The stitches and terms given herewith are such as are in general use, and were taught the writer by an English teacher of crocheting, herself a professional in the art. In some periodicals and books, the real slip-stitch is omitted, and the single is called slip-stitch; the double is called single, the treble is called double, the double treble is called treble, and so on.
There are different ways of holding the crochet-needle and carrying the thread, and many consider one way as good as another unless, as is usually the case, one’s own method is thought a little the best. The following instructions were given by the English teacher in question, and are those commonly accepted: Hold the needle in the right hand very much as you hold a pen when writing, letting the handle extend between the forefinger and thumb, which rest on and hold the needle. Hold nothing but the latter in the right hand, not allowing the fingers of that hand to so much as rest on the work. Hold work with thumb and second finger of left hand, letting the thread pass over the forefinger, slightly raised, or held up from the work, under the second, over the third and under the little finger. These instructions are especially good for using yarns, when it is desirable to keep the work as soft and fluffy as possible.
Figure 1. The Chain-Stitch
The chain. (Figure 1.) Make a loop of thread around the needle, take up the thread and draw through this loop (that is, push the hook under the thread that passes over the forefinger, draw it back, catching the thread, and pull this through the loop on the needle), forming a new stitch or loop, take up the thread and draw through this, and so continue until the chain is of the length required, tightening each loop as drawn through, so that all will be of uniform size and smoothness. After a little practise one does this without thought. When abbreviations are used, that for chain is ch.
The slip-stitch is properly a close joining stitch: Drop the stitch on the needle, insert hook through the stitch of work to which you wish to join, take up the dropped stitch and pull through, thus making a close fastening. This stitch is sometimes used to “slip” along certain portions of the work, from one to another point, but single crochet is more often employed for this. The abbreviation is sl-st.
Figure 2. Single Crochet
Single crochet (Figure 2, frequently called slip-stitch, and sometimes mitten-stitch) is made thus: Having a stitch on needle, insert hook in work, take up the thread and draw it through the work and the stitch on the needle at the same time. The abbreviation is s c.
Figure 3. Double Crochet
Double crochet. (Figure 3). Having a stitch on needle, insert hook in work, take up thread and draw through, giving you two stitches on the needle; take up thread and draw through the two stitches. The abbreviation is d c. There are many variations of the double-crochet stitch; the slipper-stitch, or ribbed stitch, is formed by taking up the back horizontal loop or vein of each stitch in preceding row. A quite different effect is given when the hook is inserted under both loops.
Figure 4. Treble Crochet
Treble crochet. (Figure 4.) Having a stitch on the needle, take up the thread as if to make a stitch, insert hook in work, take up thread and draw through, making three stitches or loops on the needle; * take up thread and draw through two, again and draw through two. The abbreviation of treble crochet, is t c. It will be noted that the single crochet has one “draw,” the double two, and the treble three, from which these stitches take their names.
Figure 5. Half-Treble Crochet
Figure 6. Double-Treble Crochet
Double-treble crochet. (Figure 6.) Having a stitch on the needle, take up the thread twice, or put it twice over the needle, insert hook in work, take up thread and draw through, making four stitches to be worked off; (take up thread and draw through two) three times. The abbreviation of double-treble crochet is d t c.
Figure 7. Triple-Treble Crochet
Triple-treble crochet. (Figure 7.) Take up thread three times, insert hook in work, take up thread and draw through, making five stitches on needle; work these off two at a time, as in double treble. The abbreviation is t t c.
One sometimes has occasion to use other extra-long stitches, such as quadruple crochet (over four times before insertion of hook in work), quintuple crochet (over five times), and so on, which are worked off two at a time, exactly as in treble or double treble. In turning, one chain-stitch corresponds to a double, two chain-stitches to a half or short treble, three chain to a treble, four to a double treble, five to a triple treble, and so on, adding one chain for each extra “draw.”
Parentheses ( ) and asterisks or stars * * are used to prevent the necessity of repetition and save space. They indicate repeats of like directions. Thus: (Chain 3, miss 3, 1 treble in next) three times is equivalent to chain 3, miss 3, 1 treble in next, chain 3, miss 3, 1 treble in next, chain 3, miss 3, 1 treble in next; or to * chain 3, miss 3, 1 treble in next, repeat from * twice.
The worker should be careful in the selection of a hook. It should be well made and smooth, and of a size to carry the wool smoothly, without catching in and roughening it. If too large, on the other hand, the work is apt to be sleazy. Needles that have been used for some time work more easily than new ones. If all makes of crochet-needles were numbered in the same way the size might be easily designated; but it happens that no two manufacturers use like numbers for the same sizes, hence the rule given is the best that can be.