Learn the Technique of Tunisian Crochet with this Easy Tunisian
Afghan Stitch Crochet Pattern Tutorial
Are you interested in knitting but haven’t tried knitting yet, you may enjoy learning the art of Tunisian crochet, a technique which combines the methods of both knitting and crochet to produce a soft knitted like, yet firm fabric.
Afghan Stitch (Tunisian) crochet differs from knitting and crochet in one distinctive feature–it is always worked on the right side and is never turned. Once you have mastered the basic techniques, Tunisian crochet is very rewarding.
History of Tunisian Crochet
The history is mysterious but I will refer you to several other blogs to answer that question. Back in 2013, Melissa Mall wrote an article titled the “Origins of Tunisian Crochet” which I think is pretty good as a reference.
Gosh, Yarn It in the article “Mysterious Tunisian Crochet” offers a delightful resource as to the techniques of the Tunisian Stitch A.K.A. (also known as) German Work, Shepard’s Knitting, Railway Knitting, Russian Work, Tricot Work, Royal Princess Knitting and known here in the USA as the Afghan Stitch.
You now have a bit of background about the Tunisian Crochet technique, let’s get started.
The Afghan Tunisian stitch crochet is the complete combination of crochet and knitting and draws on the techniques of both crafts to achieve the finished fabric. because of the way in which it is worked. Tunisian crochet produces strong, thick fabrics which are ideal for sportswear, coats, suits and heavier garments, although lighter fabrics can also be achieved Depending on the stitch used, the finished appearance can resemble crochet or it can look surprisingly like knitting.
Using an Afghan Hook
It’s different, the fabric is not produced with a regular, short crochet hook but with a special afghan crochet hook which looks like an ordinary knitting needle except that it has a hook at either or both ends. Hooks come in only one length but in a range of sizes like steel, aluminum, plastic and bamboo hooks.
Remember as with both knitting and crochet, the size of hook required depends on your particular gauge, the thickness of the yarn being used and the firmness required for the final look. This note is important because in my view some of the best Tunisian crochet patterns are from vintage and understanding interchangeable yarns and the gauge is very important.
How to Work the Classic Tunisian Crochet Stitch
Tunisian crochet takes from crochet the basic principle of being a chain which the foundation of crochet. But instead of completing one stitch and then passing on to the next, it becomes like knitting one loop from each stitch is lifted onto the hook as you work along the length of the starting chain, from right to left.
Now one row has been worked, it now requires a second row to complete the pattern. This is worked from left to right without turning the work around and reduces the number of loops until only one remains when you should again have reached the right-hand edge of the work.
Once you have practiced a little, you will find the work grows quickly and is not complicated.
Tunisian Crochet (Afghan Stitch Abbreviations)
Afghan Stitch Abbreviations
Simple stitch (TSS)
Tunisian reverse stitch (TRS)
Knit Stitch (Tks)
Tunisian purl stitch (Tps)
Mesh Mesh Stitch (TMS)
Tunisian Seed Stitch (TSS)
Rib Stitch (TRs)
Tunisian Cluster Stitch (TCS)
Classic Tunisian Stitch
Begin with a chain consisting of an even number of stitches.
Foundation 1st row. Insert hook into 2nd ch from hook, put yarn around hook–called yrh–and draw one loop through ch, *insert hook into next ch, yrh and draw through on loop, rep from * to end. The number of loops on the hook should now be the same as the number of chains worked at the beginning.
Work the first row of Tunisian Crochet from right to left.
Without turning work the second row, from left to right.
Insert the hook into the upright thread of the previous row working the third row.
Here’s what the Classic Tunisian Stitch fabric looks like.
2nd row. Do not turn work, yrh and draw loop through the first loop on the hook, *yrh and draw through 2 loops on hook, rep from * until one loop remains. This is working from the left-to-right-hand edge.
3rd row. Ch1, *insert hook from right to left through the first upright thread of the previous row, yrh and draw through one loop, rep from * into every upright thread working along the row to the left. Once again, the number of loops on the hook should be the same as the number of chains worked at the beginning.
4th row. Same as 2nd row.
3rd & 4th rows are repeated for the desired length. always finish with an end row and for a neat finish work 1-row single crochet into the last row of upright threads.
Because of the way in which Tunisian crochet is worked, it has a tendency to twist sideways. Correct this when the finished work is blocked and pressed, but you can be lessened by not working too tightly as you work along. it will be tighter if the yrh is not pulled adequately through the stitch as that only a tiny loop is formed and also if the yarn is held too tightly or if too fine a hook is used. When starting to work toward the right, never pull the first stitch so tightly that you flatten or pull down the height of the row.
Double Tunisian Stitch
Eyelet Tunisian Stitch
Tunisian Crossed Stitch
Afghan Stitch Tunisian Crochet Technique
To be able to make clothes and accessories in Tunisian crochet it is necessary to understand how to increase and decrease the fabric. How to how to make buttonholes in this afghan stitch is pictured.
Examples of how to make buttonholes in the afghan stitch are provided.
Working with two yarns simultaneously in Tunisian crochet is easy, a technique which can be used with many of the stitches to achieve tweed-like textures and a thickness of fabric which is not always possible with ordinary crochet. Experiment with two different weights of yarn for a tweedy look.
One stitch increase at the beginning of a row
End of the row one stitch increase
Learn to increase two or more stitches at the beginning of a row
Increasing two or more stitches at the end of a row
How to decrease one stitch at the right-hand edge
Decreasing one stitch at the end of a row
Winding the yarn around the hook for a buttonhole
Working the 2nd row of the buttonhole
Rib Tunisian Stitch
Worked over an even number of chains.
1st & 2nd rows. As given for classic Tunisian stitch.
Diagonal Rib Tunisian Stitch
Cluster Tunisian Stitch
Want to try a few free Tunisian Crochet patterns?
Easy Tunisian Afghan Stitch Crochet Pattern Tutorial Winter
Scarf & Hat Pattern Set uses the basic Tunisian Stitch and single crochet.
Winter Afghan pattern tutorial is a beauty from the 1970’s using the Tunisian Stitch
Couture Tunisian Crochet Pattern a Two-Piece Tweed-look 1960’s Women’s Suit
You can check out more Tunisian Crochet Patterns in my Etsy Store, here are a few of my favorites.