crochet, crochet fundamentals, instruction video

How to crochet: difference between US and UK crochet terms & crochet abbreviations

Have you mastered the chain stitch I showed you in Lesson 1? Have you been experimenting a bit with holding your yarn and hook in a certain way? Then you are just about ready to start crocheting.

US and UK crochet terminology

But before we get to making stitches, there is something you should know about terminology. You see, in English crochet country, there are two sets of terms being used, US crochet terms and UK crochet terms (don’t ask me why, I have absolutally no idea….). It is important to be aware of this because you will not be the first person to think a pattern is written in US terms and then find out it’s in UK terms when you are half way through.

The main difference between the two systems is the starting point, the so-called single crochet stitch in US terms. The two systems are basically an offset of one another. What the US terms call a single crochet, the UK terms call a double crochet, and what the US terms call a double crochet, the UK terms call a trebble crochet, and so forth.

crochet terms and abbreviations

There are MANY crochet symbols and chart keys out there. I have tried to make a list of some of the most common terms you might come across. I have also linked to my videos showing you how to make the respective stitch. [note: I will update this as they become available on my YouTube channel.] Because I also have a large Dutch speaking following I have also added the respective Dutch terms to the table. And also don’t ask me why the layout in the table is all wrong, I have spend hours trying to fix it without success….

Anyway, this list is by no means complete. It’s just to get you started on the most common terms. Any pattern or chart you follow should contain a description of any (special) stitches used. And if all else fails there’s always Google!

 

chart
symbol
US term
abbreviation
UK term
abbreviation
Dutch term
afkorting
  chain
ch
chain
ch
losse
l
  slip stitch
sl st
slip stitch
sl st
halve vaste
hv
  single crochet
sc
double crochet
dc
vaste
v
  half double crochet
hdc
half treble crochet
htr
half stokje
hst
  double crochet
dc
treble crochet
tr
stokje
st
  tripple crochet
tr
double treble crochet
dtr
dubbel stokje
dst
  back post double
bpdc
raised treble back*
rtrb
relief stokje achter
Rsta
  front post double
fpdc
raised treble front*
rtrf
relief stokje voor
Rstv
  single 2 together
sc2tog
double 2 together
dc2tog
2 vasten  samengehaakt
  double 2 together
dc2tog
treble 2 together
tr2tog
2 stokjes samengehaakt

*a note: sometimes patterns in UK terms also use the term ‘back post’ or ‘front post’. I have noticed some variation here.

How to distinguish between US and UK terms?

I use US terms is almost all of my English crochet videos and when I use UK terms I explicitly state that it’s UK terms. As such any good crochet pattern should always say which terms are used in the pattern. But if not stated, an easy way to spot if a pattern is written in US or UK terms is to see if “single crochet” or “sc” is written anywhere. If not, the pattern is most likely in UK terms. If yes, it is definitely written in US terms.

Lesson 3

Now that you know that there are two systems and that you should be aware of which system a pattern is written in and you have taken note of the stitch names and symbols, we can start making crochet stitches. In Lesson 3 I will show you how to make slip, chain and single crochet stitches. When we make our first project I will also discuss how to read a crochet chart.

See you next time,

Esther

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