What is Planned Pooling in Crochet?
Planned Pooling is basically a technique in which you crochet the same number of stitches per color intentionally using a variegated pooling yarn to make a specific design or color pattern.
The term pooling refers to gathering the same color/s together forming a “pool” to achieve a desired pattern or sequence. I talk more about planned pooling here with the exact method on how to achieve the desired pattern you want, without a pinch!
What Yarn to use for Pooling?
Pooling yarns are used for planned pooling. These are multi-colored yarns that are consistently the same on each cycle. This means that for each repeated color sequence, the length should always be exactly the same length.
The best ones to use would be the Red Heart Super Saver Jumbo Pooling Yarn in the color Icelandic or the Caron Jumbo Yarns, and with these yarns, you will be able to produce specific designs such as the Argyle pattern, zig zag stitches or other unique color palettes.
Although this pattern might seem a bit intimidating at first, this step-by-step picture and video tutorial will guide you along the way. And I promise, once you have mastered your tension, the rest as they say is a breeze!
So don’t forget to Save this Pin for later!
Can I use ANY Stitch?
The short answer is Yes you can.
Because this pattern is determined by the number of fixed stitches, you can easily substitute it with ANY simple stitch! However, depending on the type of yarn you use, you may need to tweak your stitched a tiny bit. As long as each stitch is repeated on the following stitch.
In this image (above), I am using the Half Double Crochet Stitch which I also used to make this fun and free Crochet Cardigan Jacket Pattern. However, when I tried using a Half Double crochet stitch on the Caron Jumbo Yarns like the image on the left below, I wasn’t really able to achieve a perfect argyle pattern than with the single crochet stitches on the right, because the color rows were much more shorter than the Red Heart yarns.
Now let’s get pooling
Watch The Video Tutorial Here
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Tools And Materials:
Yarn Weight: Category 4
Brand: Red Heart Super Saver Jumbo Pooling Yarn
Skill: Easy – Intermediate
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1. Start your slip knot on any color and work 30 chains.
2. Once you have reached 30 chains, and if it does not end on a new color, (which is usually the case) continue to add more chains until you reach the next color. This will be your turning chain.
3. On the 2nd chain from your hook, work a Hdc stitch.
4. Count each stitch per color sequence. In this example, I have 5 Blue stitches, 4 Dark Gray stitches, 4 Turquoise stitches, and 4 Light Gray stitches. I have a total of 4 colors per cycle.
5. Once you have determined the number of stitches per color, go to plannedpooling.com to work on your design template.
6. Select your yarn color and key in the number of stitches you made for each color. ** Note that the first color you input will also determine the color arrangement as well
7. Next, select the number of stitches you intend to work with and see how the pattern looks. If it doesn’t look right, go ahead and add/ subtract 1 stitch until you reach the pattern that you like.
8. Now that you have your stitch count and your design, you can now start working on your pattern.
How to Adjust Tension
So what happens when our numbers are off? Let me show you an example. For this sequence, I should have 5 stitches of blue but I only have 4. That means somewhere along the way, I must have made a few loose stitches. In order to fix this, what I like to do is rip out the entire one-color set, and start over by making smaller and tighter sts.
If your stitches are too tight and you end up with more stitches per color, then go ahead and frog that one color set (sometimes you might need to rip out more), and pull your loops higher to get a looser stitch.
And as always, once you’ve completed a row, it is always good to go back and check your pattern sample, to ensure everything looks right and you’re good to carry on;
How to Join Yarns
If you need to join a second skein, all you have to do is to join the new yarn at the end of the last color set.
As you can see here, turquoise is my last color set.
On my new skein, I’ll look for the next color sequence, which is light gray, and I’ll pull through the gray on that last stitch.
Continue to Hdc on the next stitch while working around the excess tail. Always make sure that the stitch count per color is the same.
Great job if you made it this far! And if you want to give it a try on a garment, go check out my free planned pooling patterns below.
If you have any questions about this tutorial, do check out the video tutorial or get in touch with me by dropping a comment below.
And don’t forget to tag me on Instagram and Facebook @theknottylace, I would love to see your work!
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