Lovelace Ring Scarf

Two romantic 19th-century crochet stitches from contrasting traditions have gracefully joined forces to warm up 21st-century necks!

I’ve used four basic crochet stitches, from slip stitch to double crochet, to smooth the way for these two unique stitches to work well together. You’ll pick up crocheting speed and never get bored.

As the laciest of the lacy stitches, love knots (aka lovers knot, Solomon’s knot) are ideal for balmy climates. Victorian-era crocheters used the finest cotton and silk threads to make fancy love knot edgings, opera bags, and baby bonnets.

Star stitches are a classic northern European stitch for crocheting thick warm coats and baby blankets in wool yarns. Even the delicate lacy stars of the earliest patterns were crocheted in lace weight wools, not cotton thread.

Pattern includes stitch hows & whys, and scarf customizing tips. The story of this special stitch pattern is blogged here.

Skill Level

Intermediate. Both star stitches and love knots are iconic Intermediate skill level stitches. In fact, the love knot has at times served to distinguish the crochet skill levels.

I teach separate three-hour classes on each of these stitch types. For this pattern I’ve selected the less challenging versions of them, and include some tips, hows, and whys that have helped my students.

You’ll have the opportunity to learn these skills:

  • How to crochet a classic two-row star stitch.
  • How to insert a two-row band of simple love knot mesh that has a selvage, and why.
  • How to customize this new stitch pattern so that you can use it for many other projects.

Finished Dimensions

One-skein scarf is 7.5″ {19 cm} wide and 30″ {76.2 cm} long (circumference of ring). Width is determined by the number of foundation chains. Add a second skein to lengthen.


  • Crochet Hook Size G/7 {4.50 mm} or size needed for gauge.
  • Yarn usedMadelinetosh Tosh DK (100% merino wool, 225 yds/206 m per 3.5 oz/100 g), one ball of color Blue Gingham used.

Yarn substitution advice: I recommend that you use wool yarn, or a wool-like blend. A single ply type like I’ve used here shows off these stitch textures especially well. Choose a #3 Light Weight yarn with a recommended crochet hook size range of US G/7 {4.50 mm} to US I/9 {5.5 mm}. These yarns may also be called Light Worsted. 

  • Notions: Scissors. Yarn needle. Large button(s), optional.
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Answers: The Electra Wrap Love Knot Pattern

Banner of Love Knot 'Flowers'

I’m seeing new questions in new places about my Electra Wrap love knot pattern.

Electra, a crochet design, continues to attract attention and I’m really happy about that. I’ve blogged questions and answers about Electra here so that people can find them easily when they Google the pattern.

Q: What is this design? I’m having trouble figuring it out!

A: Maybe you’re seeing only a photo with no source (such as in Pinterest or Tumblr). Probably it’s one of the photos below. This is the Electra Wrap love knot pattern. It was designed by Vashti Braha (me) in 2012, and published in Interweave Crochet Magazine in 2013. I released a newly updated version of the Electra pattern in September, 2014.

Maybe you mean that you’re having trouble figuring out how it was crocheted. Well, the Electra Wrap is all about visual illusions. It’s actually just a simple rectangular wrap. The stitch pattern is 100% crochet love knots. A big reason for the Electra effect is the triangular grid structure. It’s an uncommon look for love knots. A square mesh grid of love knots, on the other hand, is so common that it’s practically a cliché. My newsletter issue #62 contrasts these two basic types of crochet lace grids.

Q: Yes but it looks like more than just that! Why?

A: Three reasons:

  1. The flowery stars. A beautiful feature of triangular lace grids is how triangles tile into hexagonal six-spoked shapes.
  2. This starry flowery lace is love knots. You can crochet triangular lace grids with many different stitches. Love knots bring their own unique magic. They also show off special yarns…see #3.
  3. I used yarn that is so elegant it dazzles the eye. I’m serious! I’ve worn the Electra Wrap in conferences, guild meetings, yarn shops, and love knot classes. Even when a person is familiar with crocheting triangular lace grids – and the love knot stitch, and sees it up close in person, Electra is still a bit mysterious. The yarn’s a factor.

Q: How did you add all those tiny sequins?

A: I paid the yarn to do that! Tiny sequins were spun right into the yarn for me. (I’d personally never add the sequins by hand because this would interrupt how quick love knots are to crochet.)

Here’s the deal with the yarn. A mystery-enhancing effect of this Electra Wrap love knot pattern is it’s crocheted double-stranded. Each love knot shows off two yarn strands. Each strand plumps up and doubles the 3-D loft.

I held one strand of fine mohair yarn together with one sequined strand while I crocheted. Electra’s yarn specs:

  • Glossy sequined strand: S. Charles Collezione Crystal (85% polyester, 15% cotton; 144 yd {131 m} per .88 oz {25 g}; CYC “#0 Lace Weight”): color #11, 3 skeins.
  • Glittery mohair strand: S. Charles Collezione Luna (71% super kid mohair, 20% silk, 9% lurex; 232 yd {212.5 m} per .88 oz {25 g}; CYC “#0 Lace Weight”): color #25, 2 skeins.

Even the tiniest sequins can be hard to crochet with. They catch on yarn strands as you pull loops through loops. The solution is to buffer the sequins with fibers. Mohair is great for this.

Q: I need to use different yarn, though. Can I? Should I?

A: YES you can, absolutely. The proof is in all the different yarns people have used for their lovely Electras. See this Electra project gallery in Ravelry.

I can think of lots of reasons why one should use a different yarn, and why one should not.

Definitely use the yarns I used if:

  • …You want that ethereal, fairy godmother, fashion couture mystique. I can’t imagine a better yarn combination for this. The yarns I used are top of the line fashion yarns from a venerable Italian mill. They are pricy and yet they’re a bargain. Their high quality is clearly evident in the finished Electra Wrap. It’s part of the mystique. (Hint: it’s the ultimate gift.)
  • …You’re susceptible to swooning while you’re crocheting. I’m not exaggerating when I say that crocheting Electra kept taking my breath away. I finished two of them quickly. I didn’t want to set down my crochet hook! I fantasized about Electra when I was away from it! If you’ve ever “pined” for a crochet project you’ve fallen for, then you know what I mean. The rest of you might be laughing at me right now 🙂
  • …You want practical warmth as well as maximum magic and weightlessness. The mohair in this yarn combo gives other practical benefits, too. (I wrote a newsletter issue about this.)

Use different yarns if:

  • …You’re allergic to mohair. Mohair and love knots have a special affinity. Both add a weightless magical something. One way to get a mohair effect is with a brushed synthetic yarn. Other natural fibers can also add a halo. Angora is an obvious example. Halo is a lace-weight brushed baby alpaca yarn.
  • …You’ve stashed some skinny yarns and bling threads that are difficult to crochet with by themselves. Electra can be a great stashbuster project for these. See this blog post about fun with double stranding.
  • …You want more of a casual daytime layer. Use thicker yarns – two strands held together, or singly. Maybe you want more of a boho artsy look. Try artisan space-dyed torn silk ribbon yarns, or irregular hand spun textures.

Q: I’m confused about the Electra Wrap love knot pattern in the magazine. Can you help me with that?

A. If you have the 2013 magazine version of the pattern and need help with it:

  1. Contact the magazine. The company has pattern support staff for their patterns. They also have a forum called Crochet me.
  2. Ask a question any time in Vashti’s Crochet Lounge – lots of friendly, helpful crocheters there. It’s a Ravelry group. Chances are good that your question has already been answered there. Interweave Crochet magazine fans also have a Ravelry group.
  3. I urge you to buy & download my expanded 2014 edition of this Electra Wrap love knot pattern from the DesigningVashti shop, or my Ravelry shop. It has a stitch diagram, how-to photos, and other details that help students in my love knot classes.

A stitch diagram is essential for this design. Due to space limitations of printed magazines, the 2013 Electra pattern version is missing a stitch diagram and other helpful info. A stitch diagram reveals how simple the construction really is. It breaks the spell (those multiple visual illusions I’ve described above).

Be sure to subscribe to my newsletter where I announce discount codes for new patterns and yarns. Get your feet wet with my three-part series on Love Knot basics and tweaks. (Link goes to the third in the series, and links to the first two are at the top of the entry.)

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The Two Free Victorian Crochet Pattern Books I Love!

Of course, ALL free Victorian crochet pattern books are lovable. After I researched crochet stitches for my classes, though, I keep these two close by and bookmarked. Both of these antique crochet books were published in 1891. (Click each image for the free download information and link.)

Last year I searched in literally hundreds of crochet books and booklets. I love researching crochet. Lots of antique, public domain crochet sources are keepers. Perhaps these two stand out in particular because of the specific stitches I was looking for.

  • The Art of Crocheting. By Butterick Publishing Co., Ltd., 1891 (London and New York).
  • Home Work, A Choice Collection of Useful Designs for the Crochet and Knitting Needle… By A. M., Rose Publishing Co. Ltd. (Toronto).

I recorded all occurrences of star stitches, love knots (“knot stitches” to the Victorians), and lacy Tunisian crochet patterns. I was surprised to discover that in many of the publications ranging from the 1840’s to the 2010’s, these stitches often didn’t appear at all. These two 1891 gems were especially fun for creative star stitch patterns.

Researching crochet stitches in free Victorian crochet pattern books offers lots of insight into crochet’s development. It’s fascinating to see how crochet is explained, illustrated, and promoted. Exciting, too! By 1891 the public demand for crochet patterns and stitch how-tos was very strong.

Free Victorian crochet pattern books date from the 1840’s to shortly before World War I. Please support the Antique Pattern Library. It’s one of my favorite sources for some obscure early indie crochet designer booklets too. I hope you will help their cause by donating scans or funds.

The Home Work book was the focus of an ambitious crochet pattern project by the Cyber Chapter of the Crochet Guild of America (CGOA). Members crocheted actual swatches and projects from the book. The exhibit of them at CGOA’s annual Chain Link conference was a highlight of the event!

Also see my Antique Crochet Stunners board in Pinterest.

Lovepod Boa

Would you believe that this design looks better if the Love Knots are irregular? In other words, it’s perfect for a Love Knot beginner!

Even if you’re experienced with Love Knots, it’s likely that these “Lovepods” are new to you. They work up quickly with a range of yarns: one row of big stitches and you’re done creating this magical crochet look.

Pattern includes the option to make a full Boa with one yarn (it is folded in half then twisted lightly), or with multiple yarns (two Boas twisted together lightly). My favorite Boa (the lavender one shown here) is made of two Boas twisted together.

It may look ethereal but thanks to the mohair, this necklace-like accessory will buffer wintry drafts and the cool Spring breezes that follow. Weightless and warm, there are many ways to drape it around the neck and shoulders. Make two different colors in different yarn weights and twist them together (pictured).

Skill Level

Easy. Although the Love Knot stitch has the power to singlehandedly turn an Easy pattern into an Intermediate one, this design is a special case. What traditionally makes the Love Knot stitch intermediate-level is the skill needed to make each Love Knot the same size. In this design, some irregularity in stitch size is a plus.

After using this pattern you will know (if you didn’t already):

  • How to crochet a Love Knot stitch (a.k.a. Lover’s Knot, Solomons Knot, Knot Stitch)
  • How to use Love Knots for the foundation row instead of chain stitches
  • How to turn Love Knots into “Lovepods”
  • How to choose from a range of mohair yarns for this project

Finished Dimensions

The pictured lavender Lovepods Boa is 64 inches/162 cm, worn doubled up. However, it’s easy to customize the length.


Crochet Hook: size K/10.5/6.5mm (hook size and gauge are not important for this design. Feel free to use the hook size that gives desired results with the yarn you choose; I’ve included a list of yarns with my own swatching notes in the pattern.)

Yarn: Look for a worsted weight one. Different mohair yarns can look alike until they are crocheted, so experiment with different hook sizes, or with holding more than one strand together, if you don’t see your yarn described in the pattern.

Yarn used for Lavender Boa: Ellen’s ½ Pint Farm’s Brushed Mohair (100% Mohair, 980yds/896m per 16oz/454g skein), color hand painted purple: 1 ball. This pure mohair yarn has a chunky, almost boucle texture in places.  S. R. Kertzer’s Ovation (75% Mohair, 25% Silk; 232yds/212m per .88oz/25g ball), Color 2123 lavender. By itself, this laceweight mohair blend is too thin for a K/6.5mm hook size; for a Boa, it’s magical when held together with the metallic Filatura di Crosa Night (66% rayon, 34% polyester; 314yds/287m per .88oz/25g ball), fingering wt., color #201 Silver. I used a G/4mm hook.

Some yarns swatched and compared in the pattern:

  • Lion Brand’s Moonlight Mohair (35% Mohair, 30% Acrylic, 25% Cotton, 10% Polyester Metallic; 82yds/75m per 1.75oz/50g skein), color #205 Glacier Bay: 1 ball.
  • Nashua Handknit’s Creative Focus Kid Mohair (75% Kid Mohair, 20% Wool, 5% Nylon; 98yds/90m per 1.75oz/50g ball), color #0001 White, 1 ball.
  • Louet’s Mohair Worsted Wt. (78% Mohair, 13% Wool, 9% Nylon; 105yds/96m per 1.75oz/50g skein), color #81 Aquamarine: 1 ball.
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First Look: Yveline, a Tunisian Wrap

Photos by Daniel Shanken
All Images © 2018.  Photographer: Daniel Shanken for Stackpole Books. View hi-res.

I’ve been looking forward to sharing some sneak peeks! You’re looking at Tunisian crochet eyelets on the diagonal, frilled ? with love knots ?. I used our Lotus yarn in these colors: Carbonite, Pearly Pearl, Satin Grey, and Lustrous Tan.

Yveline is one of two new crochet patterns I contributed to a forthcoming book. It’s called Delicate Crochet: 23 Light and Pretty Designs for Shawls, Tops and More by Sharon Hernes Silverman. The book’s official publication date is December 1, but look for it as early as October. 

Yveline Goes to Class

I’ll be traveling with Yveline to the CGOA crochet conference in Portland OR next month because she wants to meet everyone who is taking the Tunisian Crochet on the Diagonal class AND 21st Century Love Knot Adventures.

If you’re going to the conference and you took one of my earlier Tunisian lace classes, Yveline will want to meet you too. I brought swatches to those earlier classes that have since come of age in the form of the lovely Yveline.

Her Story

First, the name. It started out “Lean In” because that’s what I called the early swatches. It fascinated me how much some Tunisian stitches liked to lean with a little encouragement. Not just how much, but the kind of movement; sometimes it’s like Tunisian lace stitches have hinges or ball joints.

When it came time for a grown up name, I was in a dual swoon from binge-watching the Versailles series while adding the love knot frills! I looked for names associated with Versailles and learned that the city is located in a département called Yvelines.

About Those Love Knots

Wallet-sized beige cashmere bag of Tunisian crochet, embellished with double ruffles, woven with grey satin ribbons.
A small bag I designed 9 years ago inspired the ruffle idea. Image missing? View it here.

I’m still swooning a bit from using love knots for surface embellishment. I haven’t seen anyone else do this and it’s just the kind of odd new thing I like to try each time I teach 21st Century Love Knot Adventures. (I mean, look at what I called the class.)

It did take several swatches. Remember last year when I did a newsletter on ruffles? It was shortly after I shipped Yveline to Sharon, the book author. I’d been swatching and meditating on the essence of a crocheted ruffle for a few months.

The Tunisian eyelet fabric is so airy and “flexy” (another name I gave to the early swatches) that most of the ruffles I tried were too heavy. I love how airy the love knot frills are! Love!

About the Ruffle Idea

The urge to frill has a story too. Years ago I crocheted the cutest little bag. It’s Tunisian simple stitch with ruffles surface-crocheted on it.

So that’s my Delicate Crochet story of Yveline. I have a very different story coming up about the other design I did for the book!