We asked the same question when the foundation chain just wasn’t working for us any more.
What we found was a better way to crochet any stitch pattern that uses post stitches.
When you start a project with a post stitch pattern like the basket weave stitch or ribbing for example, do you default to the foundation chain like you would for any other project (and then you’re not satisfied with the results)?
We’re with you.
In this guide you’ll learn an easier, more efficient way to start a ribbing stitch pattern so your projects look a little neater.
But it’s certainly not limited to ribbing. Apply what you learn here to any stitch pattern that uses post stitches.
The Problem Starting With a Foundation Chain
When you crochet a post stitch, like the front post double crochet, you need a sturdy base to wrap your hook around. A double crochet rooted in a foundation chain is anything but sturdy.
Wrapping the hook around a double crochet in a foundation chain stretches and distorts the chain, causing the post stitch to settle in the middle of the double crochet instead of the top.
So instead of the straight 3D line you’re going for, you’re left with a slightly crooked line. Not to mention, it’s totally awkward to crochet.
To crochet neater ribbing (or any post stitch pattern) you need a sturdier base than the foundation chain.
The foundation chain is great but it just doesn’t cut it for post stitches. It doesn’t matter which part of the chain you work the first row of stitches into, it’ll always stretch and distort when you work the first row of your post stitch pattern. So we’re saying, ditch the foundation chain.
Foundation stitches provide the sturdy base you need.
The foundation double crochet combines the foundation chain and first row of stitches, which is a great time-saver in itself but the reason we believe it’s a perfect match for any rib or basket weave stitch you throw at it is more subtle.
The real advantage here is the braid at the bottom. This sturdy little foundation makes working post stitches a breeze.
But how does it look compared to the traditional foundation chain way?
We were curious to find out so we crocheted two samples, both with two rows in the same front post, back post rib stitch. The only difference is one sample started with the foundation double crochet and the other started with a foundation chain and row of double crochet stitches.
Here’s what we found…can you tell which one is which?
The top sample used foundation double crochets and the bottom used a foundation chain. With a quick glance, you can’t see a huge difference but the more you look at it, the more obvious two things become:
- The 3D line created by the stitch pattern is straighter with the foundation stitch sample (top).
- The braid at the bottom edge of the foundation stitch sample is neater because of the braided edge created by the foundation stitch.
The sample that used a row of foundation double crochet stitches definitely makes our ribbing look neater.
Put it to use
Substitute Foundation Chain Instructions for Foundation Stitch
To use this method, take a look at the pattern and determine what stitch you’ll be working with. Most ribbing and textured patterns with post stitches use the double crochet so you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the foundation double crochet stitch.
We’ve got you covered with this guide and episode of B.Hooked TV…
Or if you’d rather try this technique in a project, give this one a try!