Crochet Basics 6: the Half Double Crochet Stitch
This is the sixth lesson in my tutorial series, Crochet basics. In this lesson we’ll learn how to crochet the half double crochet stitch and how to crochet a flat piece two ways using half double crochets.
Start from the beginning >> Crochet Basics 1: Yarn, Hooks, Stitch Markers and Terminology
Previous lesson >> Crochet Basics 5: the Single Crochet Stitch
As per usual I am using the 100% acrylic yarn Favorite by Ice Yarns and a 5mm tapered aluminium crochet hook.
The half double crochet
Name: Half double crochet (US), Half triple crochet (UK)
Abbreviation: hdc (US), htc (UK)
Height: 1 chain (not counting the chain as a stitch), 2 chains (counting the chain as a stitch)
- Yarn over and insert hook through the next stitch or chain.
- Yarn over and pull back through the stitch or chain, you now have three loops on your hook.
- Yarn over and pull through all three loops on the hook.
Half double crocheting a flat piece (not counting the chain as a stitch)
Chain 10+1, to account for the height of the stitch. Then half double crochet, following the instructions above, in the second chain from the hook (skip 1 chain). You can see that the top of the stitch you just made has that characteristic V-shape, with one back loop (farthest from you) and one front loop (closest to you). Mark the first stitch by inserting a stitch marker under both those loops.
Now continue making half double crochets in each chain across. The work will curl naturally, it does not mean you’re doing anything wrong. Mark the stitch you make in the very first chain by inserting a stitch marker under both its loops, this is the last stitch of the first row. Now count your stitches to make sure you have ten.
Chain 1 and turn your work, clockwise or anti clockwise doesn’t matter. Then half double crochet in the last stitch of the first row, the one you just marked, and mark the stitch you made.
Now half double crochet in each stitch across, nine more times, moving the marker as needed, to finish row two. The last half double crochet is made in the first half double crochet that was marked (yellow marker above).
We now have a repeating pattern. Chain 1, turn your work, half double crochet in each stitch across (10 times). Repeat until you’ve crocheted as many rows as you want.
Half double crocheting a flat piece (counting the chain as a stitch)
As with the single crochet stitch one can count the chains at the beginning of a row as a stitch which gives a different look to the work. Below we have 8 rows of 10 half double crochets, not counting the chains to the left and counting the chains to the right.
Personally, I think not counting the chains as a stitch is the prettier option, it’s also easier. So don’t sweat it if you don’t feel like learning how to count the chains as a stitch right now.
Anyhow, this how it’s done: chain 9 + 2, marking two loops of the eleventh chain with a stitch marker. Half double crochet in the third chain from the hook and in each chain across, 9 times in total. Mark the next to last stitch. Count the stitches and make sure you have 10 counting the marked chain. *Chain 2, marking the second chain in the same way as before and turn your work. Half double crochet in the stitch you marked in the previous row (or skip one stitch). Then half double crochet in each stitch across, 7 more times. Now half double crochet in the chain you marked in the beginning of the previous row by inserting the hook under the same two loops as the stitch marker. Count the stitches and repeat from *.
Now you know how to crochet a flat piece using half double crochets in two ways!