Symbols - criptic or logical?

There is no denying it, I love crochet symbols and diagrams. They just make perfect sense to me. Where the abbreviations for crochet sts can leave me a bit lost, the symbols immediately click in my brain and let me know what to do.

There is no magic to them, all they are are little drawings of the stitches. Let me walk you through some.

Starting with the beginning, the chain stitch is a simple oval symbol. Think about making a chain stitch, all it is is an oval inside of another oval. Moving up the slip stitch is a filled in dot, it is little and almost invisible just like the stitch. The single crochet is a squat cross, again just like the stitch. The half double crochet is slightly taller then the single crochet. The double crochet is taller then the half double, and has an extra cross in its middle. The extra cross represents the extra yarn over the double crochet has. The treble is taller yet with 2 crosses. The double treble is the tallest with 3 crosses. That little cross is a lifesaver for me, since I never really have to remember the difference between a treble and a dtr since the little bars will tell me exactly how many yarn overs they each have. The fancier stitches are no different. Look at the double crochet cluster, it shows 3 double crochets in one stitch bowing out slightly just like the stitch does when it’s crocheted.

To read granny square diagrams (like in the Maggie Wrap Pattern), you need to start in the center just like you would to crochet. Following the symbol key, crochet the stitches you see. There will be numbers at the beginning of each round so you can keep track of where you are. On my diagrams, I also like to color each round different so again it’s easily to see what round you are on.

And that's it. Hope that helps a bit next time you see one of my patterns or any other crochet diagram.


Marikka said...

I think someone needs to come up with a personality test to go along with crochet symbol preference. I want to say scientists and engineers tend to prefer symbols (counting myself among this group), but that's too broad a statement and it also ignores those folks who wrote theses on Edith Wharton's portrayal of impoverished women (because I'm sure some of them love symbols too).

But then again, knitting symbols always confuse me.

IamSusie said...

I LOVE the crochet symbols. I think you explained this, but it is so much easier to understand the long stitches like treble and double treble with the symbols. The hatch marks on the post of the symbol indicate how many times you wrap your thread on the hook at the beginning of that stitch. It's just fantastic!

If I forget how many chains to do at the beginning of a round or row, I just count the chains on the chart. Also it is way easier to find your place on the charts. I'm forever getting mixed up with traditional instructions.