Helpful Crochet Abbreviations, Instructions and Tips:
beg = beginning
CC = Contrasting Color
ch(s) = chain(s)
dc(s) = double crochet(s)
dec = decrease
hdc(s) = half double crochet(s)
hk = hook
inc = increase
lp(s) = loop(s)
MC = Main Color
rep = repeat
rnd(s) = round(s)
RS = right side
sc(s) = single crochet(s)
sk = skip or skipped
sp = space
sl = slip
sl st = slip stitch
st(s) = stitch(es)
tog = together
tr(s) = triple crochet(s)
WS = wrong side
yo = yarn over
CONVERTING OUNCES TO GRAMS:
1 ounce = 28.4 grams
2 ounces = 56.7 grams
3 ounces = 85 grams
4 ounces = 113.4 grams
CONVERTING GRAMS TO OUNCES:
25 grams = 7/8 ounce
40 grams = 1 2/3 ounces
50 grams = 1 3/4 ounces
100 grams = 3 1/2 ounces'
To keep your yarn from twisting, change the way you turn your work after you've completed each row - for example, turn your work clockwise after each even numbered row and turn it counterclockwise
after each odd numbered row.
Use a tapestry needle (it has a blunt or non-sharp end) to weave the ends of your yarn into your work when you are finished. A size #16 Tapestry needle, commonly used for Plastic Canvas stitching is
a good size to use for worsted weight yarn crochet patterns. When weaving in your loose ends, weave them about 2 inches in one direction and then back 2 inches in the other direction.
GUIDE TO DIFFERENT SIZE YARNS:
"Worsted Weight" or "4-Ply" yarn is the most common yarn used for projects. It has 4 individual plies of yarn that are twisted together. Some of these worsted weight yarns may be slightly thicker
than others, which is why it is important to check the gauge for each pattern.
You will usually use a hook size of G, H, or I for this yarn.
"Chunky" yarns are thicker than the worsted weight yarns. They are often special yarns such as "Angora", "Mohair", "Chenille", or special crimped yarns such as resemble bathrobe cotton.
You will usually need a larger hook to stitch these projects such as J, K, L or N.
"Sports Weight" or "3-Ply" yarns are thinner than the worsted weight yarns by one ply; they have 3 plies of yarn twisted together. This yarn is often used in project for babies - booties, outfits,
etc. - to give you a stitch pattern that is smaller and more proportioned to a small outfit. These yarns frequently have a metallic looking thread running through them to add sparkle.
You normally use smaller hooks such as F, G and H for these yarns.
"Baby Weight" yarns are usually even thinner than "sports weight" yarns but they usually have 3-plies as well. Make sure if your pattern calls for "Baby" yarn, that you compare that brand of yarn to
a "Sports" yarn to see if they are the same before you substitute a "sports" for a "baby" yarn. Once again, it's extra important to check the gauge on this yarn to be sure your pattern will turn out
This yarn also uses the smaller hooks sizes - F and G.
"Crochet Cotton" comes in different thickness described by numbers: #10 is a popular size. These cotton threads are used for very fine projects such as doilies or lace.
You would use a completely different set of hooks for these projects: they are usually silver only - called "steel" (rather than "aluminum") and are in sizes A, B, C and in numbers such as 1, 2,
Other types of materials you can crochet with are strips of material (actual fabric cut into thin strips and tied together) or even strips of plastic such as from plastic garbage bags. You would use
the large size hooks such as N, P and Q for these materials. Also, you can use these larger hooks when holding 2 or more strands of worsted weight yarn together at the same time (using 2 different
colors of yarn makes a nice variegated effect).
ALWAYS BE SURE TO CHECK THE GAUGE OF A PATTERN:
Especially if it is a pattern for clothing, slippers, booties, etc. With afghans, you don't need to be as particular if the finished size won't matter as much. To check the gauge, stitch a separate
sample of work before beginning your project, usually at least 20 stitches across and 10 to 15 rows high, then measure from the rows inside the main part of your work (the edges aren't always the
most accurate) and check this against what the pattern's gauge says. If your sample is too large, switch to a smaller size hook (one letter lower - for example from an I to an H hook) and work
another sample to check the gauge. If your sample is too small, switch to a larger hook size (from an H hook to an I hook, for example) and stitch anohter sample. The gauge instructions will tell you
what stitches they are measuring - you might see this, for example: "10 dc and 4 rows = 2 inches". This means 10 double crochet stitches across one row = 2 inches, and 4 of these double crochet rows
= 2 inches. Sometimes the gauge says "in pattern" and what that means is that if the main pattern is stitched in shells, then you will need to stitch this shell pattern up for your sample to test the
GUIDE TO CHANGING YARN COLORS:
This is especially useful for stitching crochet patterns that include graphs or charts for you to work a picture on your project:
Be sure to make all of your yarn changes on the WRONG side of your work - on this WRONG side you will drop and pick up/change the colors of yarn - always on this same side while you stitch every row.
The best way to change yarn colors is to drop the old color and pick up the new one during your last stitch of the old color: here's how to do that with a single crochet stitch: insert your hook into
the stitch to make your sc, yarn over and draw your hook through, (you will have 2 loops on your hook) drop the old color and pick up the new one and draw this new color through your hook to complete
the sc stitch. (If you are making a dc or any other stitch, just be sure to drop the old color and draw the new color through your hook to complete the last part of the stitch you are making.) The
color you drop will often need to be carried across many stitches on the wrong side of your work to be picked up again later to continue using that color. A good way to do this is to actually crochet
over the yarn that is dropped as you crochet your stitches, so that the dropped color will be carried along until it is needed again, keeping the wrong side neat.