I dunno ’bout you, but I really, REALLY, really hate working that first row of stitches into the starting chain. It’s a pain; the chains get smaller as if by magic, or get skipped by accident, or are hard to count altogether. Luckily, there are Foundation Stitches. I first learned about them in Doris Chan’s book ‘Amazing Crochet Lace‘, and I have loved them since.
Here’s what they do : with foundation stitches you are working both the starting chain and first row AT ONCE! Yep.
Now, you can’t always replace the starting chain and first row with foundation stitches, but when you can they rock hard. Basically, if your first row is a basic stitch throughout, you can use this technique. I’m going to explain how to make foundation single crochet stitches here. I also recommend a quick search for video tutes if that’s more your thing. As always, comments are welcome.
Foundation single crochet
Step 1 : Ch 2
Step 2 : Insert hook into 1st ch made (or 2nd ch from hook)
Step 3 : Yarn over and draw up a loop (2 loops on hook)
Step 4 : Yarn over and pull through 1 loop (chain made; 2 loops remain on hook)
Step 5 : Yarn over and pull through remaining loops (single crochet made)
Simple? Yep. See the pics for a visual treat.
Here’s where foundation stitches sometimes get tricky.
First see the anatomy of these babies.
So basically, if you look at the foundation stitches from the top, you see the single crochet stitches. If you look at them from the bottom, you see the chains.
To make the next foundation single crochet all you have to do is insert your hook into the last chain made (under the foundation stitches) and repeat steps 3 to 5.
See these last pics that show where you’ll be inserting your hook.
I hope you enjoy this brave new world!