Crochet Lesson #1: Crochet Basics and the Foundation Stitch

Hello, folks!  I have decided to do a series on how to crochet.  I like to crochet myself, and I hope you will have fun learning!  I am not a professional crocheter or anything, and I definitely still have a lot to learn, but hopefully I can teach you what I know.

So here’s how I am hoping to do this: in each lesson, I will show you one kind of stitch or skill, and then at the end of the post I will show you a project you can make to practice the skill you just learned.  Here we go!


The great thing about crochet is you only need to manage one thing, unlike in knitting when you use two needles.  The only things you really need to crochet are a crochet hook and yarn.

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There are several different sizes of yarn, as you can see.  There are also several different sizes of crochet hooks.  You need to have the crochet hook proportional to your yarn. (For instance, it doesn’t work very well to use a huge hook with really thin yarn.)  For starters it’s a good idea to use a medium size hook and medium size yarn.  On the crochet hook it says the size.

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The crochet hook I’m going to use is size 10, or in letter-size, size J.

To start your foundation chain (basically the first row of your project), you need to make a slip knot.  If you already know how to make a slip-knot, you can skip ahead, otherwise, read on!

First, cross the end of the yarn over itself to form a loop.

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Take the end of the yarn and put it under the loop.

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Pull the part of the yarn that is under the loop up and out of the loop.

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Keep pulling, but pinch the strands of yarn coming out of the loop or you will just make a normal knot.

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Keep pinching those strands and pulling the loop until it is tight.

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You have made a slip knot!  If you pull both ends of the slip knot at once, it will get smaller.  Be careful not to pull too hard or the slip knot will unravel!

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Pull the ends until the loop is a little bit bigger than your crochet hook, then insert your hook into the loop.

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Now, weave long end of the yarn through your fingers like this.  This helps to keep your yarn from getting too loose while you crochet.

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I’m right-handed, so I weave the yarn through my left fingers and hold the crochet hook with my right hand.  If you’re left-handed, do it the opposite way.  Use your non-dominant hand to hold the base of where your crocheting.  (See in the picture below how I’m holding the base of the loop where I’ll start crocheting.)Now, hold the hook in your right hand (or left hand if your left-handed) and wrap the hook around the yarn so that the yarn is looped from right to left.

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 Pull the hook down through the slip-knot loop further down the loop, making sure that you catch the yarn you just wrapped around the hook on the way down.  Once the hook is through the loop, pull it up again to its former position.

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You have completed one stitch!  Now, to make another stitch, just do it again: wrap the hook around the yarn and pull it through the other loop on the hook.

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Just keep repeating those steps until you have made all the stitches you need.

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Do you see how the stiches kind of look like interlocking v’s?  You can count how many stitches by counting those v’s.

To end your chain, cut off the yarn strand that is connecting it to the yarn ball, and take your crochet hook out.

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Pull the end of the yarn through the loop, and keep pulling it as hard as you can until it tightens into a knot.  You’re finished!

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Phew!  I know that was a super long lesson, but I wanted to make sure that you got this.  Unfortunately, there isn’t really any project to do with just the foundation stitch, although you can use it instead of yarn to tie bows on gifts, etc.  The good news is that you can’t really crochet without knowing this stitch, so you didn’t learn this for nothing!

Have fun practicing!


8 thoughts on “Crochet Lesson #1: Crochet Basics and the Foundation Stitch

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