Tunisian Tweed – yes please!
A little while ago I attended a small workshop on Tunisian crochet and ever since my brief introduction to some of the basics of the technique like the simple stitch, knit stitch and pearl stitch, I’ve been so impatient to try some more unusual techniques out there that are based on this little known but delightful crochet variant.
My attention fell almost immediately to the Tunisian Tweed effect. If you’ve dabbled with Tunisian crochet in the past you’ll be familiar with the ‘forward pass’ and ‘return pass’ element that makes up 1 complete row of Tunisian crochet. The ‘forward pass’ is always the technique that create the detail layer that you see on the front side of the work, and the ‘return pass’ is what creates the depth to the fabric and the backing of the work.
The tweed effect uses a different colour for each pass, making your colour change when you complete the forward pass. It creates a beautiful and delicate series of colour changes that gives the impression of fine, detailed colour changes when in fact the technique is almost identical to standard Tunisian simple stitch.
In this example I’ve added a border to the fabric using crab stitch. The crab stitch has that lovely curved effect that contrasts so well to the neat straight lines of the tweed stitch. The fabric created is thick and sturdy so the chunky border here is an ideal finish to the technique.
Looking at the back of the work, the simplicity of the stitch is clear and you can see it mirrors the bold block rows that you have created with your working yarn ‘return pass’.
Tips to remember:
Don’t forget when working on any Tunisian stitch, the fabric is a lot more dense than a standard crochet stitch so you should go up in hook size by about 2 – I’ve used a 6mm Tunisian crochet hook for this swatch in DK yarn
Like any Tunisian crochet stitch, you’ll find it takes longer than normal crochet to work up a pattern, mainly because for each row, you need to work both forwards and back again – but it really is worth it when you feel the weight of the fabric and see its intricate stitch detail.
The uses for this stitch are endless, and although the fabric is thick, it’s flexible too so can be worked into clothing patterns and household items alike. Why not give a classic tweed colour a go and create a rich rug to snuggle up in, or mix some vivid cyans and magentas together to create a beautiful summer picnic blanket for you and your family to enjoy those balmy summer afternoons!