How to crochet directly onto the finished piece
We often need to crochet directly onto the finished piece poking through its stitches.
You may happen to use this method to:
- make neck,
- make ears,
- limbs, etc.
It is done to make the transition from one piece to the other invisible and neat. But sometimes it is hard to make it look so. This article will give you some pieces of advice how to master this technique.
Some of our designers use this method in their patterns, for example, Svetlana Pertseva (Cat Mystery crochet pattern – for the neck and the ears, Angel Shu crochet pattern – for the legs) and Tatiana Chirkova in her dog patterns (English cocker spaniel dog crochet pattern and Chinese crested dog – for the neck).
Of course you can do without this method at all. But if you do not like to sew the parts together when assembling the toy, you should definitely try it. It makes the transition from one piece to the other (e.g. from the head to the neck, from the head to the ears) not noticeable, and they will look as one piece.
Do not hurry and do not skip any steps mentioned below. It will guarantee that you will end up with a nice and neat result!
Let’s get started!
1. Cut out a pattern of the size and shape needed out of a piece of paper or thick cardboard. You can crochet it instead using any scraps of yarn you have at hand. Find the right position for the pattern you have made on the piece you need to crochet directly on.
2. Insert your hook at any point you like (unless otherwise stated in the pattern you are working on) under the post between the stitches or rounds/rows. Chain 1 and work a single crochet into the same point (the tail of yarn should be on the wrong side of the piece – otherwise secure the tail of yarn and hide the loose end inside the piece). Work the next single crochet into the next post between the stitches. Continue working to finish the row/round.
3. If you do not miss the posts, you will end up with a neat row/round at the end.
4. Remove the pattern and continue working following the pattern.
However, sometimes the method described above, do not work. It happens when you have to deal with more complicated shapes for the ears as in Shih Tsu puppy dog crochet pattern by Tatiana Chirkova or Cat Mistery crochet pattern by Svetlana Pertseva (in the picture below).
Shih Tsu puppy dog crochet pattern provides additional markers while crocheting the head. You can use a piece of contrasting yarn with a knot at one end. Crochet till the phrase “place an additional marker”, put a piece of contrasting yarn with its knot being on the right side of your work and continue working. Your additional marker will remain secure between the stitches and will be easily seen and removed if needed by pulling it out holding the knot.
General recommendations for making ears:
It is better to work the first round/row for both ears at once to provide a better symmetry. After you work the first round/row for both ears, continue working the first ear then the second one.
You can make the outline of the ears first with contrasting color yarn using the markers and pictures as guidance.
You can work the first round/row with single crochet or slip stitches. If you choose sl sts, the ears will sit firmer.
Make sure you crochet the first round/row clockwise.
Moisten finished ears, spread them and let them dry.
You can crochet the ears as separate pieces and then sew them onto the head. When you finish the first row/round of the ear, you can remove all the additional markers and continue working.
You don’t have to follow the ear markers strictly. Use them as guidance. If you think the ears are not lined up and you want them to, feel free to adjust their position.
If the pattern does not provide any additional markers for the shape of the ear and gives only the scheme, you can try making the outline with sewing pins and use them as additional markers.
The more you practice this technique, the nicer your work will look like. Do not be afraid to try and we are sure you will enjoy the process and the result!