The range of visual effects you can achieve with crochet is nothing short of stunning -- but all those effects begin with a combination of the same basic stitches. Start by tackling patterns that use basic stitches like the chain stitch, single crochet and double crochet. Once your confidence increases, you can move on to projects that use specialized stitches like the fpDC, the front post double crochet, sometimes also abbreviated as DCFP.
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Chain Stitch and Slip Stitch
Every stand-alone crochet project begins with the chain stitch. Start by tying a slip knot and sliding it over your hook as the first loop. Then yarn over -- wrapping the yarn around the hook from back to front -- creating another loop of yarn on the hook. Draw that loop through the loop already on your hook, completing the chain stitch. Continue the yarn-over-draw-through process as many times as directed in your pattern.
If you're working crochet stitches into something else -- say, starting a row of edging on a fleece blanket -- use the slip stitch instead. Tie a slip knot and place it around your hook; poke your hook through a hole in the fleece; yarn over and draw that new loop back through the hole and through the loop already on your hook.
To do a single crochet, poke your hook through the stitch you're working into, passing it under both loops in the V-shaped chain at the top of the stitch. Yarn over and draw that new loop back through the existing stitch, leaving with two stitches on the hook. Yarn over again, and draw that new loop back through both loops already on the hook.
A double crochet is three times as tall as a single crochet stitch, so it works up much faster. To do a double crochet yarn over, create a second loop on your hook; then insert your hook through whichever stitch you're working into, passing it under both loops in the V-shaped chain atop the stitch. Yarn over and draw that loop back through the existing stitch, leaving three loops on your hook. Yarn over and draw that loop through two of the loops on the hook, leaving you with two more loops. Yarn over again and draw that new loop back through the loops already on the hook to complete the stitch.
Half Double Crochet
A half double crochet is somewhere between the single crochet and double crochet in terms of height, and it can be completed with one less step than a double crochet. Yarn over; poke your hook through the stitch you're working into; yarn over and draw that loop back through the existing stitch. You should have three loops on the hook. To complete the stitch, yarn over and draw that new loop back through all three loops on the hook.
How to Do a FPdc
The FPdc or front post double crochet is a specialized version of the double crochet. The actual mechanics of working the stitch are the same, except for how you insert the hook into your work. Yarn over; then run the hook from right to left behind the post, or vertical portion, of the stitch you're working into. Yarn over and pull back through behind the post, creating a third loop on the hook. Then proceed as usual for a double crochet: Yarn over, pull through two loops on the hook; then repeat to complete the stitch.