Today, we’re going to learn how to half double crochet for beginners. The half double crochet (hdc) is my absolute favorite basic stitch. It works up quickly and it looks so freaking good. You’ll see! If you’re one of our newbies, we just finished the single crochet unit and we’re over 1/3 of the way through with this month’s lessons.
NOTE: This tutorial utilizes US terminology.
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HDC Stitch Learning Objectives
Since the hdc is a brand new stitch, we have some new objectives. If you follow along with today’s lesson and video, you’ll be able to:
- Identify the half double crochet abbreviation in patterns and the symbol in charts
- Label the parts of a half double crochet
- Crochet the half double crochet stitch in rows
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About the Half Double Crochet Stitch (hdc)
The half double crochet stitch is one of the standard crochet stitches. It’s slightly taller than a single crochet (sc) and slightly shorter than a double crochet stitch (dc). Crocheting an hdc is similar to a single crochet, except you’ll yarn over before starting the stitch.
In the US, it’s called the half double crochet. In the UK, it’s called a half treble crochet. Patterns should specify if they’re written in US or UK terminology.
The half double crochet stitch creates a solid, reversible fabric. This means that both the right and wrong sides will look pretty much the same. You can use hdc stitches to crochet just about anything, including hair scrunchies, mug cozies, ribbed hat, blankets, and tiny sweater ornaments.
Identifying Half Double Crochets in Patterns and Charts
Half double crochets are abbreviated as “hdc” in written patterns and represented by a “T” in charts.
Here’s a stitch chart for a small crochet swatch with five rows of hdc stitches:
The chart above could be written in US crochet terms as:
- ch 15
- ROW 1: hdc in second ch from hook, hdc across (14)
- ROWS 2 – 5: ch 1 and turn, hdc across (14)
Parts of a Half Double Crochet Stitch
Like the single crochet stitch, a half double crochet has V’s at the top that create front loops (the loops closest to you) and back loops (the loops furthest from you). It also has a little cross bar called “the third loop.” The third loop is created with the addition of the yarn over at the start of each stitch.
We won’t use it during the Newbie Series, but as you become a more advanced crocheter, you’ll start to see patterns that utilize the third loops or the camel stitch. Here’s a cute knit-look blanket that used the third loops.
Like with the single crochet stitch, if a pattern doesn’t specify which loops you need to crochet into, just assume it’s both loops (front and back).
How to Make a Half Double Crochet Stitch
Yarn over (yo), insert your hook into the chain or stitch below, yo and pull up the first loop, then yo and pull through the remaining three loops.
Supplies / Materials
You just need a hook and yarn, so pick your favorites!
For the hdc tutorial and video, I used:
NOTE: My friends at WeCrochet provided the materials for the Newbie Series.
Half Double Crochet Video Tutorial
Learn how to crochet the half double crochet stitch with this video tutorial.
Step-by-Step Half Double Crochet Photo Tutorial
Half double crochets (hdc) are *almost* exactly the same as single crochets, with one difference — you yarn over before inserting your hook.
To half double crochet, you will:
ch any number
- a.) yarn over
- b.) insert hook into the second ch from your hook
- c.) yarn over and pull through the first loop (there are now three loops on your hook)
- d.) yarn over and pull through the remaining three loops
Repeat these steps until you reach the end of the chain, then ch 1 and turn. Rinse and repeat for each row of stitches.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
These are the most commonly asked questions about crocheting the half double crochet stitch (hdc).
Does the turning chain count as a stitch?
Y’know how we chain 1 before each row of hdc stitches? Usually that won’t count as a stitch and you’ll hdc in the first stitch of the row. HOWEVER, it all depends on the pattern and the designer. Sometimes, that ch-1 will count as a stitch and you’ll skip the first st in the row. Be sure to read the pattern notes to see!