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How to Work and Use Slip Stitch
Slip stitch is a basic crochet stitch that every crocheter should know. It's even useful for knitters! You can use slip stitch to join pieces together, add decorative elements, and finish projects with simple edging.
Patterns may call for slip stitch as a way to work a smaller stitch, as it's shorter than a single crochet. It's also a highly functional stitch with lots of uses.
By adding slip stitch edging to a project, as you see above, you can help smooth the sides or hem of a piece, giving it a more finished look. It's common to work this in matching yarn, but fun to add a pop of contrast too!
Ready to learn how to work slip stitch and some great ways to use it? Read on!
Updated by Mollie Johanson
02 of 06
Start Your Slip Stitch
You can work a slip stitch at just about any point after you begin your project.
If you already have an active loop on your crochet hook, insert your hook into the spot where you want to crochet the slip stitch. Then hook your yarn as pictured.
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Pull Yarn Through
Pull the yarn up through your project.
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Finish Your Slip Stitch
Finally, draw the newly created loop through the active loop on your hook. Once you try these steps a few times, it becomes almost like a single motion.
The slip stitch is now complete.Continue to 5 of 6 below.
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Forming a Ring or Joining a Crochet Round
Forming a Ring
Some projects begin with a ring in the center, such as a granny square or hexagon pattern. These patterns typically start with a small number of chain stitches that you join to form this ring, and a slip stitch creates the join.
To form a ring, simply insert your hook into the end of the starting chain and work a slip stitch.
Joining a Round
When crocheting in rounds, slip stitch can be a big help. When you finish crocheting a round, you might end up with a big space between the beginning of the round and the end of the round. A slip stitch can close the gap between the first stitch and the last in the round. This is common when making granny squares, for example.
If you are working from a pattern, the pattern will specify whether to do this or not. Sometimes it's not necessary to work a slip stitch at this point, for example, if you are working your rounds in a continuous spiral.
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Slip Stitches in Surface Crochet
You can work slip stitch on the surface of any fabric you can poke a crochet hook through, including most crocheted and knitted fabrics. This is handy for embellishing your crochet and knitting projects.
You can use slip stitch to outline shapes or designs done with color changes in your work, or as a way to add decorations with only the slip stitch. For example, try slip stitch as a way to write names or initials on your crochet (or knitting) projects. It's like adding embroidery to crochet or knit items, but with yarn!
To mark the designs, you can cut out a paper shape and pin it in place, then slip stitch around it. Or, use a disappearing ink marker to draw out the pattern or lettering. Be sure to test it on a swatch first so you know if the markings will come out.
More Ways to Use Slip Stitch
Joining Crocheted Elements Together With Slip Stitch
Slip stitches work great to join elements. For example, you can use this stitch to join crocheted squares together or to stitch up the shoulder seams or sleeves on a sweater. If there's anything else you'd like to join, slip stitch is a good candidate for doing so.
When joining two pieces together, insert your hook through both pieces or edges when you work each slip stitch.
If you want to whip stitch pieces together, a slip stitch edging is sometimes helpful. Working a slip stitch edging gives you an obvious place to put each whip stitch when you proceed to join the elements.
Important Note: If you work a slip stitch edging around bunches of afghan squares, it's important to count your slip stitches and work precisely the same number of stitches around each square; this helps to ensure that your whip stitching goes smoothly.
Slip Stitch Crochet
In addition to these ways that slip stitch functions to edge, join, or decorate, you can also work it just like other crochet stitches in flat rows or rounds. Crocheting a fabric made of slip stitch is called Bosnian Crochet (or sometimes a variety of other names) and it produces a denser material.