Friday, October 3, 2008

Taking the Mystery Out of 4-dc Mesh Filet Crochet

by Sandi Marshall

Filet crochet is made up of open mesh and solid mesh. The width of the mesh can be over 3 double crochet (3-dc mesh) or over 4 double crochet (4-dc mesh).


In 4-dc mesh, the first mesh of the row uses all four double crochet but each extra mesh of the row is made over only the next three double crochet. That is because the mesh share the double crochet that is in the middle of two mesh (that middle double crochet is the last one of the first mesh but also counts as the first one of the next mesh). It's easier to understand this by taking a close look at my photo above.

The following instructions are written in US American English crochet pattern terms. If you are used to British English crochet patterns terms, the translation for the American English dc (double crochet) is a British English tr (treble).

In US American English crochet pattern terms:
Solid Mesh in 4-dc Mesh -
If the first mesh of the row is a solid mesh being made over a solid mesh of the previous row, directions = ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in each of next 3 dc

If the first mesh of the row is a solid mesh that is being made over an open mesh, then directions = ch 3 (counts as first dc), 2 dc in chain-2 space, dc in next dc.

Any other solid mesh in the row:
If made over a solid mesh, then dc in ea of next 3 dc
If made over an open mesh = 2 dc in next chain-2 space, dc in next dc

Open Mesh in 4-dc Mesh -
If the first mesh of a row is an open mesh being made over a solid mesh, directions = ch 5 (counts as first dc and a chain-2), skip next 2 dc, dc in next dc.

If the first mesh of a row is an open mesh being made over an open mesh, directions = ch 5 (counts as first dc and a chain-2), skip next chain-2 space, dc in next dc.

Any other open mesh in the row:
If made over a solid mesh, then chain 2, skip next 2 dc, dc in next dc
If made over an open mesh, directions = chain 2, skip next chain-2 space, dc in next dc

Many crocheters really get hooked on filet crochet, once the basics are understood and they are comfortable with working directly from a chart, without needing written row by row directions for each new chart. Filet crochet pieces are beautiful and have varied uses. Charts can be worked in crochet thread or with any weight of yarn (the thinner the materials are that you use, the smaller the finished piece will be). An edging can be added to a thread crocheted piece to result in a doily (that is square, rectangular, oval or round, depending on the shape of the chart). Crocheted tabs can be added at the top of a finished filet crochet, to use for inserting a wooden dowel, making the filet crochet piece into a decorative banner. A filet crochet worked in yarn can become the center of an afghan by adding any number of additional rounds around the outside edge of the finished filet crochet piece. Those are just a few ideas to get your imagination going.

Browse this blog for some of my charted designs that I have created and made available as free charts for your enjoyment.

Article and photo copyright 2008 by Sandi Marshall. Do not copy to another web site, blog, ebook or print publication. Links to this page are welcome.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I like filet crochet, but notice that when I do it in 4 dc, my project come out wider than it should. How do I avoid this from happening? Sorry I don't have a user name.

Lisa

Sandi Marshall said...

Hi Lisa,

Yes, when made in a 4-dc mesh, the filet crochet piece will come out looking wider than the look of the chart. There are several ways to do filet crochet that will look closer to the dimensions of the chart.

Some people use a treble crochet in place of a double crochet so that the rows will be taller, making the height of the piece balance out better with the width of the piece. If using treble stitches, add one extra chain to the starting chain and begin one chain further over than called for in the first direction (i.e. if it says to dc in the 5th chain from the hook, but you are using trebles, then treble in the 6th ch from the hook to begin the first row).

The other way (to get a filet crochet piece that matches more closely the dimensions of the chart) is to work the chart in 3-dc mesh. In contrast to 4-dc mesh, where the first mesh of the row is made over 4 stitches but each additional mesh is made over the next 3 stitches, in the 3-dc mesh method, the first mesh of the row is made over 3 stitches but each additional mesh of the row is worked over only the next 2 stitches. This results in a piece that is not as wide as the same piece would be if made in a 4-dc mesh so the width and height balance out better with the look of the chart.

I included basic directions for 3-dc mesh in the My Favorite Things Banner that I added to this blog on October 14, 2008.

I have a scarf pattern design in the works, which I am making in both 3-dc mesh and in 4-dc mesh so that you can see the difference in the look of the two methods. I'll be adding photos and directions for that scarf to this blog soon.

Sandi

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the treble stitch idea. I will definitly try that out. I find that crocheting in 3 dc mesh doesn't look as well overall. I'll keep watching your blog for ideas and patterns (and maybe actually make up a login name next time.

thanks again for your advice!

Lisa

Sandi Marshall said...

You're welcome, Lisa.

I'm glad that it was helpful.

Sandi

Anonymous said...

I am totally brand-new to filet crochet, and this tip has saved me alot of frustration!! Thanks - Cristy

Anonymous said...

Hi Sandi I am trying to do a name doily PRUITT I went to your checkerboard alphabet and just love the way that it looks. My problem is when I add up all of the stitches and spaces and then add five to them I come out with a foundation chain of 426. This seems rather large to me and almost impossible to find a frame for it. Am I miscalculating the foundation chain?? Also how do I go about centering each letter just right?? I am making this for my daughter as a wedding gift and cannot find any books anywhere that tell me what I want to know. Thanks so much for taking the time to help me out your instructions are great and I am slowly learning all about filet.

Brenda

Anonymous said...

I like your idea about doing the treble crochet will have to try that but I have found that instead of doing from top to bottom (reading the pattern) I do it from side to side makes it a bit longer instead of wider.

Kip said...

This is wrong. You have 3 dc in each filet.

Helen said...

Hi Sandi, I've looked everywhere for a contact link on one of your websites. I just wanted to say THANK YOU for all the free charts I've seen by you at about.com and on your websites. That's very generous, and will advance my crochet education.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sandi,
Like Helen said, I have looked EVERYWHERE on your site, on About.com, and any links that come up with your name on it, and this is the first opportunity I have had to Thank You for all the Wonderful articles! I have been away from the needlearts (embroidery, crocheting, knitting, rug making etc) and I have enjoyed reading your articles as they are a refresher for me. I understand you are no longer an About guide, but keep up the excellent work. Much Success to You.

Dezzy

Anonymous said...

thanks for posting.

Charlie said...

I have copied your pattern for
"Lovely Solid Shells Baby Bib Pattern"
I think I have found an error in it. In the pattern you have doing the "Bib Strap Right-hand Side:" two times.
I thought you might like to know.
charlye46@comcast.net