Step-by-Step Snowflake Base Video Tutorial

This tapestry crochet base is great if you’re in a hurry to make a base, but don’t want to compromise on the design. With only two colors and relatively few color changes, you’ll get through it in no time.

Part 1
Part 2

It takes 23 rounds to complete this snowflake base, bringing you to¬†a total of 184 stitches at the end of the last round. If you’re interested, you can find the exact yarn colors I used below. I found mine at a thrift store for only $1 a piece! Ugh.. I just wish I had bought them all. This base used up maybe a little less than half of each skein, and I only bought 1 skein of each color, so I’d definitely have to add at least one other color to the mix to be able to complete a project. I so wish I could go back and buy that entire bin of yarn….

Anyway guys, if you have any questions/comments/etc., please feel free to leave them in the comment section below. You could also message me directly on the All Tapestry Crochet Facebook page, if you prefer ūüôā¬†I wish you all very happy crocheting!

How to Maintain Proper Tension While Doing Tapestry Crochet

Before you watch the video, I want to talk about some things I didn’t mention in the video. I’ve had a few people ask me about my choice of needle size. I generally choose a smaller hook than what is typically recommended for the yarn weight. The reason I do this is to make sure that the stitches are nice and tight so the carried yarn doesn’t show through.

For example, if you look up “yarn weight chart,” you should find charts that explain what each weight is generally used for, and recommended hook sizes. Both of the projects that I’m working on right now are made of worsted weight yarn. For worsted weight yarn, it’s recommended that you should use¬†at least a size¬†I-9 hook (5.5 mm) But in the video below, I’m using a size G-6 hook, which is 4 mm.

What I would recommend when choosing a hook size is to go a couple sizes under what is recommended, try it out and see if it’s both comfortable and if it hides the carried yarn. If you have those two things, I would say you’re good to go. (Of course, hook size will affect the overall size of your work, so keep that in mind, too.)

With all that in mind, go ahead and check out the video. I hope it’s helpful for you and that it brings you at¬†least one step¬†closer to comfortable crocheting.

How to Make a Tapestry Crochet Pattern Using Stitchworks Software

When you have to rely on pre-made patterns, the number of tapestry crochet patterns available to you are limited. But when you learn to make your own, a world of possibilities opens up. In this two-part tutorial, I go over the basics of how to use a program called Crochet Charts to make your very own tapestry crochet patterns. Please note that these tutorials are focused primarily on how to use the software. (Find the software at http://www.stitchworkssoftware.com/downloads)


Part 1:
Part 2:

How to Transition From the Base to the Body of a Bag

After you finish the base/bottom of a bag, you may find yourself feeling stuck, as there’s very little information on tapestry crochet in general and even less on the steps required to make a bag. In the video tutorial below, I explain my method of transitioning from the base to the body.

I¬†use this method because it’s the method I used in making bags before I started doing tapestry crochet. However, I’m really curious to know what you guys do to move from the base to the body. ¬†Let me know your method in the comments section below! And if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask either in the comment section below or by messaging me on the¬†All Tapestry Crochet Facebook page.¬† Happy Crocheting!

How to Crochet a Round Base in One Continuous Round (Wayuu-Style)

One of my favorite things about doing tapestry crochet in the round is that there’s never a need to join with¬†a slip stitch and chain 1. You just move from round to round as if you’re creating one big spiral.

When it comes to the base, it can be worked the same way. Moving from round to round in bases is just as simple as moving from round to round in the rest of the project, but there are a few things to remember that are unique to making bases.

  1. When you get to the end of a round, begin the next round by crocheting directly into the next stitch. No need to join or ch 1. You may find it helpful to use a stitch marker to mark the first stitch of each round.
  2. Each round (except for Round 1) must have 8 increases. If you’re making a base with more than 25 rounds, you will probably want to add more increases starting from about Round 20, because if you don’t, your base will likely start to curve up into a bowl shape.
  3. Where increases¬†are placed varies depending on the design of the pattern. Moving increases to an appropriate spot in a round will preserve the design. When using a chart, it’s helpful to decide ahead of time where you would like to put your increases.

For a step-by-step tutorial on how to make a Wayuu-style tapestry crochet base, check out this 4-part video series. (Some things are easier to learn by doing rather than by reading about, and this is one of those things.)

If you have questions or comments, feel free to either leave them in the comment section of these videos on YouTube, or in the comment section below. And if you have a YouTube account, please consider liking these videos and subscribing to my channel (All Tapestry Crochet). And if you’re on Facebook you can follow All Tapestry Crochet there, too! I’d love for you to share your works-in-progress with me ūüôā

Creating Straight Vertical Lines With a Modified SC

mscheaderFor me,¬†one of the greatest downfalls of doing tapestry crochet in the round is that the vertical lines are slanted. There have been numerous times when I decided not to do a pattern because I didn’t think it would look as good slanted. Luckily, there’s a way to combat this. I call it the modified single crochet.

The Origins of the Modified Single Crochet

If you’ve been a fan of tapestry crochet for a while, chances are you’ve stumbled upon the famous Wayuu bags, or mochilas. (You might remember from your high school Spanish class that mochila means backpack.)wayuumochilas

The modified single crochet is what is used to create the unique look of a mochila. What made me want to learn the Wayuu method was not necessarily the desire to make a mochila, but the desire to create straight vertical lines, like the ones in the bag below.

wayuuvertical

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The modified single crochet¬†creates¬†something like a ridge along the top of each round, which is different from the smooth look you get with round tapestry crochet. It’s not ideal, but to me it’s worth it to have the option of being able to create straight vertical lines.

How to do a Modified Single Crochet

As the name implies, a modified single crochet is basically a regular single crochet with just two small differences. Let’s look at it one step at a time.

Step 1: Insert hook into back loop only.msc1
Step 2: Yarn over and pull through.msc2

msc3

Step 3: Yarn under and pull through.msc4

msc5

And that’s pretty much it! The two small differences are that you insert the hook into only the back loop, and that you yarn under instead of over before pulling through the two loops on the hook. The yarn under motion takes a little getting used to. And you probably noticed that the ridges I was talking about are created because of the fact that you’re only crocheting into the back loop.

Simple, right? I will definitely be using this method regularly now that I know about, and I hope you do too ūüôā If you do make something using this method, I would love for you to come over to the All Tapestry Crochet Facebook page and share your work with your fellow tapestry crocheters! As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to ask away in the comments below. Happy crocheting!tabletcover

Reading and Understanding Graphs

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Reading graphs may seem like a foreign concept, but it’s actually pretty¬†straightforward. In this post I’ll go into detail about reading round and abbreviated. But first, I’ll go over a few general rules that apply to reading any graph.


Rules For Any Type of Graph

For any graph, you read the pattern from bottom to top. That’s¬†pretty much a given, since that’s crocheting goes. Each spot in a¬†graph represents one single crochet, and each row represents one round. Besides the occasional chain stitches and slip stitches, single crochet is the only crochet stitch you’ll use when using the tapestry crochet method.

The first time I tried a tapestry crochet pattern, I didn’t really understand when to switch colors.¬†Allow me to provide an example: Let’s say your graph shows four blue stitches in a row, followed by four pink stitches then four blue stitches again.howtoreadgraphs2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What you would do here is crochet three complete blue single crochets, but on the fourth one, do the last YO and pull through with pink. With the pink, do three complete single crochets and on the fourth, complete the stitch with blue. For a more detailed description of how to change (and carry) colors, click here.

Reading and Understanding Round Graphs

There’s actually a third type of tapestry crochet that I could go into, which is flat tapestry crochet, but to be honest I don’t care for it much. I really prefer doing tapestry crochet in the round. It’s easier, quicker and I like that look of it more as well. The round tapestry crochet may be slightly more limited in the things you can make with it, but not by much. For example, you can make both scarves, bags, tablet covers, pillow covers, etc. with both types of tapestry crochet. But if you wanted to make something like a blanket or a dish cloth, you couldn’t really make those with the round tapestry crochet method. Still, I personally find¬†the round method to be more enjoyable.

Below is the graph I use. Technically, I¬†make my graphs on a software program that I found online. I really wanted to share the process with you guys, but I can’t figure out how to make the video¬†the way I needed to. But if you guys really want to know, say so in the comments below¬†and I will figure it out for you guys.. somehow ūüėõ

my round graphIf this graph isn’t quite big enough for the pattern you want to make, you can do what I do and just print out multiple graphs and line them up to create a larger graph.

Like flat graphs, round graphs are also read from bottom to top, but unlike flat graphs, they are only read from right to left. That’s because when¬† working tapestry crochet in the round, you do not have to turn your work or and start a new round.¬†What happens is that¬†once you get started, the stitches line up so that you can just keep working in one continuous round. (I’ve written another post that goes into detail about how rounds work in tapestry crochet, which you can check out here.)designroundgraph1

So, if the rounds are continuous but the graph isn’t, how do you read the graph?

Well, let me give you a simple example. The pattern below is made of 20 stitch across.¬†Starting with the orange stitch at the tip of the second upside down triangle, crochet each stitch across from right to left. You’ll do 1 orange, 9 pink, 1 orange, 9 pink. When you get to the end of the round, you’ll already be in the perfect spot to place the first stitch of the next round into the first stitch of the previous round. If you do it right, you’ll always end each round where the previous¬†round began.¬†howtoreadgraphs5

That brings me to the next point about reading round graphs. If you looked at any point in the graph, it could seem like you have the following possibilities: stitch X goes into stitch A; stitch X goes into stitch B; or, stitch X somehow goes into both stitch A and stitch B.howtoreadgraphs6

I’ll just go ahead and tell you; stitch X goes into stitch A. That is to say, each stitch on the graph always goes into the stitch below it and to the left. This may not make sense not, but trust me; once you start crocheting, this all will become so much easier to understand because a lot of it just happens naturally.

 

Reading and Understanding Abbreviated Graphs

Abbreviated graphs are shortened versions of full patterns. They’re really useful when crocheting¬†patterns that are confusing or difficult to follow along with. I wrote a whole post about what abbreviated graphs are and how to use them. It’s a very useful skill, so it’s definitely worth checking out. Abbreviated graphs are written in a simple grid format, so it’s pretty easy to read and understand. Here’s an example of a pattern with it’s abbreviated graph:howtoreadagraph7

Abbreviated graphs can be used with either flat or round graphs. The only difference is that when reading them, you read only from right to left for round patterns, but alternate between right to left and left to right with flat patterns. On the first round, you repeat only the first row of the abbreviated graph as many times as you need to in order to achieve the correct size for your project. In the example below, the first row of the abbreviated graph must be repeated 4 times to match the full graph.howtoreadgraphs8

When you’ve finished the first round, you move to the second row of the abbreviated graph and do the same amount of repetitions as you did of the first row in the first round. Each time you finish a round, you move on to reading the next row of the abbreviated graph.

When you begin¬†a new round, you should be starting with the first stitch on the corresponding row of the abbreviated graph.¬†And likewise, you should be ending the row with the last stitch on the corresponding row. If either of these doesn’t happen, double check your work to make sure you have left out or misplaced a stitch somewhere in the round. Using the example above, if I start the fourth round of my project (using the fourth row of the abbreviated graph) with a blue stitch but I end with a white stitch, it would mean that I made a mistake somewhere along the way because the abbreviated graph says I should be ending with a blue stitch.

Other than what I’ve mentioned, reading abbreviated graphs is done pretty much in the same way as reading round or flat graphs. Personally,¬†I almost never use abbreviated graphs by themselves. I find that for me, the easiest way to crochet something is to rely mostly on an abbreviated graph, using the complete pattern occasionally¬†to double check that I’m on the right track.

The idea of reading and understanding graphs¬†is something that a lot of people wonder about. Tapestry crochet graphs can seem a bit mysterious if you’ve never used one. And there’s a good chance this post may have raised some questions that you didn’t have before. But as with many other things, this is just one of those things that you have to try to really understand. So even if you feel a little unsure, I would say just go for it and you’ll find¬†that it all makes sense once you experience it firsthand.

But of course, if you have any questions, doubts or confusions, feel free to ask away in the comments below and I’ll try to clear up the uncertainties. Happy day, and happy crocheting!

How Rounds Work in Tapestry Crochet

Before you jump into making your first tapestry crochet project, there’s a really important factor that you have to be aware of. When making something with the tapestry crochet method, you do not turn your work and chain 1 (or 2 or however many) at the end of a round, like you normally would when crocheting. Moving from round to round in tapestry crochet has to be different in order to achieve the right look. Learning about how rounds work in tapestry crochet is important, but not difficult. Let’s get to it.


How Rounds Work For Tapestry Crochet In The Round

For tapestry crochet in the round, the transition from row to row is effortless. It’s one of my favorite things about round tapestry crochet. Besides in the base (if you use one for your project), you never have to turn your work and chain x number of stitches. I repeat; you do not have to turn your work when doing tapestry crochet in the round.

The way it works is like this: let’s say you have a pattern that is 5 stitches long and you want to repeat the pattern 8 times. So you start with a foundation chain of 40 (5 x 8). You do the five repetitions of the pattern into the foundation chain. When you finish the final stitch (the 50th), you’ll be in the perfect spot to begin the next round of your pattern directly into first stitch of the previous round. The first stitch of the second round goes right into the first stitch from the first round. No need to chain 1, no turning. It’s that simple. Allow me to give an example. Here’s my the pattern I’ll be doing: (I’ll be sticking to a simple one for demonstration purposes.)

howroundsworkgraph

 

After completing 40 single crochets into the foundation chain, what you have in front of you should look like this:

howroundswork1

 

Normally at this point you would join with a slip stitch, ch 1 and then do the next round. Not in tapestry crochet. Instead, you begin the next round by simply placing the next SC directly into the first SC of the first round.howroundswork2

 

I usually like to make one row that serves as a foundation for the rest of the. So technically, the first stitch of the second round is the first stitch of the pattern. For that reason I usually don’t count the foundation round and instead refer to the second round as Round 1. Here’s the first complete round of my pattern.howroundswork3

 

When you complete Round 1, the last stitch of the round (the one you just completed) should be directly to the right of the first stitch of the round.howroundswork4

 

And now the first stitch of Round 2 goes directly into the first stitch of Round 1.howroundswork5

 

And that’s how it works for every round. Here’s the first stitch of¬†Round 3¬†going directly in the first stitch of Round 2.howroundswork6

As long as you don’t miss a stitch or add a stitch, you’ll always end the round in the perfect spot to go straight into the next round. Notice in the picture below that the way you switch from round to round does mean there will be a sort of break in the pattern. It only happens at the point when you move to the next row, so it’s not that noticeable, but maybe one day I’ll find a solution for this ūüėČ (Don’t count on it though..)

That’s all there is to it! Don’t you just love the simplicity of tapestry crochet? If I’ve left anything out or created any confusion, please feel free to leave your questions in the comments below and I’ll gladly attempt to answer them. Happy crocheting!

 

 

Carrying and Changing Colors

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The most important skill required for tapestry crochet is carrying and changing colors. Because it’s so important, I wanted to make sure that I covered every little step and got every angle. Switching and carrying colors is one of those things that at first makes you feel like your tripping over your own fingers. But don’t worry! Once you find your rhythm and flow, you’ll be glad you stuck with it. Let’s get into the tutorial ūüôā


Incorporating New Colors

To begin carrying and changing colors, you first have to incorporate the new colors. You do this by locking the colors under/behind a single crochet.

First, begin your single crochet by yarning over and pulling through, so that you have two loops on the hook as shown below. Place the new strands behind the two loops and on top of the yarn you’re doing the sc with (in this picture, it’s the gray yarn).
DSCN3149

 

Complete the sc by yarning over and pulling through the two loops on your hook.DSCN3150

 

This is what it should look like from the back of the stitch.DSCN3151

 

And this is how it looks when you’ve completed several stitches. If your stitches are tight enough, you shouldn’t be able to see the colors through the stitches.DSCN3152

You do those same steps for as many sc’s as you need to until it’s time to change color. But just to be really thorough, I’ll go over it again.

 

Carrying Colors

Insert hook into next stitch, with the trailing colors laying on top of the stitch. Yarn over, going over the top of the colors you’re carrying. I usually hold the colors towards the back of the stitch. It’s what’s most comfortable to me. But when you try it, you made find that holding the colors more towards the front feels better. Whatever feels easier or more comfortable for you, that’s what you should go with.DSCN3154

 

Pull through so that you have two loops on your hook. At this point, I usually pull on the colors I’m carrying to make sure that they stay in place. You may also want to tug on them every 15 stitches or so, so they can’t be seen through the stitches on the inside of the work.DSCN3158

 

Yarn over, going over the trailing colors. DSCN3162

 

Pull through hook. The colors will be locked into place under the single crochet. Again, be sure that you’re holding the colors tight. This will prevent you from accidentally pulling one of them up.DSCN3163

Once you figure out the best position for the trailing colors to be held in and you’ve practiced that for a bit, carrying colors will become second nature.

 

Switching Colors

Switching colors is more simple than it may appear.¬†Start by beginning a sc (insert hook, yo, pull through). That’s what you see below. But don’t finish the stitch yet!DSCN3169

 

Drop the color you’re carrying (gray in the picture above), put it with the rest of the colors, and pick up the next color you want to work with (blue in the picture below).DSCN3170

 

Use the new color to finish the sc (yarn over, pull through loops on hook).DSCN3171

 

Now that you have the new color on your hook,¬†the next sc you make¬†will be the new color. That’s all there is to it!¬†At this point, you’ll want to pull on the last color you were holding (gray here) before you make the first sc with the new color (blue here). If you don’t pull it tight, that last gray sc will be significantly looser than the rest.¬†DSCN3174

 

Tips on Preventing Tangles

I’ve found that when working with the tapestry crochet method, the easiest way for me to prevent tangling is to give each ball of yarn it’s spot. The way the strands of yarn are radiating out in the picture below give you an idea of how spread out each ball of yarn is. I try to keep everything in its spot and only move them around if I stopped paying attention and got things tangled up.

Along with having the yarn spread out, I try to make sure that every time I’m done using a color, I put it down¬†in the same spot I picked it up from. Using the picture below as an example, if I pick up the green strand from between the light blue and the dark blue, I replace it between the light blue and the dark blue. This is my method, but this is another one of those things that you’ll adapt to fit you.DSCN3175

 

Another thing that prevents tangling is to hold the next color that you’re going to use in the front until you need it. In the example below, the next color I’ll need is green, so I’m holding that color in the front with my thumb while I hold the rest of the colors towards that back. If you don’t do this, the colors sometimes start to roll a little after each stitch, which may make you next color less accessible. When holding a color in the front, be sure to hold it in the way that leaves the space for you to insert the hook into the next sc.DSCN3205

Also, you may notice that when you put one color down and pick up another, a bit of a knot is formed in the colors you’re carrying. Don’t worry about it. This is actually what happens most of the time, especially when working with more than two colors. It’s easier to just leave the knot then to move around the yarn so that you don’t have a knot.

Hopefully this post left you with a total understanding of carrying and changing colors. But, if there’s anything I didn’t cover or anything that you have questions about, please feel free to leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to clear things up for you. Now, go make something beautiful today!

Calculating How Many Rounds You Need For Your Base

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So, you’ve decided on a pattern, you’ve graphed it out, you’ve picked the colors and you’re ready to start. But just as you’re about to get to it, you¬†realize you’re not 100% sure¬†where to start. I mean, you know how to make a base but you’re not sure how many rounds to do.¬†Although there’s no easy answer, there are a few key concepts that, once you know, will allow you to start any project with confidence.

By now you’ve probably read my posts on how to make a round, square, or oblong base, and you’ve probably ready about how to design a pattern¬†and turn that pattern into an abbreviated graph. If you haven’t, you should check those out first because you’ll have to know those skills before you can begin with this one. This post is based on¬†the assumption that you’ll be making bases using the patterns I provided in my others posts. (But of course, you can still gain useful insight from this article even if you use other¬†patterns.)

For those of you who have read those other posts, you know that once you have your pattern drawn out, you can turn it into an abbreviated graph. The abbreviated graph shows the smaller repeating pattern, that your overall pattern is made of.¬†Once you have your abbreviated graph,¬†you’ll be able to see how many stitches it takes to complete one repetition of the smaller pattern. That’s the starting point for knowing how many rounds¬†you’ll need on your base. Figuring it out from there depends on whether you’re using a round, square or oblong base. But first, let’s start with calculating how many chain stitches you need when not using a base.


No base

If you’re not going to be using a base for your project, the solution is pretty simple. The first thing you have to do is decide how many repetitions you want, which will determine how big your project will be. Once you have that number, you multiply it by how many stitches it takes to complete your pattern. Then you just have to add one. Like this:

(# of pattern repetitions desired) x (# of stitches needed to complete 1 repetition) + 1 = (# of chain stitches)

That’s it! I did say it was pretty simple, right? (In case you were wondering, the + 1 is there so that you can join the foundation change and be able to work in the round.)

Now on to projects that use round bases…


Round Base

For projects using round bases, the first thing to remember is that the stitches in the last round
of your base will act as the chain stitches for your tapestry pattern. As was established in my post about making round bases, each row’s stitch total is a multiple of 7. (Row 1 has a total of 7 stitches, row 2 has 14, row 5 has 35, row 10 has 70…)The fact that the number of stitches in any given round of a base is predetermined by the pattern is¬†¬†an obstacle when it comes to deciding how big you want your project to be, but we’ll come back to that in a bit.

How Many Chain Stitch You’ll Need For your pattern

Just like for flat graphs, you have to decide how many pattern repetitions you want. Then you multiply that by how many stitches it takes to complete the repetition. You do not add 1 here, though.

(# of pattern repetitions desired) x (# of stitches needed to complete 1 repetition) = (# of chain stitches)

The formula is almost¬†the same, but the concept is very different. As I said earlier, the stitches in the last round of the base that you’re using will act as the chain stitches for the rest of the project. So once you’ve used to formula above and have determined how many chain stitches you’ll need, you have to figure out how many rounds your base will need to be in order to accommodate the amount of chain stitches you want. Here’s where the obstacle comes in. (Boo obstacles!)

How Many Rounds You’ll Need for Your Base

The ideal situation would be for the pattern you’re using to be a multiple of 7 so that it fits perfectly with the base you’re using. But of course, that’s very often not the case.¬†Let me give you a¬†couple examples; one where the numbers add up, and one where the numbers need a little adjusting.

I¬†designed a pattern and that required¬†19 stitches to complete one repetition.¬†I decided I¬†wanted to make a basket with 7 repetitions. Using my formula, that would be (7 repetitions) x (19 stitches) =¬†133 chain stitches. From that number I had to figure out how many rounds I needed my base to be. If you have good math sense,¬†you probably see the answer already. Since the total stitch number of each round in the base will be a multiple of 7, I had to divide the number of chain stitches by 7 to figure out how many rounds I needed. 133 √∑¬†7 = 19. The 19th round of a round base has 133 stitches, so it’s a perfect fit!

I made another basket where the pattern required 25 stitches to complete the rep. I wanted the basket to have 5 reps. (5 repetitions)¬†x (25 stitches) = 125 chain stitches. I divided that by 7 to figure out how many rounds my base would be: 125 √∑¬†7 = 17.8. So my base would be 17.8 rounds. Wait.. How do you make 17.8 rounds?! Clearly, you don’t. But there is a way to get around this.

Do you remember long division? Where the answer would sometimes be “such-and-such number, with a remainder of __.” So fun ūüėź Not. Fun or not, that’s the key to knowing what to do. For this case, 125 √∑¬†7 = 17, with a remainder of 6. Translation: If you make a base with 17 rounds, the last round will have 119 and you’ll be short 6 stitches. So you could do one of two things;

  • On the 17th round of the base, add an extra 6 increases spread evenly throughout the round so that you have a total of 125 stitches, (17 rounds)¬†x 7 = 119 stitches. ¬† ¬†119 + (6 extra increases) = 225 total stitches
  • or you can do 18 rounds, but only do 6 increases in the 18th round instead of the typical 7 increases so that you round’s stitch total will be 125. (18 rows)¬†x 7 = 126 stitches. ¬† ¬†126 – (1 increase) = 125 total stitches.

The underlying idea is that either way, if the numbers don’t add up like they did in the first example, you’ll have to change the number of increases in the last round of your base. In this example, when it came to how many rounds I wanted to do, the choice was clear: I’d rather do 18 rounds and take out 1 increase, because doing 17 rows and adding 6 extra increases would take much more away from the roundness of the base. To simplify (if that’s what you want to call it):

For round bases:

Step 1: (# of pattern repetitions desired) x (# of stitches needed to complete 1 repetition) = (# of chain stitches)

Step 2: (# of rounds needed in base) = (# of chain stitches) ÷ 7

 

Step 3: Adjust number of rounds/increases accordingly.


Square Base

Rounds in¬†square bases increase by like this: [(round number x¬†8) – 4]. That means round 1 will be [(1¬†x¬†8) – 4], which equals 4 total stitches in round 1. ¬† Round 3 will be [(3¬†x¬†8) – 4] = 20 sts in round 3. ¬† Row 6 is [(6¬†x¬†8) – 4] = 44. And so on. By tweaking this formula a little, you get another formula that’ll help you figure out how many rounds you need. Here’s the formula:

(# of rounds needed) = (# of chain stitches + 4) ÷ 8

If you’re not a math person and you’re wondering how I got this equation, I will gladly explain it. But otherwise, just trust me.. it works! For example, if I needed 36 chain stitches, this is how it would work out: (# of rounds needed) = (36 + 4)¬†√∑ 8 = 5, which means I would need 5 rows. Summing it up:

For square bases:

Step 1: (# of pattern repetitions desired) x (# of stitches needed to complete 1 repetition) = (# of chain stitches)

Step 2: (# of rounds needed in base) = (# of chain stitches + 4) ÷ 8

Step 3: Adjust number of rounds/increases accordingly.

Keep in mind that if you have to adjust the increases in the last round of your base, it’ll affect the shape of the base much more than it would in a round base. My suggestion would be to¬†turn up your work, complete one plain round in which you add any necessary increases, and then begin the pattern on the next round.


Oblong Base

When making a circle or a square base, the only thing you really have control over is how many rounds it has. When making oblong bases, however, you can also choose how long or short you want it to be by increasing or decreasing the length of its foundation chain. This is generally a good thing, but unfortunately it makes it much more difficult to find out how many rounds you’ll need.

For example, imagine you made an oblong base with a foundation chain of 13 and another with a foundation chain of 23. For both bases you complete 10 rounds. On the tenth round, the one with the foundation chain of 13 will have 80  stitches in the last round. The one with a foundation chain of 23 will have 100 stitches in the last round. So you can see that the number of stitches you end with depends not only on how many rounds you do, but also on how many stitches are in the foundation chain of the base.

Okay, I’m going to get to the formula now. It’s going to get a bit complicated, but¬†I encourage you to stick with me! Knowing it will save you a lot of time. Here’s the formula:

{(# of chain stitches) Р[(# stitches in foundation chain Р3) x 2]}  ÷ 6  =  # of rounds needed

Plug the formula into the steps that you use for any base:

For oblong bases:

Step 1: (# of pattern repetitions desired) x (# of stitches needed to complete 1 repetition) = (# of chain stitches)

Step 2: (# of rounds needed) = {(# of chain stitches – [(#stitches in foundation chain – 3) x 2]} √∑ 6

Step 3: Adjust number of rounds/increases accordingly.

Now, you can just stop here and use that formula if you don’t feel like getting into the specifics, or you can stick around for the explanation.

To find this formula, I started with what I already knew. What I knew was this:

  1. The pattern calls for adding an extra three (3) chains to the foundation chain in order to allow for easier turning at each end of the base. If you made a foundation chain of 13, three of the stitches on the foundation chain (1 chain one one side, two on the other side) would be used to create the ends, and the remaining 10 stitches would be used to form the sides of the base. That’s where the (# stitches in foundation chain – 3) comes from.
  2. There are two sides on the base, so you multiply the part above by two. Thus, [(# stitches in foundation chain – 3) x 2].
  3. While the sides never get longer, the ends increase in size by a multiple of 6. That’s where the (¬†√∑¬†6) comes from.

Putting all these bits of information led me to the formula you see above. Okay, so that’s not the full explanation but I trust it’ll suffice ūüėČ

I know at first glance this post may have seemed daunting, but I hope that after reading it¬†you¬†understand how to determine how many rounds you should do. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments below and I’ll do my best to clear up any confusion. Happy crocheting, everyone!