Irish Crochet Techniques

The Art of Irish Crochet

Irish crochet is a freestyle form of crochet from the 19th century. There are vintage books trying to explain these techniques, however they can be hard to understand. The patterns are vague at best. Luckily there are people today that have deciphered the old patterns and are re-introducing the old motifs of Irish crochet. Irish crochet consists of making motifs that later are crochet together through creating a lace netting. As the picture below show; Irish crochet is truly amazing.

irish crochet rose motif

Modern Irish Crochet

If you choose to give Irish crochet a go you are entering into the past. You are learning an old craft, and you will be bringing it into the modern world. The materials used for Irish Crochet are fine yarn and small sized hooks. You can of course use thicker yarn and larger hooks to give it your own spin. Usually though Irish crochet uses size 10 crochet cotton an size 7/1.65 steel crochet hook.

Irish Crochet stitch conversion

Old Irish patterns uses the UK stitch abbreviation. Please see chart below to translate your pattern.

Old Term (UK)                       Modern Term (US)

Single stitch                            Slip stitch (sl st or ss)

Plain, (double crochet)         Single crochet (sc)

Treble                                        Double crochet (dc)

Long treble crochet              Triple crochet (trc or tc)

Common Irish Crochet Stitches

The bullion stitch

bullion crochet stitch bullion stitch

The Clone stitch

clone stitch crochet clone stitch

Crochet cord

crochet cord stitch crochet cord

Reverse single crochet

reverse single crochet stitch reverse single crochet

The Art of Irish Crochet

In Irish Crochet the patterns are not worked in consecutive rows, their executions more resemble that of needle-made lace. You crochet all the motifs that form the full pattern and then laced together. The motifs are often worked over a cord foundation, which can be straight or curved.

How to crochet over a single cord foundation

crochet over the cord how to crochet over the cord

Crochet over a single cord foundation gives substance to the motifs. Some patterns say to crochet over a double or triple cord foundation.

How to crochet a second row of double crochet (plain) stitches over a cord foundation folded back.

how-to-crochet-a-second-row-of-plain-stitches-over-a-cord-foundation-folded-back

How to crochet a closed tendril

how to crochet close tendril crochet closed tendril

To make a closed tendril you join the loop of thread creating a little eyelet. Coming back over the stitches below you crochet a 2nd row of double crochet. Another way of crochet tendrils is to crochet 3 plains (dc) in each stitch.

How to make a detached ring.

how to crochet a detached ring crochet

Detached rings are usually made over a triple cord foundation. Twist the cord foundation several times round a mesh, and cover the ring entirely with plain stitches.

How to make drooping eyelets

how to crochet drooping eyelets drooping eyelets crochet

How to make eyelets turned upwards

how to crochet eyelets turned upwards crochet upwards eyelets

Make a number of double crochet over the cord foundation and then draw it up tight into a curve. Secure it with a dc in one of the dc beneath.