Crochet Month Designer Interview Series: Get to know Robyn Chachula!

A structural engineer by trade, Robyn Chachula uses her knowledge of building design processes to create crochet projects in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In her latest crochet book and DVD Workshop, Blueprint Crochet Sweaters: Techniques for Custom Construction and Crochet Sweater Studio (Interweave), she used her engineering background to break down the challenges of customizing crochet sweaters into bite sized pieces any crocheter can use for their perfect project.  Robyn is also the author of Blueprint Crochet, Baby Blueprint Crochet, Simply Crochet,Unexpected Afghans, and Crochet Stitches Visual Encyclopedia (Wiley).

Get Robyn's tips in our crochet Q&A session with her below!

BY (Bernat Yarns): What's your favorite type of crocheted item to design and why?

RC (Robyn Chachula) Anything with motifs.  I am a sucker for granny square and flowers.  I love combining them and watching a whole new fabric unfold before my eyes.

BY: What's your favorite piece of crochet advice?

RC Its only crochet.  Meaning, don't worry if your edges are not straight or your stitches look wonky.  Its only crochet.  You can fix any mistake, a lot of times without ripping out, and learn something new along the way.  Crochet is all about the enjoyment of stitching, don't worry so much about the outcome. 

BY: What's your favorite Bernat Yarn?

RC Bernat Alpaca.  I enjoy animal/ acrylic blends when I crochet.  The animal fiber always feels great to crochet, and the acrylic makes it more durable when finished.  This yarn can crochet up fast with a larger hook and make cozy scarves and hats that are perfect for our long winters here in Pittsburgh, PA.
Want to win a DVD copy of Robyn's Unexpected Crochet Stitches for Afghans and Beyond workshop for Interweave? Tell us your favorite Bernat yarn to crochet with, and you'll be entered to win! Entries are open until Friday March 22nd, and we'll be announcing our randomly selected winner on March 25th.

Take advantage of Robyn's crochet expertise by making her Daisy Snow Shawl, crocheted in Bernat Satin!

Daisy Snow Shawl
Designed by Robyn Chachula

One Size
Width - 18.5”/47cm
Length - 64”/162.5cm

Bernat Satin (100 g/3.5 oz; 182 m/200 yds)
Main Color (MC) Grey Mist Heather (04045)      4 balls
Contrast A Sandstone (04009)    1 ball
Contrast B Stone (04044)             1 ball
Contrast C Maitai (04732)             1 ball

Size 5 mm (U.S. H/8) crochet hook or size needed to obtain gauge.
Water spray bottle and blocking pins.

Daisy Snow Motif = 7”/18 cm diameter


Special Stitches
2dc-cl: yo, insert hk into st, yo, draw up lp, yo, draw through 2 lps on hk, yo, insert hk into same st, yo, draw up lp, yo, draw through 2 lps on hk, yo, draw through last 3 lps on hk.
yo, insert hk into st, yo, draw up lp, yo, draw through 2 lps on hk] 3 times total, yo, draw through rem 4 lps on hk.

Daisy Snow Motif
Make 12 with A as Color 1, 9 with B as Color 1, 10 with C as Color 1.
With Color 1, ch7, sl st to first ch (ring made).

Rnd 1: Ch1, [sc in ring, ch4] 11 times in ring, sc in ring, ch2, hdc to first sc.
Rnd2: Ch2, 2dc-cl in hdc, *ch3, sk sc, 3dc-cl in ch4-sp; rep from * around, ch3, sl st to 2dc-cl, fasten off Color 1.
Rnd 3: Join MC with sl st in first ch3-sp, ch1, (3sc, ch3, 3sc) in same ch3-sp, sk 3dc-cl, *(3sc, ch3, 3sc) in next ch3-sp, sk 3dc-cl; rep from * around, sl st to first sc.
Rnd 4: Sl st to next 2 sc, sl st to ch3-sp, ch2, (2dc-cl, ch7, 3dc-cl) in same ch3-sp, *(3dc-cl, ch6, 3dc-cl) in next ch3-sp, (3dc-cl, ch7, 3dc-cl) in next ch3-sp; rep from * around, (3dc-cl, ch6, 3dc-cl) in last ch3-sp, sl st to 2dc-cl.
Rnd 5: Ch1, *(6sc, ch3, 6sc) in next ch7-sp, 11sc in next ch6-sp; rep from * around, sl st to first sc, fasten off, weave in ends.

See Layout for placement of Motifs.

Joining two Motifs:
After completing 1 Motif, follow directions for Motif above until Rnd 4 is complete.

Rnd 5: Follow Rnd 5 above to first connecting ch3-sp corner, 6sc in ch7-sp, ch1, sl st to other Motif’s ch3-sp corner, ch1, 6sc in same ch7-sp, 5sc in ch6-sp, sl st to center st of 11sc curve on other Motif, 5sc in same ch6-sp, 6sc in ch7-sp, ch1, sl st to other Motif’s ch3-sp corner, ch1, 6sc in same ch7-sp, cont with rnd 5 above, fasten off, weave in ends.

Joining more Motifs:
Follow directions for joining 2 Motifs together; continue in same manner by connecting all corners ch3-sps with sl st, connect all 11sc curves with sl st in center st.
See diagram for assistance.

Lay Shawl down on blocking board.  Pin to finished size.  Spray with water and allow to dry.


Bernat Alpaca

I like bernat satin

I love Bernat yarns! I don't know if I can choose a favorite. I have been using Pipsqueak a lot lately to make the cutest soft toys. And I love the look and feel of Mosaic. Bernat yarns are awesome :)

I like Bernat satin.

Love Love LOVE Bernat Bamboo! Fun to crochet and luxurious next to skin!

Bernat Mosaic - love the long color changes and the great color combos.

i love bernat mosaic. They look great and projects done with them are marvellous.

Bernat Soft Boucle love it.

I love Bernat Satin, it's so versatile; from baby blankets to sweaters, it really is a great yarn and has such a nice feel to it.

I love Bernat Mosaic yarn. I've finished a sweater in the "Ninja" colorway, and am planning to get enough Mosaic in the "Medusa" colorway to make a jacket for fall.

I love Bernat Bamboo. I made a scarf for my yarn-snobbish mil and she loved it!

Bernat Satin

Bernat Satin is one of my favorites!

I love all Bernet yarns but especially the bulky ones. The feeling of accomplishment comes so quickly with the bulky yarns. Since I have six grandchildren and a seventh due next week I especially like making warm projects for children. I appreciate all the free patterns on the bennet site and the wide variety of quality yarns. Love the Daisy Snow Shawl, Robyn and think I will take a break from children's projects and make something for myself.

I've had fun using Bernat Mosaic, what great colour combinations. Also love Bernat Satin and Bamboo!

Since teaching myself Tunisian crochet, I'm in love with Bamboo!

I love the colors of Bernat Waverly - it is one of my favorites, so soft and has really good hand!

I love the bernat baby yarn,.all of them!

Love Bernat Bamboo! Great texture and colors!

Like Robyn, I love to work with "Bernat Alpaca" it has a luxurious feel, and a pleasure to crochet with

I have only crocheted baby blankets, so i would have to say my favorite Bernat yarns are the baby yarns. Very soft and wonderful selection of colors.

I also love flowers and motifs. My favorite is the Irish Crochet Rose but enjoying trying new ones. I love Robyn's pattern and will be making this. I want a soft yarn for fashion apparel and Alpaca sounds fabulous.

Love all Bernat Baby Yarn! Also love seeing Robin on Knit and Crochet Now! She is a wonderful instructor and inspiration! Have been following her blog and sites which are all very enjoyable!

Like many other comments above, I LOVE Bernat Satin plus a few others I've used for crocheting. I LOVE your DAISY SNOW SHAWL pattern & plan to crochet it, but I'll change the dark charcoal stone color to a pastel pink to coordinate with the hot pink and pure white. Lots of crocheting ahead to create the 31 total DAISY motifs and then attach all in 3 rows. I'll probably start during Easter week 2013... and I'm anxious to purchase the yarn skeins already. I can imagine wearing this shawl to many concerts and plus. So, THANKS in advance for the FAB pattern. Sarah Helene in Minneapolis, MN

Love the Bernat Bamboo and Mosaic, both are fabulous to work with and look great in finished projects.

I like using Bernat satin for wraps- so cozy warm!

HANDICRAFTER *COTTON*!! -- and in the BIG 400g Balls!! I am such a Total 100% "Natural" Fiber SNOB!! -- I probably have enough of THIS yarn to start my own Store!! Seriously!

Sheepish for making bright accessories and Waverly for its sophisticated palette for afghans and cushions!

I love Bernat bamboo!

One of my favorite yarns is Bernat Softee Chunky.

I love Handicrafter Cotton. I knit dishcloths to give to my friends and co-workers who "cannot live without knitted dishcloths". I give them each 6 at Christmas and 6 for their birthdays. I feel good knowing I am giving a gift they really want and I don't have to spend a lot of money.

My favorite Bernat yarn is Sheepish. I'm going to make this shawl with it.

I'm loving the Softee Baby yarns. Making some baby hats for the pregnancy center in my area.

I love the Bernat Softee Baby and the gorgeous colors of Mosaics

I love so many of the Bernat yarns! Especially the CottonTots and Alpaca!

I don't have a favorite - I like them all!

I love working with Bernat Satin!!

I like Mosaic. I love the colors.

I like Bernat Sox. I have been shifting away from heavier yarns for my crochet projects and using sock yarn more often.

I love Satin and Bamboo.

I love any of the Bernat baby yarns or Vickie Howell's Sheepish yarn.

I enjoy Bernat Bamboo.

I love to make shawls with white Bernat Baby Sport yarn - it makes a very soft and lacy shawl.

I love the Softee Baby. Been making baby hats with it for the pregnancy center in my area. So soft!

Bernat satin.

I love Bernat yarns

I love Bamboo & Mosaic.

I took a class with Robyn this weekend and learned so much! She's a fantastic teacher!! I made a Babette Blanket a few years ago with mixed fibers and by far the one yarn I used that was my daughter's favorite was the Bernat Soft Boucle. She loved it so much I used it as a "sherpa" lining for a hat I designed for her as well. I've also had a ton of fun with Bernat's Glow in the Dark yarn I purchased years ago! I've made all kinds of Halloween amigurumi with it including a skull and a bat. I also used some of it to include a "secret message" ( I <3 U) in the Babette, so when my daughter goes to sleep under it, she'll see it and feel my love. (I'm such a sap!)

I love crocheting with Boucle Rainbow yarn. It is so soft and easy to work with.

Sorry posted the wrong yarn on my last comment. I love to use Bernat Soft Boucle yarn. My grandkids love the feel of the yarn. It is so soft and projects work up so fast with it.