Tunisian Crochet: The Basics

Date: 11th April 2014


Take the first steps into the fun world of Tunisian Crochet with our free How-To Guide.

TUNISIAN CROCHET

Also known as Afghan, Tricot, Railway and 'Crochet knit', Tunisian Crochet has had a long history of names. The 1882 Dictionary of Needlework lists several additional names for this stitch, two that stand out the most are "Fool's stitch" and "Idiot stitch".

Tunisian Crochet is easy to learn and as it works up quicker than regular crochet (and is roughly twice as fast as knitting!) it's great for beginners.

While the finished fabric is dense, textured and can appear knitted or woven, it has less stretch and is considerably thicker than a knitted piece would be, making it ideal for crochet garments and winter pieces.

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Two main differences between regular crochet and Tunisian

The Tools:

Tunisian Crochet uses a long hook, usually with a stopper on one end and occasionally double-ended (perfect for working Tunisian in the round).

The Technique:

With Tunisian crochet you don't turn your work, the front (RS) is always facing you. Instead, you work the stitches on and off the hook with the "Forward" and "Return" passes. During the forward pass the stitches remain on the shaft of your hook (much like knitting) and the return pass works them back off again. Think of it as zig-zagging back and forth across your piece.

Getting Started:

As with any new skill, practice makes perfect! Tunisian Crochet begins with a foundation chain.

Begin by making a chain of at least 10 stitches (if you're working from a pattern they'll specify how many chains you need, if you're just practicing we recommend you start small, around 10 is perfect).

Remember: Each row in Tunisian crochet is a two-step process.

Forward Pass (image left)

Next we move on to the "Forward Pass" for the foundation row. This involves pulling up a loop in each chain while keeping all of the loops on your hook. Simply insert the hook into the second chain from the hook, yarn over then pull the loop through the chain. Continue pulling a loop through each chain and collecting them on your hook.

When you reach the end of the row, count the number of loops on your hook. You should have the same number of loops on your hook as the number of chains in your foundation.

Return Pass (image right)

To work the loops off of the hook and complete a standard return pass, work a yarn over and pull it through one loop for the edge. Next, yarn over and pull through two loops.

Continue in this way (yarn over and pull through two loops) until only one loop remains on the hook.

Congratulations! You have now completed your first forward and return pass.

Join us next Friday Tuesday (18th April 2014) when we'll be looking at TSS (Tunisian Simple Stitch) and (TKS) Tunisian Knit Stitch.



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  • Ian

    Ian 3rd November 2014 13:30

    Learning Tunisian crochet and this has been a great help. Now looking into its many possibilities . Men Who Crochet unite lol


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