Increasing and Decreasing Crochet Stitches

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 42,857
    Fiber artist Toni Lipe demonstrates how to increase and decrease crochet stitches.

    Toni Lipe: I am Toni Lipe with Toni's Design Studio. Today, we are talking about how to crochet. Right now, we are going to talk about increasing and decreasing crochet stitches, joining new yarn. When you are crocheting on your crochet fabric, sometimes you need to increase the stitches to create ruffles or to create sleeves or whatever you are working on. Increasing in crochet is very easy. What we have to do, right now, I am working on single crochet fabric. When you are crocheting your stitch you go through your chain, you yarn over, you pull your yarn through the work and then through the tow loops. Before you move on to the next chain, you go back into that same chain yarn over, pull the yarn through the work and then pull the yarn through the two loops and you have increased from one stitch to two stitches on your fabric. Going to do that again. Crochet one stitch, single crochet two stitches in the same chain and this will increase the width of your project by however knitted stitches you need to increase.

    Now, decreasing is equally as easy. Basically, crochet two stitches together. We will do it by going under the crochet chain, wrapping, pulling the yarn out, but instead of going through those last two loops, we will go down into the next chain, wrap the yarn, pull through the work, we have three stitches on our hook right now. We will wrap the yarn around the crochet hook and pull it through all three stitches and we have taken those two stitches and made them into one. We will do that one more time; under the chain, yarn over, pull through the work and stop there. Under the chain, yarn over, pull through the work; I have three stitches or three loops on my  crochet hook, yarn over and pull the yarn through all three loops, thereby reducing the number of stitches that we have in our fabric. So that's how we increase and how we decrease crochet stitches.

    Now, we are going to talk about how to join new yarn. Most projects take more than one ball of yarn and sometimes we need to switch our yarn to get a new color for stripes. What you need to do, as you're crocheting along, when you are almost there, when you are at the very end of the row and you are making your last single crochet, I have gone under the chain, yarn over, pull through the work and I have my two stitches left on the needle. This is where I introduce my new yarn. You don't have to knot it; you just simply place the yarn in the hook of your crochet hook and pull it through those two stitches and there you have added the new yarn. Since, we are doing a single crochet, I start by chaining one, doing one single crochet and then I start by single crocheting across my fabric; into the chain, yarn over, pull through the work, pull through the loops; under the chain, yarn over, pull through the work, pull through the loops and this is how we change colors for stripes or just switching to a new ball of yarn. Next, we will talk about combining some of our crochet stitches to make some fancier stitches.