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How to Do Half Double Crochet Stitch (hdc) Worked in Rows

Free Instructions, With Step-By-Step Pictures

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The First Row of Half Double Crochet Stitches
The First Row of Half Double Crochet Stitches -- Photo © Michael Solovay

Repeat those same steps again and again and again until you've worked a half double crochet into each chain stitch in your starting chain.

When you reach the end of the row, and you run out of chain stitches to work into, end the row by working two chain stitches. These will be your turning chain; they allow you to achieve the correct height for starting your next row of half double crochet stitches.

 

Half Double Crochet Tutorial: This Photo Shows the Work Turned Over
Turn the Work Over -- Photo © Michael Solovay

Next, turn your work over to the other side. This will enable you to crochet back across your row.

Before I explain what I did next, and what you should (or might want to) do next, I'm going to digress for a moment and mention that there are actually about a zillion possibilities for what you could do from here. Crochet is a craft that offers you a lot of freedom. You can vary each crochet stitch in many possible ways; each slight change could result in a different outcome in the way the fabric ends up looking (and performing.)

In my experience, most crocheters work through both loops of each stitch to create what is considered a standard half double crochet stitch. However, you don't have to do it that way. You could work through the front loops, or you could work through the back loops. Or you could work through a front loop, then a back loop, then a front loop. Or two front loops, then two back loops, then two front loops. Or you could work through different loops (or groups of loops) on alternate rows. See what I mean about possibilities?

When you work from a crochet pattern, the pattern designer might specify which loop(s) to work through. If so, you're likely to get the best results by following the pattern as it's written. If nothing particular is specified about which loops to work through, your safest option is to work through both loops.

Next there's the issue of deciding whether or not your turning chain counts as the first half double crochet stitch in the row. In some cases you might want to count it, and in other cases you might not want to. When you're working from a pattern, your pattern will probably tell you whether or not to count it.

 

Begin Working the Next Half Double Crochet Stitch
Begin Working the Next Half Double Crochet Stitch -- Photo © Michael Solovay

I'm going to count my turning chain (those two chain stitches I worked before turning the work over) as my first half double crochet stitch in the row. So now I am going to work the next half double crochet stitch in the row. It's the same steps as before, except that instead of working stitches into my starting chain I am now going to work them into the stitches crocheted in my previous row.

Wrap the yarn over the crochet hook...

 

Half Double Crochet Stitch in Progress
Half Double Crochet Stitch in Progress -- Photo © Michael Solovay

Insert the hook under both loops of the top of the next stitch...

 

Half Double Crochet Stitch in Progress
Half Double Crochet Stitch in Progress -- Photo © Michael Solovay

...and then grab the yarn with your crochet hook and pull up a loop. You'll have three loops on your hook.

 

Half Double Crochet Stitch in Progress
Half Double Crochet Stitch in Progress -- Photo © Michael Solovay

Wrap the yarn over your crochet hook again...

 

Half Double Crochet Stitch in Progress
Half Double Crochet Stitch in Progress -- Photo © Michael Solovay

...and pull the yarn through all three loops on your hook to complete the stitch.

 

Half Double Crochet Stitch Complete
Half Double Crochet Stitch Complete -- Photo © Michael Solovay

Here's how the completed half double crochet stitch looks.

Keep making more half double crochet stitches until you get to the end of the row. Be sure to count your stitches to make sure you have the same number that you did in the first row. (If you're counting your turning chains as stitches, remember to count them too!)

When you reach the end of future rows, you can crochet your last stitch in the row into the turning chain of the previous row; if you're counting it as a half double crochet stitch, you'll treat it just like you would treat an ordinary half double crochet stitch.

Rows of Half Double Crochet Stitches

Rows of Half Double Crochet Stitch
Rows of Half Double Crochet Stitch -- Photo © Michael Solovay

Here's another look at how my completed rows of half double crochet stitch look.

More Stitch Patterns Worked Using Half Double Crochet

Puff Lace Stitch With hdc V-stitches
Puff Lace Stitch With hdc V-stitches -- Photo © Michael Solovay

So now you've learned how to work a solid fabric using the half double crochet. This is a useful fabric; and important one, but it isn't the only fabric you can create using the half double crochet stitch. You can use half double crochets in combination with other stitches to create many other interesting fabrics as well. Here are some stitch patterns you can make using half double crochet.

  • Puff Lace With Half Double Crochet V-Stitches -- This lace fabric features fabulous texture created using a combination of puff stitch and shorter-than-usual v-stitches. Usually, the v-stitch is worked using double crochets, but in this version you use half double crochet instead.


  • Shell Stitch -- You combine double crochets, half double crochets and chains to crochet the basic shell stitch.


  • Lacy Treble Shell Stitch -- This stitch is based on the basic shell stitch, but it's taller and lacier. This stitch pattern also incorporates half double crochets as part of the design.

Free Patterns for Practicing Your Half Double Crochet Stitch

This headband is made in half double crochet stitch worked through the back loops only.
This headband is made in half double crochet worked through the back loops. Photo © Amy Solovay

Ready to try crocheting a project using the half double crochet stitch? Here are some free patterns you could use:

  • Men's fall / winter headband -- This contoured headband is made in half double crochet stitch worked through the back loops only. It's designed for active guys who enjoy being outdoors during the fall and winter seasons. The free crochet pattern is by Amy Solovay.


  • Half double crochet placemat pattern -- This placemat is a simple, basic design that's beginner-friendly and easy to crochet.


  • hdc crochet shell edging -- This simple scalloped edging incorporates the half double crochet and other stitches. This pattern is super easy to crochet.


  • Pixie hood -- I think this pattern is simply genius. It's so easy, and since there are five sizes you could crochet one of these for every gal in your family, from babies and children to teens and adults. This free pattern is by Erica Jackofsky.


  • Easy slouchy crochet hat -- This is another multi-size hat pattern with a lot of style. The free pattern is by Erica Jackofsky.


  • Downhill skier hat -- This is a warm winter hat that'll look great on the ski slopes. If you don't ski, don't worry, it'll look fab out and about wherever you want to wear it. This free pattern is by Erica Jackofsky.
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