We kick off the Patchwork Party Cardi ORIGINAL pattern by making and joining our back-of-sweater strips! Find part 1 of the free pattern and video tutorial below or purchase the complete, printable PDF here.
The Patchwork Party Cardi pattern is part of a collaboration with Lion Brand Yarns. This post contains affiliate links.
If you're completely new to the Patchwork Party Cardi pattern set, you can find the main page with all the resources and links for both the ORIGINAL and LITE sweaters here.
Part 1 of the pattern is very portable. Stash it in your bag and patchwork your way through the next week.
Let's do this!
The LITE Version of This Pattern
Don't forget we've got a sister pattern to go alongside the ORIGINAL Patchwork Party Cardi. The LITE pattern uses all the same skills as this pattern, but is a bit simpler to crochet. Click the photo below to get the free pattern or pin the pattern for later here.
What To Expect in Part 1
This week is all about learning the basic skills necessary to crochet your Patchwork Party Cardi ORIGINAL. First we'll check our gauge and adjust hook sizes if necessary. (This is super important in ensuring your sweater fits as expected!)
Then we'll focus on creating the strips for the sweater back, the number of which will vary based on the pattern size you're crocheting. Lastly, we'll learn how to join the strips to create the patchwork look.
At the end of this week, you'll have already mastered 90% of the skills needed to crochet your Patchwork Party Cardi – and you'll have a beautiful mini-quilt to show for it!
New to making cardigans? Don't miss How to Crochet a Sweater for our best beginner tips
Pin it! Click to pin this pattern for later ⇨
Get an All-In-One Crochet Kit
If you haven't yet gotten your sweater yarn, the all-in-one crochet kit is a perfect way to make your Patchwork Party Cardi. This bundle from Lion Brand includes all the Scarfie and Wool-Ease you'll need, plus a free printable PDF of the complete pattern (delivered digitally).
I love this option because it lets you choose from a delicious assortment of Scarfie colors that are harder to find in stores.
Want to Print the Pattern or Work At Your Own Pace?
As a reminder, you have the option to purchase the ad-free PDF of the complete pattern on Etsy here or LoveCrafts here. Not only does it include parts 1-4 of the pattern in one place, it’s formatted for easy printing and includes all the photo tutorials.
Patchwork Party Cardi Video Tutorial Part 1
I’m so happy to be able to share this very detailed video tutorial on how to crochet and join your cardigan strips. If you’re still building your pattern-reading skills, this video will be immensely helpful in showing you the main concepts of The Patchwork Party Cardi.
Directly below the video player, you can find all the links I mention in the video.
NOTE: If you have an ad-blocker running, you’ll need to disable it to view the video tutorial below.
More Free Crochet Sweater Patterns
Crochet sweater patterns don't need to be difficult. In fact, most of ours are made with very simple shapes. Dive into the wonderful world of crochet garments with cardigans, pullovers, ponchos, shrugs and more!
See more free crochet sweater patterns →
Links Mentioned in the Video:
• The Patchwork Party Cardi Crochet Along main page
• The free pattern, Parts 1 (directly below – scroll down)
• The ad-free, printable PDF including the complete pattern + photo tutorials
• The Patchwork Party Cardi ORIGINAL all-in-one kit from LionBrand.com
• Tips for planning colors (within the pattern below – scroll down)
Patchwork Party Cardi ORIGINAL
Free Crochet Pattern - Part 1
Save this pattern to your Ravelry here.
Pin this pattern for later here.
Grab your scraps or some multi-color yarn and call on your inner artist, it’s time to throw a patchwork party! You’ll likely find the construction of this sweater different from anything you’ve seen before, but that doesn’t mean it’s complicated–quite the opposite, in fact!
This painterly cardigan uses a clever technique of crocheting in strips to minimize seaming and create fewer ends to weave in. With endless ways to customize, this is a cardigan you can truly make you own.
Order an all-in-one kit from Lion Brand here.
• Lion Brand Scarfie (Weight: 5/bulky - 312 yds, 5.3 oz) - 5 (6, 6, 8, 8) total skeins*
- Seafoam/Clay [826-237] – 1 ball (approx. 150g)
- Rust/Cameo [826-235] - 1 ball (approx. 150g)
- Ice/Gold [826-232] - 1 ball (approx. 150g)
- Mushroom/Blush [826-231] - 1 ball (approx. 150g)
- Mustard/Ice Pink [826-236] - 1 ball (approx. 150g)
- Steel Blue/Slate [826-234] - 1 ball (approx. 150g)
* Yarn amounts listed will result in leftover yarn at the end of the project. This is intentional to allow for flexible color planning. Should you want to purchase only enough yarn to crochet the sweater without manipulating the colors, you’ll need approximately 3 (4, 5, 6, 6) skeins [(approx. 433 (583, 750, 851, 900) g)].
• Tapestry needle
• Size L (8.00 mm) crochet hook or size needed to obtain main body gauge
• Size J (6.00 mm) crochet hook for ribbing
• Stitch markers or safety pins
• Needle felting tool (optional, but very helpful to avoid weaving in ends)
• (4-5) 1” buttons (optional)
|Size||Fits Actual Bust||Sweater Length||# of Skeins of|
|# of Skeins of|
Sample pictured is a S/M on a model with a 38” bust. For a looser fit, don’t be afraid to size up.
12 ehdc x 6.5 rows = 4”
Abbreviations and Glossary (US Terms):
ch – chain
rep – repeat
RS – right side
sc – single crochet
scblo – single crochet through the back loop only
sk – skip
slst – slip stitch
slstblo – slip stitch through the back loop only
st(s) – stitch(es)
WS – wrong side
yo – yarn over
tch - turning chain
ehdc – extended half double crochet: yo, insert hook, yo, draw loop through, yo, draw through one loop on hook, yo, draw through all three loops on hook
ehdc2tog – extended half double crochet two together: yo, insert hook, yo, draw loop through, yo, draw through one loop on hook, yo, insert hook in next st, yo, draw loop through, yo, draw through one loop on hook, yo, draw through all five loops on hook
More Free Make & Do Crew Crochet Patterns to Try:
Step-by-Step Video Tutorial:
Follow along with the video tutorial above to see a demonstration of how to work your extended half double crochet stitches, how to avoid weaving in ends and how to join your strips together. It's all there! (Be sure to turn off any ad-blockers you have running in order to see the video player.)
Overall Pattern Notes:
• Pattern is written for smallest size, with stitch counts for larger sizes following in parentheses: XS (S/M, L/1X, ⅔X, ⅘X). It can be helpful to highlight all numbers related to your size before beginning. When only one number is given, it pertains to all sizes.
• Ch 3 counts as 1 ehdc throughout.
• In last row of each colored square, complete final yarn over of last stitch using new color. View a brief tutorial here.
Tips for Planning Colors:
It can be helpful to mentally separate your yarn into “light” and “dark” categories, noting that many colorways of Scarfie include both a light and dark color with a span of midtones mixed in. Generally alternating between squares of lighter and darker colors in a checkerboard pattern will give your sweater a balanced look.
While this doesn’t need to overcomplicate things, keeping an eye on your “checkerboard” as you plan your sweater strips can prevent any section from looking particularly heavy or muddy in the overall design.
TIP: Not sure if a color is a light or a dark? Snap a photo on your photo of your chosen yarns. Use your phone’s basic editing features to make the photo black and white. This allows you to see the relative value of each color and decide where to place them to create enough contrast. See photo below for example.
How to Minimize Ends to Weave In:
Stephanie from AllAboutAmi.com developed a very easy technique for securing ends without needing to weave them in. As long as you’re using a yarn with an animal component such as Lion Brand Scarfie, this works beautifully and can save so much time.
- After a color change, crochet over previous color and new color yarn tails during the first row with the new color.
- Later on, such as when one strip is complete, lay strip on top of a foam mat of any type. (I use a kneeling pad from the dollar store.) It’s important that the strip is positioned with the RS up as the WS of the fabric can get a little fuzzy during this process.
- Use a needle felting tool to poke at the row of crocheting that contains the yarn tails. Focus especially on the end of the row near where the yarn tails are hanging out. Continue poking until yarn fibers have fused a bit, but before you’ve changed the look of your crochet fabric.
- Snip off excess yarn tails. Repeat steps 1-4 where each color transition takes place.
More resources on this brilliant technique can be found here:
!! Gauge Check !!
Please don’t skip this step or you will risk your sweater not fitting as expected. Fortunately, your gauge swatch can also serve as one of the pockets, as long as your gauge measures correctly.
To check gauge, with any color and larger hook:
Foundation Row: Ch 17 (20, 23, 21, 23).
Row 1 (RS): Ehdc in fourth ch from hook, ehdc each ch to end; turn. (15 (18, 21, 19, 21)
Row 2 (WS): Ch 3, ehdc in each st to end; turn. (15 (18, 21, 19, 21) sts)
Rep Row 2 six (eight, ten, ten ten) more times to create a total of 8 (10, 12, 12, 12) rows. Measure center four inches of swatch vertically and horizontally. Compare to pattern gauge listed above.
- If there are too many stitches in 4” horizontally, increase your hook size and re-swatch.
- If there aren’t enough stitches in 4” horizontally, decrease your hook size and re-swatch.
- If swatch is measuring too small vertically, make a deliberate effort to pull loops up a bit higher before completing each single crochet.
- If swatch is measuring too large vertically, make an effort to work the loops of each single crochet a little tighter.
- This video is incredibly helpful if you’re having trouble achieving the correct vertical gauge.
Main Sweater Body at a Glance
- Note that chart below does not include the sleeves.
|Size||Strip Width |
(# of chain sts)
(# of rows)
|# of Full|
|# of Underarm|
Strips To Make
Find Your Next Crochet Cardigan Pattern
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- Sweater back is constructed from a series of full-length strips. When crocheting each strip, keep in mind tips from the “Planning Colors” notes above.
- Each square in the strip is 8 (10, 12, 12, 12) rows tall. To change colors for the next square, work the final yarn over of the last stitch of the row using new color. (It is helpful to crochet over these yarn tails as you work next row.) At the end of the fourth square, fasten off.
Alternative Approach: Pattern is designed in strips to achieve a complicated colorwork look without juggling multiple balls of attached yarn at once. If you want to avoid seaming at all costs though, you may work all strips concurrently.
To do this, chain 47 (56, 65, 78, 86) and work in columns of color 15 (18, 21, 19, 21) sts wide. See this video tutorial for tips on switching colors mid row, but note that in the Patchwork Party Cardi, you do not carry your yarn under each column, but rather leave it attached to pick up on the next row.
Instructions for One Full-Length Strip:
With any color and larger hook:
Foundation Row: Ch 17 (20, 23, 21, 23).
*Row 1 (RS): Ehdc in fourth ch from hook, ehdc each ch to end; turn. (15 (18, 21, 19, 21) sts)
Row 2 (WS): Ch 3, ehdc in each st to end; turn. (15 (18, 21, 19, 21) sts)
Rep Row 2 six (eight, ten, ten ten) more times to create a total of 8 (10, 12, 12, 12) rows.
In last row of colored square, complete final yarn over of last stitch using new color.**
Rep from * to ** three more times to create a total of 4 squares of color. Fasten off leaving a 40” tail.
Make 3 (3, 3, 4, 4) individual strips.
Joining Back Strips:
Lay strips out with WS facing up. Pin first two strips together with stitch markers, taking care to line up color transitions for a tidy patchwork effect.
Use a tapestry needle and leftover yarn tails where possible and work from final row at top of strip to foundation row at bottom. With first two strips beside each other, use a running stitch to join them together. At bottom of strips, weave in end and fasten off. Repeat joining process with remaining Back strips.
Stay Tuned for Part 2 of the Free Pattern
Next week, we'll crochet the strips for the front and sides of the sweater, which means there's lots more beautiful patchwork color planning to come!
Remember if you just can't wait to continue with your Patchwork Party Cardi, you can purchase the printable PDF and have full access to the complete pattern. Get the ad-free PDF on Etsy here and LoveCrafts here.
Otherwise, sign up for our emails below and I’ll send you a note when each section of the free pattern is available.
That was so fun! Now what?
Invitation to our Facebook group
Come discuss crocheting patchwork cardigan patterns and lots of other crochet projects and techniques in our Make & Do Crew Facebook group. Here thousands of helpful crocheters answer each others questions and share their stitches. Come join us here.
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