In this post I’m going to share four ways to join yarn in crochet when working on a project!
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So, what, exactly, does this mean?
If you’re working on a larger project, say a blanket, an article of clothing, or a big, warm scarf, you’re going to need more than one ball of yarn to complete the project. But how do you transition from one skein to another?
I was confused by this when I started out, so I’m pleased that I get to teach you several indispensable ways to join yarn in crochet.
There are many images below to demonstrate what I’m saying.
I use two different colors in my examples, just so it’s easier to see and understand what I’m doing. I’ll also show a finished example with just one color.
Keep in mind that, in reality, these techniques are not very useful
for changing colors (except for the first method).
Let’s get started!
Related: How to Design & Crochet Lace
In addition to the 4 methods below, there’s one time saving hack you need to try: Crochet over your yarn tails.
1. JOIN YARN WITH THE LAST YARN OVER OF A STITCH
This is the easiest, quickest way to join yarn in crochet. You just grab your new yarn and seamlessly continue crocheting.
Joining yarn with the last yarn over of a stitch is also especially good if you’re changing yarn colors, like in tapestry crochet and some methods of fair isle crochet.
However, there are some drawbacks. It’s not as secure as other joining methods, meaning it could come apart more easily. You also have to weave in ends.
Suitable for: any yarn type/fiber
Crochet until you come to the last 4-6 inches of your working yarn. Now, we’re going to start another stitch, but we won’t complete it.
Make the stitch but stop before you make your final yarn over.
- Single crochet: insert hook into stitch, yarn over, pull up a loop, STOP.
- Half double crochet: yarn over, insert hook into stitch, yarn over, pull up a loop, STOP.
- Double crochet: yarn over, insert hook into stitch, yarn over, pull up a loop, yarn over,
pull through 2 loops, STOP.
- Treble crochet: yarn over twice, insert hook into stitch, yarn over, pull up a loop, yarn over
and pull through 2 loops, yarn over and pull through 2 loops, STOP.
Take your new yarn and complete your stitch with it. In other words, yarn over with the new yarn and pull through remaining loops on hook.
Then, simply continue to crochet with the new yarn.
I would also recommend giving your two yarn ends a gentle tug after you’ve crocheted a few stitches with the new yarn.
Remember that you’ll also need to weave in those ends later.
This technique is also helpful for Tapestry Crochet.
2. THE MAGIC KNOT
This second method of joining yarn in crochet is probably my favorite. I definitely use it the most out of all of the options I’m showing you today!
The magic knot is tiny, barely noticeable, and really strong!
I’ve seen many ways to make the magic knot, but I’m going to show you the one way that makes sense to me.
If this doesn’t click for you, search for other ways, and I’m sure you’ll find one that makes sense to you!
Suitable for: any yarn type/fiber
Crochet until you have about 10-12 inches of your working yarn left. (With practice you won’t need this much yarn to make a magic knot, but it’s helpful to have more yarn to work with when you’re learning).
First, lay your working yarn and new yarn parallel with the working yarn below and coming from the left and the new yarn above and coming from the right. *See the photo
Take the working yarn and put it under the new yarn. Bring it back over the new yarn and across itself.
You’ll have made a loop with the working yarn. Tie a knot with the working yarn and pull tight.
Now, take the end of the new yarn and lay it over the working yarn. Bring it back under the working yarn and under itself.
You’ve made a loop with the new yarn.
Tie a knot with the new yarn and pull tight.
I like to tighten each knot again to make sure they’re secure. Then take the working yarn in one hand and the new yarn in the other and pull apart.
The two knots will slide together. Pull tight.
Carefully, trim the yarn ends as close as possible to the knot, without cutting the knot or the joined yarn.
3. THE RUSSIAN JOIN
This method is also very useful way to join yarn. It creates a nice, strong join with no ends to weave in.
It will be a little bit thicker at the join but it shouldn’t be too noticeable once it’s crocheted.
Suitable for: any yarn type/fiber
Thread working yarn onto a sharp needle.
Thread the needle and yarn through its own plies (through the center of the working yarn) for several inches. *See the photo
Pull the needle and yarn through gently, making sure there is a loop at the end.
Thread the new yarn onto the needle and thread it through the loop of working yarn.
Again, thread the yarn through its own plies for several inches.
Pull the needle and yarn through gently.
Smooth the join by tugging on the working yarn and the new yarn.
Carefully trim any loose yarn ends.
4. THE FELTED JOIN
This is also called a spit splice because you can use your own saliva, but I prefer to use water and that’s what I’ll use in this example.
This join yarn method is unique to animal fiber yarns.
The yarn of animal fibers has barbs that moisture and friction turn into felt.
These two elements cause the barbs to catch onto each other and fuse into one, creating a seamless join.
I don’t have a lot of experience with most animal fiber yarns (this girl is on a budget!), but I’ve used it with success on wool and even yarns that had as little as 20% wool in it!
Suitable for: animal fiber yarns and partial animal fiber yarns (but I’d always test it first, just to
You’ll need warm/hot water and your yarn.
Unravel the ends of your working and new yarn for about 3-4 inches.
This next step isn’t absolutely necessary, but I think it creates a nicer look: Trim half of the plies on each yarn end.
This ensures that the joined area is not twice as thick as the rest of the yarn.
My yarn has 4 plies so I cut off 2 plies where I had unraveled it.
Put your ends in the water for a moment.
Shake off and remove excess moisture and place the ends in the palm of your hand so that they overlap.
Rub your hands together. This felts the yarn.
Stop and check the strength of your join and if there are any ends sticking out.
Rub your hands again, if necessary.
That’s a lot of information to cover! I hope that you’ve found this post about different ways to join yarn in crochet helpful, whether you learned something new or had a nice refresher.
Krista is the blogger behind HattieMay Crochet. Her goal is to create fun, simple, and modern crochet designs that are attainable for all skill levels. She loves everything chocolate, everything floral, and everything yarn, of course!
Check out her free patterns and tutorials on her blog, HattieMay Crochet.