The crochet waffle stitch is a pattern stitch worked in rows. The waffle stitch creates a vertical ridge on the right side of each pattern sequence, and a horizontal line with a single crochet stitch row. It's crocheted on a foundation chain the length you need for your project, in a multiple of four plus one. It makes a nice tight fabric for a baby blanket or a lap robe, or if you're ambitious, you can use it for an afghan.
Before You Begin
When you learn to crochet, you should learn to begin with a swatch to check your gauge. It may seem like a waste of time and yarn, but it'll save you time in the long run, and if you save your gauge swatches, you can make a crazy afghan some day. The project gauge is the number of stitches per inch, as well as the number of rows per inch, made in the pattern stitch. Your own hand crochet gauge depends on the thickness of your yarn, the size crochet hook you use and the tension, or tightness, of your stitches.
The type of crochet yarn and the hook size are usually specified in the pattern. You can adjust your gauge if you need to by using a larger or smaller crochet hook, using a different width of yarn or by adjusting your tension. The last method is the hardest to use, since most people develop a tension they're comfortable with as they learn to crochet.
Stop Waffling and Get Started
With your crochet hook and yarn, make the foundation chain specified in the pattern. Remember that the loop on the hook never counts as a chain. If you want to make a practice swatch, chain 21 (a multiple of four plus one).
The first row is the foundation row. It provides the base for the pattern to work, but it isn't actually part of the pattern that you'll repeat for the waffle stitch. Make a double crochet stitch in the fourth chain from the hook, then make a double crochet in each chain to the end. Chain one, and turn.
Row two begins with a single crochet in each of the first three double crochets, putting the hook through only the front loop of each double crochet. Then the pattern starts: chain one, skip next stitch and make a single crochet in the next three double crochets (again, only through the front loops). Repeat this until the last three double crochets and the turning chain. There, chain one, skip next stitch, make a single crochet in the last two double crochets and the top of the turning chain, then chain three and turn.
Make row three working through both loops of the row two stitches. Begin by skipping the first single crochet and making a double crochet in each of the next two single crochets. Then start the pattern stitch by making a triple crochet around the fourth double crochet (counting the turning chain as a double crochet) in the foundation row by inserting the hook under the right side and out the left side of that stitch. Skip the chain one space, and make a double crochet in the next three single crochets (again, through both loops of each stitch). Repeat that pattern to the end of the row, chain one and turn. Repeat rows two and three until the piece is as long as you want it to be. (In subsequent row threes, make the triple crochet around the triple crochet below it, then skip the chain one space and continue with the double crochets as indicated in the pattern.)
When your work is as long as you want it to be, finish by cutting the crochet yarn six to eight inches from the hook. Pull the end yarn through the last loop and snug it up. Use a tapestry or darning needle to weave any loose ends into the work.
The triple crochet stitches should line up to make vertical ridges on your work, and the single crochet rows make the horizontal rows. Congratulations! You've just learned your first pattern stitch, and created a waffle look in crochet.
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