Saturday, July 27, 2013


My now second post into the world of learning how to Crochet, so excited! After finishing a big project for my son, a sweater, it feels good to write again. Getting all the knots out of my fingers, lol.

There are many stitches but, it is easier to focus on a few and then branch out later. here it goes:

In Crochet, a project is started with a chain row or foundation row, this can be done in two different ways. Today I am only going to go over one. The second one is called the no-chain foundation row which is a little more complex so, I will be going over this is my next post.

To complete a chain row or foundation row (abbreviation for pattern reading Ch):

The initial part known as a slip knot always reminds me of how I learned to tie my shoes, make bunny ears with your shoelace, cross bunny ears, pull top bunny ear under bottom bunny ear and through the hole. I know there was a whole saying but, it has been ages that i don't remember it. Anyhow with a Chain (Ch) row you only have one bunny ear and yarn is your shoelace.

When you make a bunny ear the yarn is automatically crossed, the end part of the yarn should be on top of the yarn that is connected to your ball of yarn. What I do is wrap the yarn around my fingers and pull the end string through the hole in between my two fingers, not pulling it all the way through only enough to make another bunny ear.
***Note: make sure you have enough yarn length on the end part of the yarn***

Once done you should have an adjustable bunny ear to start the Chain (Ch) row, insert hook into the bunny ear and adjust bunny ear to fit your crochet hook. To complete one Chain (Ch), yarn over (Known as Yo or Yoh (yarn over hook) in pattern reading), pull yarn on hook through the bunny ear hole, repeat this until you reach the desired amount of Chain (Ch) stitches (St(s)).
***Note: yarn over (Yo) with the yarn attached to your yarn ball***

Here is a simple start to a pattern using Ch row:

Row 1: Ch 11 with A, turn (A refers to a specific color for a project, You could have multiple colors B, C and so on). (turn refers to turning back the way you started from) .

Before I go into the next stitch I want to go over different ways to start the next row after a Chain/foundation row (Ch). There are at least 4 ways start the second row: Two loops (Tl), One loop (Ol), front loop (Flo) and back loop (Blo). I am going to go over the two basic ways to start, the other two I will go over in my next post.

Two loops (Tl) is when you insert your hook into the Chain (Ch) row that has two loops (Tl) showing on top.

Two loops on top

 One loop (Ol) is when your insert you hook into the Chain (Ch) row that has one loop (Ol) showing on top.

One loop on top

I usually go with the one loop (Ol) on top because it creates a cleaner looking edge underneath.

***Note: this is only used when crocheting after the the chain/foundation row (Ch). The two loops (Tl), front loop (Flo) or back loop (Blo) would need to be used after a stitch (St) row has been put over a Chain/foundation row (Ch).***

Onto the next stitch...

Slip stitch (abbreviation for pattern reading Sl St):

To complete a slip stich (Sl St), Insert hook into Chain (Ch) or stitch (St) and Yarn over (Yo), pull through chain (Ch) or stitch (St) and both loops leaving one loop on the hook, repeat till destination is reached.

Pattern continued-

Row 2: Sl St in the second Ch from the hook (Note: putting the stitch (St) in the second chain (Ch) is mostly done after a chain row (Ch) so, the stitch (St) can't easily come out), Sl St into the remaining 9 Ch spaces (Sp), Ch 1 (Note: The chain (Ch) 1 helps keep the row straight and at the proper height going into the single Crochet stitch (Sc)) and turn.
Row 1: Chain (Ch) &  Row 2: Slip Stitch (Sl St) together

Single Crochet (abbreviation for pattern reading Sc):

To complete a single crochet stitch (Sc), Insert hook into Chain (Ch) or stitch (St) and Yarn over (Yo), pull through chain (Ch) or stitch (St), Yarn over (Yo), pull through both loops leaving on one loop on the hook, repeat till destination is reached.

Pattern continued-

Row 3: Sc in the next stitch from the hook, Sc into the remaining 9 Sl St Sp(s), Ch 2 (Note: The chain (Ch) 2 helps keep the row straight and at the proper height going into a double crochet stitch (Dc)) and turn.

Row 1, Row 2 & Row 3: Single Crochet (Sc) together

Double Crochet (abbreviation for pattern reading Dc):

To complete a double crochet stitch (Dc), Yarn over (Yo), Insert hook into Chain (Ch) or stitch (St) and Yarn over (Yo), pull through chain (Ch) or stitch (St), Yarn over (Yo), pull through two loops leaving two loops on the hook, Yarn over (Yo), pull through the last two loops leaving one loop on the hook, repeat till destination is reached.

Pattern continued-

Row 4: Dc in the next stitch from the hook, Dc in the remaining 9 Sc Sp(s), Ch 3 (Note: The chain (Ch) 3 helps keep the row straight and at the proper height going into a Triple crochet stitch (Tc)) and turn. 

Row 1, Row 2, Row 3 & Row 4: Double Crochet (Dc) together

Triple Crochet (abbreviation for pattern reading Tc):

To complete a triple crochet stitch (Tc), Yarn over (Yo) twice, Insert hook into Chain (Ch) or stitch (St) and Yarn over (Yo), pull through chain (Ch) or stitch (St), Yarn over (Yo), pull through two loops leaving three loops on the hook, Yarn over (Yo), pull through another two loops leaving two loops on the hook, Yarn over (Yo), pull through the last two loops leaving one loop on the hook, repeat till destination is reached.

Pattern continued-

Row 5: Tc in the next stitch from the hook, Tc in the remaining 9 Dc Sp(s), Ch 1 (Note: The Chain (Ch) 1 helps keep the stitch (St) from coming out), fasten off and weave in ends.

Row 1, Row 2, Row 3, Row 4 & Row 5: Triple Crochet (Tc) together

One more thing I want to go over is that a pattern can be worked in rows (straight lines) or rounds (Circles). The pattern I did today was in rows, it was only meant to show you how to read patterns and work the stitches.

Hope you enjoyed my post today, my next post will be on modification of basic stitches and continued pattern reading.

Happy pattern reading!

© Hooking Rainbow 07/27/2013. All rights reserved.

Friday, July 19, 2013


Hi all, I have been absent for a few usually gets pretty busy around April through the beginning of July for me. I work a regular 9-5 job on top of blogging, taking care of my big 18 month old and keeping my sanity. Year end (June) for the company usually ends up with extra work and long hour for a few months. I have been crocheting things here and there but, mostly from other peoples relaxes me. On top of reading, got to love the mindless reading!

In May & June my family decided to come for a visit. Those two months also included me trying to potty train and to switch my son to his own bed. It finally just settled down a few days ago. I remember my mom crocheting along with me one day in June, realizing she didn't actually know any of the crochet stitch names or some basic crochet knowledge. It really surprised me since she taught me how to crochet before I started digging more into the crochet world. I learned so much just by surfing YouTube and Google. It got me thinking, that I should write up a few posts on the basics I learned, tricks/tips, pattern reading and crochet stitches to help other people learn to crochet as I did. Although I had to wait till I had some free time...

Then I was reminded by a friend who is just learning how to Crochet that I need to get on writing these posts. Here is goes, hope this helps all you out there learning to Crochet for the first time.

When my mom started teaching me how to crochet, I had trouble keeping my yarn on the hook so, she found a solution: a Latch hook.The Latch hook helped me learn the technique of how to Crochet, the art of movement and keeping the yarn on the hook. The hook doesn't allow for smaller or bigger sizes projects as latch hook is ones size fits all kind of tool. However, it works well for training purposes and simple projects. Once the technique is down the transition to any size Crochet hook is very seamless.

Latch Hook
Hook holding Styles:
There are two well known styles of holding a Crochet hook but, there is no real right way to hold a hook. There can be many possibilities of hook holding, it is just what feels most comfortable when Crocheting.

Pencil Grip

Knife Grip

Hook sizes: 

Hook sizes are different depending on brand, country and materials they are made from. It can be very confusing at times to figure out what the correct hook size is to use. Most patterns have a hook size listed and yarn also lists on their packaging the suggested hook size to be used.


Here is a simple conversion chart to help you out with Hook sizes.
Here is a page to help you choose the Correct hook.

I find when I am crocheting if I want a bigger size item then a pattern calls for I go up a few hook sizes and I getting bigger result. The opposite goes for a pattern with a bigger hook. This is usually determined by gauge swatches, some patterns have them and some don't. If you find your Crochet tension is too loose then go down one to two hook sizes and if it is tight then go up one to two hook sizes.  

Yarn types:

There are 7 standard yarn weights, all used for different types of projects. Yarn weights range from fine to bulky yarns. Yarn packaging typically lists how to take care of the yarn, what hook size is recommended and the yarn weight of the yarn.

Here is a page to help you choose your Standard yarn weight for your project.
Here is a page to help you determine the care instructions for your Yarn care.


Other tools you will need for Crochet:

You will definitely need a good pair a scissors for cutting yarn and a metal tapestry needle for fastening off/weaving in ends.

When I was first learning how to weave in my end I would use my crochet hook to pull the yarn in and out of stitches I made in the last row of my work. This was very messy the yarn always came out. While I was looking through tutorials I found a way that was very invisible and held in place quite well.

See for yourself: Weaving in ends tutorial
My next post will be about the basic crochet stitches & pattern reading.

Hope this post helps all you new crochet fanatics.

Happy hooking!

© Hooking Rainbow 07/19/2013. All rights reserved.