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A clever beginner tutorial to crochet straight edges in rows every time. Included is a full video tutorial with easy-to-follow formulas so you will never have problems again.
Of course, this crochet straight edges in rows tutorial is mainly for crochet beginners, but advanced crocheters should bookmark it as well. This is a great little trick for reference, if you forget or ever teach someone else how to crochet.
I noticed that this subject of “how to get straight edges” has been brought up a lot lately in many facebook groups, and I was determined to teach you my method and easy crochet formula to always get it right!
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Let’s start basic. As a beginner in crochet, you likely already noticed the power that crochet has on our mentality and mood. But it’s important to also have the basic stitches and techniques down such that you could almost crochet in your sleep. Check out these Crochet Beginner Stitches and Techniques. That includes how to calculate and measure gauge perfectly.
Now, some of you might know how to crochet straight edges, but not be able to teach it to someone. Well, this tutorial will be ideal to use for those of you who need an easy formula to teach it.
So, let us now get started on how to crochet straight edges every time, no matter which stitches you will use. Seriously, I will provide you with an easy formula that will help you know how many beginning chains you will need to crochet for each stitch type.
But the first thing I want to teach you is using stitch markers to mark your first and last stitch of a row or round in your crochet project. I go in-depth on how to do that in the video below.
If you do not understand the written formula below, be sure to watch the video tutorial, because I really do go into detail and show how to use this little trick and understand it perfectly.
Video Tutorial on how to Always Crochet Straight Edges for every Row
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How many chains do I crochet at the beginning of a row to create straight edges?
Let’s say you have a long chain and you do not know into which chain to start crocheting into. The amount of stitches you will need to skip depends on the stitch that you will use, BUT it is the same amount of stitches you will need to chain at the beginning of each row thereafter.
So let’s say you have a long chain and now want to crochet only single crochets. You will need to skip one chain and start crocheting into the second chain from the hook and into each chain after that. Therefore, you will need to crochet 1 chain at the beginning of every row when making single crochets.
For half double crochet stitches it is also 1, but for a double crochet stitch it is 2 and treble crochet it is 3.
Is there a formula for how many chains to crochet?
Yes there is. Let’s go through how that looks for single crochet, half double crochet and double crochet rows.
How do you keep single crochet edges straight?
Well, think about crocheting a single crochet stitch. You will insert the crochet hook into the stitch you need to make the single crochet into. Then you will yarn over and pull thru the stitch. You have now 2 loops on your hook. NOW, after that how many times do you yarn over and pull thru the loops to finish the stitch? ONE time! So, it will always be 1 chain for the beginning or turning chain of each SC row.
That always works for rounds and for every other stitch. Let’s go through several more examples so you will always get it right and therefore make straight edges every time.
How do you keep half double crochet edges straight?
For a half double crochet, you will yarn over, insert the hook into the stitch, yarn over and pull thru. NOW after that you will yarn over and pull thru all loops. Which means you yarned over ONCE. Therefore, you will use 1 chain as the turning chain in the beginning of each row or round.
How do you keep double crochet edges straight?
How about for double crochets? Well, you will yarn over, insert the hook into the stitch, yarn over and pull thru. NOW, you will yarn over and pull thru 2 loops, yarn over again and pull thru 2 loops to finish the stitch. That means you will use 2 chains for double crochets for each row or round.
Therefore, for treble crochets it would be 3 chains. Make a treble crochet and see how many times you yarn over AFTER you pulled the yarn thru in the stitch?
Here is now the exact formula:
Number of chains to make for a stitch = how many times do you YARN OVER and pull thru the loops to finish a stitch AFTER you pulled the first loop thru the stitch
If that makes no sense, please watch the video below. I promise it will be really clear on how to do it and how to create straight edges.
Also, make sure to use stitch markers to mark your first and last stitch of every row until you can see them visually every time.
How do I get straight edges every time and what does that have to do with the formula?
Well, when you do not create the right amount of beginning chains for each row you will not have a straight edge. Now that you know how many chains you will need to make to create for each type of stitch, you will need to skip that amount of chains and then start crocheting your stitches.
Let’s say you make double crochet stitches. You crocheted 2 chains for the turning chain at the beginning of the row, now those chains you will need to skip and start crocheting into the next stitch (3rd from the hook). That will create a straight edge.
That turning chain ALSO needs to be skipped at the end of the row. When you reach the end of the row, you will see the turning chain from the previous row. Do NOT crochet into them! Otherwise you will not have a straight edge.
Avoid wonky edges with precise stitch count!
I also cover that information in the video tutorial below. If you follow those simple tips you will always crochet a straight edge in every row. Check out my summary table below. I also included some extra information that does not exactly work with the formula above.
First of all, I mentioned that for half double crochet, there are 2 ways of doing them. I only mentioned that because half double crochet is like a half stitch between single crochets and double crochets. Therefore, some use 1 and some use 2 chains as the turning chain. I only use 1 every time.
Also if you DO count the turning chain as a stitch, then you will skip an extra chain at the beginning and also crochet 1 extra chain for the turning chain. I do not like doing that as it creates a gap in the beginning of each row or round. I also mentioned and showed that in the video tutorial.
I recently shared more information how to crochet an even BETTER straight edge! Check it out HERE to learn how to crochet a better edge for sc and hdc, and click HERE to learn how to do it for dc, tr and taller stitches. You will be amazed how beautiful your projects will look like now!
I really hope you learned a lot in this tutorial. Please look at the video tutorial above if you need more tips.. Please subscribe to my Youtube channel and share this tutorial with others on social media. Thank you!
Longer Straight Edges video
The video below is from 2018. The video above is an updated version from 2020. Enjoy
Problems with creating a straight seam when making beanies? Check out my tutorial HERE on how to prevent the slanting!
Thanks for reading this easy crochet tutorial. Now you have the answer to “Why is my crochet not straight?” and “How to crochet straight edges every time“!
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If you enjoyed this article, I’m sure you’ll also get benefit from this blog post! How To ALWAYS Crochet Smooth Edges
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