Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Tutorial - No More Turning Chains!

When crocheting in rows, how many times have you ended up with those ugly turning chains? You know what I'm talking about. The pattern says to "chain 3 and turn." The chain 3 is the equivalent to a double crochet stitch and begins the next row. But - let's be frank here - it's just plumb ugly. Even if you can get past the look, it's still difficult to work vertical stitches into those 3 chains.

Instead of working a traditional ch-2 (hdc), ch-3 (dc) or ch-4 (tr) – we will work stacked sc stitches or BegHdc, BegDc, BegTr. This produces more mass and a sturdier stitch. When working into the top of a stacked sc stitch, you will have 2 loops in which to insert your hook under (as a regular stitch). Also, when working into the vertical side of a stacked sc stitch, there is plenty of mass in which to place a stitch – no flimsy chains.

Here’s a handy equivalency chart that displays the standard rule of thumb.

I usually determine how many stacked sc I need on a project by project basis. Depending on my tension or yarn thickness, I sometimes fudge how many stacked sc I work. My own personal BegDc is usually 2 stacked sc – which technically is equal to a ch-2 or a hdc. Since I chain a tad loosely for this stitch, I just use 2 stacked sc for my BegDc and I get the height I need. For a BegTr, I use 3 stacked sc which is equal to a ch-3 or a dc. This may vary from project to project depending on yarn. Just experiment a little to see how many Stacked Sc you will need to replace your turning chains. It really makes no difference, as the goal is to achieve the height you want.

Here's how to make a Beginning Half Double Crochet - BegHdc.

Just keep repeating Steps 4 – 6 to make the BegDc, BegTr, etc.

Remember – you don’t have to follow the chart to a tee. Use as many stacked sc as you need to achieve the height desired. It's all about the height - and fudging is allowed.