Sunday, March 22, 2009

Learn to Crochet - Lesson 3 - Description of Basic Stitches

Learn to Crochet - Lesson 3 - Description of Basic Stitches

So, now you have your yarn all ready to GO. You are itching for me to get going! But, let's talk just a little more. :-)

Crocheting is simply a series of knots. Very nice knots. Matching knots. Rows built on rows built on rows of knots. Loops pulled through loops. You pull the loops via a hook. You loop the yarn over the hook and pull it through the loop. One loop stays on the hook. Simple!

There are several basic stitches. They include the Chain, Single, Double and Treble stitches.
When you read crochet patterns, the abbreviations go like this:
Chain (ch), Single Crochet (sc), Double Crochet (dc), Treble Crochet (tc), yarn over hook (yo), loops (lps), and more! Once you have the CHAIN and the SINGLE CROCHET down, you will have the basic skills to go and read any pattern that you like! I will only teach you the Chain and the Single Crochet. I will also teach you how to make the Herringbone pattern (zig zag) that goes into making many blankets or afghans.


This is the most basic of loops and it is the base and foundation of any crocheted work. It is made by forming a circle with a strand of yarn, and then pulling a single strand through that circle of yarn with a crochet hook. You make a length of chain by pulling one strand of yarn through each loop, one at a time, over and over and over, until you have a chain long enough to start the project you are beginning.
This is the stitch that I use the most. This is a single stitch worked through a chain stitch. This is made by pulling one strand of yarn over the hook and then another single strand through the single strand AND the strand you already have on the crochet hook. (pictures to follow will make this easier to understand)

This is a double stitch; which jst makes it twice as long/deep as the single. You have two strands of yarn that you pull the stitch through to make one stitch. (pictures to follow will make this easier to understand)

This is a stitch that pulls yarn through three strands of yarn and makes a very long stitch. If you do 3 treble stitches and then 3 chains, and when you work your way back the other way do the opposite stitch (3 chains into the 3 trebles, and 3 trebles into the 3 chains) your finished work will have a nice, open weave to it. This makes a very open and light-weight project. I did this stitch on the yellow baby blanket I made for May before we brought her home. That was July 2001. Want to see it? Here she is today with her special blanket:

Herringbone Pattern (that is what I call it)

This is an afghan stitch that makes a zig-zag design in the finished work. Addictive! I have done millions of these stitches -- honestly! I have made MANY MANY blankets/afghans over the years (I learned to crochet when I was 16 - my sister Linda taught me). I nearly always use this stitch on blankets/afghans. To make the zigs and zags, you skip 2 stitches on the down zig and do 3 stitches into ONE stitch for the up zig (or was it a zag?). This pattern is useful on BIG projects, as it provides variety and keeps you interested. Doing a blanket without the zig-zag is far more tiresome and tedious and you lose some of the wonderful meditative quality of crocheting.

Here are my girls under the Christmas afghan, which I made with what I call the Herringbone pattern (and single crochet stitches):

Next lesson: The Chain stitch.



Dana70 said...
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Dana70 said...

I just love your Herringbone Pattern. I have searched online for hours trying to find a pattern to make a queen size bed coverlet. I am making one as a gift for my grandmother. Do you have written instructions for this pattern which include the edge pattern?