Learning the Single Crochet Stitch (sc): The Dos & Don’ts

What to know before we start the single crochet stitch:

How many hobbies are there where you can make something so useful and cozy with just a hook and some yarn?  That’s why I love crochet!  Buy a hook, get some yarn and off you go!  But…before we jump right in to the single crochet (abbreviated sc), take a look back at my last post,  how to create a chain stitch.  The chain is important, and often called the “foundation chain”.  The foundation chain is just that…the foundation to start building our stitches on.  Remember when making your foundation chain, don’t make it too tight or too loose…time to channel your inner Goldilocks!

Prepare for the magic!

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Before we jump right in and create something useful, we are going to create something completely useless…you know, just to practice!  Then we can go bigger! Let’s create a small swatch using the single crochet (sc) stitch; there are a few things you need to get started.  I’m using a neutral color worsted weight yarn, a size I crochet hook (5.5mm), some stitch markers, and a row counter.  If you don’t want the row counter, you don’t really need it…you can keep count on a piece of paper…but you HAVE TO KEEP COUNT!  I love the row counter because it’s so easy to click and keep going, without having to put my hook down to write.

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   Let’s get ready to CROCHET!  (said in my best announcers voice)

In my video below, I review how to chain, give you some tips and tricks, and walk you through, step-by-step, how to create the single crochet stitch.  If you need a little more information on how to chain or make a slip knot, click those links…they will lead you right to the lesson!  I am a little camera shy, but I really wanted to show you with a video instead of still pictures.  I share with you some tricks to making sure your stitch count is correct and other things that I wish I didn’t have to figure out the hard way when I first starting learning how to crochet.

 

I finished my swatch!  Now what do I do?

Now that you have completed your small swatch of 10 single crochet (sc) and 10 rows of them, I might add, take a look at this video.  I’ll show you how to “finish off” your work so it doesn’t all unravel!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iiPsTmU5fww

In the video above, I explained that if you are making a project that you want to be square or rectangular, you want to start (foundation chain) and end (stitch count of last row) with the same number of stitches.  For the single crochet (sc) swatch we created above, we chained 10…each row consisted of 10 single crochets (sc) and we did 10 rows of this.  This will give you an approximate square…note that I say “approximate”.  To be sure, you should measure.

But how did I know that we would end up with a square?

Because the single crochet (sc) stitch is about as wide as it is tall.  This little bit of information is handy to have when planning what shape you want your single crochet project to be.

Did you end up with a WONKY “square”?

Your stitch count is very important! Not starting your row in the proper stitch, and ending the row in the proper stitch is usually the reason for your project getting bigger or smaller; that’s why I highly recommend counting your stitches to make sure that you on track.  You don’t want to get done with your project and realize that it comes to a point (you are ending with fewer stitches than you are supposed to)…OR your finished project looks like an upside down trapezoid (you have added some stitches in there somewhere and now you have more than what you started with).

Moving on up!  To a larger single crochet (sc) project!

Now that you understand how to make a slip knot, foundation chain, turning chain, single crochet (sc), finish off, and make a useless little square, we are going to move on to making a larger project using the single crochet stitch.  We will make…wait for it…a WASHCLOTH!  When you use a single crochet (sc) stitch for your entire project, your finished project will be “tight”…not much space or air between stitches.  That’s why the single crochet (sc) stitch is perfect for projects that you want to be a little stiff.  Washcloths and hand towels are perfect since you want them to stand up to some scrubbing!  But you really wouldn’t want to make a long scarf using just the single crochet stitch, since it doesn’t have much “scrunch” or softness to it.

The hidden message!

How many of you noticed a little hidden message I included throughout this lesson?  Can you tell me what (sc) means?  I put it throughout…YES!  It is the abbreviation for “single crochet”…when we get to reading patterns, you will need to know this, and after seeing it all through this lesson, I think you got it!

Join me for the next lesson…we will make a WASHCLOTH!

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