Debate with Daniel and I over Crochet Pattern Usage


Kincardine Ontario Canada, Lake Huron

Daniel and I have been talking a lot about patterns.

The question revolves around pattern books and magazines that have adult clothing inside. I see a lot of great designs but I am wondering how many people are actually going to grab a crochet hook and do the project?

Mikey’s Thoughts:

  • I am of the belief that many people enjoy looking at the photographs but the chances of doing the patterns are highly unlikely here in North America when it comes to adult clothing. I feel the percentage of people who do the patterns for adult clothing is really low.

Daniel’s Thoughts:

  • Daniel feels that my thoughts are based in North American principles of lack of time and value. He feels that the patterns of adult clothing is most likely to be done by a European, Chinese, and Middle Eastern individual. There are stronger in cultural values which help keep things like crochet alive and well by all ages. He says it’s possible they don’t see crochet as a craft but as a art form which changes the level of respect.

Daniel’s thoughts are based on the ideas of fashion, art and music seem to be more appreciated in Europe. When he looks at the mega shows for designing and the arts, the appreciation level as an entire society is enriched with enjoying life with work being a balance point.

My thoughts are that here in Canada and USA, we are exceptionally busy people. Some of us having two jobs to keep the roofs over our heads. We work ourselves to extreme exhaustion. Even if you are a Domestic Homemaker, the work never ends. We complete our crochet when we have time, which in many cases, isn’t a lot of time left over each day. I feel many of us do baby size projects and afghans as a society here in North America.

So the question are…

  • How likely are you to do an adult article of clothing in a pattern book, internet website or magazine?
  • If you do adult clothing, what types of projects?
  • If you do use pattern, what are the projects you mostly look for and why?

About Mikey, The Crochet Crowd

I am Mikey, owner of The Crochet Crowd Blog. I'm a 'hooker' at heart with the passion to crochet. I am from Ontario Canada and teach how to crochet online through YouTube Video Tutorials. From a simple idea and being at the right place and time in my life back in 2008, the concept of The Crochet Crowd was developed. I'm here to hook and share. Come follow my crochet journey and share yours with comments here and you are most welcome to share your creativity within our Facebook page.
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74 Responses to Debate with Daniel and I over Crochet Pattern Usage

  1. Sadly, most of the adult clothes I see are designed as knit patterns and not crochet-wear. With the plethora of lovely yarns available and hooks of all sizes, there is no reason great patterns for adults have to all be made for knitters! I have just finished a lovely shrug sweater in crochet and will be tackling some tunic length sweaters for my nieces (ages 13-25) for the Winter Holidays. More patterns that are finer (rather than bulkier) work might do more to promote crocheters to make adult clothes.

    • evelyn Overman says:

      I concur with your “fitted clothing is mostly for knitting” I have often wondered why that is. All I know is that most of the really nice, good or elegant clothing is knitted and there is not even on option to crochet as there is not a pattern in site. Even the people who do both will more often than not switch to knit when doing clothing.

  2. Valda McGillivray says:

    strictly afgans for me..would never think to make an adult or childs garments far to labour intensive, but having said that when I think of the hours spent and the size of the afgan I could probably have made a garment.

  3. As an American living in Europe I can tell you you’re definitely right about the difference in cultures between Europe and the US. That said, I find the patterns, ideas, blogs and video tutorials coming from North America so much more inspiring than what’s readily available in Europe. The North American online material is new, modern and innovative. Here in Europe people tend to be stuck in the very traditions that are keeping crochet alive. They tend to do the same sorts of projects with the same sorts of yarns and colors that have been done for generations. Most of my projects, from pattern to yarn and even hook come from North America. Although I’m fairly new to crochet, I often find myself being asked where I get my ideas, yarns, etc. when people here in Europe see me working on a project. Projects such as the Caron “Rows of ruffles” dress or the Redheart Spider-Web-Throw are bright and new and highly unusual here in “old Europe”. That will change. The people who are in their 20’s now are much more likely to reach for their computer when researching something and more ready to try new things. I’m always handing out links to open-minded, curious Europeans.

  4. Pattie Fulton says:

    If I wanted to make really elegant clothes, I think I would learn to knit, as the finer yarns and knit patterns are more suitable for drapey clothes. Crocheted items seem thicker and bulkier, and not as appropriate for clothing. That being said, I have used very fine yarns and made some really adorable baby layettes, so I suppose I could try my hand at more adult items. I absolutely LOVE sock yarns, but don’t think I would want to wear bulky crocheted socks…I have crocheted one skirt for my daughter out of a very soft, drapey yarn, but she’ll probably stop wearing it the first time it develops a little loop or pill. Tops or cardigans would probably be more appropriate. The magazines tend to feature really trendy clothing, and that’s the last thing I would want to do as a starter adult clothing project. I like the idea of those books that deconstruct the construction of a garment, and tell you how to make the various classic pieces in any appropriate size. That’s the kind of pattern I would want to follow, with LOTS of pictures (magazines don’t generally have enough pictures of each project).

  5. Karen Rinehart says:

    I have a stack of patterns I want to make. My problem is that I work full time, usually work over, work as many Saturday overtime hours as I can, and I am also a full time caretaker for a disabled husband. I have a sweater pattern I am determined to make for myself… after I finish a prayer shawl, 3 baby afghans, some hats for a homeless outreach group, an afghan for my son, and then one for his girlfriend who will decide his afghan was really meant for her, a couple small scrap afghans for their dogs to sleep on, and… the list goes on. In 41 years of crocheting, nearly everything I made has been for someone else. I do have a small pile of shawls, and some hats and scarves I managed to make for myself. I just made an “emergency” baby afghan for a friend granddaughter who is in the hospital, bedfast to try to prevent the baby coming to early… I always think these things need to come before my sweater or vest… but I have the patterns handy and I review them and have them in the order I want to make them for myself!!

    • Evelyn Overman says:

      Are ;you living inside my brain that is exactly how my crocheting life is. Except I do not have one thing, not even a hat, for myself.

  6. Margaret Bernardi says:

    I do occasionally crochet an article of clothing from a magazine but it has to be something that is very classic. The trendy items are not worth the time and expense to me. When you make something you want to feel good about wearing it for a long time. The latest crochet edition of Vogue has a cute sweater on page 59 (item 15) that fits the bill for me and I plan on doing it as soon as I finish two wips. Unfortunately the magazines usually just have trendy items.

  7. I will quite often make a sweater. But as for things like skirts/dresses, I would not.

  8. Cheryl goodsell says:

    I have made a couple shawls and lots of scarfs. Years ago I made vests, still have the pattern book it came from, now I see vest are starting to show up again. What goes out of style, usually finds it’s way back………..never throw anything away. LOL.

  9. Tina Lawson says:

    The thing about doing adult sizes is that I never really know if , as a gift, if they will really wear it. Kids aren’t ad picky. I haven’t done any adult size yet, but I have a couple things picked out for my daughters Christmas gift. Afghans and kids stuff go faster for me. I have a beautiful hoodie sweater picked out for my daughters gift.

  10. Elli Z says:

    Funny you should bring this up now. I’ve always wanted to crochet my own sweaters, tops and vests but have always stuck with hats, mittens, scarves, shawls and afgans. Many others have mentioned the same problems that have made me hesitate to start on adult clothing – (1) models that no where near approximate my size (and I’m pretty average-sized), (2) a basic lack of knowledge about sewing clothing and how to change sizes, (3) published patterns that list sizes that don’t match up with mine (i.e., find the right bust size but then arm circumference is way off, waist is shaped but no measurements given, and length is for a midget), and (4) an unwillingness to use expensive yarn and devote all that time for something that might not fit.

    So a few weeks ago I kicked myself and attacked the problem head on. I’ve basically given myself a detailed course on all the stuff I felt wobbly, read and compared a few hundred patterns, shopped yarn sales carefully, and am starting off tomorrow morning (my next stitching window) with my first adult cardigan – of my own design! I would have preferred to take a pattern and just follow it, but the sizing is just never right and if I’m going to make a mistake I’d rather it be my own mistake so I can learn from it rather than wondering at the directions while I try to figure out where it went wrong.

    By the way, I never ever make baby items. I didn’t even for my own baby. They’re cute, but so impractical at the speed the kids outgrow them. Now that my son is 5 I’ve finally started making sweaters for him. It doesn’t take much yarn and he wears them more often than store-bought stuff because he loves that he “helps” make them. (I’ve been encouraging him to hold the hook for a stitch here and there so he feels part of the process.)

    I’m from the US.

    • Evelyn Overman says:

      I regularly look through magazines and books regarding crochet. I have made many scarfs, afghans, children’s slippers, hoodies, hats and leggings using the patterns from the magazines and books. I am from California, and I do find time for my favorite craft.

  11. Pacific NorthWest here! I too love looking for idea’s and inspiration, but hestitate at the cost of really good yarn, versus the appreciation factor. I am disabled, so time isn’t a problem, but the fixed income is! I have made an Adult skirt, for a Daughter-in-law, and matching skirt for the granddaughter. They were made of the silk sari yarn, and turned out quite beautifully! They were seemingly well received, but have never been worn! I have made other items for the granddaughter that have been worn/used/loved. Now I only make what I KNOW will be used and loved, and that is not usually anything in adult sizes!

  12. I have made hats, scarves, gloves, mittens, sweaters… and shawls. Most of those were for my daughter. I made one large throw for the couch… it’s long, but only 1/3 of the width of the blanket (it fits the top of the couch perfectly) I started making my daughter a dress 🙂 I was thinking of making myself a top or dress… I am on stage here and there (we volunteer at a local community theater), so in between shows I have tons of time to devote to crochet, now that my daughter is older 🙂 I have also been creating (my own pattern) doll clothes for her Monster High dolls (I’m in a way relieved she just got into them… at the age of 11 I was fearing she was growing up too fast when she sold off her Barbie stuff at the yard sale this Spring!)

    I never learned how to knit… I tried and tried and tried and just couldn’t get it – granted, this was out of a book – same way I learned crochet. But I’m SO used to crochet that I can’t imagine trying to knit now lol… I am SO grateful for this site cuz nearly EVERYWHERE else – it’s ALL about knitting and I felt like the red-headed step child of the yarn people lol 🙂

    But YES I really want to make more clothes for adults! I’m planning to make my husband a sweater for the holidays, but I’m having trouble finding a nice (and free) pattern for a man’s sweater, pull over, etc.

  13. Lisa says:

    I have to say that for me I crochet adult clothing. I usually have enough in my stash to complete a top or vest. It is much cheaper than buying clothes. There are times I want a change from premade clothes. It may be easier to buy ready made, I find them in poor quality to my own. I am always looking through books an magazines and videos at the library.

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