Friday, September 7, 2012

Puff Stitch Basics

Many motif patterns like Flower in Hexagon, French Square crochet motifs and the Italian Square use lots of puff stitches. You’ll find all sorts of ways to start them off at the beginning of a round. Some patterns tell you to make initial chains and work two stitches together, while others explain that the initial chain is actually part of your very first puff stitch in the round. (Well, no it’s not – at least not as far as I’m concerned.)

Because puff stitches have average height, you do need to start out each round or row with a chain 3 (or whatever your pattern calls for) to begin. However, this beginning chain is only a tool to prevent your stitches from bunching up and looking awkward. When you complete the round, the usual course of action is to slip stitch into the top of the first puff stitch, ignoring the chain 3 that started the round.
Crochet Puff Stitch Tip
When you slip stitch into the top of the first puff stitch you made at the beginning of your round, pull tightly and push the beginning chain 3 to the back of your work, hiding it behind your piece.
Back of square shows chain 3 pushed behind work.

Steps for Making a Puff Stitch
Step 1:  Yarn over, insert hook in or around desired stitch or space

Step 2:  Yarn over, pull up a loop (4 times)

Step 3:  Yarn over, draw through all 9 loops on hook

Note:  Sometimes patterns will include closing the puff stitch with a chain 1. Sometimes they won’t, because the pattern already has a series of chain stitches following the puff stitch, and the (extra) chain 1 to close the puff stitch will be too much.

I’ve been working with a lot of puff stitches lately, and thought this post might be important, especially since I’m sharing the puff stitch work I’m doing with all of you. It's my hope that this helps make all of your puff stitches that much easier to make!

Here’s wishing you all a wonderful Friday and fantastic weekend!

Until next time then, happy crocheting good people!
M. J.