crochet shawl pattern we will change the yarn color only at the beginning of any given row we are changing color. Depending on the height of your stripes, it may make more sense to cut the yarn between stripes, like mentioned above, but carrying yarn along is always an option. Just like with any other crochet color work, if you are not fastening off a color before beginning the next color, crochet the last step of the last stitch in the previous color with the next color of yarn.
A knit or crochet pattern is just the beginning of your creative journey with yarn. You can choose to change the color, the fiber content, the embellishments, and you can also choose to add color work in so many ways, too! You can use these tips on other crochet shawl patterns, too!
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Kristin Omdahl is the best-selling author of dozens of knit and crochet books; designer of almost 1000 knit and crochet patterns; and producer of award-winning videos. You can join Kristin LIVE 5 days a week for The Kristin Omdahl Show on YouTube and browse through thousands of tutorial videos there, too. Kristin donates a portion of every sale to help survivors of domestic violence. Learn more about Kristin’s charity, Project Kristin Cares HERE.
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