It’s yet another January, and once again my goal is to master Tunisian crochet this year. I failed at accomplishing it that last two years, not because it’s difficult, but because I have so little time I can commit to crochet that I usually fall back on standard crochet because it’s quick and easy for me because I’ve been doing it for years. But I swear, this year will be different.
I did complete one project, a Tunisian Crochet infinity scarf, a few years ago. You can get the free pattern here, but this year I want to understand what can be done with Tunisian because there are so few patterns available for it. I love the look of it because it’s much more refined than crochet and looks more like knitting. I know there has to be plenty of ways I can incorporate it into my repertoire of yarn creations, but it’s going to take some time.
Tunisian Crochet Basics – What You Need to Know to Get Started
Tunisian Crochet is also called the Afghan Crochet because it makes such a beautiful blanket. It can be very densely stitched, so the blanket is warm without having to be heavy. It’s done with a long afghan hook that has a head similar to a traditional crochet hook, but the length is between 12- and 14-inches. You can also buy double ended Tunisian crochet hook or a flex hook which combines a crochet hook with a cord (often plastic) of about 12″ with a stopper on the end to keep stitches from falling off. Some Tunisian experts swear by the Addi Turbo Interchangeable set, but they’re pricey, and it’s easy to drop stitches with them which isn’t ideal for a new crocheter. Beginners to Tunisian crochet will find the Tunisian Flex Hooks easier.
Tunisian Crochet is generally worked with the front side facing you because it’s worked in Forward Pass (FwP) and Return Pass (RetP) rows – FwP rows move right to left and RetP moves left to right. Like knitting, as you move Forward, you pick up stitches onto the hook, but when you Return, you combine stitches until you have only two left. In Tunisian, it takes a FwP and RetP to complete one row.
Projects made with a Tunisian stitch starts out like most any crochet project with a foundation chain. Where the difference in traditional and Tunisian crochet really stand out is in the stitches themselves. Instead of inserting your hook into the top of the stitch like traditional crochet, the hook is inserted in the vertical bar in a Tunisian Simple Stitch (TSS).
One natural, but annoying, feature of Tunisian crochet is that it curls as you work it. You can block your project after it’s finished or use a bigger hook. You can also modify how you do your first pass into the foundation chain by going into the back ridge (sometimes called the bump) so that the stitches stack differently and are less prone to curling.
|Tunisian Crochet Abbreviations|
|Tbs||Tunisian Bar Stitch|
|Tdc||Tunisian Double Crochet|
|Tfs||Tunisian Full Stitch|
|Tks||Tunisian Knit Stitch|
|Tps||Tunisian Purl Stitch|
|Trs||Tunisian Reverse Stitch|
|TSS||Tunisian Simple Stitch|
|Ttc||Tunisian Treble Crochet|
First, I’ve got to master the basics. I’ve purchased a few books so far, and I’m finding them helpful. I want to make some samples with yarn of the different stitches to see how they look in self-striping, variegated, and other multi-colored yards. It’s amazing the different looks you can get with the same yarn and different stitches.
Tunisian Crochet Basics – Books to Get You Started
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Have you tried Tunisian Crochet yet?