When you are working from a crochet pattern, it is common to run across different abbreviations, most of which can look like a foreign language. Tog. is a common one that almost all crocheters will run into at some point.
So what does tog. mean? Tog. is a common abbreviation that simply means together. By crocheting the specified number of stitches together, you are combining multiple stitches into one single stitch, and decreasing the total amount of stitches you are working on.
Learning how to crochet stitches together is a skill that every crocheter needs to know, and it is relatively simple to do. It is one of the only ways to provide a shape to a garment, and crochet shapes that are a bit more complicated than a rectangle. There are different forms and variations of completing this task, but they all follow the same basic technique.
How to Work Stitches Together
There are different ways that you will work stitches together, depending on the project you are working on and the stitches you are using. The most common are:
- — Single crochet two stitches together.
- — Half double crochet two stitches together
- — Double crochet two stitches together.
Depending on the pattern you are using there are times you will work two, three, or even four stitches together into one. To work a basic sc2tog, start with putting your hook through the first stitch. Place the yarn over the hook, and draw the hook up through the stitch. You should now have the first part of the basic single crochet stitch completed. Next, you are going to insert the hook into the next stitch, wrap the yarn around the hook, and pull the yarn through the stitch. You should now have three loops of yarn on the hook. To finish the stitch, wrap the yarn around the hook and pull the yarn through all three loops on the hook, making the two stitches into one. To work two half double crochet stitches together, you will start with the basic start of the half double crochet stitch: yarn over and put the hook through the specified stitch. Draw up a loop, then continue on in the same manner as the single crochet. To double crochet two stitches together, you will yarn over, place the hook into the stitch, draw up a loop, and pull the yarn through the first two loops. Place the yarn over the hook again, and insert the hook into the next stitch; draw up a loop, and pull the hook through. Pull the yarn through the next two stitches on the hook, then continue in the same manner as before. When at all possible, it is best to work multiple stitches together when you are one or two stitches away from the edge of the pattern. This is simply because it is the least noticeable, and makes the finished edge of the project smoother. There are times when you will work stitches together towards the middle of the project, depending on what you are creating, but generally the decreases look best if they are close to — but not on — the edge.
Variations of Working Stitches Together
A crochet pattern will rarely tell you how to accomplish the sc2tog, it will just tell you to do it. The basic way I shared above is always a good choice, but there are several fun variations of crocheting multiple stitches together that will lend a unique look to the finished product. A favourite one is to work only through the back loops. It produces a smoother fabric that makes it harder to tell that a stitch was decreased. You can also work through the front loops only, or work around the front or back post of the stitch. Both of these variations will form a unique stitch that lends interest to the piece. You would use a variation of working stitches together if you wanted to draw attention to the decreases, instead of having them subtly blend in with the rest of the work. When the two stitches are worked together, the way the stitches worked together will lean is determined largely by you. They don’t lean predominantly to one side or the other, and you can easily finagle the stitch to lean to whichever side you want — which means that almost any form of working the stitches together goes, depending on the overall look you are going for.
When Would You Use This Technique
It is important to know how to crochet multiple stitches together because it aids in shaping a crocheted piece. When making clothing, especially with sweaters or cardigans, shaping plays an important role. Knowing how to crochet two stitches together enables the crocheter to adjust a garment specifically to their very own measurements, creating a flattering fit. Being able to crochet multiple stitches together is an important element in making crocheted baskets that will stand up. When making a shawl or poncho, combining stitches together is what will give your work it’s shape. When crocheting lace, a series of stitches worked together can make a decorative edge, a lacy appearance of fabric, or an unusual pattern. When crocheting a hat, working stitches together is what will keep it fitted to the head. The same goes for mittens, socks and slippers. Baby booties and socks will use multiple decreases to make the front of the foot fit well and to shape the heel. There are very few projects that would not use this decrease at some point. Some examples of not using this technique of working multiple stitches together would be if you were wanting a project with straight lines like a scarf. When crocheting two or more stitches together you are making the row you are working on shorter than the previous one, essentially pulling the width in, resulting in edges that will lean inwards. This would be disastrous in a project such as a pillow that would need nice, straight edges, or in making square hot pads or washcloths, but perfect for that triangular shaped shawl.
What is the Difference Between Working Stitches Together and Forming a Cluster?
A crocheted cluster of stitches is a group of stitches used for decorative purposes. Normally along an edging, or to lend focal interest to a piece of work, the cluster creates a small bubble of stitches that is puffed up from the rest of the project. A group of cluster stitches is worked very similarly to working two stitches together, except you are adding the stitches you will later be working together, and you don’t loose any stitches. Normally used with the double crochet stitch, it starts basically the same way as before. To create a cluster of four stitches, you would wrap your yarn over the hook, and insert your hook into the specified stitch. Pull the yarn through the stitch, as you normally would. Bring the yarn through the first two loops on the hook, completing the first part of a normal double crochet stitch. Wrap the yarn over your hook, and insert your hook into the very same stitch from last time, and work the stitch the same way. You should now have two half finished double crochet stitches on you hook. Do it all over again, so you now have three almost finished stitches. Now for a fourth time — and by now you should have four stitches that look somewhat out of place. To finish the cluster, take the yarn, wrap it over the hook, and pull it very tightly through all four half finished stitches on the hook. The key is to hold the yarn tightly through this step, so all the stitches are squished together tightly, forming a small ball of stitches that is raised above the other stitches around it.
How would you crochet three stitches together? To crochet three or more stitches together, you will simply insert your hook into each stitch to be worked together, pull up a loop, and continue on as above, drawing the final loop of yarn through all the loops on the hook.
What does dec. mean in crochet? Decrease, or dec. is another way of saying together. When a pattern says “Dec. 2 stitches” you are to work two stitches together.
How do you fasten off a crochet piece? To fasten off a crochet piece, cut the yarn, leaving about 6 inches of yarn. Pull the yarn all the way through the last stitch, and pull on the tail to tighten it. Use a crochet hook to weave the yarn through the crocheted fabric, hiding the yarn in the stitches.
How do you block a crocheted piece? The easiest way to go about “blocking”, or finishing, your completed crocheted piece is to use a spray bottle to mist it with water, and stretch it out on top of a towel, pinning it to the finished dimensions specified in the pattern. Leave it there to dry overnight, about 12 hours.