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Broomstick Lace Tutorial

February 12, 2012

This is a very wordy and picture-ey tutorial because it is a pretty involved process, so please bear with me! I’ll break it into four parts: Tips, Starting the Base, Working the First Row of Loops, and Making the First Row of Lace. This is gonna be intense . . . Ready? You can do it, I know you can!

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TIPS

  1. Be patient with yourself. Broomstick lace has a bit of a steep learning curve because it is so awkward. Take heart! Practice makes perfect, as they say.
  2. Pull your lace loops snugly around whatever lace tool you are using, but not too tight.
  3. If you are a beginner, I suggest using a synthetic or synthetic blend yarn. Anything with a little give and stretch will be easier to work with.
  4. This tutorial shows my way, using this pin. This is not the only correct method. There are many different ways to make broomstick lace, so do what feels right for you. Here are some other methods: video by Crochet Geek, picture tute at Crochet Cabana, picture tutorial at Crochet Spot, picture tutorial at Kootooyoo.
  5. You can make your own pin, like I did, or you can purchase one here. You can also use a broomstick, a ruler, a knitting needle, a pipe, or a turkey baster.
  6. You may want to use a lifeline. You can read about how to do that here.
  7. Inevitably, once in a while you will discover that you are one loop short. That’s okay – just make the correct number of single crochets in your lace loop groups and keep going.
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STARTING THE BASE
You can start your first “loop” row right after you make your chain, but I find it is easier to make a more sturdy “base layer” with a row of single crochet. First, you must determine your multiple. Decide how many loops you want for each of your lace groups – it can be any amount. Then, decide how many lace groups you want/how long you want your row to be. Here is the formula for your beginning chain: (number of loops per group× number of lace groups) + 1. For this tutorial, I decided on five loops per grouping and I want four groups. So, my formula looks like this: (5× 4) + 1 = 21. Chain 21, then single crochet in the second chain from the hook, and in each remaining chain to the end. If you are following this example, you will have 20 single crochets for a base (do not remove your hook):

broomstick lace_base stitches

WORKING THE FIRST ROW OF LOOPS

After you finish your base row of single crochet, pull up a big loop with your hook (through the last stitch you just made). This loop will already be there, you just need to yank it up:

broomstick lace_pulling up first loop

Remove your hook and set it aside for now. Grab your pin or lace tool and insert it through the loop you just made. Pull the ball-end of the yarn to make the loop snug (but not tight!) around the pin:

broomstick lace_inserting the pin

Okay, here’s where everything gets awkward. I’m going to show you what works for me, but you very well might come up with a way that works better for you. Do whatever is most comfortable/makes most sense to you! Weave the yarn through your fingers, as you would normally do for controlling tension, and slide your hand up to meet the pin. Grasp the pin. I am right-handed, so my yarn and pin are in my left hand:

broomstick lace_grasping the pin front

broomstick lace_grasping the pin back

For “loop” rows, always work through the back loops only of the single crochets. You will pull up a loop for each single crochet from the previous row (so for this example, I will have 20 loops at the end). Insert your hook through the back loop of the next single crochet and grab the ball-end yarn that is wrapped through the fingers:

broomstick lace_grabbing a loop

Pull that yarn through – make the loop as big as you want – and at the same time, slide your middle finger down the hook so it is also in the loop:

broomstick lace_pulling up a loop

Next, insert your ring finger into the loop as well. Now you have the hook, your middle finger, and your ring finger all inside the loop:

broomstick lace_inserting ring finger

Spread your ring and middle fingers apart to open up the loop and guide it onto the pin:

broomstick lace_opening the loop

Snuggify the loop around the pin. Most likely, you will have to readjust your hands and yarn a bit now. That’s okay – just get back into position for the next loop. With some practice, all of these steps become more fluid and easy:

broomstick lace_tightening the loop on the pin

Continue making a loop for each of your single crochets until you get to the end (20 loops here):

broomstick lace_first row of loops

Set your hook aside for now, and carefully pull the pin out completely. Here is an in-progress-pin-removal:

broomstick lace_sliding the loops off

MAKING THE FIRST ROW OF LACE

And now, the moment we’ve been waiting for, the first lace group! Grab up your hook again and insert it through the first five loops, pulling them a little taut. Now get your ball-end yarn in working order through the fingers of your left hand:

broomstick lace_starting the first lace row

To start the very first lace group of each row, we’ll need to “lock” it in place with a slip stitch. Grab the ball-end yarn with your hook:

broomstick lace_sl st to start first lace row

Now, pull up the yarn through all five loops:

broomstick lace_securing first lace group

Yarn over:

broomstick lace_start first sl st

. . . And pull it through to finish the locking slip stitch. This slip stitch does not count as a single crochet:

broomstick lace_finishing first sl st

Because our lace groups are five loops deep, we need to make five single crochets into each group. Insert your hook through the “eye” of the lace group:

broomstick lace_starting first sc

Grab the yarn from behind the lace group:

broomstick lace_working first sc

Pull it through:

broomstick lace_finishing first sc

Yarn over:

broomstick lace_finishing first sc 2

. . . And pull the yarn through both loops on your hook to complete the first single crochet:

broomstick lace_end first sc

Continue to make single crochets through the eye of the lace group until you have five single crochets:

broomstick lace_first lace group done

For the rest of the lace groups, you do not have to make a locking slip stitch. Insert your hook through the next five loops, making sure they aren’t twisted, and that they’re all facing the same direction:

broomstick lace_starting 2nd lace group

Yarn over:

broomstick lace_yo for first sc for 2nd lace group

. . . And pull the yarn through:

broomstick lace_start of sc for 2nd lace group

Yarn over again and pull the yarn through both loops on your hook to complete the single crochet:

broomstick lace_end first sc for 2nd lace group

Continue making five single crochets in each group of five loops to the end. You’ll have 20 single crochets and four lace loop groups. Do not remove your hook:

broomstick lace_first lace row done

Pull up a big loop, take up your broomstick lace pin, and start all over again. Repeat to your heart’s content:

broomstick lace_starting row 3

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115 Comments leave one →
  1. jan permalink
    July 25, 2013 2:52 pm

    love it so easy to follow thank you

  2. August 3, 2013 7:12 pm

    Great tutorial. Do visit my broomstick patterns too when you find time. here is the link.

    http://livingwell231.blogspot.com/2013/04/square-broomstick-lace-baby-blanket.html

    Thanks a ton
    Shanti

  3. Anonymous permalink
    August 8, 2013 2:04 pm

    Beautifully and patiently explained, with pictures for each step. It was very easy to follow and very helpful. Thank you!

  4. hester van staden permalink
    August 10, 2013 7:04 am

    i do not understand the last 5 sts of row 4. can you help me please?

    • August 10, 2013 9:19 am

      Yes! Can you copy and paste the text that you’re stuck on (because the tutorial isn’t written in rows)?

  5. October 20, 2013 11:22 pm

    I have watched countless YouTube videos and have yet to figure it out.I came across your tutorial and I finally know how to do this stitch! Thank you!!! :)

    • October 21, 2013 7:05 am

      Oh my, you don’t know how happy this makes me! Thank you so much!

  6. Hito permalink
    October 27, 2013 6:00 am

    I have literally read through three broomstick lace patterns and sobbed because they didn’t explain the transition from the first five to the second well. I tried and tried and couldn’t. Thank you so much for pictures and well described actions!!! I look forward to finally getting this right!!!

  7. Anonymous permalink
    November 7, 2013 12:07 pm

    Why don’t you just do a video ?

    • November 7, 2013 2:49 pm

      I don’t have money to purchase a video camera. I often don’t do tutorials all in one sitting because I have a full time job and I don’t have time to do that.

  8. Marina permalink
    November 19, 2013 4:30 am

    Great tutorial.
    Is there a right side to broomstick lace or not?

    • November 19, 2013 2:56 pm

      The right side is the side that faces you as you work through the top loops of the broomstick lace! Depending on the pattern, you might always have the right side facing you (because broomstick lace is worked back and forth without turning), or you might have some rows of different stitches between broomstick lace rows. Then, you would be turning your work.

  9. Rachel permalink
    January 3, 2014 6:29 pm

    I have been making a baby blanket it is ready to finish. What is the best way to finish it? The blanket is the broomstick lace style.
    Thanks. Rachel

  10. February 1, 2014 7:59 pm

    Reblogged this on Brooklyn Red Girl and commented:
    broomstick lace

  11. February 2, 2014 3:04 pm

    Reblogged this on UK Crochet Patterns.

  12. February 2, 2014 5:50 pm

    Check out our Broomstick Lace Blanket/Afghan. Great tutorial.

  13. February 3, 2014 3:26 pm

    I may actually give it a try after reading through this !!! always thought it was way too hard, you have explained it wonderfully .

  14. Angela permalink
    February 8, 2014 10:52 am

    I am just learning to crochet and looked at the picture and thought no way! Your pictures and explanations made it easy to follow and I am proud to say it worked.. Thanks for making it seem easy!

    • February 8, 2014 11:10 am

      YES! I am so glad it made sense and worked for you — it feels awesome to learn a new skill!

  15. Anonymous permalink
    March 16, 2014 3:27 am

    Hi,from the Philippines ,
    thanks for this wonderful share! i did it!

  16. July 18, 2014 7:07 pm

    Reblogged this on missy4987m and commented:
    I can not print this page.

  17. Steph permalink
    August 24, 2014 1:35 pm

    Hi, does the single crochet that joins the five loop groups count as one of the five single crochets into that group?

    • September 2, 2014 7:02 am

      Yes! There should be a total of 5 sc in each group.

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