Turning Chains and Wandering Seams


Annette asked how to make turns in sc and about the ch-1 in the original Baby Cowboy Hat pattern which I adapted to include a broader, shapeable brim.  I thought I’d take her great questions and turn them into a post, since I’ve been pondering and playing around with both stitch-thoughts myself.

Besides, it’s either write a blog post or do post-vacation laundry!  🙂

Hibiscus @SuzBroadhurst


Three Ways to * Turn * in Single Crochet

Here are the three ways I’ve played with a single crochet (sc) turning chain:

Method A

1 ch, turn, sc into second stitch (skipping the very first one right next to the hook).

This creates a tough stitch to crochet into on the way back down the row, having to wiggle the hook into that turning chain for the last stitch as the chain 1 pretends to be a sc.

This was my standard turn, however, until I discovered some crocheters do this …

Method B

2 ch, turn, sc into second stitch.

This made it a little easier to hook into when I came back down the row, the chain 2 pretending to be a sc.  It also makes for a more even edge.

Then I read that others …

Method C 

1 ch, turn, sc into the very first stitch, the one right next to the hook and kind of *under* the ch 1 just made.

In other words, if I have a row of 10 sc, I will make 10 sc, ch 1, turn, and make another row of 10 sc. The ch 1 in this case wouldn’t be considered a sc. 


Read patterns carefully, because some designers do consider the ch 1 a first stitch, especially when using methods A or B above.

My Druthers, Your Druthers, Their Druthers*

Recently, I’ve been using Method C most often, mainly because I like having a full stitch at the end to work into, rather than working into a turning chain stitch when I come back down the row again.

From what I can tell, it is a matter of personal choice.  I’ve read a variety of patterns, and the turning isn’t consistent across the board (or row, tee hee).

Help for Druther Choosing


Suggestion:  Make swatches of several rows of sc, using one turning option for each swatch.

You may find you like one look on the edge better than you like another.  And you may find you like finding the last stitch on the returning row better one way than other.

Make at least 5 rows so you have a good idea of right-side/wrong-side looks and feels.

The Cowboy Hat

Now to the hat and Annette’s seam question, in particular. Thank you for your patience, Annette!

Pink Cowboy Hat @SuzBroadhurst

The hat is worked in rounds (or ovals) without turning, so the question is to join or not to join.  To ch 1 or not to ch 1.

The ch 1 after each round is in the original pattern, and I, too, got a wandering seam.  It ran at a diagonal which I believe happened because of the increase in stitches.

I’m not exactly sure why the ch 1 is in the pattern, but I did stitch it in both times. However, I’m thinking it is not really necessary (? maybe ?) since there is no turning involved and the increases are done by adding extra sc along the way. 

Crocheting in a Spiral Instead

Some patterns worked in the round don’t slip stitch to join – nor add ch 1’s – at the meeting of one round to the next.  It makes it challenging to find the starting point to count rows, but a stitch marker can help with that.

I think *crocheting* in a true spiral (versus sl st or ch 1-ing) would most likely, probably, maybe might, hopefully eliminate the seam we’re seeing.    Smile

How to Spiral?

Just skip the round-joining stitch and keep on sc-ing.  A stitch marker will help you keep track of where you began the round/oval.

Happy Crocheting! 

Now, for that laundry …

Find thousands of craft supplies online!

Thoughts ... Insights ... Questions?