Best Tunisian Crochet Stitches Guidance
The origin of Tunisian crochet is shrouded in mystery. We do not know when or even where it was invented. But we know that in the 19th century, this technique quickly became popular for the warm dense fabric it could create, before falling out of fashion. In the last several years, Tunisian patterns have quickly risen back into vogue.
Tunisian crochet is more than a unique crochet technique. Tunisian crochet stitches can be used to create ethereal lace as well as dense warm fabrics perfect for cold weather accessories and jackets. Modern designers are exploring the possibilities of this versatile stitch with innovative afghans, unique sweaters, and modern accessories.
What is Tunisian Crochet?
Sometimes referred to as a hybrid between crochet and knit, Tunisian has been called by many names over the years; such as afghan crochet, tricot crochet, and shepherds knitting. Tunisian crochet patterns are created with a single hook, pulling up multiple loops in a “forward pass” and leaving them on the hook before working them off in a “return pass.” Both the forward pass and return pass count as a single row.
Tunisian Crochet Hooks: What to Choose
For working a Tunisian crochet pattern, crocheters can choose between three types of hooks. For projects that aren’t very wide you can use a regular crochet hook; however, you want to make sure the hook has a straight shaft that does not widen. If your project is too wide for a regular hook, you can use a Tunisian crochet hook which is much longer than a typical crochet hook so that it can hold a large number of stitches. For much larger projects, such as afghans, you can use a flexible Tunisian crochet hook, also known as an Afghan hook. We highly recommend learning how to use an Afghan crochet hook if you’d like to use your Tunisian stitches to create beautiful blankets.
The most common stitches are Tunisian simple stitch, Tunisian purl stitch, and Tunisian knit stitch. Each one of these Tunisian stitches is unique, with some more complex than others. We highly recommend starting with the Tunisian Simple Stitch and then building upon that to learn some of the more complicated stitches. Although many of the techniques outlined in our Tunisian crochet stitches instructions are distinct, they all have one thing in common: They generally require you to work each row in two passes.
Keep reading for some basic Tunisian crochet instructions to help you learn how to do Tunisian crochet stitches. As long as you take it slow and follow our guide, you’ll be able to master these stitches in no time flat with a little bit of practice and determination!
How-To: Tunisian Simple Stitch
Forward Pass: Insert hook from right to left behind the second vertical bar (see Figure 1). Yarn over and pull up a loop (see Figure 2). Leave this loop on the hook and insert the hook from right to left behind the next vertical bar. Yarn over and pull up a loop, leaving this loop on the hook as well. Continue pulling up loops in each vertical bar across to the last stitch of the row. To pull up a loop in the last stitch, insert your hook behind both the vertical bar and an additional loop at the edge of the row. You should now have the same number of loops on your hook as you have stitches.
Return Pass: Yarn over and draw through one loop. *Yarn over and draw through two loops (see Figure 3). Repeat from * until there is only one loop on the hook. This loop is the selvedge stitch.
Tunisian Crochet Stitches: Knit Stitch Demystified
Forward Pass: Skip the first set of vertical bars. Insert hook between next set of vertical bars, working under the horizontal strands (see Figure 1). Yarn over and pull up a loop. Insert hook in the same manner in the next set of vertical bars, yarn over, and pull up a loop. Continue to pull up loops in this manner across to the last stitch. To work the last stitch, insert the hook behind both the vertical bar and an additional loop at the edge of the row; yarn over and pull up a loop. This will create a more stable edge for the fabric.
Return Pass: Work the return pass as for the Tunisian simple stitch (see Figure 2).
You Need to Know the Tunisian Purl Stitch
Forward Pass: With the yarn in front, insert the hook from right to left behind the second vertical bar. Yarn over and pull up a loop (see Figure 1). Keeping the yarn in front, insert the hook from right to left behind the next vertical bar. Yarn over and pull up a loop. Continue pulling up loops in the same manner to the last stitch. To work the last stitch, insert the hook behind both the vertical bar and an additional loop at the edge of the row; yarn over and pull up a loop. This will create a more stable edge for the fabric.
Return Pass: Work the return pass as for the Tunisian simple stitch.
Tunisian is a wonderful crochet skill to have, and it’s really quite enjoyable once you have the hang of it.
The most important thing to remember with Tunisian crochet stitches is to use a hook with a smooth, even shaft. A crochet hook that widens at the grip will increase the size of the loops as they are picked up across the row and left on the hook, and we wouldn’t want that. Now that you know how to do Tunisian crochet, and have explored some basic stitches for this fascinating and popular crochet technique, you’re ready to starting on your first few Tunisian crochet patterns!