How to Crochet a Circle

A free, easy pattern for a single crochet motif

Half Double Crochet Circle, 3 Rounds
Kathryn Vercillo

There are, of course, many different ways to crochet a circle. However, there is a basic formula for increasing when crocheting in the round that will keep your crochet circle flat. Without this information, you may end up with a circle that's a little wavy or wonky. Here is a simple single crochet circle pattern that will show you how to crochet a basic flat circle with a solid center. But first, there are a few notes here to help you crochet in the round.

Slip Stitch To Join

This crochet...MORE circle pattern uses the method of joining with a slip stitch at the end of each round. The alternative would be to create continuous rounds that lead to a spiral pattern rather than a circle. It relies on an increasing sequence that is very common when making simple crochet circle. 

In this example, you will slip stitch through both loops to close the circle. As you explore circle crochet patterns, you will see that some ask you to sl st in one loop only to create a seamless join. Do note that we are working in both loops throughout this project; you can create crochet circles working in the front loop only or back loop only but of course they will look slightly different. We begin with this crochet pattern because it teaches you all of the basics of making a crochet circle; you can add variations from there.

Additionally, in our circle, we slip stitch then chain to begin the next round. Alternatively, some crochet patterns ask you to end off after each round and then begin the new round by re-joining your yarn in a different part of the circle. The reason for this is to avoid any seam where the starting chains are, which you will sometimes notice in our type of crochet circle. Those are advanced options, however, and the easy crochet circle pattern here is a beginner pattern that is commonly used across many, many projects.

Any of these options is "right". There is no wrong way of doing it. What we offer here is a guide to learning how to crochet a very basic single crochet flat circle. Flat crochet circle patterns can be used to make a variety of items including doilies, mandalas, coasters, placemats, rugs and blankets.

The Math of Crocheting in the Round

From crocheting this sample, you can learn about the increases used when crocheting in the round. If there are too few or too many increases when crocheting in the round, the piece can buckle, so using the correct number of increases is important. Practicing crochet circles using this easy pattern will give you a solid understanding of how increases in the round work when you want to keep your work flat. You will find tips and descriptions throughout this crochet tutorial to give you a strong working knowledge of how to crochet circles using basic stitches.

  • 01 of 08

    Start Your Crochet Circle With a Chain 2

    Chain 2
    Kathryn Vercillo

    We are going to begin our crochet circle with a ch 2.

    Other options for beginning your crochet circle:

    Note that there are a couple of other ways that you could begin your crochet circle:

    • Chain 3 or 4 and then slip stitch to close, creating a circle that you will work into when you move on to step 2. See an example of this.
    • Crochet a magic circle to work into when you move on to step 2.

    Starting chain length:

    Note also that if you choose to work with the chain 2, this is the length of the chain that...MORE you want for a single crochet circle. The first chain is going to count as the first single crochet of the first round. If you want to create a crochet circle using other stitches, you will need a longer chain to create the number of stitches necessary for that project. So, for example, you would chain 3 for a half double crochet circle, and the first two would count as the first hdc of the first round. 

  • 02 of 08

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 1

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 1
    Kathryn Vercillo

    Make six single crochet stitches into the second chain from hook. The photo here shows the six single crochet stitches before joining. At the end of the round, you will slip stitch to join. This completes round 1.

    How many stitches for Round 1

    Note that this is going to create a single crochet circle that begins with six single crochet stitches. You'll double it in the second round to a circle of 12 stitches. However, you do not have to begin with six stitches. You can start with whatever size...MORE circle you would like. For example, you could crochet ten single crochet stitches to begin with a circle of that size.

    That said, crocheting a flat circle - especially one with many rounds - works best if you follow some general guidelines for your starting round:

  • 03 of 08

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 2

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 2
    Kathryn Vercillo

    Chain 1. This counts as the first single crochet of round 2.

    Single crochet in the same stitch as the base of this chain 1. 

    2 sc in each stitch around. This will give you a total of 12 single crochet stitches in round 2 of your circle. (You have two stitches in each stitch of the round before. Note that if you had started with a round of 10 sc stitches, you would finish with 20 crochet stitches at the end of round 2. We started with 6 so we now have 12.)

    Slip stitch to the first stitch to join....MORE This completes round 2.

  • 04 of 08

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 3

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 3
    Kathryn Vercillo

    Chain 1. This counts as the first single crochet of round 3.

    2 sc in the next stitch.

    * 1 sc in next stitch, 2 sc in following stitch.

    Repeat from * around.

    Slip stitch to first sc to join.

    Understanding crochet circle math

    So, basically, for round 3, you're going to think "1 sc, 2 sc, all the way around". For your crochet circle that has begun with six single crochet stitches, you are going to end this round with 18 single crochet stitches. Notice that this is 3x the first round. Each...MORE round of your crochet circle will always be # of the round multiplied by # of stitches you began with. (In this case, round #3 x 6 stitches from round 1).

    So, if you started with 10 stitches in round 1, you would still work 1 sc, 2 sc, all the way around, and you would end with 3 * 10 (or 30) stitches at the end of round three.

    Continue to 5 of 8 below.
  • 05 of 08

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 4

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 4
    Kathryn Vercillo

    Chain 1. This counts as the first single crochet of round 4.

    Single crochet in next stitch, 2 single crochet in following stitch.

    * 1 sc in each of next two stitches, 2 single crochet in following stitch.

    Repeat from * around. 

    Slip stitch to join.

    Understanding how to grow your crochet circle

    So, basically, for round 4, you're going to think, "1 sc, 1 sc, 2 sc, all the way around." You might notice now that the number of stitches in each repeat adds up to the same number as the round that...MORE you are on. So in this case, you crochet four stitches (1, 1, 2) then repeat around and around.

    Again, you will end with the # of the round (round 4) multiplied by # of stitches you began with (6) so you'll have 24 single crochet stitches at the end of round 4.

    If you were working with a starting round of 10 stitches, you would still do sc, sc, 2 sc all the way around and would end with 4 * 10, which is 40 stitches.

  • 06 of 08

    Single Crochet Circle, subsequent rounds

    Single Crochet Circle, Round 5
    Kathryn Vercillo

    If you want to continue growing your circle, you will continue growing your pattern. 

    In each round, you will add one more single crochet before the 2 sc (increase) in each repeat.

    So, for round 5, you would single crochet in each of the first three stitches then 2 sc in the next stitch. That totals five stitches for the repeat, because we are in round 5. The round would finish with 30 stitches (5 rounds, beginning with 6 stitches - 5 * 6 = 30).

    Then for round 6, you would single crochet in...MORE each of the first four stitches and 2 sc in the next stitch. For round 7, you would single crochet in each of the first five stitches and 2 sc in the next stitch. And so on.

  • 07 of 08

    Optional Edging for Single Crochet Circle

    Single Crochet Circle with Slip Stitch Edging
    Kathryn Vercillo

    You can end off your crochet circle after any round and it will be great the way it is. However, if you want a circle that has a more finished edge, then you can slip stitch in each stitch all the way around.

  • 08 of 08

    How to Crochet a Flat Circle Using Other Stitches

    Half Double Crochet Circle, 3 Rounds
    Kathryn Vercillo

    This same basic crochet circle pattern will work for stitches other than the single crochet stitch.

    Starting chain

    As discussed in step 1, your starting chain will need to be longer depending on the height of your stitches. Likewise, at the beginning of each round, where you would "chain 1" to create the first single crochet, you would need to adjust the height of your chain. So, for example, instead of a ch 1, it would be a ch 3 if you were working a double crochet circle; similar to the...MORE differing heights of the turning chain when working in rows instead of in the round. Otherwise, it's all the same. Increase in each round according to the same basic math.

    Begin with the right number of stitches

    As mentioned already, you want your first round to have the right number of stitches for that stitch height; see chart in Step 2 for reference.

    Other crochet circles

    Of course, you can also go on to make other types of crochet circles, such as granny circles in the round and crochet mandalas, and those will have different math but gaining the understanding of the basic crochet circle that you get from this tutorial will even make those other more complex patterns easier to understand.