Directions for a Crocheted Japanese Motif

Written by jessica cook
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Directions for a Crocheted Japanese Motif
Use a Japanese crocheted motif pattern to make lacy creations like these. (crochet serviettes image by Maria Brzostowska from

Japanese crochet patterns tempt crocheters of all ages and ability levels, but they can be intimidating when the text is in Japanese. Fortunately, Japanese motif patterns are generally charted using standard crochet symbols. That means you can read the pattern chart, which is in picture form, even if you can't read the accompanying text.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Japanese crochet motif pattern
  • Yarn
  • Crochet hook
  • Large eye blunt needle

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  1. 1

    Review the motif's chart to identify the pattern stitches used. You will not need to understand Japanese, as crochet charts are written in universal symbols. In general, a small oval represents a chain stitch; a lower-case "x" represents a single crochet, a stitch that looks like a "T" represents a double crochet, and anything taller than that will add a tick mark into the stem of the "T" shape. Slip stitches are generally represented by solid dots or filled-in ovals. Reference any stitch patterns you do not understand on the chart before you begin crocheting; this way you will be able to work continuously once you start.

  2. 2

    Start in the centre of the chart. Make the desired number of chain stitches and join with a slip stitch to make your starting circle. Then work the charted stitches into that circle for your first round.

  3. 3

    Continue to follow the chart by working in a counter-clockwise direction in concentric circles. Once you have finished the first round, you will usually have to make a certain number of chain stitches to begin round two, and work counter-clockwise from that point.

  4. 4

    Follow the chart until your motif reaches the desired size and you have finished all rounds, then join with a slip stitch and finish off, weaving in your loose ends using a large eye blunt needle.

Tips and warnings

  • Instead of starting with chain stitches, consider using a crocheted magic adjustable ring. This technique requires you to simply loop the yarn twice and make stitches into this loop; after you work stitches into it, you can tighten the loop to close up the hole in the centre of your motif.

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