Boteh: An Experiment in Half Doube Crochet Stitch
While making the Boteh Scarf a couple weeks ago I found myself experimenting and swatching with different variations of the half double crochet stitch (hdc). The results are fairly subtle, but I think they are fun to look at none-the-less.
Warning: the Boteh Scarf is addictive to make. I made one triangle shape and immediately had to start the next, and then the next, and then…well, you get the picture. Before I knew it, I’d made the entire scarf but still wanted to make more triangles (thus the experimenting and swatching)!
Let’s take a look at the different swatches I created.
Half Double Crochet in Both Loops
The Boteh Scarf pattern calls for half double crochet in both loops. So, that’s how I made the initial scarf. Working in both loops is the most common crochet technique. Doing so provides a nice smooth fabric. The hdc does have a bar across the back of the stitch which creates a subtle line. But it doesn’t stick out. This project is worked in rows, so the subtle line will appear on both sides of the fabric.
Half Double Crochet in Back Loops Only
The next most popular technique is to crochet in the back loops only. This tends to give a more rippled or wavy texture. And because the front loops are unworked, there is a more prominent line across the work. So, this technique is great for adding a bit of texture to fabric. Again, since this crochet scarf is made in rows, the line of unused loops will be visible on both sides of the fabric.
Half Double Crochet in Back Bar Only
This hidden gem of a technique involves bypassing the top two loops all together. Instead, the crochet hook is inserted into the bar in the back of the stitch. By working in the back bar, the top two loops fold forward creating a very prominent horizontal line across the fabric. This technique is not used very often, but it’s fabulous. Again, since this project is worked in rows, the highly textural horizontal line will appear on both sides of the fabric.
Want to experiment with the HDC yourself? I highly recommend the Boteh Scarf as a fun quick crochet pattern to experiment on.
Oh, and there are kits of yarn and pattern available, too! Check out the different color options that are available for the Boteh Scarf.