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Dear Ann,

It’s an MDK Rule, or it should be: Never say never.

You and I have always been great admirers of crochet, but we have practiced it only rarely, and timidly. A granny square here, a buttonhole there. Mostly, we’ve used crochet hooks to pick up a dropped stitch in our knitting.

That all changed a few weeks ago, when everyone who attended the first-ever MDK Summer Camp made a Bucket Hat, worked in single crochet.

What got into us? Why was a knitting site hosting a crochet along? It was mostly nostalgia for the Craft Huts of summer camps we attended as kids, where it was a given that we were all going to learn something new, together, using materials as varied as popsicle sticks and lanyard. But it was also because crochet is such a close cousin to knitting. Although it’s a different way of pulling a loop of yarn through another loop of yarn—crochet is still that thing we love to do: pull a loop of yarn through another loop of yarn.

On the one hand, I’m not good at crochet. On the other hand, I feel sure that I did a lot of crochet in a past life. It calls to me. Even as I fumble, it feels familiar.

Bucket Hat: Recipe

The bucket hat we made at MDK Summer Camp was such a hit that we are sharing it with the crochet-curious public.

The pattern is available here. It’s a one-size, one-skein pattern, designed with the crochet newbie in mind.

The most challenging part of the hat comes at the beginning, when you start the hat with a Magic Circle. To guide us through that moment, we’ve got a sweet and simple video for learning how to get started.

Bucket Hat: Ingredients

To maximize bucket hat success and bucket hat joy, our Summer Camp box included these essentials, all of which are available in the MDK Shop:

A skein of Creative Linen, Rowan’s sturdy and smooth blend of linen and cotton. While one skein will make the one-size Bucket Hat, a second skein opens up possibilities for adjusting the sizing. Get that second skein in a second color, and you’re in for some fun with stripes.

A super comfy crochet hook, size G.

A Kacha-Kacha Counter, which is still our favorite tool for keeping track of rounds. Low tech is sometimes the best tech!

Cute People in Cute Hats

Anyone who decides to dip their hook into the warm waters of crochet is cordially invited to join the Bucket Hat sharing and caring that is already in progress in the MDK Lounge. It’s so fun to see all the hats!

What next, doilies? Never say never!




  • Make it taller. Add a drawstring and eyelets and have a nice deep project bag…. great shape.

    • Don’t dis doilies. They can be beautiful, intricate and a wonderful challenge for the advanced crocheter. I made a boatload before I was able to master knitting. I have a collection of no. 10 and 20 and even 30 size DMC Cebelia thread in my stash and a pile of Magic Crochet magazines waiting for me to return to my first skill… If I can ever stop knitting long enough.

  • I learned crochet and knitting at the same time, so I’ve been fortunate to love both since childhood. The hardest part of crochet for me was the that, unlike continental knitting where everyone learns the same techniques, crochet is different for left and right handers. As a leftie, I thankfully had a leftie aunt who taught me. I’ve managed to teach crochet to a couple righties – they sat across from me to mirror my motions. The magic circle is challenging – especially as a leftie watching the right-handed way.

    • I took a beginner crochet class last January, figuring that, as a leftie, I might have to “muddle through.” Luckily, the instructor was accommodating and was able to demonstrate left-handed techniques for me. I’m “hooked,” and I’m happy to find that so many Youtube tutorials also demonstrate techniques left-handed if I just search for them.

      • Yes! Good ol’ YouTube. 🙂

  • I never let an opportunity slip by to say… “Bistitchuals have twice the fun!” Or call us double agents – armed and dangerously adept with sticks and hooks.

    I’m not sure why these rigid knit and crochet camps exist in the US. As a kid in India I learned both knitting and crochet from my mom. Crochet patterns lately are simply stunning, no more toilet paper cozies and such.

    And knitting and crochet love each other- take a look here:

    • I agree! Crochet patterns have come a long long long way. And even Granny Squares are hip right now. Viva la Crochet!

    • Take a look at Tatsiana Kupryianchyk’s gorgeous crocheted sweaters–no granny squares here. It’s hard to tell that they are not knitted.

        • She is not on Ravelry, but if you google ‘Adinda’s World’, she has some fun and whimsical designs for crochet.

        • WOW! I had no idea. Never saw anything like her patterns. Fantastic! Thanks so much for introducing me to what’s possible with crochet. Yes, a Field Guide of crochet would be great.

    • @Deepa, I totally agree! I learned crochet and knitting as a child and love them both for different style projects. I never liked the look of a crocheted garment tho (except for those string bikinis I wore in another life) until I saw the sweater you linked to, gorgeous, love it!

  • I think adding crochet to your field guides would be an amazing addition. It would bring more people and ideas to the table. And give everyone a chance to increase their skill set. I guess it’s obvious I love crochet. Crochet is doilies and there’s nothing wrong with that. But it is so much more! Tunisian, mosaic, intarsia, overlay and on and on. Let me get down off my soap box……. Thanks for listening!

  • Yes! A bucket hat! I just finished an Andrea Mowry hat for one daughter in Malabrigo Rios who lives in Berlin and needed something for the other daughter who lives in Los Angeles where hats for cold weather don’t work. How fortuitous. Thank you!

    • Yes! Doilies are awesome jewels! I adore both, actually ALL handcrafts!

  • I also learned both crochet and knitting around the same time as a child. I picked up crochet easily, while knitting took more work. I still enjoy both, for different types of projects. It would be lovely if MDK added more crochet to the already stellar list of designs!

  • I don’t know why, but I recently had a hankering to do some crochet as well. Granny Squares seem to be having a “moment” right now. I have even seen them on garments on TV. I started an Arne & Carlos flower throw! This helps to give my hands a break from knitting.

  • Crochet was my first fiber art – my mother (not otherwise crafty) and I learned together from the Leisure Arts illustrated instructions in the late ‘70s. Great memories of making granny squares together! After a young-adult break from crafts, I returned to crochet in my late 20’s for baby blankets for all those friends and coworkers and some doilies for my mom! I started learning to knit in 2016 and fell in love with it and MDK. Knitting, MDK, and crochet all together? Fiber Heaven!!

  • Crochet a doily with worsted weight cotton yarn and you have a placemat or a coaster. Bright summer colors are so fun during summer travel. You can do this as a hostess gift after you visit — send back a pair/set of circular place mats that match her plates. Perfect for breakfast.

  • I became more interested in crochet when I learned that a lot of knitting can be done, and is done, by machines but that almost all crochet is handmade. It seems that it is much more difficult to make a crochet machine. So if you see a crocheted garment (or anything really even a hanky sack) it is most likely handmade.

  • I love this! I found a free pattern by We Are Knitters of a bucket hat

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