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Crochet Basics

There are a handful of simple techniques you'll need to know for most basic crochet patterns.  Just remember to keep a loose hold on the yarn, don't worry about mistakes, and have fun!

Below, you will find...

  • Making a Foundation Chain
  • Slip Stitch
  • Single Crochet
  • Double Crochet
  • Half Double Crochet
  • Treble Crochet

 

Making a Foundation Chain

The chain is the first stitch in any crochet. A group of chain stitches is called a foundation chain. 

Begin with a slip knot on the hook.

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Wrap the yarn around the hook from back to front. 

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Draw the yarn through the loop on the hook.   

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Slip Stitch (sl st)

Begin with a stitch on the hook. Insert your hook under both branches of the V.   

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Wrap the yarn around the hook from back to front, then draw the yarn through both the V and the stitch on your hook.   

Single Crochet (sc)

Begin with a foundation chain.  Insert the hook into the center of the third stitch in the foundation chain (the one next to the one next to the one on the hook). You now have two stitches on the hook.

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Wrap the yarn around the hook from back to front, and draw the yarn through both stitches, pulling them off the hook. 

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Repeat for each stitch in the chain.  At the end of the row, lift the last remaining stitch off the hook and turn the work around.  Place the stitch back on the hook, chain 1, and start the new row. 

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For all following rows after the first row, insert the hook underneath both branches of the V shaped stitch, rather than through it.

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Double Crochet (dc)

Begin with a stitch on the hook.  If you are at the beginning of a row, chain 3.

Wrap the yarn around the hook from back to front, then insert the hook underneath both branches of the V of a stitch in the fabric or row.  Wrap the yarn around the hook again, then draw the yarn through the stitch. 

You know have three stitches on the hook. 

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Wrap the yarn around the hook, then draw it through the two stitches closest to the end of the hook.  You now have two stitches on the hook:  one old stitch on the right and one brand new one on the left. 

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Wrap the yarn around the hook once again and draw it through both stitches on the hook. Now there is only one stitch remaining. 

cro12.jpg 

Half Double Crochet (hdc)

Begin as you would for double crochet, so that you have 3 stitches on the hook.

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Wrap the yarn around the hook and draw it through all three stitches at once. 

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Treble Crochet (tr)

Begin with a stitch on the hook.  Wrap yarn twice around hook, then insert the hook into a stitch in the fabric or row.  Wrap yarn around hook, draw hook back through stitch. 

You now have four stitches on the hook. 

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Wrap yarn around the hook, draw hook through two stitches closest to the end of the hook. Now there are three stitches remaining. 

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Wrap yarn around the hook again, draw hook through two stitches closest to the end of the hook. Now there are two stitches remaining.

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Wrap yarn around the hook one more time.  Draw the yarn through the two remaining stitches.  

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9 Responses to Crochet Basics


  1. Leah says:

    Great tutorials! I hope you don’t mind if I refer people to your site to learn the basics when I post some easy pattern tutorials on my blog.

  2. Donna says:

    This picture (of the mohair granny sqaure) is what got me inspired to learn to crochet. May I ask what yarn you used?

  3. purl bee says:

    Dear Donna,
    This is a lace weight mohair. I’m not sure which one it is specifically, but here is a link to our mohair page. Check out the Haiku, Kid Seta, Kid Silk Haze, and Kid Silk Spray, they are all very similar to the yarn used in this image.
    http://purlsoho.com/purl/products/yarnlist/fiber,11

  4. elizabeth says:

    Silly question – but how do you make a slip knot?

  5. purl bee says:

    Hi Elizabeth,
    Here is a great tutorial for making a slip knot for crochet
    http://belladia.typepad.com/bella_dia/2008/02/video-tutorial.html

  6. Natalia says:

    This is great… it’s my go to guide whenever i get stuck !!!!!! Thanks !!!

  7. Brandy says:

    Thanks for such a great tutorial. This made crochet so easy to understand!!

  8. Karen says:

    Your tutorials are so informative. I like them better than the You Tube videos. Often, the videos go way too fast and are not as precise and exacting as your pictorial steps.

  9. Kathryn says:

    How do you do a stitch? (I am a beginner, obvs) I want to learn to do a slip stitch, and then a granny square, but i don't even know what a stitch is!?

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