Free Crochet Pattern – The Key West Cardi

By July 19, 2020No Comments

Who doesn’t love a light weight lacy summer cardi? I know it’s the end of summer! I promise some Autumn patterns coming soon. This will be the last free pattern of Summer 2020 and I hope you love it!

The Key West Cardi is constructed from 3 simple rectangles. The fronts have a simple mesh pattern and the back has a contemporary geometric filet crochet motif.

This crochet cardi is oversized and very roomy. It also makes a great lacy crochet swimsuit cover up as well a beautiful layering piece to go with your favorite summer sun dress. With the Key West Cardi, oversized does NOT mean heavy! The lace weight yarn and the open mesh pattern combine beautifully to create a light, drapey and cool crocheted piece.

*This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue posting new free crochet patterns, tutorials and tips and tricks that you’ll love. Thank you for supporting my little business.*

The Yarn

My friends over at lovecrafts.com were generous enough to send me a few skeins of this beautiful Debbie Bliss Rialto lace yarn to create the Key West Cardi.

I’ve used Debbie Bliss before and have always been impressed with the quality, appearance and color availability. The Rialto was no exception and I really love this bright greenish yellow color that screams summer!

Rialto is available in both DK and lace weight, I used the lace for this pattern. Don’t be afraid of using lace in crochet, it will take slightly longer to work up your piece, but you won’t regret in.

In the end, lace weight yarns are easier on the hands and wrists when working and result in garments that don’t hang as heavily. Thereby creating both a better fit and appearance for your crochet wearables.

If you’re looking for more free patterns, click the button below and head over to lovecrafts.com to browse their selection of indie designer patterns (including my Miami Metallic Tank, not featured on my blog) which are totally free to download!

Working in filet crochet

This cardi is probably a great starting point for crocheters with little to no filet crochet experience because the back motif is so simple. Filet crochet consists of nothing more than double crochet and chain stitches. The trick is learning to read the chart, which is also a breeze.

Simply put, filet crochet consists of two basic stitch patterns. “Open mesh” and “closed mesh.” In this pattern as in most filet patterns, the open mesh includes a double crochet and a chain 2 space, while the closed mesh consists of 3 double crochet stitches. As you can see, both the open mesh and closed mesh consist of 3 stitches (chain spaces count as a stitch.) So when you refer to the chart, remember each block equals 3 stitches. In the Key West Cardi chart, the yellow blocks (closed mesh) consist of 3 dc and the white blocks (open mesh) consist of double crochet, chain 2.

For example, both front panels of the Key West Cardi are made up of open mesh which creates an open space between the stitches. While the back panel is made up of both open and closed mesh. The rectangles motif in the back are closed mesh (3 double crochet stitches) surrounded by open mesh (1 double crochet and a chain 2 space.) It’s the placement and combination of the open mesh and closed mesh that create the image or “motif” that makes filet so visually applealing.

I think you get the idea, but if you’d like to read further on this topic, I found a great article on the subject over on wecrochet.com

learn all about filet crochet

Click the link above to check out a great article by wecrochet.com and learn even more about filet crochet and how to read filet charts.

Pattern please….

First things first. If you’re looking for the ad-free printable version, simply choose your favorite shop from the buttons below and grab the PDF for a very low price. The advantage here is you can print it out, make notes on it, save it in your pattern collection and take it with you whereever you go! Keep reading for the free version here on the blog.

The Key West Cardi Crochet Pattern

Finished Measurement

Pattern is written in size S/M with sizes (L/XL, 2/3X) in parenthesis.

Bust Circumference: 45.75 (51.25, 56.5)”


Cardigan is worked in 3 panels then seamed at shoulders and sides. Sleeve trim is crocheted on separately. Work Back Panel according to chart where instructed. Work front panels in open mesh pattern.


3 (4, 5) balls Debbie Bliss Rialto, #1 lace weight, 100% Merino Wool, 50g (1.8 oz)/ 390 m (427 yds) per ball

US E/3.5 mm crochet hook

Blocking Mat, pins and spray bottle

Tapestry needle


9 spaces/blocks (see special stitches) x 12 rows = 4 inches in pattern

Special Stitches

Foundation single crochet (Fsc): Ch 2, insert hook in 2nd ch from hook, yo, pull up a loop (2 loops on hook), yo, pull through 1 loop (1 ch made), yo, pull through 2 loops (foundation single crochet completed) *insert hook under the 2 loops of the ch at bottom of stitch you just made, yo and pull up a loop, yo and pull through 1 loop, yo and pull through 2 loops. Repeat from * to desired number of foundation single crochet.

Beginning Space: Ch 5 (counts as 1 dc and 2 ch), sk next 2 sts or ch’s, dc in next st.

Space: Ch 2, sk next 2 sts or ch’s, dc in next st.

Block: Dc in next 2 dc, or 2 dc in next ch-2 space, dc in next dc.


ChChainSkSkipWSWrong side
St(es)Stitch(es)RepRepeatRSRight side
Sl stSlip stitchBegBeginning
DcDouble CrochetRemRemaining
ScSingle Crochet

Pattern Instructions

Back Piece

Row 1: Fsc 166 (190, 202), turn. 166 (190, 202) sc

Row 2: Ch 1 (does not count as a st throughout), sc across, turn. 166 (190, 202) sc

Row 3: Ch 5 (counts as dc, ch 2 here and throughout), *sk 2 sts, dc in next st, ch 2; rep from * across, dc in last st, turn. 55 (63, 67) spaces

Rows 4-13: Ch 5, sk next ch-2 space, *dc in next dc, ch 2, sk next ch-2 space; rep from * across, dc in 3rd ch of beg ch-5, turn.

Rows 14-81: Work beg spaces, spaces and blocks according to the chart.

Right Shoulder

Rows 82: Work beg space, work 23 (25, 27) spaces, leave rem spaces unworked for neck and Left Shoulder, turn. 24 (26, 28) spaces

Rows 83-85: Work even in mesh pattern. 24 (26, 28) spaces

Fasten off.

Left Shoulder

With RS facing, sk center 7 (11, 11) spaces, join yarn with a sl st in dc of next space.

Row 1: Work beg space, work 23 (25, 27) spaces, turn.  24 (26, 28) spaces

Rows 2-4:  Work even in mesh pattern. 24 (26, 28) spaces

Fasten off.

Front Panels

Row 1: Fsc 73 (79, 91), turn. 73 (79, 91) sc

Row 2: Ch 1, sc across, turn. 73 (79, 91) sc

Row 3: Ch 5, sk next 2 sts, *dc in next st, ch 2, sk next 2 sts; rep from *across, dc in last st, turn. 24 (26, 30) spaces

Row 4: Ch 5, sk next ch-2 space, *dc in next dc, ch 2, sk next ch-2 space; rep from * across, dc in 3rd ch of beg ch-5, turn. 24 (26, 30) spaces

Rep Row 4 until piece measures 28.25 inches or the same length as front panel. Fasten off.

*Note, due to the nature of the mesh fabric, it is likely that the front panels will not require as many rows as the back panel in order to reach equal length. To avoid uneven panels, work the back panel as instructed in the pattern, measure its length, then work the front panels to that length.* 

Final Finishing

Lay pieces out according to finished measurements. Pin in place. Spray with water to block. Allow to dry completely.

Whipstitch front panels to back panel at shoulders.

Sew side seams, leaving 9 (11, 13)” unsewn below shoulder seams for armholes and leaving 2” unsewn at lower edges for side slits.

Sleeve Trim

Sleeves are worked in rounds and joined with a sl st to 3rd ch of beg ch 3 of each round.

Round 1: With RS facing, join yarn with a sl st at underarm, ch 3, work 96 (117, 139) dc evenly spaced around armhole opening, join. 97 (118, 140) dc.

Rounds 2-3:Ch 3, dc around, join.

Weave in all ends and admire your work!

And don’t forget to like and share this pattern on social media! I would love to see your Key West Cardi on Instagram Facebook and Pinterest

*This pattern and all photos are the property of mommylovesyarn.com. Please respect the designer and their work, do not copy the pattern or photos to use as your own. You may sell handmade items made from my patterns if you wish. If you do, please give credit to me by tagging or linking back to my design. Thank you for your support.*