How to Carry Yarn Up the Sides When Crocheting Stripes

  • 01 of 06

    Avoid Weaving in Ends When Crocheting Stripes

    First Color Change
    First Color Change. Photo © Amy Solovay, Licensed to About.com, Inc.
    Are you tired of weaving in zillions of ends when you crochet stripes? This tutorial demonstrates how to carry yarn up the sides of your work. This technique will help you save time when you are crocheting stripes; it will eliminate the need for weaving in an excessive amount of ends, leaving you with only a few at the beginning and end to deal with.

    Materials:

    You'll need two different colors of yarn: color A and color B. You'll also need a crochet hook. In my sample swatch, I'm using...MORE baby pink yarn as color A, and baby blue yarn as color B.

    Instructions:

    Crochet two rows of single crochet in color A. When you get to the last stitch, stop short of completing the last step. (View A.)

    Grab color B with your hook. (View B.)

    Pull it through to complete the stitch. (View C.) Do not cut color A!

    Work the turning chain with color B as you normally would. (View D.)

    Continue to 2 of 6 below.
  • 02 of 06

    Second Color Change

    Second Color Change
    Second Color Change. Photo © Amy Solovay, Licensed to About.com, Inc.

    Finish crocheting two rows in color B. When you get to the last stitch, leave the last step incomplete in preparation for the next color change. (View E.)

    Remember how you didn't cut color A when you were finished working the first two rows? Since you didn't cut it, it should still be hanging around down there, just waiting for you to pick it back up and keep going. That's exactly what you're going to do: grab color A with your hook, (view F) and pull it through to complete the stitch (View G.)

    Wor...MOREk your turning chain in color A. (view H.)

    Continue to 3 of 6 below.
  • 03 of 06

    Striped Crochet With Colors Carried up the Sides of the Work

    Striped Crochet Swatch With Colors Carried up the Sides of the Work
    Striped Crochet Swatch With Colors Carried up the Sides of the Work. Photo © Amy Solovay, Licensed to About.com, Inc.

    That's it, in a nutshell. From here, you just keep repeating those basic steps every time you change colors to make a new stripe.

    Views I and J show another color change, completed exactly the same way.

    View K is a close-up photo of the side of the afghan block; this picture shows how the carried yarns will look.

    Continue to 4 of 6 below.
  • 04 of 06

    Striped Crochet Afghan Block With Carried Yarns

    Close-Up Photos of the Striped Crochet Fabric Swatch.
    Close-Up Photos of the Swatch: The Upper Photo Shows the Edge Where the Yarns Were Carried up the Side. The Lower Photo Shows the Entire Swatch. Photo © Amy Solovay, Licensed to About.com, Inc.

    View L shows how the sides look after a bunch more rows have been added to the afghan block.

    View M is a photo of the block before the edging has been added.

    Continue to 5 of 6 below.
  • 05 of 06

    Stripes With Edging Added

    Stripes With Edging Added
    This Photo Shows How the Edge Looks Once an Edging Has Been Added Overtop of It. This Edging Consists of Single Crochet Stitches. Photo © Amy Solovay, Licensed to About.com, Inc.
    View N is a close-up photo showing how that same edge looks after an edging of single crochet has been added overtop. See how well the edging hides the carried yarns? You can't even tell they are under there.
    Continue to 6 of 6 below.
  • 06 of 06

    When to Use This Technique:

    This technique can be used successfully under the following circumstances:

    • When you are crocheting a stripe or colorwork pattern in a color that will be used again within several rows. For example, the striped pattern shown in this tutorial is ideal for using with the technique, since both colors are used frequently, and within a few rows of each other.

    • When you are crocheting a project that will have either side seams, an edging, or some other means of hiding the carried yarns. For example, this...MORE afghan block was completed with a simple edging of single crochet. This technique could also be successfully used to create sweaters, where the carried yarns will be hidden in the side seams of the garment.

    How to Know When NOT to Use This Technique:

    This technique isn't ideal for the following circumstances:

    • If you're using a color that won't be repeated again for more than a few rows, carrying the yarn up the sides is not a good idea. In that case, go ahead and cut the yarn.

      Even then, you aren't necessarily doomed to weaving in lots of ends. Depending on the colors and yarns you are using, you might be able to crochet overtop of the ends, which may be easier and quicker than weaving them all in.

    • If you're working on a seamless project, and you don't plan to put an edging on it, you'll have to evaluate whether the pitfalls outweigh the benefits to carrying your yarn.

      One of the downsides to this technique: Things can catch on the carried yarns if you leave them exposed. It's really preferable to bury them under edgings or hide them in seams. If you don't camouflage the carried yarns, you'll have to put up with the risk of the yarns catching on things when you use / wear the finished project.