Crocheting the Universe – Can You Really Make Everything?

By Veronica Smith – 27 Comments

You have crochet patterns and more patterns and then some ‘just in case’ patterns. You have books, leaflets, ones you have printed from the internet, free ones, purchased ones and websites bookmarked for future reference. You kid yourself that you are going to organize them – how, you are not sure and the space on the bookcase is now too small.

You never imagined that you would have so many patterns, and quite frankly I blame the internet. Those of us that were around pre-internet only had a few books and pamphlets, they were expensive and we needed the money for the yarn. The patterns available were basic. Now patterns are available for anything that you have a noun for and then some.

So, to my point, can you really crochet everything? The answer is that you CAN because there are patterns for everything. Just a few I have thought of: cushions, decorations, throws, bedspreads, afghans, curtains, toys, hair ties, cup holders, little things to embellish existing things, fridge magnets, pretend food items, headbands, slippers, clothes, mats, hats, scarves, Christmas stockings, baskets, lampshades, toilet seat sets, car and bike cozy’s, teapot covers and tissue box covers. And so on… And this is good, great in fact, but how many do we need? They make excellent gifts though.

But do you WANT to crochet everything? I love yarns of all types, and want to make things, especially when I see a new pattern. I of course need one of those things, even if I don’t know what it is. It is crochet, so I need it. However, with all I have listed above, plus the things I haven’t, you can actually get a pattern for them. Do I actually want all these things surrounding me 24/7? Would you actually ‘see’ them? Everything would be a bit cluttered and you would not appreciate specific pieces.

So the answer to the question is that you most definitely CAN crochet the universe, but I don’t want to, I don’t think. Or do I?

Am I alone in thing that?
Apologies to anybody that has crocheted their house and its contents. I’m just not sure it is for me.

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  1. Bliss says:

    After seeing the latest Royal Wedding, I want to crochet one of those ultra fancy hats for myself. lol

  2. Sandie says:

    I rarely crochet things for myself. We have a bunch of afghans, hats and scarves I’ve done through the years. I actually prefer the fleece ones when I’m cuddling on the sofa. I don’t put good things out as I want to keep dog hair (and dog) away from them. Large things like curtains, tablecloths, and bedspreads take too long. I don’t have the patience for that and I don’t work well with thread, though I think they can be beautiful!

  3. debbi says:

    I took a WW pineapple shawl for a curtian. Framed doilies. Afghans. Pillow covers on my to do list. Tablecloth. That’s it so far.

  4. Madelein says:

    I just love this photo!!!!!

  5. Lori says:

    The photo is amazing. However, I noticed that almost everything is done in granny squares. Of course, granny squares are very versatile, and you can add shaping by making half-squares. I know I would not enjoy my entire home, or even one room, in almost nothing but granny squares.

    I think I would stop “seeing” the crochet, and would therefore stop appreciating the beautiful work if I were completely surrounded. In fact, I am so used to seeing the lovely afghan I made as a copy of one my student came up with, I forget just how much I love to look at it.

    If I did cover my home in crochet, these reactions would happen:

    My cat would think he was in claw-sharpening heaven.
    My husband would think he was in crochet-hell.
    The dog would try to pile everything up into a really fabulous dog-bed.
    I would probably go crazy trying to protect everything from the other three!

  6. Monique says:

    i must admit that I am planning a crocheted lamp shade lol. In my defence, I bought an old house which was previously owned by people who lacked taste, as the apple green paint in the living area proves. The spare bedroom had a very old, very faded Bananas in Pyjamas lampshade. I’ve pulled it down and plan to rip B1 and B2 off and crochet over the frame. Lampshades are expensive, and I have a free frame and a yarn stash I’m trying to halve so it makes sense at this point. I haven’t been able to find a pattern for it though…

  7. Grace says:

    Yes & no! I love challenges, so yes, I want to crochet everything. Do I want to look at it? NO! If someone else wants it, they can have it. I’m a wee bit selective about what I have around the house, though. So, far, nothing I’ve made has stayed. My family likes them too much.

  8. Kyle says:

    My problem is I see a yarn – color or texture – that I just love, and tell myself that I will find something to make from it! Not the best way, but some are just so darn pretty!

  9. Lori says:


    Have you looked at any books that teach free-form crochet? I haven’t done so yet, myself. You might get some ideas on how to proceed with your own ideas. On the other hand, maybe someone here has an idea, or Rachel might.

    If you contact me on my blog (click my name – it’s a link to my blog), I will post a picture or several if needed, of the frame in question, so others can offer you some ideas.

  10. Monique says:

    Hi Lori,
    No I haven’t looked into free form crochet as yet. I only started crocheting 18 months ago, and at the moment am getting a whole lot of birthday gifts done. I am halfway through designing a pair of pyjamas for my dog so I guess maybe that’s free form. Just making it up as I go along. I make them out of fabric for her so I have a fair idea of the final shape and I think I know how to achieve it. We shall see lol.
    I saw a pattern for a knitted lampshade in a magazine. In that one they folded the top edge down inside the frame and had elastic to hold it tight. But that was on a straight frame. Mine is the shape of an upside down tulip (best I could think of at 5am!) so I doubt that will work very well. I’ll take some photos of the frame in the next couple of days and then get in touch. Thanks 🙂

  11. Lisa says:

    I love to crochet! I have mega hundreds, if not thousands of patterns. I fully intend to make them all, or most of them anyway. I do have some, just in case! I have more yarn, than I can imagine using… not to mention the fact that I have developed a fiber addiction as well, and am learning to spin my own yarn. However, I could not possibly have my house entirely of crochet, especially granny squares, as it is my least favorite.

  12. happy grandma says:

    My late mother was the queen of crocheting (knitting & sewing). After she passed, I discovered tons of wool, at least 100 different kinds of crochet hooks etc. I was the ‘lucky’ one to inherit all the wool which after I separated into colors, consisted of 3 huge bins. I spent the winter renewing my newfound craft. I have also ‘inherited’ many instruction books which can very well be called ‘vintage’ as well as all the afghans, doilies and sweaters she had made. I also learned alot from Crochet Spot which was the first site on crochet that I found – it is great and I thank you very much. It’s like having my mom guiding me only you don’t keep ripping every attempt. Unfortunately, where I live the art of crochet is dead – it is difficult even to find a ball of wool! Recently retired and recently moved to the country, I crocheted 5 blankets and gave them to my ‘young’ neighbors who had new babies. Although their first reaction was of gratitude, the age gap seems to set us apart!

    I don’t particularly care for granny squares which was one of my mother’s unfinished projects and still sits at the bottom of the ‘to finish’ pile. Perhaps next winter I will finish it off and donate it to the local thrift shop! Thanks again for your great articles.

  13. Lu Ann says:

    But of course we can crochet EVERYTHING!

    Pattern searching can be so boring bc I find more afghans and shawls than anything else. ***yaaawwnns***

    Living with ONLY CROCHET (and especially a single kind of stitch – granny squares) is a whole ‘nuther… ball of yarn! No thanks.

  14. Michelle says:

    Perfect timing. I’m trying to plan a crocheted lampshade slipcover, too. What a puzzle. I want to do one fairly lacy, with beads and pointy edging that hangs down. Maybe I’ll try to make a sort-of trapezoidal flat shape, then join it and cinch up the top with ribbon. I’d rather do it in the round, but I don’t have enough experience to know how to plan that out.

  15. Veronica Smith says:

    I googled “crochet lampshade pattern” and came up with a heap of ideas. Maybe give that a go. Alternatively convince Rachel to design one for you!

  16. Monique says:

    Yes Michelle I would much rather do mine in the round too, and I want to crochet it onto the frame. But I think holding the frame to crochet around it is likely to be extremely awkward!

    Veronica maybe when I googled it I split lampshade into 2 words. Sometimes I do that, sometimes I don’t. If you look at my first post I used both versions lol. I do the same with lipbalm and loungeroom too. The joys of Fibromyalgia robbing my brain of words. I used to have perfect spelling and grammar. It’s really slipping these days.

  17. Michelle says:

    LOL Veronica, Google is always my first resort, not my last. You’re right about the range of ideas. I’m sure you know what happens when you’re looking for something specific and a little obscure – lampshades in every conceivable form and variety of taste, except what you have in mind. There is some crazy stuff out there. I found a pattern for what looks like a 1940’s crochet chandelier, which was fascinating, and weird.

    I had a bit of a brainstorm, though, and I’m going to try adapting a kid’s poncho pattern. I’m trying to do a sort of lacy cozy or slipcover treatment, which is different than what Monique is doing (a full lampshade).

  18. nommyzmommy says:

    Lori: You’re not the only one who noticed right away that this maniacally yarnbombed room was done all in granny squares with a few hexagons thrown in here and there. Yes, they’re small, quick, and portable, but enough is too much already! Too many people go through their entire lives seeing almost nothing but grannies (usually the “plain” kind) and think that’s all there is to crochet, and they think “EWWW! Crochet! That’s for old people! Just ‘something to do with your hands,’ not creative at all! Booooooor-ring! Tacky!”

    That’s why I luuuuuuuuuurvs me some Google. Yes, I think you CAN crochet (or knit, I do both) just about anything in the universe. As a scientist by training, I especially love the things my fellow scientists come up with. I’ve seen everything from molecules (I want the caffeine one) to microbes (yup, someone has made a ginormous cold germ!) to the human brain and digestive and circulatory systems to an entire solar system. Definitely NOT your Great-Aunt Myrtle’s afghan!

    Monique: Just a random thought from someone who’s never content to make something exactly the way the pattern says and for whom EVERYTHING is an experiment 😀 … perhaps you could find/adapt/design a filet motif that will fit between the ribs of the lampshade frame? That way you could swatch one section & see how you like it. Crocheting the whole shade in the round directly onto the frame would be a bit awkward, but not really difficult. The hardest part would be getting it started. Once you get it started, you could set it up on a table and turn it as you go.

    Have fun, and I’d love to see what you come up with. Post some pix of your FO on Ravelry, maybe? You could even write up and chart the pattern and post that too. 🙂

    ‘Nuff for now, got 2 huge projects to finish before my son’s wedding on the 14th. Back to it! =^..^=

  19. I possibly could crochet everything, but I really don’t want to: there are too many other techniques I love and do!

  20. Nancy M. says:

    I find that the vast majority of my crocheted items go to other people. Scarves and afghans, for the most part. I’ll probably be making socks for a couple of friends for Christmas gifts this year, and a shawl or two for another. I have even seen a lot of amigurumi patterns that I would love to make as gifts for friends. I think the short answer here is that, if other crocheters/crafters are in the same boat as I, there really isn’t a whole lot of concern about filling up our homes with crocheted goodies, because we don’t keep a majority of what we create.

  21. Veronica Smith says:

    I actually made a doily type thing for a lightshade many years ago. I made chains to go around the top and then crocheted a FLAT piece. Like a blanket with a big square hole in the middle. I then draped it over the frame and attached it to the top. Being square it hung down at varying lengths and being a flat piece to start with it had gather in it. Sorry this is hard to explain. I just made the pattern up as i went though. It looked nice for many a year.

  22. Nancy says:

    I agree with you Rachel on it’s not for me to crochet the universe,but I am trying to teach a few others in my family the craft of crocheting to pass along.In the meantime my universe will be to start a special box filled with crocheted items for each of my grandchildren.

  23. Katelyn says:

    WOW! But to be honest, my living room is REALLY starting to look like this!!!

  24. Lori says:

    @Nancy – I also gift almost everything I make. I finally managed to make, and keep, a few afghans, a shell (blouse), and a vest. That’s about it. Even the dog and cat each get an afghan on cold nights – my work gets no respect! 😉

    Everything I have ever tatted has also been gifted to family. The only things I’ve kept besides the afghans, is some cross-stitch, pillow cases, crewel, or candlewicking projects I made for myself to decorate my home. Since I now live in an RV, I don’t have room to hang things on the walls, so it is all in storage! Oh, well. At least I have someplace to live, and my very understanding husband allocated an entire cabinet to me for my yarn, thread, and supplies. In such a small space, that cabinet is a huge concession!!

  25. Diana S says:

    ^U^ It’s lovely to read there are other crazy crocheters like me.

    I’m 18 and have been crochetting for…three years I believe, but MAN, i feel like carpal tunnel is just around the corner!!

    Thank you for sharing honesty! It shows people like me that it isn’t just me thinking this way! 🙂

  26. Mad =^..^= (aka nommyzmommy) says:

    @Diana: You sound like me! I just picked up knitting again about a year ago after 25 years away, & crocheting a couple of months later (ditto), & whereas before I was never without a book, now I’m never without my latest project, or 2, or 3, or 6. (Some people have 4 or 5 coats, jackets, sweaters, etc. hanging on hooks on the side of their front doors – I have a half dozen project bags.)

    If I’m not actually making something, I’m usually doing one of 3 things:

    [1] surfing the web for more “yarnstuff” (currently have about 80gb of books, single patterns, pix [YAAAAAAAAAAAARRRNNNNN POOOOORRRRNNNNN!!], etc. on my HD & various CDs & DVDs – maaaaaaan, do I need to do some sorting!),

    [2] working out a new design or adapting an existing one (so far it’s just knitting except for a few quick & dirty make-it-up-as-I-go-along hats-in-the-round), or

    [3] buried in the crafts aisle of the bookstore or the 746.4 section of the library.

    It’s great to see the younger generation(s) going in for yarnstuff – I’ve helped my mom teach 4th & 5th graders the last 2 summers – after so many in my 50-something generation decided aww, that’s old-fashioned, hokey, not for “liberated women,” etc., and the variety of designs and materials out there is…well…so much yarnstuff, so little time, so little money…who needs plain old granny squares, anyway?

    Guess I’ve rattled on long enough for one post. Have fun, & don’t forget to share some pix of your FOs! =^..^=

  27. Great photo! As a published designer and someone who has been crocheting for more than 45 years and have used all types of fibers to crochet with, I can crochet just about anything. Does that mean I would or should. I don’t think so. lol. I sometimes direct people to others who crochet when asked to make items such as granny square afghans.

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