The Crochet Basics: How To Make The Chain Stitch And The Slip Stitch

slip stitch and crochet chain stitch

Making a chain stitch is the first thing you learn to do in crochet since just about every project is started using them. The reason I’m including the crochet slip stitch in this tutorial as well, is that they are basically the same thing. In the case of the slip stitch, you work into another stitch (a chain, a single crochet, etc.). Whereas the chain, is made using just the working yarn.

Some Things To Know

In case you’re not familiar with the uses of these stitches.

Chain Stitch

Chain stitches, aside from being the start of a project, are usually used as the beginning of each new row or round to achieve the correct height for the stitch.

  • 1 chain for a single crochet or a half double crochet
  • 2 chains for a double crochet together
  • 3 for a double crochet
  • 4 for a treble crochet

They are also used as stitches in combination stitches as places to work into in ones like the The Granny Stitch, Crochet V stitch or The Wattle Stitch. I love seeing them used in open work stitches like The Diamond Mesh Stitch too.

Slip Stitch

The slip stitch is a funny thing, most commonly it is used to join things. Whether it be joining a round together before moving to the next one, joining two sides of a project, or even 1 granny square to another. Joining is generally the reason for it’s use.

However, I will be showing you how to make a fabric out of it in this post. You will end up with a very dense fabric if you decide to use this stitch. Since the rows are so close together, you can’t really see the post part of the stitch. (where the height of a stitch comes from.) For more information about crochet terms go to A Glossary of Crochet Terms.


  • worsted weight yarn
  • I/5.5mm hook
  • snips
  • yarn or tapestry needle


  • Ch = chain
  • Slst = Slip stitch
  • St = stitch
  • <> = total number of stitches in row

If you don’t already know how to make a starting knot, you might want to take a look at this post:

Tip: Patterns aren’t hard to follow. Just remember that to follow one, you simply complete the instructions in between the commas. When you come to a comma or a period, that’s the end of that step. Move to the next step and follow that until you come to the next comma.

The Chain Stitch Tutorial

 how to make a chain stitch

Take your yarn, make your starting knot. Put the yarn over your hook, that’s called a yarn over, pull the yarn in your hook through the loop on your hook, *yarn over, pull through the loop of your hook,* repeat from *-* until you reach your desired length. The repeat is 1 chain.

The Slip Stitch Tutorial

Keep your stitches loose, other wise you’ll have a hard time getting your hook back into the stitches.

row 1 of slip stitch

Ch 10.

Row 1. Turn your work, in the second ch from the hook**, put your hook into the ch, yarn over, pull through the ch and the loop on your hook, *put the hook in the next st, yarn over, pull through the ch and the loop on your hook,* this is 1 complete slst, repeat from * to * until you have no more chs. You should have <9> slip stitches.

**The loop on your hook does not count as a chain.

This method of putting 1 slst in each ch is most commonly used as a thicker string for drawstrings, a chain for crochet necklaces, and tentacles or limbs in amigurumi.

row 2 of the slip stitch

Row 2. Ch 1, turn, work 1 slst into the same st, *put the hook in the next st, yarn over, pull through the ch and the loop on your hook,* this is 1 slst, put 1 slst in each of the remaining sts. <9>

Remember to keep it loose, you can go up a hook size if you’re having a hard time working into your stitches.

Row 3-7. Repeat row 2.

It can be difficult to see the rows, but you can count the ridges on both sides to see how many rows you have. I would also suggest stretching the piece out a bit to see the rows better.

Weaving In The Ends

Cut your tail and tie it off.

weave in the ends

Weave the tails in using a yarn needle.

As you can see from the little swatch, this makes a super dense, fairly stretchy fabric. It would probably make a great infinity scarf, head band, or if you have a lot of time on hand, blanket. What would you make with it? Let me know in the comments.

I hope you found this tutorial helpful! If it is, please show your support by liking this post and following my blog, so you’re alerted when ever I make a new one. You can also sign up for The Crocheting Owl Monthly Newsletter for free patterns, updates, yarny bonuses and more!

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All these photos are copyrighted by Becka Hons, please do not take them and use them as your own work. Please link back to this page if you wish to share it.

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