Working into a chain

★☆☆ - Improver

Once you know how to make a loop out of chains, it's handy to know this technique for reducing that center hole down to next to nothing.

Working into a loop of chains is great for a lot of patterns but sometimes we want to eliminate that central hole to get a nice tight center.  Flower patterns in particular use these nice smaller centers.

The Magic Loop is the perfect way to make that hole disappear and as it's a sliding loop it can hold as many or as few stitches as you need it too.  But it can be tricky to master when you're still learning, so here's an idea which will get you similar results without the finger juggling.

Tutorial: (Working treble stitches)

First you need to make the correct number of chains for the turning chain of your stitch.  For the first example I'm using treble (US double) crochets and so I've made a chain of 3.
Now we need to add 1 extra chain.  This is so we have a chain to work all of our first row stitches into.  So now I have a chain of 4 and can begin working stitches.
Make a treble (double) crochet into the first chain you made, that's the one next to the slip knot.
Carry on making treble (double) crochets into this same chain.  You'll find that it expands out to fit more stitches as you work.
Keep going until you have enough stitches for your first round.  Here I've just made a little circle and as you can see, the center hole is already pretty tight.
If you want to squash it up even more, just turn your crochet over and give the yarn end in the center a bit of a tug.  It should close up any little remaining gap quite nicely.

Tutorial: (Working double stitches)

To work double (single) crochets into a chain, begin the same way, with 1 chain which is the correct turning chain for this stitch and then add 1 extra chain so that we can work the stitches into it.
Start by working double (single) crochets into the first chain that you made, the one next to the slip knot.
Carry on until you have all the stitches you require for the first row.
If you've like to tighten the center gap even more, just turn over and tug the yarn end, just as above.

Next Steps:

✽  Find out how to make a magic loop
✽  Find out how to end a round