How to Multi-Strand Crochet!
I love multi-strand crochet. The projects work up quickly and is a great stash buster. You can crochet everything from a pillow cover to an afghan or a rug. It just depends on how many strands of yarn you use at one time and how big a hook you use. The most difficult part of Multi-Strand crochet is keeping the yarns from tangling, but if you pull the skeins from the center and use a bowl for all little balls of yarn, the tangling can be kept manageable.
The Fall Table Runner
The pattern for this table runner is more like a list of guidelines. It uses some of my stash and scrap yarns that I NEEDED to use up as they are taking up valuable storage space. They are also colors that I do not use all the time and were not going to be used, unless I made a special effort. When you take multi-strands + creating it to fit your table + picking through your own yarns = a multi-step process. Not hard but more complicated than I usually write.
This is a perfect project to use up some yarns in your stash and also all those little tiny scrap balls of yarn.
This is also a great home decor project as you can match the colors in your home. You will need at least three skeins of yarn and a large plastic or wooden hook. The large hook is the key to the whole thing! It will make the project quicker than you can imagine and also grab all those strands of yarns. Pick colors that you will want to have in your house, or to give as a hostess or Christmas gift. It can even be a mix of fiber content, but be sure to tell your gift recipient how to care for the table runner.
What follows is more of an outline rather than a pattern. Feel free to adapt these guidelines to create anything from mug mats to rugs for your home.
- Pull out all the yarns you never use. Hunt out the little bitty balls of leftover yarn from previous projects. Pick a color range. Since this is a Fall table runner. I was looking for browns, beige, oatmeal, creams, orange, yellows, and any yarns with mostly those colors in them
- Sort the yarn into weight groups; worsted, bulky, fingering, laceweight, dk, home dec. t shirt yarn.
- Then I weighed it to see how much of each type of yarn I had. I had more than 20 oz of yarn.
You can see that I have
- tiny balls of yarn
- some t shirt type yarn
- almost three full skeins of lion brand yarn
- some really Bulky brown yarn
- the yellow granny square
- camo look yarn
- enough creams/ beige yarns to use these as the base yarn to keep it harmonized. (These didn’t make it to the photos and I didn’t end up using the really thick brown yarn.)
- Use off white, cream or oatmeal yarns throughout the crocheting.
- The overall gauge (or thickness) of the yarn group is more of a concern than the number of strands-try to keep this gauge consistent.
- Try to crochet roughly half of each accent (orange, yellow and camo) yarn and then use in the 2nd half of the table runner. This adds continuity in the overall color of the crocheted item.
- finish one tiny yarn ball then just tie on the next yarn ball
- try to stagger tying on new yarns to help hide knots
- only add one new yarn at a time. Which also helps to hide the knots.
- crochet about 2 rows of accent color before changing to another accent color
- Use a plastic hook large enough to easily hold all the different strands at one time. (I used a large plastic P hook with this project.)
Note: These are my rules – but you can change them to fit your yarns.
- Primary color: beige, off white, cream- used throughout the table runner.
- Accent colors: yellow, camo, dark brown, cranberry, orange,
- 2nd accent colors: variegated yarns, variegated string yarns
- Put the yarns in your lap or a bowl and get started.
(Adding in a very small fingering gauge or crochet cotton doesn’t add much to the gauge of the yarn group and I was trying to use those up as they have been in the stash for far too long and I don’t use them often enough to warrant keeping them.)
Using three or more yarns and your large crochet hook crochet a chain the length needed to fit your table minus 6 inches (3 inches each side for the fringe).When our family gathers for meals we have two leaves in our table which makes our table is 84″ long. The table runner is 62″ long. The table runner uses 14.1 oz of yarn.
Single crochet with all three or more yarns across the chain. Adding or changing yarn as necessary. Chain one and turn at each end of the table runner continue in SC the length of the table runner.
Continue adding rows until your table runner is the width you want. You will want to reserve roughly half of each accent color of yarn for the other half of the table runner. (This keeps the table runner color balanced.)
Crochet an odd number of rows to achieve the width that looks best on your table. My table runner is seven rows wide but would look good with 9-11 rows. Tie off and cut the yarns.
Cut six inch lengths of the leftover yarns and using the larks head knot attach one group of five yarns each to each stitch at the end of each row on both ends of the table runner. Mix up colors and textures of the yarns to get a similar look to the table runner. Trim the fringe level across the ends to get a straight edge if needed.
Multi-Strand Crochet Inspiration
Just to inspire you, I found a couple of photos of my favorite multi strand crocheting using yarns of different weights. This poncho was crocheted using an Etsy friend’s scrap and stash yarns. She was selling them and I fell in love with all of the colors and textures. I added more of the yarns I had on hand + the Basketweave stitch and this was the result.
The blue afghan shown here uses three strands of the same weight yarn to create an ombre effect. You do have to be careful not to create an item with such heavy fabric that it is not useable.
We are nearing the end of September and Fall is really here! I am excited about the next few months as the Holidays are coming up and life gets busier. Take time out to enjoy the beauty of the season and the yarn in your basket. I am also getting ready to put this table runner and Autumn decorations out.
Talk to you later,
P.S. I think Multi-strand crochet would be wonderful for the pet beds people make for the animal shelters- just be sure to use washable yarns.