A different way to combine knitting and crochet

Several years ago, I was playing around with combining knitting and crochet, and I hit upon a way of doing so that made me really happy. I was going to write more about it “later”, but then my wrist stopped allowing me to do crochet, and “later” never came. (No, really, I tried a bunch of things. Please don’t offer me advice.)

Anyway, I recently came across some old swatch photos I took with a cell phone, and thought I’d write about it in hopes that it would spark someone’s interest. I’d love it if someone else were to play around with this!

The thing I found tricky about the usual ways of combining knitting and crochet in the same project is that the stitch gauge for knitting and crochet in the same yarn is usually not the same. Furthermore, because of the structure of the two kinds of stitches, the scale feels different to me: crochet looks bulkier than knitting when it’s worked in the same yarn.

Around that same time I was planning a knitting project where the yarn I had was fingering, but I wanted to knit at worsted gauge. So I doubled the yarn. Somehow that cross-fertilized with the combination of knitting and crochet, and I had an idea: what if I worked the crochet in one strand of fingering, and the knitting with the same yarn doubled?

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Amazingly, it worked! I’m afraid I only have crappy old cell phone photos; I couldn’t find the swatches to take better ones. And of course I can’t make new swatches.

One strand of yarn on these swatches is continuous throughout the swatch. The knitting has an extra strand added in.

I went down two or three hook sizes as compared with the knitting needles; that’s something an individual crocheter would have to adjust to their own gauge.

But the key point is: the gauge is essentially the same! I could go back and forth interchangeably from live knitting stitches to crochet stitches and vice versa. And the crochet feels much closer to being at the same scale as the knitting.

Would you like to try this? I would be so pleased if other yarn lovers were to take this method on. I just wish I could do it.

An alternate method is to make a project in the same yarn at two different weights – though dye lot would be tricky if you wanted the same color.

I had seriously just bought one skein of Brooklyn Tweed’s Shelter yarn and a contrasting shade of Loft to make a shawl combining knitted lace and crochet lace when my wrist started giving me fits. I still regret that shawl.

11 thoughts on “A different way to combine knitting and crochet

  1. Very intriguing. I like the idea of combining crochet and knitting. It doesn’t immediately spark ideas but it is in my head fermenting away 🙂 thanks for sharing.

  2. This sounds about right. The way crochet is constructed there are more layers of yarn at any given point so doubling the yarn for knitting should work quite well.

    I’ll play around with this some time, because I think there are many ways knit and crochet could play off of each strengths and weaknesses and finding new ways to combine them is always interesting.

  3. This sounds about right. The way crochet is constructed there are more layers of yarn at any given point so doubling the yarn for knitting should work quite well.

    I’ll play around with this some time, because I think there are many ways knit and crochet could play off of each strengths and weaknesses and finding new ways to combine them is always interesting.

  4. Thanks for coming back to discussing the idea ‘later’ even if you are unable to make any more (that’s sad).
    Your experiments add to my ideas about ways to interchange tricot (Tunisian crochet) with knitting and other types of crochet. The challenge is to find and make time just to play. I will take your ideas on board and let you know if I manage to go any further with it.

  5. I’ve wondered about combining the two like this and am glad you did some swatching; I’m tucking your findings away so the next time I feel experimental I can give this a go. I designed a shawl continuously knit using two different yarns – one bulky, one fingering weight – and this strikes me as somewhat similar.

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