4 ways to crochet even edges and not have a pesky gap at the beginning of the row. I tested each method and found the best way to crochet an even edge. It might surprise even seasoned crocheters.
Scrubbing the ugly water spots off my wood table is getting old. A pretty set of crocheted drink coasters is the perfect solution. I knew I didn’t want to crochet a border around the squares. I needed to crochet straight edges without any gaps.
I experimented with 4 different ways to start the rows. All of the swatches are made with a double crochet. You can also use these methods with a treble crochet and a double treble crochet.
Here’s What I Learned
- When working the first and last stitch of the row it’s important to know where to insert your hook.
- At the end of each row turn your work clockwise or counterclockwise, but be consistent. Switching between the two will twist your turning chain.
- All 4 of these methods have a place in crochet. Choose the one that fits your end result best.
1. Standard Turning Chain
ch 3 (counts as a st), skip first st, 1 dc in each st across. Your last dc will be in the top of the turning ch.
The chain 3 turning chain is the universal way to start crocheting a new row. If you are a beginner this is the way you were taught. It’s easy and the edges are straight. My only complaint is the gap. The awful gap at the beginning of each row. The chain 3 is not as thick as a double crochet. When you skip the first stitch it leaves a hole. I use this technique with half double crochets in the Boho Toddler Vest Pattern and the Boho Baby Vest Pattern. The vest has an airy feel so the gaps work right in with the stitch pattern.
2. The Solution To The Gap…
ch 3(doesn’t count as a st) 1 dc in the first st and each st across. The last dc will be in the last st not the turning ch.
The best way to get rid of the gap when crocheting in rows is to crochet in each stitch across. No skipping stitches. The gap is gone but so are the straight edges. The chain 3 at the beginning of each row puckers out a little, leaving a scalloped edge. The dainty design is pretty unless you are needing perfectly straight edges.
I made a cardigan with this turning technique. The scalloped edging didn’t need a border and added a feminine touch.
3. If 3 Is Too Much 1 Should Be Perfect
ch 1(doesn’t count as a st), 1 dc in first st and each st across. The last dc will be in the last st not the turning ch.
I thought this would create a straight edge. The scallops are less pronounced but still not straight. If you are beginner this method will be the easiest to work and no gaping hole.
4. The Best Way To Crochet Even Edges
1 sc in the first st, insert your hook into the left leg of the sc you just worked, 1 sc, (the stacked sc’s count as 1 st) 1 dc in the second st and each st across. The last dc will be worked in the top of the stacked sc’s. ( if you are crocheting treble crochets, add 1 more sc to the stack)
The foundation turning stitch is the best way to crochet even edges without the awful gap. Instead of starting with a turning chain you will stack two single crochets on top of each other. Your stacked single crochets will be thicker than a turning chain leaving no room for a hole in your crochet rows. The double crochets stay straight with this method instead of slanting like in the first and second methods.
When NOT To Use The Foundation Turning Stitch
- The pattern has increases or decreases
- The pattern has color changes in the middle of a row
- The pattern has different size stitches in the middle of the row
The foundation turning stitch will work with all the scenarios listed above, except the stitch count won’t be the same. The best way to figure out what stitches need to be worked where is to try out a couple rows. We learn the most from our mistakes. I should be smart by now 🙂
The foundation turning stitch is my go-to way to crochet in rows. Now I can get started on those coasters.
P.S. If you are looking for more crochet video tutorials I’m currently taking this Aran Crochet Class. Melissa goes over the importance of turning chains and all the basics along with more advanced techniques.