Crochet Stitch Tutorials

Foundation Crochet Stitches

SHARE or PIN this post to your Crochet Board for later!

Did you know that there’s more than one way to begin your crochet projects? With foundation crochet stitches, you can skip the usual foundation chain and start working on your first row right away!

Wait, how does it work? It’s simple, really! With foundation crochet stitches, you’ll create both the chain and the first row at the same time. So, instead of two separate steps, it becomes just one step. It’s a total game changer!

Scroll down to explore what foundation stitches are, how to use them, and where they come in handy! Or jump right into the individual photo and video tutorials below for each foundation crochet stitch. Just a tip, starting with the foundation single crochet would be the simplest to learn the technique.

Three versions in green yarn for foundation crochet stitches
Example of Foundation Crochet Stitches

Can you Crochet Without a Foundation Chain?

Yes! In many patterns that start with basic crochet stitches, you can use the chainless method. Is it easier than the traditional chain? No. But it is an alternative starting method to create more elasticity. Plus, some crocheters really don’t like working into the chain and whenever it’s possible to start with a chainless row and use foundation stitches – you can!

You might be wondering, why bother with foundation crochet stitches when the traditional chain works just fine? Well, one of the key reasons I prefer starting my projects with foundation stitches is to achieve more elastic edges.

Have you ever encountered the issue where the starting edge of your soft and cozy creation (like a scarf, blanket, or shawl) doesn’t stretch and feels tight? There are a couple of solutions to this problem. One option is to opt for a larger hook size when making the foundation chain (which I sometimes do), and another effective method is to utilize foundation stitches!

What are Foundation Crochet Stitches?

Foundation stitches are a way to create the initial row of stitches in crochet without creating a separate chain and then working stitches into it. Chainless foundation crochet provides a more flexible and stretchy foundation compared to traditional chains.

There are three common types of foundation crochet stitches: foundation single crochet (fsc), foundation half double crochet (fhdc) and foundation double crochet (fdc).

Foundation crochet stitches can be used as a starting point for various crochet projects, providing a more seamless and elastic edge compared to traditional chain stitches. They are especially useful when working on projects that require a lot of foundation chains, such as blankets, scarves, or garments.

Benefits of Foundation Stitches

Chainless foundation rows offer several benefits that I personally love. Let me break them down for you:

  • Stretchy edges. The best part, in my opinion, is that foundation stitches create edges that are wonderfully stretchy. This is especially important for items like scarves or anything that needs to have some elasticity. With traditional starting chains, you might notice that the sides don’t stretch as much as you’d like. So, foundation stitches come to the rescue!
  • Cleaner edges. Not only do foundation stitches provide stretchiness, but they also give you cleaner, more polished edges. When you use traditional chains, you might end up with uneven edges or gaps. But with foundation stitches, everything looks much neater and more aesthetically pleasing.
  • Easier to count.
  • Let’s say you need to create a long foundation chain. Counting your foundation stitches will be much easier than counting the chains. We all know that chains can look uneven, with some smaller and some larger. They also tend to twist and turn, which isn’t fun at all!
    • Also, if you accidentally make your chain too long or too short and only realize it after completing the first row, you’ll have to unravel the entire row to make adjustments. However, with this method, it’s simple to achieve the correct number of stitches since they are worked together at the same time.
  • Better fit. Have you ever made a foundation chain with a specific length, only to realize that your project grew by a couple of inches after completing the first row? Did you have to unravel the first row and remove a few chains to fix it? Well, with foundation crochet stitches, you create both the chain and the first row simultaneously, so that’s no longer a problem!

Where to Use Foundation Stitches

Foundation stitches are fantastic for when you want a stretchier edge in your crochet projects. They work well for various items like blankets, scarves, hats, cardigans, and more. If your pattern’s first row involves regular single, half double, or double crochet stitches where you work into each chain stitch, foundation stitches are perfect for the job!

However, it’s important to note that foundation stitches may not always be suitable for every pattern. If your pattern involves skipping stitches, working stitches together, or any other techniques beyond the regular (sc, hdc, dc) crochet stitches into each chain, then foundation stitches might not be the best option.


Intermediate. If you’re completely new to crochet and are just getting started, I suggest beginning with the traditional chain and single crochet stitches. Mastering these basic crochet stitches will make it much easier for you to grasp the foundational crochet stitches technique.

How to Use Foundation Stitches Instead of Foundation Chains

To use foundation stitches instead of foundation chains in a pattern, take a look at the total stitch count specified for the pattern’s first row. This will tell you the number of stitches needed for the foundation stitches. Since you’re working the chains and the first row together, you’ll end up with the correct number of stitches required by the pattern.

Now that I’ve shared all the information I have about foundation stitches, are you excited to try them and see if they become your go-to method for starting new crochet projects?

I’d love to hear about your experience and whether they become your number one choice. Happy crocheting!

Crochet Patterns that use Foundation Stitches

More Crochet Stitch Tutorials

The form you have selected does not exist.

SHARE or PIN this post to your Crochet Board for later!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *