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Foundations


Traditional Chain Foundations

The most common way to start a crochet project is with a foundation chain. It's nothing more than a row of chains on which to build your project. The overall stitch pattern and size of your project will dictate how many chains you need. If you're following a pattern, it will tell you how many chains to make.

Once you've made the foundation chain, you'll be instructed to work your next row of stitches into the chain. The pattern will tell you which stitches to use. Normally the stitches will be slip stitches, single crochets, half double crochets, double crochets, or treble crochets; nothing too fancy. You may even be asked to skip some chains to create a space that you will work into on a later row.

There are four ways to crochet into the foundation chain for the first row of the project. Each of which creates a different effect.
* Insert your hook under the top two loops (the most common way)
* Insert your hook under the top front loop only (creates a line in the front of the pattern)
* Insert your hook under the top back loop only (creates a ribbing effect)
* Insert your hook under the back "bump" (AKA "bar") behind the chain (the first row of the project will look exactly like the last row)

Chainless foundations

Another way to start crochet projects is the chainless foundation. This method is quite popular and works well if the first row of the project is a solid row of stitches (ie: the first row is a solid row of single crochet stitches). This technique is often referred to as the chainless foundation row, foundation single crochet, or foundation double crochet. The method makes it possible to create your foundation chain and first row of stitches at the same time. Here’s how to do it.

1. Foundation single crochet (Fsc)
Chain 2, insert hook into the second chain from the hook, pull up a loop, Yarn over and pull through 1 loop on the hook (this is the foundation chain), yarn over, pull through both loops on the hook (this is your single crochet). First Fsc made.

Insert hook into the foundation chain that you made above, yarn over and draw up a loop, yarn over and draw through 1 loop on the hook (this is the next foundation chain), yarn over, pull through both loops on the hook (this is the next single crochet). Second Fsc made. Repeat this step using the new foundation chain you make each time.

2. Foundation double crochet (Fdc)
Chain 4, yarn over, insert hook in the fourth chain from the hook, pull up a loop, Yarn over, pull through 1 loop on the hook (this is the foundation chain), yarn over, pull through 2 loops on the hook, yarn over and pull through remaining 2 loops on the hook (this is the first double crochet stitch). First Fdc made.

Yarn over, insert hook into the foundation chain that you made above, yarn over and draw up a loop, yarn over and draw through 1 loop on the hook (this is the next foundation chain), yarn over, pull through 2 loops on the hook, yarn over, pull through remaining 2 loops on the hook (this is the next double crochet). Second Fsc made. Repeat this step using the new foundation chain you make each time.

If you have questions feel free to send an email or post them in the forum using the links provided in the right hand column. Also fell free to share any great techniques you know about that aren't mentioned here.

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Content copyright © 2014 by Melissa Rodriguez. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Melissa Rodriguez. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Melissa Rodriguez for details.

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