The broomstick lace, also known as the peacock eye crochet or jiffy lace is one of the oldest crochet techniques in use from as early as the 19th century. As the name suggests, actual broomsticks were used originally to create the intricate design of a broomstick lace. But in modern crocheting, a dowel pin or a dowel is used for the same purpose.
How to crochet the broomstick lace
The complicated twisted design makes the pattern look quite intriguing, while in truth it is pretty simple pattern, suitable even for beginner crocheters. Apart from the crochet hook, the pattern calls for a dowel or a large size knitting needle (size 50 works well). Here are the step by step directions:
First, chain 21 before making a single crochet (sc) in every chain starting from the second chain. You will have a single crochet foundation row with 20 sc.
The pattern is worked with groups of five stitches at once, so the number of sc on your foundation row should be a multiple of 5.
Once you are done working the foundation row, pull the loop to slide it onto the dowel or knitting needle you will be using for working the pattern.
Mark the next single crochet, insert your hook into it, yarn over (yo), pull up the loop and slide it onto the dowel. Now, you need to pull one stitch from each sc after yo onto the dowel, so you have a total of 20 stitches on your dowel.
As mentioned above, you will be working with five stitches at a time, so there will be 4 groups of five stitches to work with in this project as there are 20 stitches on the dowel. You can take all the stitches off the dowel at this point as there is no risk of losing the stitches like in a knitting work.
However, if you are not comfortable with keeping all the stitches off the dowel, you can pull five stitches on your crochet hook and leave the rest on the dowel until it is time to work with the next 5 stitch set.
Now, count the first 5 stitches and insert your crochet hook through them.
Next, yo, pull through the 5 loops on your hook at once. Now for the first set in every row, you need to work a single chain so you have the turning chain.
Work 5 sc in a similar manner, into the center of the 5 stitches you are working with.
This step may vary if you are working with a different number of stitches. For example, you will have to work 6 sc into the center if you are dividing your stitches in groups of 6 stitches each.
Your first group is complete once you are done working one sc for each of the 5 loops. Now, count the next five stitches and insert your hook into them.
Yo and pull through all the loops together as you did in step 6. You do not have to work the chain this time as you only need to work one turning chain in each row.
Repeat from step 8 until you have worked all the 4 sets of 5 stitches each.
Stretch out your work and note how the sc made in the 5 loops have laid the foundation for the next 5 stitches to be pulled onto the dowel.
Work in the similar manner as in step 2 to pull 20 loops from the 20 sc worked in the last row.
Repeat from step 5 through 10.
Repeat from step 2 to step 10 until your work reaches the desired length.
Instructions found on craftsy.com
Uses of the broomstick lace
Like most other lace crochet and knitting patterns, the beautiful netted fabric produced by the broomstick technique is ideal for making stylish triangular shawls, prayer shawls and hooded or ruffled infinity scarves. It can be used for making Afghans and baby blankets as well when combined with a stylish yet sturdy knit or crocheted edging. Fingerless gloves and neck warmers can be ideal lace projects for beginners.
Proficient crocheters can experiment with knitting the broomstick lace in the round as this technique is suitable for making fashionable slouchy hats, beret beanies and pretty neck warmers. The crocheted lace also looks stunning when used in handmade beaded accessories like bracelets and arm bands.
Broomstick lace pattern ideas
Now that you know the secret of the lacey, swirling pattern, test your crochet skills and take up a simple project using the design. Here are a few ideas for you to get started:
Like the above ideas? Check out a few more unique things to be done with the broomstick technique:
- Broomstick Lace Baby Blanket Pattern
- Broomstick Lace Beanie Hat Pattern
- Broomstick Lace Fingerless Gloves Pattern
- Broomstick Lace Jacket Pattern
- Broomstick Lace Purse Pattern
- Baby Broomstick Lace Headband Pattern
- Broomstick Lace Dress Pattern
So, go ahead and surprise others with your expert handiwork.