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CROCHET TUTORIAL

Chart Abbreviations:

- shows where the mesh starts and where ends;

- dc;

- chain

  - tr (treble crochet)

- dtr (double treble crochet)

Increasing and decreasing.
(LESSON 4, part 1)

Please note: I've divided this lesson into two parts so the pages could load faster.

In this lesson I'll finally explain how to increase and decrease your work. If you have problems with it - then it's YOUR part!

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We'll start with increasing, as it's more tricky.
The actual projects with increasing and decreasing are, for example, my centerpieces.

On the schemes increasing may look like this:

wpe3.jpg (1871 bytes) or wpe4.jpg (1973 bytes)

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The increasing combinations you may encounter are:

Increasing on one, two, three or more open meshes at the beginning of the row.
Increasing on one, two, three or more open meshes at the end of the row.
Increasing on one, two, three or more filled meshes at the beginning of the row.
Increasing on one, two, three or more filled meshes at the end of the row.

It doesn't matter what mesh follows right before or after the increasing. The procedures are all the same, so in the examples bellow we'll assume that mesh right after or before increasing is open.

1.  - increasing on one open mesh at the beginning of the row

Work ch7 out of the last dc of previous row (row below increasing). Again note, that it doesn't matter if this last dc belongs to open or filled mesh (i.e. if the last mesh of row bellow increasing is filled or open). In our example it's open. This ch7 counts as  increasing open mesh. Then turn your work, dc in first dc of row below (i.e. the one you've worked ch7 out of). This dc belongs to next mesh of the row. In our example it's open, so you work ch2 next. Should it be filled - you work two dc. (But you already know this! If you don't - refer to previous lessons).

2. - increasing on two open meshes at the beginning of the row.

Work ch10 out of the last dc of previous row (row below increasing). The first seven chains of this ch10 counts as first open mesh of increasing. Then turn your work, dc in eighth chain from the hook, ch2 - that's the second open mesh of increasing. Then work dc in first dc of row below (i.e. the one you've worked ch10 out of), ch2 - that's already the third mesh of this row.

3. - increasing on three or more open meshes at the beginning of the row.

Work ch13 out of the last dc of previous row (row below increasing). The first seven chains of this ch13 counts as first open mesh of increasing. Then turn your work, dc in eighth chain from the hook, ch2 - that's the second open mesh of increasing. Then skip two chains, dc in third chain, ch2 - that's the third open mesh of increasing. Then work dc in first dc of row below (i.e. the one you've worked ch13 out of), ch2 - that's already the fourth mesh of this row.

If you have to increase on four open meshes - work ch16 out of the last dc of previous row, if you have to increase on five - ch19, on six - ch22 and so on (add three chains for each additional mesh). Turn your work, dc in eighth chain from hook, ch2. *Skip two chains, dc in third chain, ch2 - repeat the procedure from * 2 times to increase on four open meshes, 3 times to increase on five open meshes and so on. Finish increasing with dc in first dc of row below (that dc is already the part of the next mesh).

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Before you can increase your pattern on one or more open meshes at the end of the row you have to know how to work double treble crochet (dtr). This is how: yarn over three times, insert hook in stitch, yarn over and draw through two loops on hook 4 times.

4. - increasing on one open mesh at the end of the row

After you've worked the last dc of the row (before the open mesh of increasing), work ch2. Then work dtr in the same stitch you've worked previous dc. This ch2 and dtr form the open mesh of increasing. That's it! If you are not sure in which stitch to work the last dc and dtr, refer to the previous lessons, where I describe how to finish the row.

5. - increasing on two open meshes at the end of the row

After you've worked the last dc of the row (before the open mesh of increasing), work ch2. Then work dtr in the same stitch you've worked previous dc. This ch2 and dtr form the first open mesh of increasing. After this work ch2 and work another dtr in middle of previous dtr. This ch2 and dtr form the second open mesh of increasing. How to work dtr in the middle of another dtr? Very simple: yarn over three times, insert the hook in the middle of dtr (you decide yourself what looks like a "middle" of dtr to you!) yarn over again and draw through two loops on hook 4 times.

6.  If you have to increase on three or more open meshes at the end of row,  you just repeat the above described procedure (ch2, dtr in middle of previous dtr) as many times as necessary - one extra procedure for each extra open mesh.

Important thing to remember: we all crochet differently. Some of us crochet tight, some crochet loose. So if you tend to crochet tight and your  open mesh of increasing at the end of the row looks too small, you may work treble treble instead of double treble. And on the opposite, if you tend to crochet loose and your open mesh looks too big, work treble instead of double treble.
Though double treble is more common in increasing, feel free to experiment and choose the stitch you like more.

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7. - increasing on one filled mesh at the beginning of the row

Work ch5 out of the last dc of previous row (row below increasing). The first three chains of this ch5 counts as first dc.Then turn your work, dc in fourth chain from the hook, dc in next chain - that's the filled mesh of increasing. Then work dc in first dc of row below (i.e. the one you've worked ch5 out of), ch2 - that's already the second mesh of this row.

8. - increasing on two filled meshes at the beginning of the row

Work ch8 out of the last dc of previous row (row below increasing). The first three chains of this ch8 counts as first dc.Then turn your work, dc in fourth chain from the hook, dc in next chain - that's the first filled mesh of increasing. Then work 3dc in remaining three chains - that's the second filled mesh of increasing. Then work dc in first dc of row below (i.e. the one you've worked ch8 out of), ch2 - that's already the third mesh of this row.

9. If you have to increase on three filled meshes at the beginning of the row work ch11 out of the last dc of previous row (row below increasing). To increase on four - work ch14, to increase on five - work ch17 and so on. Add three extra chains for each extra filled mesh. Then turn your work, dc in fourth chain from the hook, dc in each chain, finish increasing with dc in first dc of row below (that dc is already the part of the next mesh).

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Before you can increase your pattern on one or more filled meshes at the end of the row you have to know how to work treble crochet (tr). This is how: yarn over two times, insert hook in stitch, yarn over and draw through two loops on hook 3 times.

10. - increasing on one filled mesh at the end of the row

After you've worked the last dc of the row (before the filled mesh of increasing), work tr in same stitch you've worked the previous dc (if you are not sure which stitch is that, refer to the previous lessons, where I describe how to finish the row). Then work tr in the base of previous tr (i.e. the bottom part of tr). Work another tr in the base of previous tr. These three tr form the filled mesh of increasing.
Important thing to remember: you work tr in base of previous tr, NOT in the same stitch as previous tr, and it makes a big difference! You decide yourself what looks like "a base" or "a bottom part" of tr to you.
It's kind of tricky to work tr in base of another tr. But after a little bit of practice you'll get it.

11. - increasing on two filled mesh at the end of the row

After you've worked the last dc of the row (before the filled mesh of increasing), work tr in same stitch you've worked the previous dc. Then work tr in the base of previous tr (i.e. the bottom part of tr). Work another tr in the base of previous tr. These three tr form the first filled mesh of increasing. Work another tr in base of previous tr, then another tr in base of previous tr and another tr in base of previous tr. These three tr form the second filled mesh of increasing.

12.  You've probably figured out by now that to increase on three or more filled mesh at the end of the row you just have to add more trebles worked in base of previous tr - add three extra tr for each extra filled mesh.

I'll share a secret with you - I personally don't like increasing on filled meshes. I never use it in my designs, I always use only increasing on open meshes.

In Part 2 I'll explain you how to decrease and give you (as usual) some exercises with increasing and decreasing.

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Kateryna Madsen, crocheter and designer.

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