An edge is worked directly on a piece of crochet, unlike a trim, which is worked separately then attached into position on the fabric (crocheted or not).
Your choice of crochet edge can make or break your design. Leaving an edge unfinished is not the end of the world, but if you really want your project to soar, choosing an appropriate finishing stitch can really take it over the edge!
Here are a few of the most common edge stitches you can use.
I suggest memorizing them, so when you get to the end of a project, you already have a few ideas on how to complete it.
Along with how to complete the stitches, I have included a suggested number of stitches they can be worked on. If you find your last row has a few less stitches than called for, make an evenly spaced increase row. Fortunately, most of these are worked over a small number of stitches, so your increase row will likely not warp the shape of your fabric.
Crocheting a row of SC is suggested before you start an edge pattern so you can work on an even line, especially if you are working a side!
The crab stitch is utilized as a corded edging. It’s a subtle and sophisticated finish that will be the easiest to memorize and use.
Worked over: any number of stitches
Finish it: Work an odd number of rows (at least one) of single crochet. At the end, do not turn — CH 1, skip the stitch directly to the RIGHT and reverse single crochet (rev SC*) into each SC, ending with a slst in the turning chain of the previous row. Fasten off.
Worked in the round: slst into first SC, Ch 1, then continue as for working flat, ending with a slst into first rev SC.
*rev SC (worked from left to right): Insert hook in next stitch to the right, yarn over, pull loop through, yarn over, pull through both loops on hook.
Shell edging: worked after one row of contrasting SC.
Shells will give you a more dainty looking finish. The scallops create an air of girlish charm. It’s beautiful on blankets and garments alike.
Worked over: multiple of 4 stitches + 1
Finish it: Ch 1, SC in first st, *skip 1 st, 5 DC in next st, skip 1 st, 1 SC in next st; Rep from * to end, SC in last st (or turning ch, if you work in the turning chains). Fasten off.
Picot edging: 3 chain picots with two stitches between each.
I like using picots when I want a decorative edge that’s not going to outshine the pattern. This really simple edge uses only single crochet and chains.
Worked over: Any number of stitches, depending on how you want to space the bumps (picots).
Finish it: Treat this like a row of SC. After the first stitch, Ch 3, 4, or 5 and slst into first ch (picot made!). Work two, three, or four stitches, then make another picot. Continue working as such, ending with a picot over the second to last SC.
I like to call these “leaning DC groups.” I sometimes used them in my patterns, but they make a pretty interesting edge. If you want to put them in a pattern, your next row can be made by crocheting into the corners of each little block and chaining to get to the next.
Worked over: Multiple of 4 stitches + 3
Finish it: Ch 3, skip first 3 stitches, *1 DC in next st, Ch 3, 3 DC around the post of the DC, skip next 3 stitches; Rep from * to last 3 stitches, Ch 3, slst in last stitch or turning chain of previous row.
Worked in the round: Ch 6, DC in 4th ch from hook, DC in next ch, 2 DC in first ch, skip next 3 stitches, * 1 DC in next st, Ch 3, 4 DC around the post of the DC, skip next 3 stitches; Rep from * around, slst into third chain of beg-ch.
This stitch is called the blanket edge because it resembles the blanket stitch in embroidery. It’s a simple stitch that looks best in a contrasting color.
Worked over: Any number of stitches.
Finish it: This stitch utilizes the spike SC. Space them to suit the number of stitches you have in the row or round.
For example (multiple of 4 stitches + 3):
Ch 1, SC in first 3 stitches, *1 SC in next stitch by inserting your hook about 1/4″ below the edge, 1 SC in each of the next 3 stitches; Rep from * to end. Fasten off. You can make the spikes longer by inserting your hook lower in the main piece.
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