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Chainless Row Turns SC, HDC, DC: Crochet Techniques

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In this post you will find videos, written instructions, and photos teaching you how to turn your crochet rows without a starting chain. I am not a fan of the starting chain in many cases, because it leaves a space between the chain and the next stitch. So here is how I start my rows. I have shown sc, hdc, and dc, at the end of the dc written instructions I tell you how to alter it for trc. For instructions on how to make the basic stitches, go here.


After finishing a row, remove hook, turn work, and put hook back through loop.


Make a sc in first st ~ insert hook into first st (last st of previous row)


Yarn over, pull through (2 loops on hook)


Yarn over, pull through both loops


continue working row



Start off by making the sc row turn (remove hook, turn work, replace hook, sc in first st)


there is one loop on the hook, and two loops coming off that loop; insert hook into second loop (the one farthest from the hook)


yarn over, pull though one loop (two loops on hook)


yarn over pull through both loops


continue working row



After finishing a row, remove hook, turn work, and put hook back through loop. Pull loop up a bit, and place finger on loop. Hold the loop on the hook so that it does not move. Yarn over with the loop ~ NOT with the working yarn as usual. Continue making dc as normal ~ instructions follow.


insert hook into first st (last st of previous row), yarn over, pull through (3 loops on hook)


yarn over, pull through 2 loops (2 loops on hook)


yarn over, pull through both loops


continue with row *this same technique can be used for treble crochet by adding another yarn over at the beginning of the stitch and continuing to make a treble as opposed to a double.



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24 thoughts on “Chainless Row Turns SC, HDC, DC: Crochet Techniques”

  1. I am teaching myself to crochet and I am on my second project. I am making a dog sweater and using a hdc and sc stitch. In the hdc row I skip the second stitch in the beginning of the row and the second from the last stitch at the end of the row to decrease the sweater toward the neck. Then I sc an even row. I can’t get both sides to decrease evenly. What am I doing incorrectly? I have tried many variations and it is the side with the turning chains that appear to be the issue. I count my rows and the stitch count is correct but the appearance is not. Any help would be appreciated.

    • Your descriptions sounds correct, so it is hard for me to know what is wrong. Your best way to get the correct answer is to contact the designer of the pattern you are working on. There is the possibility that you are using a starting chain at the beginning of your hdc row, and then skipping the first st, but the starting chain counts as a stitch so you would not really be decreasing unless you skip two stitches.

      • I have talked with the manufacturer and have not made much progress. The turning chain for the hdc does not count as a stitch so I started in the first stitch in the next row. Once the hdc row is complete I chain one and start the sc in the first stitch in the next row. I am just baffled.

      • Would it make sense that if you are dropping 2stitches every other row, that after a couple of rows you would loose a stitch when you crochet the sc?

        • If you are decreasing 2 stitches on the hdc row, then the sc row will be 2 sts shorter as well. Follow the counts provided in your pattern. If you pattern is not clear and the designer is not willing to help you, then you may need a new pattern. Posh Pooch Designs provides spectacular dog patterns and Sara (the designer) is happy to help if you hit a snag.

  2. I have a pattern that calls for rows starting with a chain 4 and chain 5, both of which count as the first stitch. I love doing using the chainless row turns for HDC and DC and I was wondering if there is a similar technique for the the chain 4 and chain 5.

    • It would depend on the st they are replacing. Not the chain number, but the st the chain replaces. Without that info, I can’t help you. All I can say, is just continue the chainless row turn taller, for taller sts.

  3. I have been crocheting for a very long time and have always hated those spaces at the beginning of the row. Thank you so much for your tips. I can’t wait to use them.

  4. Thank you so very much for the chainless tutorials. I am making my first baby blanket for my first great granddaughter and it calls for a chain 3. I hate starting chains and have been trying to devise a way to eliminate them before I do the actual blanket. You have helped me not pull my hair out before she arrives.

  5. I am making a baby blanket in which you half double crochet in back loops only. Can this turning technique still be used. If so, how would it be modified? Also, I am using bulky yarn. Is this technique suitable for bulky yarn?

    • Sure, just follow the directions. If you want you can do the turn in the back loop only, but when working in the back loop only I usually do the first and last stitch through both loops anyway for stability.

  6. Thank you so much for this great overview of techniques! You are the first one I found that explains great alternatives for double crochet and also hdc and sc.
    Do you also use the same method when you’ve made a foundation chain?

  7. The pattern i am working on is worked in hhdc and the rows begin with a ch 2 which doesn’t count as a stitch. I’d like to replace the ch 2 with the chdc; being this is a thicker stitch, should it be counted as the first stitch?
    Thank you,

    • Yes, if you used one of these sts to start a row or round, the DO count as the first st. So you would ignore the chs that don’t count as a st, and replace the first st with one of these. 🙂

  8. Hello – the videos are great! I am very new to crocheting and am using stitch markers to help me out. Where would I place the stitch marker in a SC Chainless turn?

    • I would place it around the top of the stitch. So, when your stitch is done, there is a loop on your hook, that loop is coming out of the top of the stitch you just made.


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