Mosaic Knitting and Mosaic Crochet Resources

Mosaic designs are intricately patterned designs, often worked in two colors, that you can create using knitting, crochet, or Tunisian crochet. You can use different stitches and techniques in these crafts to achieve the desired effect. If you want to learn them all, you should sign up for Camp Colorwork, where we teach you various types of mosaic knitting and crochet, with patterns to boot.

What Is Mosaic Crochet?

There are different ways to achieve Mosaic Crochet. However, the basic concept is the same. You’ll work with one color across the row. This is different from other types of crochet colorwork, such as tapestry crochet or split single crochet, techniques where you work with two colors in the same row.

But wait!

When you look at mosaic knitting and mosaic crochet, it always looks like two colors are used in the same row to create the pattern detail.

Crochet Spike stitch

It’s an illusion!

You’ll use specific stitches to create that effect. For example, you can use spike stitch in mosaic crochet. You can also use front loop only, worked in the row below, in an overlay crochet technique. The great thing is that you don’t have to carry yarn as you go, so you’re freed up to create colorful patterns in an entirely new way.

What Is Mosaic Knitting

Mosaic knitting sample

Don’t be scared of mosaic knitting! It looks complicated, but you can use basic knitting skills to create this beautiful colorwork. Like with crochet, it’s a two-color pattern with graphic motif details. And, just like with crochet, you’re working with one color at a time, then working into the rows below to create the illusion that you’ve worked with two colors in the same row – and to create those great designs.

There are different techniques for mosaic knitting, of course, but basically, it’s a subset of knit slip stitches. As you learn mosaic, you’ll probably be surprised to realize just how much you can do with slipped stitches!

Slip a stitch to move the color to the row below, creating the aforementioned illusion. You alternate colors from row to row, slip stitching to work across one or more rows below.

You can use garter stitch with slip stitches to create mosaic knit patterns. Therefore, it’s a surprisingly easy technique to learn. However, you can also get more advanced. For example, you can combine garter and stockinette stitches in the same mosaic pattern. You can also use just stockinette; you’ll get a more impressionistic, elongated design if you use the same chart for stockinette as compared to garter, and it’s a really cool effect.

Woven slip stitch knit waves - Marly Bird

One of my very favorite techniques, which I learned from my friend Faina Goberstein, is woven slip stitch waves mosaic knitting. You still use slip stitches, but you do it with the yarn in front, creating this super cool wave effect.

Mosaic Knitting and Mosaic Crochet Charts

You use charts or grids rather than written patterns when working with the mosaic technique. (Although some patterns have written instructions, the charts are the best way to see the placement of each color as you work.)

You can use the same charts for mosaic knitting and mosaic crochet. You can even learn how to use those same charts for Tunisian mosaic crochet. The same charts will look slightly different depending on your technique. The design will generally be more elongated in crochet than knitting and even more so in Tunisian crochet. We go over all of this in detail in Camp Colorwork.

Magical mosaic stitches crochet stitches shown in a variety of swatches. All of these mosaic crochet techniques are used in Camp Colorwork - Marly bird

Are Mosaic Crochet and Knitting Reversible?

You might have seen that some mosaic crochet projects are reversible. It really depends, though, on what techniques you’re using. For example, if you use overlay crochet, you get completely different looks on the right side and the wrong side, although both are pretty. Whereas, using other mosaic crochet techniques, you might get a reversible fabric or one that really isn’t reversible at all. In mosaic knitting, you don’t really get a reversible fabric. Instead, you can easily tell the Right Side and Wrong Side of the fabric.

Helpful Books for Mosaic Knitting and Crochet

Mosaic medley knitting book by KnitPicks

In addition to Camp Colorwork classes, you can get helpful information from the following books.

Mosaic Knitting by Barbara Walker

Mosaic Medley Slip Stitch Colorwork Collection by KnitPicks

The Art of Slip Stitch Knitting by Faina Goldstein

The Beginner’s Guide to Mosaic Knitting: Easy One Color Per Row Technique by Melissa Leapman Blowney

Alter-Knit Stitch Dictionary: 200 Modern Knitting Motifs by Andrea Rangel

Mosaic Crochet Stitches Visual Encyclopedia by Robyn Chachula

Modern geometric designs for throws and accessories by Esme Crick: Mosaic Crochet Workshop

Mosaic Crochet by Ana Morais Soares

Mosaic Knitting and Crochet Patterns

Truly, Camp Colorwork is the best place to learn all about mosaic knitting and mosaic crochet. We also have patterns for you there, of course. But here are some additional patterns that you might enjoy:

12″ Mosaic Crochet Square Patterns

12" Mosaic Crochet Square Pattern - Marly Bird
Diamond mosaic crochet square pattern - Marly Bird

Learn the basics with these two squares. Click the images above to get to the patterns.

Oliver and Olivia Crochet Blanket with inset mosaic stitches is a free pattern - Marly Bird

Oliver and Olivia Mosaic Crochet Baby Blanket Pattern

This is the perfect baby blanket for anyone. The repeating pattern will help you work on mosaic crochet muscle memory. And the result is impressive.

Chic Modern Mosaic Blocks Throw

Chic mosaic modern blocks throw pattern - Marly Bird

Another great two-color blanket pattern to work with.

Azores Mosaic Crochet Blanket Pattern

Azores colorful crochet blanket

The Azores Blanket is an amazing 30+ page crochet pattern that teaches you all about colorful mosaic crochet techniques.

Pumpkin Spice Cropped Crochet Sweater Pattern

Pumpkin Spice crochet sweater pattern - Marly Bird

One of the great things about mosaic is that you can use just a band of it, like on this cropped sweater, to get a lot of bang for your buck.

Tournament of Stitches 2020 mosaic knitting cowl with a variety of stitch patterns and an applied i-cord finish - Marly Bird

TOS 2020 Knit Cowl Pattern

Each block of this knit cowl pattern has a different geometric design, allowing you to practice many ways to use mosaics within one pattern. Yet, you’re working with garter stitch and slip stitches, so it’s easy!

Crazy Stripes Mosaic Knit Shawl Pattern

Mosaic Knit Shawl in five colors and made in asymmetrical shape. Applied I-cord finish and free knit shawl pattern - Marly Bird

I love this pattern so much. It uses garter and stockinette stitch, with one color of yarn in each. So, you’ll slip the stockinette stitch color over the garter stitch color to create the effect. It creates a really cool ribbed design.

Festive Textures Knit and Crochet Blanket Patterns

Festive Textures Knit and Crochet Blanket Patterns - Marly Bird

This was originally a CAL/KAL/SAL, so you can still follow along with each video and its instructions to complete the project. Note that the knit version is the one that uses some mosaic colorwork. The crochet version does not. However, it’s still a great colorwork pattern.


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Marly Bird

The One and Only, Marly

Marly is a knitwear and crochet designer (and yarn addict) that is here to help you learn how to knit and crochet in a way that's fun and approachable.

Meet Marly

Knitting & Crochet Patterns for Every Mood
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