The best thing about learning to crochet? You don’t have to be an expert crocheter to look like one! Once you’ve mastered the basic, must-know stitches (like chain stitches and single crochets), you’ll possess all the tools you need to try more complicated, different crochet stitches.
Most often the only difference between a basic stitch and a decorative stitch is stitch placement. Working between stitches, around posts, or in front or back loops only can drastically change the look of your work.
9+ different crochet stitches to try
This is certainly not a comprehensive list — there are hundreds of crochet stitches out there! But this will be a good starting point for finding something new, finding inspiration or just seeing what’s out there.
Different stitch constructions
Foundation crochet stitches
Most crochet patterns start with a chain followed by a row or round of stitches into each chain stitch. An alternative base for crochet projects are foundation crochet stitches.
With this stitch, you avoid the need to work into a simple chain. Foundation crochet stitches yield a neater starting edge, so continuing your work is a cinch!
Post stitches use the stitches you already know to add surface texture to your work. When you make a post stitch, you insert your hook behind or in front of the stitch from the previous round.
Once you master the post stitch, you can create ribbing, cables and decorative overlay work, to name but a few. Start with this post stitch tutorial; if you’re looking for more advanced uses of this technique, check out our Aran Crochet class.
Front and back loop only
Normally when you make a crochet stitch, you insert your hook through both legs of the stitch from the previous round. But you don’t always have to.
By inserting your hook through the front loop only (which is what you see above) or the back loop only, you create a slightly lighter fabric that has interesting ridges throughout the stitching. It’s when you combine FLO and BLO stitches with other stitches that the magic really happens! Check out Shannon Mullet-Bowlsby’s Crochet Technique Toolkit to learn more.
The linen stitch (also known as moss stitch, woven stitch or granite stitch) is a wonderful, versatile stitch with a dense texture. It’s easy to master because it only includes single crochets, and you don’t actually work into the tops of any stitches. Instead, you work into the ch-1 spaces between single crochets.
Test out various color changes in your project to achieve different looks. Because this stitch is so dense, it allows you to use a bigger hook than you normally would, making it perfect for quick and colorful baby blankets.
This iconic, classic crochet stitch probably looks familiar! While you may picture this stitch is basic granny squares, it can be used for much more. In fact, you can make stripes, chevrons, and all kinds of shapes just with these clusters of double crochets.
Unlike post stitches, which are worked in front or behind of previous rounds, spiked stitches are made over previous rounds, yielding a graphic, modern look. They’re a fantastic next step for beginners because a spike stitch is, at heart, a long single crochet. Learn how to add this graphic, colorful stitch with this spiked stitch tutorial.
Popcorn & bobble stitches
Whatever you call them, they’re loads of fun! These two textured stitches are slightly different, but can usually be used in the same way. You can find out what makes them different and how to stitch each one in this class.
The shell stitch is easy to master — you only need to make chains, single crochets and double crochets. It’s fabulous for adding lots of colors to a project, as you can see from the swatch above. Check out our tutorial for this stitch (with a few fun patterns to try) here.
Chevron or ripple stitch
By cleverly combining increases and decrease, you can create a trendy chevron design. You’ll also hear it called the zigzag or ripple stitch. You can get a brief tutorial here, or put the stitch to use in this Vintage Bulky Chevron Throw Blanket Kit.
Similar to a popcorn or bobble stitch, the granule stitch creates a totally touchable, textured fabric. It combines single crochets with single crochet picots (more on those below!) to create the bumps in the stitching.
In fact, you can create many similar textures by combining stitches of different heights. For example, there’s the aligned cobble stitch (triple crochets mixed with single crochets), the crunch stitch (half-double crochets paired with slip stitches) and more. Learn how to make all of these (and more!) in Beth Graham’s class.
These are the squishy, fluffy stitches that are just begging to be touched! These are a bit advanced. The stitches come together by making several incomplete stitches into one space, which creates more threads than in a normal stitch.
Puff stitches can be arranged in many ways — carefully aligned, staggered or even crossed — to create even more textures using the same basic technique. Find out how to stitch all of these possibilities in Fun & Fantastic Textured Crochet Stitches.
This stitch looks as pretty as its name sounds! The primrose stitch add loads of pretty texture to your projects without making them terribly complicated. You can learn how with our free tutorial.
Yes, this stitch is just what it sounds like! In this stitch, you make two double crochets separated by chain into one space, creating a sharp V shape. It looks striking stitched simply, but it gets really interesting when you use multiple colors. Learn how to stitch it here!
The crocodile stitch is one of the most unusual and coolest looking stitches out there! It’s definitely considered an advanced stitch, so you’ll want a little practice under your belt before trying this one. The stitch is often used on blankets and pillows, but you’ll also find them in innovative places like this necklace from our Crochet Crocodile Stitch class.
The crab stitch (or reverse single crochet) is one of my favorite edgings — and it’s so easy to add to almost any project. It is basically a single crochet worked backward, and it creates a knotty, rope-like edge that is both decorative and sturdy. It’s especially well-suited to rugs, where you want your edge to be bulky and strong.
An added bonus? It’s reversible! Depending on the look you want to achieve, you can work the crab stitch with the right side facing (shown above on the left) or with the wrong side facing (above on the right).
Another option for decorative edge stitches is the picot stitch. This stitch gives the edges of garments, blankets and other projects a scallop-like detail and can often make a project feel a bit more feminine.
Picot stitches come in lots of varieties, with some being farther apart for wider scalloping and others being closer together for a more pronounced edging.
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in July 2015 and was update in January 2018.