Sunday, 23 June 2013

Crochet Abbreviations

It may feel a little daunting at first to read crochet patterns, which are usually full of abbreviations and symbols.  Some may describe it like learning another language but in time you will become familiar with these common crochet terms.  Here are the basic abbreviations used for crochet patterns in the UK.  The US and other countries use slightly different or a variation of these abbreviations.

Commonly Used Crochet Abbreviated Terms

Ch = Chain
Yoh = yarn over hook

Beg = Beginning
Foll = Following

Rep = repeat
Miss = Skip

Cont = Continue
WS = Wrong side

RS = Right Side

Inc = Increase

Dtr = Double Treble
Dec = Decrease

Sp(s) = Space(s)
Patt = pattern

Ss = Slip stitch
Tog = together

Sk = Skip
Rnd = round

Lp = Loop
Yo = Yarn over

Reading Crochet Patterns

Crochet patterns are generally written in shorthand to save on space.  If you are unsure of a crochet term or unfamiliar with an abbreviation, you will normally find the meaning of the term printed in the beginning on your crochet pattern. 

A pattern may say ’18 ch’. This would mean do 18 chains, or 2 tr, meaning do 2 treble stitches.

You will find that more complex crochet patterns are a combination of any of these simple crochet stitches.  With repeated combination of patterns, square brackets or parenthesis are commonly used [ ].  Some patterns use the normal brackets e.g. ().  Some patterns use a combination of the square brackets with the normal brackets inside a repeated instruction.  Other symbols such as the asterisk may be used, for example, for when a repetition of a pattern starts.

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Patterns normally indicate a skill level.  To start you off, choose the easy skill stage.  A great start is to crochet a simple scarf, a doily or a tablecloth.  Granny squares is another simple project to set you off.  Experiment with different colours and yarns and practice some simple stitches, for example, chain stitches and double and treble crochet.  After a little practice, you will get the feel of crocheting these simple stitches and then you will be ready to move up to a more complex pattern.  Seeing your crochet work grow quickly will spur you on to learning more about crocheting.  You will also find, with practice, that crocheting becomes second nature and your work will look neater and you crochet speed will increase.