Spike stitches are stitches that extend down further than a crochet stitch typically would. Usually, you'd work your basic stitches into the tops of the stitches in the row or round below. With a spike stitch, you might go two rows down, or even further.
Spike stitches can be used to introduce extra color, texture and interest into your crochet stitch patterns. Crochet work often emphasizes visual elements that draw the eye in the horizontal direction, since rows of crochet stitches are typically worked from side to side. Spike stitches introduce interesting vertical elements into the work. You can use spikes to create satisfying balanced effects, but you can also use them to create interesting asymmetrical designs too. There are many fascinating possibilities.
There's no limit to the amount of different stitch patterns and crochet projects you can create using spike stitches. This page is dedicated to exploring some of the possibilities.
Crochet Patterns and Projects Featuring the Spike Stitch
The following free crochet patterns include spike stitches, among other stitches.