Chaining can be a pain in the neck, at least for me. It’s not the act of chaining itself, it’s working that first row into the chains that I find annoying. I’ve been crocheting for a long time, and I wish I had known this one simple trick to make your crochet neater when I first started. In this post, I’m going to show you how to crochet into the back bone of the chain.
What is a back bone?
In the first picture you see a chain, if you go into one loop you get this stretched out loop at the bottom of your work. If you work in 2 loops it’s neater, but you have a odd look to the bottom of your work. And I find it very annoying to have to wiggle both loops onto your hook.
In the second picture that chain is turned over, you see these little bump at the back?
This is referred to as the back bone of the stitch, or the back bump. I have quite a few stitch tutorials that recommend working in the back bone, but I haven’t done a full tutorial on how to do it until now.
How to crochet into the back bone
I’m assuming in this post that you know how to make a chain and a single crochet. If you need some help with either of these stitches, I have tutorials here: The Crochet Basics: How To Make The Chain Stitch And The Slip Stitch and The Crochet Basics: How To Make A Single Crochet Stitch.
Make your chain. Count your front chains to find you second chain from the hook.
Turn your work over. You should see some bumps at the back.
Work into the one loop at the back and finish your single crochet.
Why use the back bone?
I really think it makes your work look so much neater! I have these two single crochet swatches to show you what I mean. The pattern I used for both is identical in every way except that I used the backbone of the stitch on the one on top and the one loop method on the one on the bottom.
There’s less of a difference between these at first glance. However, when you look at the bottom of the work you can tell which is which pretty quickly. When you work in the backbone of the chain you leave the V part of the stitch untouched at the bottom edge of your work. This makes the top and bottom of your work look the same. And there’s no weird gaps left behind either.
This method is extremely useful for when you’re working on both sides of your chain. Like in my Crochet Trinket Drawstring Bag Tutorial. You don’t get odd gaping holes in the center of the chain stitches.
What do you think of this simple trick?
Will you try it ? Let me know in the comments below.
If you want some more, another good stitch to know might be A Good Foundation…Stitch which is when you make the chain and your first row at the same time. If you liked this post on How to crochet into the back bone of a chain, than you might like my monthly newsletter. Every month I share a joke, a book recommendation, a new subscriber only pattern, and exclusive coupons for my premium PDF pattern in my Etsy shop. You’ll also get updates on what’s coming up in the future. You can join and become a Stitchcrafter, what I call my subscribers, right here:
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