Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Stitch Heights, New Rows

Stitches have their designated chain-height equivalents: single crochet equals  one chain, half double crochet equals two chains, double crochet equals three chains, treble crochet equals 4 chains.

Convention has you use these equivalents when you start a new row, because chaining enables you to build the stitch height with immediacy.

Several inventive crocheters have developed other ways to achieve the stitch height
without using the conventional, weak and wobbly turning chain. My favorite of these methods employs a technique like a foundation single crochet. After a single crochet, you insert the hook on the left side strand(left vertical loop), yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through two -- creating a sc over a sc -- like a building block. And you repeat this for as many times as you would chain. I've incorporated it in many patterns now and call the stitch a build/t _____, as in a bhdc (build half double crochet), bdc (build double crochet), btr (built treble crochet).

There's a wonderful video of the technique here

This fsc approach is like magic to me -- as it enables you to create platforms for stitches in space....

This summer while working on spirals, I came to another practice that also goes against conventional dictates. When creating multicolor spirals (worked in continuous rounds) I prefer to use a ch-2 before the starting sc in a ring. Why? Because it gives the sc a little side edge and makes it easier to find as you spiral around toward it. Having confessed this to the IFF group on Rav, I heard from another crocheter who said she does that too!

Wishing everyone safe travels and happy gatherings during this cold, stormy, Thanksgiving week.

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