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Last fall I posted this picture on Instagram. What was it? My very first crochet pattern, which I’m now ready to share with you!
Here it is: the Ball & Chain crochet necklace pattern!
(Suggested musical accompaniment: They Might Be Giants’ song “Lucky Ball and Chain”)
I’m a beginner crocheter and knitter, so it’s a pretty simple pattern, made up of linked modules of one stuffed ball and a chain of variable length. You can choose how long the chains should be, and also how many modules to make, making all sorts of possible lengths and looks. Above you can see the three necklaces I’ve made with this pattern. Being made with cotton yarn, it’s a nice and light spring or summer accessory!
The balls are all the same size, but the chain length between balls varies from necklace to necklace.
The first chain ends in a loop, which gets hooked over the last ball for a super easy closure.
I used Alessandra Filati’s Lupo di Mare cotton yarn with a 3 mm hook (size 11 UK or D/3 USA), instead of the 4 mm hook recommended for this yarn. Gauge is approximately 14 rows of 11 single crochet stitches for a 2 x 2″ (5 x 5 cm) sample.
The first one that I made was this blue one. Partway through the necklace, I realized that I didn’t have enough yarn in this color to continue with the current chain length, so I made the later chains longer. It can be looped around the neck either three (left) or four (right) times.
For my next version, the green one, I decided to try longer chains between balls, which makes the work go a lot faster.
The chains get a bit wavy that way, but I’ll bet you could iron them.
My favorite is the final version (pink), with just one loop of balls that are relatively close together. It reminds me of a sort of casual string of pearls. This is also the easiest one to put on, as you don’t have to worry about looping around the necklace and arranging the balls so that they don’t all end up in the same position.
Something I really like about this project is that it’s very portable. Over the past 6 months or so, I’d keep my yarn, hook, scissors and a little baggie of batting in a small fabric bag that I could just grab whenever I was going out the door, so I could work on it whenever I’d get a free moment. For example, the first picture of this post was taken while I was waiting for my daughter at her painting lesson and this picture above was when we went for a weekend away in the Cilento last fall. (You can see a picture of us working on our DIY letter magnets at the very same table at the B&B La luna nella mano, and the same wall is a backdrop for my DIY Beach Umbrella Carry Bag tutorial, too.)
Oh, and another great thing about this necklace? It’s perfect for kids to wear, too! I rewarded my sweet little photographer with a necklace after she took all the pictures of me modelling the necklaces (isn’t she great at taking pictures?), and she was pretty happy with it!
Oh, and by the way, there’s an interview with me today at the Italian crochet and knit website All’Uncinetto, so take a peek at it! 🙂