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Filet Tutorial

Filet crochet basics
Starting your work
Checkmark mesh
Working borders
Finishing your work
'Cut' edges

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Finishing your crochet project.

Crocheting your project is only half of the work, though it's the main half, of course! But the final look of a project as well as its size, depends on how you finish your work.

When you finish crocheting, your project usually looks slightly different from how it's suppose to look: round designs may have sharp edges, equilateral triangle is not exactly equilateral, a square looks like a rectangle, your project is smaller than expected and wrinkled. This is because your work is not done yet.

Please note, that all instructions below do not apply to the large or long models, like edgings, curtains and valances. All you have to do is just wash, starch and iron them.


Here are some tips on how to finish your work.

  • Wash your work with soap and warm water. You also may starch it lightly.
  • Take a piece of cardboard (for example, cut it from a cardboard box). It should be clean and a little bit larger than desirable sizes of the crochet item.
  • On the cardboard, mark with a pencil the outlines of the design. For example, if the item is round or oval, you can draw a whole circle or ellipse, or just mark several main dots (see figures below).

If your project is a triangle, you can either draw the triangle shape or just mark 3 dots (see figures below).

If your project is a square, draw the square shape or mark 4 dots. If your project is any other shape, draw that shape or mark its main dots.

  • By doing so, you'll not only give your project the necessary shape, but you'll also make it the desirable size. So make sure that you've marked on the cardboard the shape of the exact size you want.
  • Place the wet item on the cardboard, and stretch it, giving it the necessary shape and size. Start with aligning the appropriate parts of the item with the dots you've marked and affix them with the pins to the cardboard. Then affix with the pins the rest of the item (see photos below).

  • Let it dry stretched, then remove the pins, remove the item from the cardboard and iron it (make sure that you don't stretch the item while ironing and don't change its shape!).
  • You are done!

I always give the approximate sizes of my designs not only because everybody crochets differently and the gauge varies, but also because you have an option to stretch it to meet your needs. You can change the size slightly (1-4"), but I give you the optimal stretched size for each design. Increasing a project more than on 3" may change the pattern or even cause the item to shrink back in the future. Decreasing the design sizes more than on 2" may cause the item to wrinkle and change its shape.


You may take a look at my centerpieces Four Hearts, Massandra and California, or tablecloth decoration Poinsettia, or table runner Butterflies, or place mat Evrika. Those would never look nice enough without stretching and pining! Not to mention all round or oval projects.

All tips above apply not only to filet crochet. You may find those useful for your regular crochet projects as well (for the round doilies, for example).


We are done with the main part of this tutorial.

In my next lessons I'll start explaining to those of you who are interested some advanced stuff.
We'll start with the "cut" edges (like in my table runner Beverly, for example).

Happy crocheting!

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