Creating Beautiful Things in Life: How to Crochet - Finishing Off, Reading a Pattern and Crochet Abbreviations (Tutorial)

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Friday, August 3, 2012

How to Crochet - Finishing Off, Reading a Pattern and Crochet Abbreviations (Tutorial)

Learn to Crochet - Finishing

Finishing methods for crochet depend largely on the end purpose of the crochet (pillow, afghan, garment) and the yarn you use to create the piece.

Learn to Crochet - Crochet Diagrams

Diagrams are read exactly as the crochet is worked. Each stitch is represented by a symbol that has been drawn to resemble its crocheted equivalent. The position of the symbol shows where the stitch should be placed and worked.
Stitch symbols are drawn and laid out as realistically as possible, but there are times when they have to be distorted for the sake of clarity. For example, stitches may look extra long to show clearly where they are to be placed, but you should not try to match the chart by making elongated stitches. Crochet each stitch as you normally would.

n order to follow crochet instructions, you should know how to make the basic stitches and be familiar with basic procedures for making crochet fabric. You should also be familiar with the abbreviations for basic crochet stitches.
The pattern will list the materials necessary for the project, including the size of the crochet hook used to meet the designer's gauge. Gauge refers to the number of stitches and rows in a given area. When following a pattern for a garment or other article, the instructions will include a specified gauge. If you do not crochet fabric with the same number of stitches and rows as indicated, your work will not be the same size as the measurements given. To ensure that you achieve the correct gauge, work a large sample or swatch before starting to crochet the actual project. The hook size stated in the pattern is a suggested hook size only. You must use whichever hook gives you the correct gauge. If you have fewer stitches and rows than the specified gauge, you are working too loosely and need to try a smaller crochet hook. If you have more stitches and rows than the specified gauge, you are working too tightly and need to try a larger crochet hook. If you cannot meet gauge by changing hook sizes, sometimes changing hook types (bamboo, wood, aluminum, plastic) may help.
In the written instructions, the stitches that should be repeated are contained within brackets [ ] or follow an asterisk *. These stitches are repeated across the row or round the required number of times. On chartedcrochet diagrams, the stitches that have to be repeated can be easily visualized. The extra stitches not included in the pattern repeat are there to balance the row or make it symmetrical and are only worked once. Turning chains are only worked at the beginning of each row.
If you are confused by a particular set of instructions, you may find it helpful to write out the instructions without abbreviations, writing out each individual pattern repeat. You may also find it helpful to use a repositionable note to cover the instructions above and below the step you are working on so that your eye doesn't stray and pick up with another set of similar instructions in a different step of the pattern.

beg  …. begin(ning)
bet …. between
blk …. block
CA, CB, CC, etc …. Color A, Color B, Color C, etc.
ch(s) …. chain(s)
cm …. centimeter(s)
dec ….. decrease
dc  …. double crochet
dtr …. double treble
hdc ….  half double crochet
inc …. increase
lp(s) ….loop(s)
mm …. millimeter(s)
rep …. repeat
rnd(s) …. round(s)
RS …. right side
sc …. single crochet
sk …. skip
sl …. slip
 …. space(s)
st …. stitch(es)
tog …. together
tr …. treble
WS …. wrong side
yo …. yarn over* or ** … repeat whatever follows the * or ** as indicated
[ ] …. work directions in brackets the number of times indicated

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