3 Ways to Work into the Starting Chain

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Our Crochet Tip of the Week is 3 Ways to Work into the Starting Chain.

When I was learning to crochet I thought you had to work into both the back bump and the back loop together. I didn’t realize there were other options available. I dreaded needing to crochet my starting chain row, especially for larger projects. When I was new to crochet I had quite a bit of trouble keeping my gauge relaxed enough when working into the starting chain and it always ended up being tighter than the rest of my project.
My least favorite way to work into the starting chain is by working in the back bump and the back loop. It has the least amount of stretch (elasticity). For many years I countered this by crocheting my beginning chain in a larger size crochet hook. Now, if I am not using Fsc (foundation single crochet) I use option 1 or 2 instead.
Of the three options, Option 1 is the most elastic. It can be a little bit tricky to master at first – but it is well worth the effort.

3 Ways to Work Into the Starting Chain

  1. Work into the back bump
  2. Work into the back loop
  3. Work into the back bump and the back loop
3 Ways to Work into the Starting Chain

Option 1 also gives you the added benefit of a starting chain that mirrors the look of the final row of crochet.

3 Ways to Work into the Starting Chain

If you haven’t tried Option 1 – I recommend you give it a try 🙂


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  1. Thanks! This is how I usually do it but for a flat piece, I do back loop, it leaves a nicer finished edge.

  2. I’ve done it both ways – I find if you grab both remaining loops it tends to leave a small space in the center of the chain. If you leave the back bump unworked it leaves the loop there instead. I usually leave the loop – to avoid the space being present.

  3. If you are working on both sides of the chain, do you do the stitches on the back loop then around on the front loop, leaving the back loop unworked?

    I am making toe-up crocheted socks and did it the way above but I wonder if that was the best way.

  4. Hi BJ, You are very welcome! I hope you have fun trying the alternate ways to work into the starting chain!

  5. Thanks for the clear pictures and explanation. I’ll have to give it a try.

  6. Very welcome Kim 🙂 It is my favourite way to work the starting chain. I’m happy you tried it and liked it too!

  7. Had one of those ” what if I did THIS instead of THAT……. ” moments yesterday and was playing around with using the back bump of a starting chain! Then read this post today. Lol! Didn’t realize that it mimics the look of the last row! How cool is that? I, too, will be using this option instead of the way I originally learned! I also find that working into the back bump produces a firmer, less sloppy (floppy?) starting chain. Thanks!