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Irish Dreams Doily

Click here for larger image.Even if you don't have Irish blood, you can get in the spirit of the holiday this month and become a little bit Irish for a day or all month long with our featured free pattern, Irish Dreams Doily by Ferosa Harold. If you've ever wondered if Irish crochet is as complicated as it looks, now's the time to get your Irish on and find out. The techniques used to create this heirloom doily are classic and offer just as much inspiration today as they did in centuries past.

Whether you are a crocheter who loves a challenge or one who is tired of the same-old, same-old, Irish Dreams Doily is the project for you this month. Irish crochet is the mother of all techniques, and this exquisite pattern has written instructions, as well as symbol crochet instructions, and includes a snippet of Irish crochet history.

So, prepare a cup of Irish tea to set the stage and relax and enjoy the challenge we have provided for you. It might be a while yet before you are out in the sun gardening, so take advantage of the last cool days of winter and crochet the day away!

Designed by Ferosa Harold

Finished Size

15 1/2 inches x 21 1/2 inches

Materials

  • 650 yds. white size 10 nylon thread
  • 218 yds. Pearl #32 Blending Filament by Kreinik
  • 11 yds. Periwinkle #9294 (blue) #16 Braid by Kreinik
  • No. 6/1.8mm steel hook or hook size needed to obtain gauge

Gauge

Steps 1-3 of Motif = 2 inches x 2 1/2 inches. Each Flower = 2 inches across.

Basic Stitches

Ch, sl st, sc, hdc, dc

First Motif
Cording

Cut 60-inch piece of white thread. With blue braid, place slip knot on hook, join with sl st in center of 60-inch piece, fold in half. You will be working over both strands of Cording for entire rnd.

Note: For picot, ch 3, sl st in top of last sc made.

Step 1: For first ring, working over both strands of Cording, work 8 sc, (picot -- see Note, 3 sc) 9 times, sl st in first st of 8-sc group (first ring completed).

Step 2: For second ring, 7 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 11 times, sl st in fifth st of 8-sc group on first ring, 3 sc, sl st in first st of 8-sc group on first ring.

Step 3: For third ring, (3 sc, picot) 9 times, sl st in fourth st of 7-sc group on second ring, 3 sc, sl st in first st of 8-sc group on first ring. Fasten off.

Note: For joined picot, ch 1, drop lp from hook, insert hook in center of specified picot, pull dropped lp through, ch 1, sl st in top of last st made.

Step 4: For bar, join white thread with sc over Cording, 13 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 6 times, picot; for ring, 7 sc, picot, 3 sc, joined picot (see Note) in fifth picot of third ring, 3 sc, picot, 3 sc, place last sc made behind last 7-sc group, sl st in fourth st of same 7-sc group.

Step 5: For bar, (3 sc, picot) 7 times; for ring, 7 sc, picot, 3 sc, joined picot in second picot of second ring, 3 sc, picot, 3 sc, place last sc made behind last 7-sc group, sl st in fourth st of same 7-sc group.

Step 6: For bar, (3 sc, picot) 5 times; for ring, 7 sc, picot, 3 sc, joined picot in fifth picot of second ring, 3 sc, picot, 3 sc, place last sc made behind last 7-sc group, sl st in fourth st of same 7-sc group.

Step 7: Repeat step 6, working joined picot in seventh picot of second ring.

Step 8: Repeat step 6, working joined picot in tenth picot of second ring.

Step 9: For bar, (3 sc, p) 7 times; for ring, 7 sc, picot, 3 sc, joined picot in fifth picot of first ring, 3 sc, picot, 3 sc, place last sc made behind last 7-sc group, sl st in fourth st of same 7-sc group.

Step 10: For bar, (3 sc, picot) 7 times, 14 sc (last bar completed), join with sl st in first sc made on first ring. Fasten off. Trim excess Cording.

Second Motif
Cording

Work same as First Motif's Cording.

Steps 1-3: Repeat same Steps of First Motif.

Step 4: For bar, join white thread with sc over Cording, 13 sc,  (picot, 3 sc) 3 times, joined picot in fourth picot of last bar on First Motif, (3 sc, picot) 3 times; for ring, 7 sc, picot, 3 sc, joined picot in fifth picot of third ring, 3 sc, picot, 3 sc, place last sc made behind last 7-sc group, sl st in fourth st of same 7-sc group.

Steps 5-9: Repeat same Steps of First Motif.

Step 10: For bar, (3 sc, picot) 3 times, 3 sc, joined picot in fourth picot of first bar on First Motif, (3 sc, picot) 3 times, 14 sc, join with sl st in first sc made on first ring. Fasten off. Trim excess Cording.

Flower No. 1
Cording

Cut three strands of white thread each 50 inches long. With one strand thread and one strand filament held together as one, join with sl st around center of all threads held together as one; you will be working around six strands of Cording unless otherwise stated.

Rnd 1: Work 16 sc around Cording, join with sl st in first sc, separate three strands from six and cut remaining strands close to ring (16 sc made) Pull the three hanging strands of thread to close ring.

Rnd 2: For petals, working over Cording, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc, ch 3, sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc of petal, sl st in next 2 sc on ring) 7 times, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc) around Cording, ch 1, sl st in center picot of center bar on one end of center Motifs, ch 1, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc of petal) around Cording, sl st in last 2 sts of ring. Fasten off.

Click here for larger image.Flower No. 2
Cording

Work same as Flower No. 1 Cording.

Rnd 1: Repeat same rnd of Flower No. 1.

Rnd 2: For petals, *(sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc, ch 3, sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc on petal) around Cording, sl st in next 2 sc on ring; repeat from * 5 more times, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc) around Cording, ch 1, sl st in center picot of next bar on center Motifs (see diagram), ch 1, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc on petal) around Cording, sl st in next 2 sts on ring, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc) around Cording, ch 1, sl st in ch-3 sp of next unworked petal on last Flower, ch 1, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc on petal) around Cording, sl st in last 2 sts of ring. Fasten off.

Flower No. 3

Work same as Flower No. 2.

Flower No. 4

Joining to first free picot of next bar on center Motifs instead of center picot, work same as Flower No. 2.

Flower No. 5

Joining to last free picot of next bar on center Motifs instead of center picot, work same as Flower No. 2.

Flowers No. 6-10

Work same as Flower No. 2.

Flower No. 11

Joining to first free picot of next bar on center Motifs instead of center picot, work same as Flower No. 2.

Flower No. 12

Joining to last free picot of next bar on center Motifs instead of center picot, work same as Flower No. 2.

Flower No. 13

Work same as Flower No. 2.

Flower No. 14
Cording

Work same as Flower No. 1 Cording.

Rnd 1: Repeat same Rnd 1 of Flower No. 1.

Rnd 2: Working over Cording, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc, ch 3, sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc of petal, sl st in first 2 sts of ring) 5 times,  (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc) around Cording, sl st in ch-3 sp of corresponding petal on first Flower, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc of petal) around Cording, sl st in next 2 sts on ring, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc) around Cording, ch 1, sl st in center picot of next bar on center Motifs, ch 1, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc on petal) around Cording, sl st in next 2 sts on ring, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc) around Cording, ch 1, sl st in ch-3 sp of next unworked petal on last Flower, ch 1, (sc, hdc, 7 dc, hdc, sc in first sc on petal) around Cording, sl st in last 2 sts of ring. Fasten off.

First Round
Cording

Cut 160-inch piece of white thread. With white thread, join with sl st in center of 160-inch piece, fold in half. You will be working over both strands of Cording for entire round. Work this round with wrong side of Flowers facing you.

Step 1: 6 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, with wrong side of Flowers facing you, joined picot in ch-3 sp of second free petal on Flower No. 1, (3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 6-sc group, sl st in first sc (first ring), (3 sc, picot) 5 times (first bar); for ring, *9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in ch-3 sp of next petal on same Flower, (3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 9-sc group, sl st in fourth sc; for bar, (3 sc, picot) 5 times; repeat from *.

Step 2: For ring, 9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in ch-3 sp of second free petal on next Flower, *(3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 9-sc group, sl st in fourth sc; for bar, (3 sc, picot) 5 times*; for ring, 9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in ch-3 sp of next petal on same Flower; repeat between **.

Repeat Step 2 five more times.

Step 3: For ring, 9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in ch-3 sp of second free petal on Flower No. 8, *[(3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 9-sc group, sl st in fourth sc; for bar, (3 sc, picot) 5 times]; for ring, 9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in ch-3 sp of next petal on same Flower; repeat from *; repeat between [].

Repeat Step 2 six more times. At end of last Step, 3 sc, join with sl st in first sc of first 6-sc group on Step 1. Fasten off. Trim excess Cording.

Second Round
Cording

Cut 320-inch piece of white thread. With white thread, join with sl st in center of 320-inch piece, fold in half. You will be working over both strands of Cording for entire round.

Step 1: 6 sc, *(picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in second picot of first bar on First Round, (3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 6-sc group, sl st in first sc (first ring), *(3 sc, picot) 3 times (first bar); for ring, 9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in fourth picot of same bar on First Round, 3 sc, joined picot in second picot of last ring, 3 sc, picot, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 9-sc group, sl st in fourth sc, 3 sc, picot, 7 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 5 times, sc in base of fourth st of last 7-sc group (first outer ring), 3 sc, picot*.

Step 2: For ring, *9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in second picot of next bar on First Round, 3 sc, joined picot in second picot of last ring, 3 sc, picot, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 9-sc group (on this step), sl st in fourth sc; for bar, (3 sc, picot) 3 times; for ring, 9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in fourth picot of same bar on First Round, 3 sc, joined picot in second picot of last ring, 3 sc, picot, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 9-sc group, sl st in fourth sc; for bar, (3 sc, picot) 3 times; repeat from * 13 more times.

Step 3: For ring, 9 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in second picot of next bar on First Round, (3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 9-sc group, sl st in third sc of 9-sc group; repeat between ** of Step 1.

Step 4: Repeat Step 2, 3 sc, join with sl st in first st of first 6-sc group on Step 1. Fasten off. Trim excess Cording.

Third Round
Cording

Cut 250-inch piece of white thread. With white thread, join with sl st in center of 250-inch piece, fold in half. You will be working over both strands of Cording for entire round.

Step 1: For ring, 6 sc, picot, (3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 6-sc group, sl st in first sc; for ring, 11 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in first picot of ring just made, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 11-sc group, sl st in sixth st of 11-sc group, 5 sc, joined picot in center picot of first outer ring on Second Round.

Step 2: For ring, 10 sc, picot, (3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 10-sc group, sl st in sixth st of last 10-sc group; for ring, 11 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in first picot of ring just made, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 11-sc group, sl st in sixth st of 11-sc group, 10 sc, joined picot in center picot of next bar on Second Round.

Step 3: For ring, *16 sc, picot, (3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 16-sc group, sl st in eleventh st of 16-sc group; for ring, 11 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in first picot of ring just made, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 11-sc group, sl st in sixth st of 11-sc group, 10 sc, skip next bar on Second Round, joined picot in center picot of next bar on Second Round; repeat from * 13 more times.

Step 4: For ring, 16 sc, picot, (3 sc, picot) 2 times, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 16-sc group, sl st in eleventh sc; for ring, 11 sc, (picot, 3 sc) 2 times, joined picot in first picot of ring just made, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 11-sc group, sl st in sixth st of 11-sc group, 5 sc, joined picot in center picot of next outer ring on Second Round.

Step 5: Repeat Step 2.

Step 6: Repeat Step 3, 10 sc, join with sl st in first st of first 6-sc group on Step 1. Fasten off. Trim excess Cording.

Fourth Round
Cording

Cut 180-inch piece of white thread. With white thread, join with sl st in center of 180-inch piece, fold in half. You will be working over both strands of Cording for entire round.

Step 1: For ring, 6 sc, joined picot in first picot of second ring on any 2-ring group, 3 sc, picot, 3 sc, joined picot in third picot of first ring on next 2-ring group, 5 sc, place last sc made behind first 6-sc group, sl st in first st of 6-sc group; for bar, 5 sc, picot, (3 sc, picot) 4 times.

Step 2: For ring, *11 sc, skip next ring, joined picot in first picot of second ring on next 2-ring group, 3 sc, picot, 3 sc, joined picot in third picot of first ring on next 2-ring group, 5 sc, place last sc made behind last 11-sc group, sl st in sixth st of 11-sc group; for bar, 5 sc, picot, (3 sc, picot) 4 times; repeat from * around, 5 sc, join with sl st in first st of first 6-sc group on Step 1. Fasten off. Trim excess Cording.

Irish Crochet: A Vintage Technique

The lovely, unusual techniques used in Irish crochet show off the true talents of the crocheter. Known as early as 1743 when the Royal Dublin Society awarded prizes for it, Irish crochet became recognized worldwide during the days of the terrible Irish potato famine of 1845 to 1851. To survive, many women went into convents, where they were taught to make the exquisite laces. These were sold to wealthy families in England and France, who considered owning the fine lace a symbol of high social position.

Using the thinnest threads and a hook so small it was hard to see, the lace makers made individual dimensional motifs, including shamrocks, roses and other flowers, leaves and padded circles, which were arranged and then joined with a grounding mesh crochet fabric. It was traditionally worked only in white or off-white and occasionally in black for mourning.

These pieces were highly valued and have been handed down through the generations.

In the Edwardian period, Irish crochet wedding gowns were the fashion, and an entire convent might work for a year or more on one dress. Our doily uses the most traditional of the techniques.

Copyright © March 2004 Crochet! magazine. All rights reserved.