How to Crochet: Single Crochet Decrease

By Rachel Choi – 12 Comments

Knowing how to smoothly decrease the number of stitches in a row is necessary when you need to change the shape of the item you are crocheting. There are different decrease for different stitches, such as single crochet, double crochet and treble crochet. This tutorial contains instructions for decreasing single crochet stitches. Here is the link to the double crochet decrease tutorial if you would like to learn that as well: How to Crochet: Double Crochet Decrease.

Single crochet decrease is commonly abbreviated as the following steps: pull up a loop in next 2 stitches, yarn over, pull though all 3 loops on hook, counts as one single crochet.

Below is the step by step picture tutorial to help you visualize each step. This tutorial is for both right and left handed people. For left handed pictures, roll your mouse over the image and it will change for you.

Begin with a swatch of work to practice on. Below I am using a small square of single crochet stitches.
Insert your hook into the next stitch.

Yarn over (wrap the yarn around you hook).

Pull the strand of yarn through the stitch on your hook. You should now have 2 loops on your hook.

Insert your hook into the next stitch.

Yarn over (wrap the yarn around you hook).

Pull the strand of yarn through the stitch on your hook. You sould now have 3 loops on your hook.

Yarn over (wrap the yarn around you hook).

Pull the strand of yarn through all 3 stitches on your hook.

Congrats! You just completed a single crochet decrease! When you are working with a pattern, most single crochet decreases are counted as a single crochet when you are counting stitches. Also remember, when you do a decrease you are decreasing the number of stitches on a row by 1.

This is the common method for making a single crochet decrease, however, sometimes it is better to make an “invisible decrease”. Use the following link to learn more: How to Crochet: Single Crochet Invisible Decrease.

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  1. […] stitches is easy! Here is the link to the traditional method for making a single crochet decrease: How to Crochet: Single Crochet Decrease. The problem with the traditional method is that sometimes it leaves gaps and holes in your work. […]

  2. Melanie says:

    I just wanted to say that I was so happy to come across your site. I am going to be teaching a crochet class in a couple weeks and your How to Crochet stitches have great, clear images and simple instructions that will be very useful! Thank you for taking the time to create this site and for including some fun patterns as well.

  3. […] on the stitch are you working with. If you are working with single crochets, you may want to make a single crochet decrease, or if you are using double crochet you may want to do a double crochet decrease. This tutorial […]

  4. Bella says:

    thank you sooooo very much for posting this!! I’ve looked all over and I couldn’t find these instructions. Thank you thank you thank you!!! =)

  5. […] Row 1: Ch 11, sc into second chain from hook and in each across: 10 sc Row 2: ch 1, turn, sc2tog, sc in next 6 sc, sc2tog: 8 sc Row 3: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc across: 8 sc Row 4: ch 1, turn, […]

  6. GeorgeRupert says:

    How come you don’t have a tutorial for the HDC? Or do you and you just didn’t link it anywhere…..

  7. Rose says:

    Hi Rachel, I am about to start making a baby blanket for a friend and am having trouble with the pattern – it’s a single crochet square, with a sc3tog decrease halfway (foundation chain of 58) but everytime I try to follow the pattern to the letter it ends up not square at all! I’m wondering if I should try doing it as a sc2tog decrease, but thought I’d ask u for your opinion first, is it normal to use sc3tog to get a 90degree decrease, or would sc2tog work better? (or even alternating between the two) hoping u can help, but no worries if not 🙂 Rose

    • Rachel Choi says:

      Hi Rose! I don’t normally use a decrease to make squares, I normally use an increase working the other way around lol
      For an increase at a corner I would do 3 sc, so I would imagine that a decrease at a corner would be dc3tog. Feel free to try and ask the designer for more help if you can!

      • Rose says:

        Yes, there is also a pattern in the book for starting with one stitch and increasing the stitches to a square, I think I’ll try that one if I can’t get the decrease pattern to work 🙂

  8. Gretchen says:

    Excellent tutorial and the right / left hand pictures are really helpful. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Vijaya Vasudeo says:

    I was looking for such a photo tutorial as I can’t always understand some of the instructions. Thnks dear.

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