*this post contains affiliate links* One of the top trends right now in the crochet world is Planned Pooling Argyle. I have known about planned pooling for a while in regards to knitting (I learned from the amazingly talented Laura Bryant who wrote a book on it, Artful Color Mindful Knits). When this trend came to the crochet world I knew I had to be involved in making some great designs and helping you all to learn the technique. Red Heart has so many great variegated yarns that lend well to this technique and each color variation will make a different pattern. Today I want to share with you the new video I released, The Best Crochet Tutorial Planned Pooling Argyle. Let me show you how to make the magic happen.
Where did I learn and find help?
I first learned how to do the crochet planned pooling argyle through a blog post on the Red Heart website. After learning the basics I sat down and swatched and swatched and swatched. I did a lot of swatches to figure out the best way to do the technique and how it worked for the different colors and to get the look I wanted for each project.
Along with the many blog posts and videos out there I have found great support and fellow planned pooling lovers in the Planned Pooling with Crochet Facebook group. The admins in the group are fantastic and the members post so many wonderful projects that they have completed.
It’s amazing how much I needed to put aside my years of knowledge and just do what I was told to do. I wasn’t following a pattern as there wasn’t one for me to follow, I simply did trial and error. I learned many things through swatching that helped me better perfect how I could teach others to do this technique.
The biggest of which is this, getting a yarn to automatically pool argyle for you without any adjustments is unlikely. More often than not, you will compensate the gauge/tension of a stitch to get the correct color placement in the ch-1 space (when using moss stitch). Meaning, you may have to adjust the size of the stitch or the actual type of stitch you are using depending on the placement of the color needed to establish and maintain the planned pooling argyle pattern.
What do I mean by color placement?
If you think of a chart showing you exactly where a color has to go to get an argyle look you can begin to see what I mean by color placement. If you chart out the argyle with each square representing the Single Crochet stitch of the moss stitch (as that is the only stitch that is showing) then you can see EXACTLY where each color has to go.
If you were doing cross stitch, you would place use whatever color indicated in the chart for the color in that space; if you were doing fair isle, you would strand the color needed in that space behind the other colors in place to make that stitch the correct color as indicated in the chart; if you were doing argyle, you would have bobbins of color dangling from the work and use the correct color for that stitch as indicated in the chart. All of which are reasonable and possible.
BUT, we don’t want to do cross stitch, or strand our yarn, or do actual argyle, we want to do PLANNED POOLING ARGYLE where the yarn does the work for us. So, we work along in moss stitch and manipulate the yarn to make sure that when the color is suppose to change from one to another it happens. Sometimes we do that by changing hook size and other times by changing a single crochet to a half double crochet or ch 1 instead of ch 2 on the turn.
Because the yarn is not made to automatically work into argyle and is sometimes inconsistent in the lengths of color, it is our job to make it work by manipulating it.
Clear as mud, huh? Well, I’ve made a video that will hopefully make it more clear for you.
Where should I start?
The first thing I want you to do is take a look at this list of yarns from Red Heart that are supposed to work for Planned Pooling Argyle. Some of these are more difficult to pool than others but at least you have a starting point.
Once you’ve learned the basics in the Best Crochet Tutorial Planned Pooling Argyle video, watch the follow up video, 10 Secrets to Perfect Planned Pooling.
Looking for more PLANNED POOLING ARGYLE PROJECTS?
Of course you are, you are ready to jump into the pool too! The best place to start is right here.
Yarn Pooling Made Easy by Marly Bird:
Did you know that Marly has published a book on Planned Pooling Crochet? In this book, published by Leisure Arts, you will find 10 beautiful designed patterns that you can create using Red Heart yarns.