Stitches for Your Crocheting Arsenal – Part 2

By Erin Burger – 21 Comments

In a previous post I gave instructions for three special stitches, the moss stich, the chevron stitch and the smocking stitch, which all help add texture and interest to crochet projects. Below are instructions for two more special stitches, photos of the stitches and general uses for them.

Classic Checkerboard Stitch
This stitch is great for all kinds of around the home type projects like washcloths and table runners. You can play around with this stitch by making each ‘checker’ a different color or any other kind of variation of colors.

Start by chaining a multiple of 6 plus 5
Row 1: sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each ch across.
Row 2: ch 3, turn, skip first sc, dc in next 3 sc, *ch 2, skip next 2 sc, dc in next 4 sc, repeat from * across.
Row 3: ch 5, turn, skip first dc, *skip 2 dc, dc in next dc, 2 dc in next ch-2 space, dc in next dc, ch 2, repeat from * across, skip last two dc, dc in top of beginning ch.
Row 4: ch 3, turn, *2 dc in next ch-2 space, dc in next dc, ch 2, skip 2 dc, dc in next dc, repeat from * across, ending with 3 dc in beginning ch.
Row 5: Repeat Row 3
Row 6: Repeat Row 4
Row 7: ch 1, turn, *sc in next 4 dc, 2 sc in next ch-2 space, repeat from * across across, sc in top of beginning ch.
Repeat Rows 2-7 until appropriate length is reached.

Simple Shell Stitch
There’s something so sweet about a simple shell stitch. It reminds me of lovely shawls, baby blankets and thick double stranded afghans.

Start by chaining a multiple of 4.
Shell = (2 dc, ch 1, 2 dc)

Row 1: shell in 4th ch from hook (skip 3 ch, shell in next ch) across.
Row 2: ch 3, turn, (shell in ch-1 space of next shell) across.
Repeat Row 2 until appropriate length is reached.
See? I told you it was simple!

Have any questions about completing these stitches? Know of any other uses for these stitches? Just want to comment? Please don’t hesitate!

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  1. SoSaje says:

    I always love learning new stitches! Thank you for posting these. 🙂

  2. Jackie says:

    I am a beginner and it is nice to learn some new stitches.Thank you..

  3. Paula McSheehy says:

    I don’t understand multiples. These are nice looking stitches, but the directions are Greek to me. Is there somewhere that it explains multiples of however many stitches you want to do??

  4. Jackie says:


    Can you help me please…How many stitches should i chain if i want to make a scarf using the simple shell stitch and classic checker board stitch….I don’t understand multiples….I like when the pattern just tells me how many to chain…Thanks

    • Erin says:

      Hi Jackie (and Paula),

      Off the top of my head I would say that chaining 29 or 35 for the checkerboard and chaining 28 or 32 for the simple shell stitch. I am currently working on a tutorial about chaining multiples, so keep an eye out for it!


  5. […] third installment of Stitches for Your Crocheting Arsenal (check out Part 1 and Part 2 for even more special stitches!) contains the instructions for two more special stitches, photos of […]

  6. lena says:

    Hi, Erin, and thank you very, very much for your great work!

    I tried the shell pattern, which I love when I see it in your photo. When I do it, however, the ch-1 space of each shell “gives” and expands and then the shell doesn’t look so beautiful or put together anymore…

    How do you keep the two dc before the 1 ch so close together to the 2 dc after?

    ch-1 space means that I pass my hook under the chain and not through, right?

    Thanks again for your patterns!

  7. drcstevens says:

    I am just learning crochet, and I found this page with the shell stitch. It was so simple and pretty. I made a lovely warm scarf with fringe using this stitch and am so encouraged to go on crocheting. Thank you!

  8. Patricia says:

    First of all, my computer crashed and i have been without a computer in about 3 months. Anyhow, I missed “Stitches for your Crocheting Asenal Part 1” and I can’t find it. Please help.

    • Rachel says:

      Hi Patricia, if you scroll to the top of the page, you’ll see Erin mention 3 stitches that she shared earlier. The link to that post on the first line is Part 1 of the series.

  9. Nami says:

    Thank you for the pattern :]

    I’m just a little confused on end of row 3 in the Classic Checkboard Stitch. What do you mean by “skip last two dc, dc in top of beginning ch” I had 3 chains left and I just double crochet it. So it would look like the end of the second row.

    Sorry if that didn’t make any sense.

  10. Nami says:

    Oh, never mind! I found my mistake but I still don’t really get “…dc in top of beginning ch”

    • Rachel says:

      Hi Nami, at the end of row 3 the “dc in top of beginning ch” mean you are going to make the last dc into the top of the chain 3 that you made at the beginning of row 2. The top chain is the third chain in the chain 3.

  11. Jeannie says:

    Thanks for the Simple Shell Stitch pattern. I’ve been looking everywhere for this. I have a question about the foundation chain. It says multiples of 4, but do you add extra chains for the foundation chain? Also, at the end of the 1st row, do I end with a double crochet or a shell? Thanks!

  12. Cassey says:

    Oh no, I am really lost with the checker board pattern. Do you make youtube tutorials?

  13. Hi Rachel,

    I am looking for a checkerboard pattern that does not carry the two threads all of the way through. I made a shell 30 yrs ago that had a checkerboard yoke and, if my memory serves me correctly, I did not carry two threads. Seems like there were some single chrochets in between the doubles. Unfortunately, I can not find the book that I used. All of the patterns I have found are carrying the two threads. Can you help me.


    Shyrl Bechdolt

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