Monday, March 19, 2012

Increasing and Decreasing Single Crochet Stitches

by M. J. Joachim
Updated 4/20/16

Spent some time away from my blog yesterday to enjoy the beautiful thunderstorms happening out here – such a rare treat for people living in the desert southwest. I did manage to fit in some crocheting, but it was mostly on a project that uses single crochet stitches, something I’m sure you’re all very familiar with. A lot of my projects include rows of single crochet and variations of it, like the slanted single crochet stitch or front and back loop single crochet stitches. It’s a wonderful stitch for waist bands and hems on skirts, blankets – as opposed to afghans, potholders and kitchen towels and borders for just about anything you can think of.

Take a look at this skirt I made for my daughter, for example. I used several rows of front and back loop single crochet for the waist band. I also added single crochet as a finishing touch for the top of the skirt and used single crochet for the hem. When making the actual skirt, I started with single crochet, making sure it matched my stitch-count necessary for the skirt body and top portions respectively. This is easy enough to do, by increasing or decreasing a couple of single crochet stitches on the last row, as necessary.

A very simple way to increase single crochet is to make 2 sc’s in the same space. If you need to increase by several stitches, it might be better to do it over a couple of rows. Keeping yarn tension and fabric gathering tendencies in mind, you can also follow this sequence for increasing (2 sc in same space, 1 sc in next space, 2 sc in next space), which will prevent too many stitches from bunching up in one section of your work.

Decreasing single crochet is a matter of working 1 single crochet over 2 stitches, bringing up a loop from each stitch and drawing yarn through all 3 loops on your hook, during the final step. Again, it is important to keep yarn tension and fabric gathering tendencies in mind, when making single crochet decrease stitches to your work.

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