Get rid of the floppy crochet basket. Use this invisible round to keep your basket sides sturdy and upright. Plus tips to pick the right yarn and hook.
Last Christmas I had an idea to give crocheted gift baskets filled with some of my family’s favorite things. I tried a few crochet basket patterns and every single one turned out to look more like a bowl with rounded sides then a basket.
After the holiday season, I was trying to organize the truckload of toys my kids accumulated. I needed new bins and baskets to corral the craziness. I revisited the basket patterns and figured out how to make sturdy baskets.
Why are some crochet baskets floppier than reheated pizza?
A lot has to do with the yarn type and hook size. The key to making a basket, instead of a bowl, is a sturdy base. You want the first round of the basket sides to be thick, tight, and stand up on their own.
Your goal is to crochet a tight fabric. A super bulky weight yarn is a must. Some patterns even double up strands of chunky yarn. T-shirt yarn is the super hero for a few reasons.
- Thickness: T-shirt yarn is thicker than most super bulky weight yarn.
- Durable: T-shirt yarn doesn’t get fuzzy & looks the same as the day I made the baskets, even when my 3-year-old uses them for pretend play.
- Choices: The patterns and colors are so fun and modern. I found this shop in the United States that has the best selection and prices.
To get a tight fabric, your stitches need to be tight. A smaller hook is a must. When I’m done with a crochet basket my hands are sore from the tension being so tight.
The Invisible Round
The sturdy, thick base is important to getting the basket sides to stay upright on their own.
Here’s how most baskets are constructed.
- Crochet a flat circle for the base.
- Start the body of the basket by crocheting the first round in the back loop.
- Continue crocheting around until your basket reaches your desired height.
Step 2 of crocheting in the back loops is important, but there’s 1 more round you should add. The video tutorial shows you exactly how it’s done. If you prefer written instructions you can find them after the video below
A Sturdy Base For Your Crochet Basket
- After crocheting a flat circle, slip stitch in the back loops only all the way around the circle.
- Single crochet in each stitch around, BUT instead of inserting your hook under the top loops of the slip stitches insert it into the same place as you did in step 1. You will be working over the top of the round you just worked.
This extra step is called an invisible round because you are covering up the slip stitches. You won’t see them anymore. This creates a thick base for the start of your crochet basket sides.
You can also try this technique with bags, baby booties, and even floor poufs. More on the floor pouf later.
The Bottom Line
- Use t-shirt yarn.
- Use a smaller hook than recommended.
- Add the invisible round to your basket sides.
- Don’t reheat your pizza.
For more crochet tips check out the Crochet Stitch Guide.