Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet – 5 Alternatives

Janne Kleivset
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Ready to learn more about the turning chain for half double crochet? From the steps, materials needed and even alternative methods to start a row or round of half double crochet, this blog post has it all!

When I was a beginner crocheter, I hadn’t heard of many of these different techniques before so I was delighted to over the years discover that there are multiple alternatives available. Like using stacked single crochet stitches or twisting the yarn around to make the HDC without chains.

So if you’re not sure which technique is best for you, read on to find out more!

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 AlternativesPin Pin

What is Turning Chains for Half Double Crochet?

Turning chain for half double crochet is the chain stitches you crochet to start a new row or round of half double crochet stitches (half double crochet tutorial).

The turning chains are used to lift your hook and yarn to the level of the stitch you crochet, for the half double crochet stitch this number is 2.

The turning chains can be crocheted either before or after you turn your work, and varies depending on which pattern you follow. Both give the same overall result, so do what you prefer.

There are many alternative ways to start a row or round of half double crochet. These are turning chain alternatives that gives the same result, by lifting your crochet hook and yarn to the same level as the stitch, but may result in neater edges.

Each turning chain technique for half double crochet may give better or worse results, depending on the crocheter that uses them. Because of that, it’s important that you try the different techniques and stick with the ones you find suits you best.

Get a full overview of turning chains for all stitches including tips and tricks on our main post here.

Materials Needed

To crochet a turning chain for half double crochet you can use any crochet hook size and yarn. If you’re following a crochet pattern, use the crochet hook and yarn suggested.

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Turning Chain for Half Double Crochet Abbreviations

Turning chains are abbreviated tch or t-ch in crochet patterns.

For half double crochet you may also find them abbreviated as ch 2.

Learn more about crochet abbreviations & find a complete list on our Crochet Abbreviations & Terms post.

Half Double Crochet Turning Chain – Crochet Chart Symbol

The turning chain for half double crochet chart symbol is simply the same symbol as two chain stitches turned upwards.

It is two oval circles representing the chain stitch crocheted as a turning chain.

It will be turned in the direction it will lay in your finished crochet work.

Photo showing the turning chain for half double crochet stitch chart symbol.

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

4 Alternative Ways To Start A Row Of Half Double Crochet – Step By Step Photo Tutorial

Alternative 1: Turning Chain 2 Counts As A Stitch

The first alternative for the turning chain for the half double crochet the turning chains counts as the first half double crochet of the row. In this case you will have to work into the top of the turning chain when you come back to it when you finish the next row.

Step 1: Chain 2

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

To get to the height of the half double crochet stitch the common number of chains is 2 turning chains.

Step 2: Work first half double crochet into 2nd stitch

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

After working the 2 chains, work the first half double crochet stitch into the second stitch of the row. That means the second to last stitch made on the previous row.

It may feel like you are skipping the first stitch, but the chains are made to replace crocheting into the stitch in this case.

Then continue with hdc stitches into the next stitch and following stitches.

By following the instructions above, the turning chain does count as a stitch.

Alternative 2: Turning Chain 2 Does Not Count As A Stitch

In the second alternative, the turning chains does not count as a stitch. In this case you will not work into the turning chain when you come back to it on the next row, as the last stitch of the row.

If you work into it, you will end up increasing the number of stitches on the row.

Step 1: Chain 2

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

The first step is to chain 2 turning chains to get to the height of the stitch.

Step 2: Work first half double crochet into first stitch

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

The second step is to work the first half double crochet into the first stitch (at the base of the turning chain). That means to work into the last stitch of the previous row. Then continue crocheting half double crochet stitches into the following stitches.

By following the instructions above, the turning chain does not count as a stitch.

Alternative 3: Work First Half Double Crochet Directly Into First Stitch

The third alternative way to start a row of half double crochet stitches is to work the first half double crochet directly into the first stitch, without crocheting any chains.

This alternative gives you straight edges and is a simple alternative to do.

Step 1: Work 1 half double crochet directly into the first stitch

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

After turning your work, crochet 1 half double crochet into the first stitch of the row. That means crochet into the last stitch made on the end of the row (previous row).

Step 2: Continue with half double crochet stitches

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

Then continue with single crochet stitches into the following stitches.

When you come back to that first half double crochet on the next row, work into that half double crochet stitch as well to keep the stitch count correct.

Alternative 4: Wrap Around Technique

The 4th alternative turning chain for half double crochet is the wrap around technique. It creates a big turning chain and first half double crochet stitch in one.

The positive about this technique is that you avoid gaps completely and the edges turn out straight.

It can be a bit more difficult to master than the other techniques, but the overall finish looks good.

Step 1: Chain 2

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

To start the wrap around technique for half double crochet, chain 2.

Step 2: Move the crochet hook to the right of the chains and behind

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

Wrap the crochet hook around the chains, moving to the right of the 2 chains and behind.

Step 3: Pull up a loop from behind the chains

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

Pull up a loop from behind the chains, you have 2 loops on the crochet hook.

Step 4: Insert crochet hook into first stitch

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

Insert hook into the first stitch. That means the last stitch you made on the previous row.

Step 5: Pull up a loop and yarn over

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

Pull up a loop, then yarn over.

Step 6: Pull through all loops on hook to finish

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

Finish the wrap around technique for turning chains by pulling the yarn through all loops on the crochet hook.

You can see the finished stitch on the photo.

Step 7: Continue with half double crochet stitches

Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet - 5 Alternatives Pin

After crocheting the turning chain wrap around technique, you can continue with half double crochet stitches in the following stitches.

Make sure you crochet into the wrap around stitch when you come back on the next row to keep the stitch count consistent.

Alternative 5: Stacking Single Crochet

We don’t have photos for this one, but you can start the row with 2 stacked single crochets like for starting a row with double crochet stitch.

Half Double Crochet Turning Chains Video Tutorial

Typical Questions About Turning Chain for Half Double Crochet

How many turning chains for a half double crochet stitch?

The common number of turning chains for half double crochet is 2.

Do you chain 1 for half double crochet?

You could chain 1 for half double crochet, but the common number of turning chains for the hdc stitch is 2.

Should you chain 1 or 2 for half double crochet?

For the half double crochet you should chain 2 stitches.

Is the number of chain stitches needed for the normal half double crochet the same as for different type of stitches?

Yes, for different variations for half double crochet stitches you need the same number and length of the turning chain. Including the front loop half double crochet, back loop half double crochet, front post half double crochet and back post half double crochet.

Turning Chains – Step-By-Step Tutorials

Below you can find turning chains needed for the different basic crochet stitches:

  1. Turning Chain For Single Crochet Stitch (sc)
  2. Turning Chain For Half Double Crochet Stitch (hdc) – this tutorial
  3. Turning Chain For Double Crochet Stitch (dc)
  4. Turning Chain Treble Crochet Stitch (tr)
Janne Kleivset

Janne Kleivset

Founder, Crochet Pattern Designer & Owner of Joy of Motion Crochet.

Janne has helped millions of crocheters find their next crochet project with more than 250 free crochet patterns and 110 crochet tutorials on her blog.

With more than two decades of crochet experience, and crochet designing since 2011, she's been featured on multiple prominent sites such as Lion Brand Yarn, in crochet magazines and the OML "Make" book.

Learn more about Janne.



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