The White Russian

Crochet: The White Russian



© positivelylace

© positivelylace

So I’ve been seeing a lot of those adorable crochet ruffle shorts around, and it finally dawned on me that I really wanted a crochet ruffle skirt to wear during the summer to the beach or anywhere, really.

© positivelylace

© positivelylace

I searched long and hard until I found a free pattern here that I liked, except, it was in Russian (hence my adorable name) and it didn’t really give any instruction.

Luckily, there was a stitch diagram available so I was able to figure out the basics and create the pattern for the skirt by myself.

I started by measuring the widest part of my hips with measuring tape (which for me was about 36″).  Looking at the stitch diagram, I decided that the pattern would repeat every 14 stitches…So I needed to make my beginning chain as long as a multiple of 14 chains that came close to 36″.   Therefore, the pattern for your skirt will be based on the gauge that you come up with, you can follow mine if you are a size 5/6 – 7/8 (this skirt will run a little large as the material will stretch a bit, so make a size smaller if you can).

The White Russian (skirt):

Start by measuring your hip circumference, and if you like you can also measure the length that you want your skirt to be.  For this skirt I chose to use the following materials:

You will want to decide your chain length as a multiple of 14 chains that equal your hip circumference.

Image retrieved from BabyBlog

Image retrieved from BabyBlog

Row 1: ch (your decided length, or mine..) join with a sl st to beginning ch and begin to work in the round.

© positivelylace

© positivelylace

Row 2: ch 1, sc in ea ch, join with a sl st in 1st sc. (make sure to count each stitch to be sure you have the same # of stitches as chains… it’s real easy to lose or gain one and mess the pattern up)

Row 3: ch 4, tr in ea sc around, join with a sl st in the 4th chain of beg ch 4. (again, count all your stitches)

Row 4: ch 1, sc in ea tr around, join with a sl st in 1st sc (when joining, do so only in the front loop of the st). (again count all stitches)

Row 5: (working in the front loops only) ch 5, sk 3 sc, sc in next 11 sc.  *ch 5, sk 3 sc, sc in next 11 sc* repeat from *-* around skirt, join skirt with a sl st to 1st sc/1st ch of ch 5 at the beginning of the round.

Row 6: ch 3, 10 hdc in the ch 5 sp, *ch 3 sk 5 sc, sc in 6th sc, skip 5 sc, ch 3, 11 hdc in next ch 5 sp*  repeat from *-* around, join w/ a sl st to 3rd ch of beg ch 3.

Row 7: ch 4, *dc in next hdc, ch 1 (repeat from * 9 times ending with a dc in the last dc… you should have 11 dc and 9 ch sp in between them), ch 3, sk ch 3 sp, sc in sc, ch 3.  <dc in next hdc, ch 1> 10 times, dc in last hdc, ch 3, sk ch 3, sc in sc, ch 3** repeat from < to ** around, join w/ sl st to 3rd ch of beg ch 4.

Row 8: ch5, dc in next dc, ch 2 (9 times), dc in last dc, ch 2, sk ch 3 sp, sc in next sc, ch 2, sk ch 3 sp *dc in next dc, ch 2, (10 times) dc in last dc, ch 2, sk ch 3 sp, sc in sc, ch 2, sk ch 3 sp * repeat *-* around, join w/ a sl st to 3rd ch of beg ch 5.

Row 9: ch 1, *sc in 1st ch 2 sp, 3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc in next ch 2 sp, sc in next 2 ch 2 sp (repeat from * once more), skip one ch 2 sp, 3dc ch 2 3dc in last ch 2 sp, sk ch 2 sp, sc in sc, sk ch 2 sp** repeat from *-** around skirt, join w/ a sl st in 1st sc.  Fasten off.

Now, you will join your yarn again in the back loops of Row 5, I joined in a space so that my ruffles would not be overlapping (there would be a new ruffle below the space between two ruffles on the first round)… to do this I found the center sc between two ruffles, skipped one sc on the right next to that and joined in the next sc.


Row 10: (working in back loops only of row 5) ch 4, sk one sc, *dc in next sc, ch 1* repeat *-* around, join w/ a sl st to 3rd ch of beg ch 4.

© positivelylace working in the back loops only

© positivelylace
working in the back loops only

Row 11: ch 3, dc in each dc and ch sp around, join w/ a sl st to 3rd ch of beg ch 3.

Row 12Row 16: Repeat Row 5 – Row 9

Continue adding rows of ruffles until your skirt is the desired length.  Below is a (not so great quality) instructional video that I created for this skirt:

I was a little nervous making this skirt and almost gave up on it because I thought the cotton yarn was too thick, but it turned out amazing!  I added a ribbon between the triple crochet’s of the waist.  You can make this skirt in any yarn, but I would recommend sticking with a cotton yarn or thread… I can see this skirt being made beautifully in a small crochet cotton thread as well.  I hope you enjoy!!

Please do not sell this pattern.  Please reference my page for the pattern.  You have my full permission to sell any finished product from this pattern, please give me credit.  Thank you!!

© positivelylace

© positivelylace






  1. smallcrochet says:

    Thanks for sharing the pattern and the how to. The days of me being able to wear a skirt like yours are long gone :).. but the ruffled lace would also look good on the edge of a shawl or as a clutch bag.

    • Erica says:

      You are welcome Brenda! Please share your finished projects, I’d love to see all the beautiful variations you all make from this pattern!!

  2. Julia says:

    Very lovely! I’ve been done ruffled skirts for my nieces ages 7 and 11, but now I’d love to do this for myself :) I love your suggestion of using crochet thread, and my hip measurement is similar to yours so how many number of starting chains do you think I should start? I’ll be using the classic crochet thread (#10) and a steel hook #7. I would greatly appreciate your input with excitement!

  3. Erica says:

    Julia, let me practice with that and get back to you. The idea is to just chain until you reach your hip measurement… and making that as close to a multiple of 9 as you can. If you have to choose between two sizes, go with the lesser amount of chains!! The skirt will gain weight as there is a lot of ruffles, and you don’t want it to fall off. I hope this helped.

  4. Jamie S says:

    Hello and thanks for the pattern write up. Maybe you can consider to put it on Ravelry? Just add a link up, that way you get lots more traffic here and I can (selfishly) add this to my favorites…

  5. Donna says:

    I left you a FB message in the general inbox.
    I think there are a couple of typos in your pattern.

    In row 8, there is an error.
    ch5, dc in next dc, ch2 (9 times), dc in last dc,
    sk ch 3 sp, sc in next sc, ch 3, ———- etc.

    In row 9 there is an error:
    ….3dc ch 2 3dc in last ch 2 sp,
    sk ch THREE space (not 2), <—- CORRECTION here
    sc in sc,
    sk ch THREE space (not 2), etc <—— CORRECTION here

    Also, I am wondering if in round 9 where it reads
    (repeat from * once more), skip one ch 2 space…..
    that this should instead read
    skip one ch 2 space (repeat from * once more). It doesn't make sense when I work it as written, but to be honest, I haven't fully tackled the round yet due to a time constraint today. I figured since I was commenting, I'd let you know that even tho my sample is "in progress."

    Lastly, I tried using the multiples of 9. I did better with multiples of 14. 14 is how many stitches the ruffle spans. When I got to row 5 I had to adjust for this, so I reworked it with multiples of 14 and it worked better.

    Have you made more than one of these? Did anyone pattern test for you?

    I saw on Ravelry 2 other ladies are having issues with it; however I saw on FB someone posted a picture that seems to be progressing without issue.

    Thank you, Donna

    • Joe says:

      I agree there are some confusion but what helped me out is the diagram which i followed and it helped a lot.

      • Erica says:

        Hi Joe, yes that is why I tried to keep my pattern as close to the diagram as possible, I understand it is not always easy to follow the written words of how another views a pattern. I am a beginner at writing out patterns, I am glad the diagram helped you!!

  6. YoYingers says:

    I am currently making this skirt, I agree there are some errors in the pattern, I have reworked some parts to rectify this and is turning out ok. I have also made minor adjustments to the pattern so that the stitches are more even. I found in row 9, when you SC into the previous rows SC’s it made the CH3’s of row 8 bulky. according to the original chart it should only be CH1 so I did this rather than follow the pattern instructions.

    I have just added my second tier/ruffle and working on my third. I think I will

    • Erica says:

      Hi, I tried to keep the pattern as close to the diagram as possible. It is difficult to assess where the pattern needs moderation… some do not have the same issues with their skirt as others. I’m sorry you experienced problems, and I am glad you figured out a way to make it work.

  7. YoYingers says:

    I think I will go about 5-6 tiers for finishing this skirt. it’s going to be a special custom tutu for my daughter to wear to ballet :) thank you for sharing x

  8. Just sayin says:

    You do not need permission or to credit the maker of a pattern if you want to sell something you have made from a pattern, even if you payed money for that pattern. Copyright law does not work that way in regards to textiles, it is impossible to prove the garment was not reverse engineered.

    • Erica says:

      When I contacted major yarn companies I was told that I would need permission from the designer or company who makes the pattern. I would be careful regardless, I was letting everyone know that it is ok with me to sell a finished product, however, the pattern may not be sold.

      • Erica says:

        It is a very fuzzy area but in my opinion it is always better safe than sorry! Any finished piece of work in a tangible form whether or not there is any mention to a ‘copyright’ to the pattern, is in a form copy-written, it is an unwritten law. This means that if you make something from another persons pattern, you would have to give credit to the pattern or creator if you wish to sell the finished product (as well as get permission)… you cannot say that this was your design. Even worse and more strict is selling a pattern that is not your own work. You can get you in a heap of trouble with a litigious pattern creator. I would greatly research what you do before doing it, for a little creator like myself, whatever… but for a large yarn company who manufactures and copyrights patterns, watch out and ask before hand.

  9. Lise says:

    I am trying to crochet this wonderful skirt for my daughter.. I am kinda new in crochet I therefor have a question for you.. in row 11: do I make 1 dc and 1 ch 1 dc, 1 ch all the way round so I end up with twice as much ch as I started out with… its not so easy as I am translating the pattern to Danish while I crochet :) hope you can help me.. oh and btw where do I start row 12 so that the pattern is offset relative to the overlying pattern, if you know what I mean.

    regards from Denmark

    • Erica says:

      Hello Lise… it might be easier if you just follow the diagram. You just dc in each spot (in each double crochet and in each ch one space from the previous round… do not make chains on this row). Row 12 should be worked in the front loops of row 11, that way you can work in the back loops later when you add a new tier/layer . I hope I helped you!

  10. Jane Delcambre says:

    Hi! There are lots of crocheters trying out your pattern and have added some changes they think is good. I will also like to help with my opinion. I have begun making this skirt today. I find the math is perfect, as you say, for the ‘9 stitch repeat’. Then, I made it all the way to the last row (row 9, end of the 1st lace panel). I wasn’t satisfied that you had to skip over a ch 2 space in each repeat section. It seemed like a waste of yarn. I ripped it back to row 6 and made only 10 hdc in each of the ch 5 spaces instead of 11. This way it works out even for the 3 points at the end of lace sections >

    *sc in 1st ch 2 sp, (3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in next ch 2 sp, sc in next 2 ch 2 sps, (3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in next ch 2 sp, sc in next 2 ch 2 sps, (3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in next ch 2 sp, sc in last ch 2 sp.* Repeat * – * for each lacy ending.

    I also changed on row 8 the (ch 3, sc in sc, ch 3) to (ch 2, sc in sc, ch 2) for each. It helps the yarns lay down smoother.

    Since the cotton is slightly thick & the hook is a small E I thought it worked out better for me. This is only what I have completed so far today :’}

    You have created a beautiful skirt and I’m very excited you shared!
    Thank you.

    • Erica says:

      Hi Jane, I KNOW EXACTLY WHAT YOU MEAN!!!… if you look at the diagram it is the way they made the pattern, and it made no sense to me either but I stuck to the diagram so that nobody would get confused… it seems to have just made more confusion. Thank you for leaving your correction here, hopefully it will help others who have the same issue! There were no written instructions when I found the diagram, so I had to write them out as close to the picture as possible…

  11. Michelle says:

    Hey, hun. First I want to thank you for taking the time to decipher this pattern and share it with everyone. It certainly is gorgeous and I cannot wait to wear it! I am however having some issues that I was hoping you or anyone else might be able to help me with. I started mine with 135 chains. Once I got to the end of row five, I was left with five sc. This was right after a ch5, so I figured I would need to do the 11 sc, but there is not enough room. I have taken this apart several times, counted and re-counted but I always end up not knowing what to do with the 5 extra sc at the end. I am not fortunate enough to be able to read charts, it had might as well be written in Russian (haha) to me. I could make this in the larger size you posted, and just use the ribbon to hold it up, but I was really hoping to make it closer to my size. Thanks in advance!

    • Tarra says:

      I had the same issue. Donna wrote that she used multiples of 14 instead of 9. I tried it and that took care of the extra stitches at the end.

      • Erica says:

        That’s fantastic Tarra, I don’t know why some find 14 works and other find that 9 works or 11. I am going to try and get a video made for this skirt as well, so that people can see how I crocheted the skirt. I will try and have that done as soon as possible, but I am glad you were able to make it work!

      • Erica says:

        Thank you Tarra, feel free to post your corrections in the comments here, I am going to make a video for this skirt soon and I think it would be great to have alternate instructions available for anyone experiencing the same issues. I’m glad you like the skirt :)

    • Erica says:

      Hi Michelle, I’m sorry that you are experiencing issues with the pattern… for some people my instructions work, for others its a chain 14, others a chain 11. I don’t know why these differences are occurring. It is a major goal of mine to re-do this pattern in a video, and post that for everyone to “SEE” how I did the skirt. I will try and get that done as soon as possible for everyone, and again I am so sorry that the pattern is confusing!

  12. Akua Lezli Hope says:

    Thanks for sharing this beautiful skirt! I want to make one for my niece in grad school. We’ve selected a cotton/wool yarn by Cascade and I’m trying to figure out how much to get. When you said the large ball of Lily there’s a “Big Ball” at 710yds/14 oz and something else called “Super Size” which is 200 yards/3 oz. Did you use 710 yards (more or less) or the lesser amount?

    • Erica says:

      Thank you, and you are so welcome! I purchased the large 14 oz skein as it was a much better buy… however I did not use even half of it on the skirt. I am horrible with math so I don’t know how much yardage I used, but I would just buy the large 14 oz skein so you have extra for other projects anyways :) Best of luck with your skirt!!

        • Erica says:

          You are so welcome! If you have any difficulties just try to follow the diagram (which in itself gets kind of weird too), also others have posted different ways that worked for them in these comments and on ravelry. Good luck and I hope she loves it!

  13. Jane Delcambre says:

    On row 6, if you only do 10 hdcs in each ch 5 space, the skipped ch 2 on row 9 can be eliminated.

    I am making another skirt. It has become very popular with the first one I made with my family & their friends. (posted on facebook)

    I started with 154 chains (14 sts x 11 lace patterns=154 beg chs) for a size 36″ hip. 14 sts = 3 inches using the E/4-3.50mm crochet hook with Lily’s Sugar & Cream. This gives you 11 completed lace sections per completed around using the 14 stitch count for each lace segment. It works perfect now!

    You’ve done an excellent job with your video!

    • Erica says:

      Thank you so much Jane, yes another girl mentioned eliminating that as well, and I see no reason not to! It seems like an error in the diagram for sure. I am so happy that you enjoy the pattern and the video, I hope to make much more soon!!! Thank you again for your positive feedback!

  14. amber says:

    I used this pattern to upcycle a pair of my daughters pants. I cut the pants all the way up to about 2 inches away from the zipper. Then I used your 14 count and crocheted the edge of the skirt in sc. Then just followed the pattern. And it turned out so super cute. Thank you for the wonderful pattern.

  15. Lisa says:

    Way cute skirt! But in row six I changed it to 10 hdc. Maybe it’s OCD but I couldn’t handle the skip a ch2 space on row 9. Looks he same but without the little bump!

    • Erica says:

      I know Lisa, I didn’t understand why that was put in the pattern diagram, I’m so glad it turned out ok for you and thank you for the kind words :)

    • Erica says:

      Thanks Melissa! I simply found a diagram that others were using for free… not really sure of the origin either. In cases like that, I chose just to translate the diagram and I also linked to my source just in case. I did not claim the diagram to be my original diagram (I also did not charge for the pattern), I just wanted to share a great pattern with those who cannot read Russian (like me). I hope you enjoy it!

  16. Jan Smith says:

    Amazing skirt and you have done a wonderful job with this pattern and video. My question is, would I be able to start the ruffles after I do several rows of SC or HD below the triples, like 6 to 8 inches of solid sc or hd,? This way older ladies like my self can feel comfortable wearing this and make the ruffle area end about 4 inches above the knew? I have been trying to do this with spool thread yarn by myself with out a pattern. and I am wondering if I can do my top area different and use your ruffles at the bottom of my skirt?

    • Erica says:

      Yeah, you definitely can do that… just make sure you keep the stitch number the same as you would need for your ruffles… other than that, you can definitely change it up to fit your style :) Good luck, let me know how it turns out!

    • Erica says:

      This was a thicker cotton. Bamboo would definitely have a lovely drape to it, but I think sticking to cotton would be best (would probably last longer and be more durable). If I make this again I would try a light cotton yarn or thread, probably Patons Grace

  17. Julieann says:

    Very cute!! Thank you for posting a how to video. I was able to follow it very easily. I did modify a little bit with your pattern. I added a row between each ruffle so they were a little more spread out. I used this pattern along with a bikini top pattern to make a cute top. I love it!! It is a little thick and heavy which is great for spring or beginning of fall. Thanks again!!

    • Erica says:

      Thank you Julieann! I am so happy it worked out for you! Feel free to post pictures on my facebook page if you like :)

  18. nells says:

    Were is the pattern. To the top is it available. As wellmy aunts making this for me and i love this…. please send pattern lydiaraven209@Yahoo. Com

    • Erica says:

      Thank you Nells! The pattern for the bikini top is posted on this page, just click the link to it and it should direct you to the ravelry page for the top. I’m so glad you like the pattern!

  19. nells says:

    By the way great look of wk im so in love thanks for the sharing the craft work we definitely will give credit to u for sharing … thanks look foward to wearkng this most of the summer…

  20. Angela Lewis says:

    I made this for my sister who is a model. SHE LOVED IT! She took pictures with it on in her photo shoot! She rocked it!!!

  21. Elaine' Marie Meeker says:

    I can’t wait to start making this, the skirt is so cute and flirty. I first saw this skirt on Pinterest and it was the russian version of it, I’m so happy that you made written instructions for it! Thank you :)

    • Erica says:

      Thanks so much Elaine! It’s a great skirt, I recommend using a lighter cotton than the one i used… try patons grace :) I really hope you enjoy the pattern!! <3

  22. Evelyn says:

    Hi Erica:

    Love the skirt! Love it! Love it! Love it! I just saw it and haven’t tackled it yet but I am due for surgery in the next week and will have 2 months recuperating so I will definitely have the time to tackle this skirt. I was wondering if you also had available the pattern for the bikini top you have pictured with the skirt. I think it goes awesome together and I would like to make both. Thank you for sharing! There are a lot of comments and suggestions and I am hoping I can figure it out.

  23. robyn Haddock says:

    Erica do you have a pattern for the bikini top pictured with this skirt. I just started the skirt for my daughter and would love to do the top also:)

  24. ying says:

    Wonderful Job , I have 3 little ones that cant wait to wear this skirt is so beatiful, thank you,
    I am very bad reading patterns, n the video is a zuper plus , keep doing fresh n young ideas I love your work , n add more videos :)

  25. Michelle N Wayne Smith says:

    Hello Lovey, Im making this fantastic skirt right now, and im probably an idiot but, when rows 12-16 are repeat 5-9… Do I complete rows 10-11 when beginning a new row? Thanks it is so Beautiful. Im excited to finish before summer. :-)

    • Becca says:

      I’m also doing this skirt right now and I repeated rows 10 and 11 also. I believe it makes it look great!

  26. Emily says:

    Hey there. In row 10 it shows that you ch 1, dc in next sc all the way around. The pictur shows you skipping 1 sc. Am I correct?

  27. Becca says:

    I wanted to thank you for posting this lovely skirt, it gave me a wonderful skirt to make and wear to the beach!!! Thank you so much!!

  28. Nicole says:

    I have a 45″ hip and I’m having trouble figuring out how many stitches I would need to equal that. Can anyone please help?

  29. Tety says:

    Hai, i want to try the pattern…hope i can make it.
    What about the bra pattern? Please share with us.
    Thanks ^^

  30. Katie says:

    Hello, I am in the process of printing the patterns of this and the pineapple express because I don’t always have internet connection. 21 pages later…. ok so what I am asking is if you can offer a printable version of the pattern that wont make me use up all my ink for just one pattern? We are kind of limited on what we can find to replace cartridges down here in central america. I think the skirts are very cute btw.

What do you think?