Make a Dish Cloth and Learn to Crochet the Tunisian Simple Stitch
I’m just in love with this stitch. It is so light, with lots of movement and yet warm and toasty. None of those annoying gaps at the beginning of a row. Don’t get me wrong – a good repeating DC stitch is very meditative and may remain my go to stitch. But a Tunisian! Just. Love. It. Bonus – it makes a really great dish cloth with built in scrubbies on the back!
I hear it’s a difficult stitch to learn but I found that it’s pretty easy. You probably will as well. Nay sayers be damned! So, here we go. Let me show you the Tunisian Simple Stitch (abbreviated TSS)
Sugar ‘n Cream – Potpourri Ombre (100% cotton 4 ply)
Sugar ‘n Cream – Rose Pink for the border (100% cotton 4 ply)
10 mm Tunisian/Afghan Hook
6.5mm standard hook for the border
I am making my dish cloth 18 stitches wide, because, well that’s my favorite size. You can make yours any width you like – just remember if you are using a 100% cotton yarn like I am, that baby is going to shrink.
Step 1: With 10mm hook and Potpourri Ombre -CH 18
Step 2: Forward Pass- Pull up loops
This is where we veer off the standard crocheting course. You’re not going to make a stitch and move on. You’re going to pull up all the loops onto your hook for all the stitches in the row. This step looks suspiciously like knitting. Huh, any how. When you are loading your stitches onto the hook it’s called the forward pass.
Skip the first CH as per usual, insert the hook into the second stitch, YO and pull up the loop. Leave it on the hook. Repeat, repeatedly, until you have 18 loops on your hook.
Step 3: Reverse Pass – Take off the loops
To begin the reverse pass YO and pull through 1 loop. Then YO and pull through 2 loops. YO and pull through 2 loops until you are back to the beginning of the row (1 loop left on hook) See? Super simple. Always under 1 loop for the first stitch, under 2 for all the rest.
Step 4: Forward Pass
This is the forward pass that you will be using from here on out. It’s basically like the beginning forward pass except you’re not hooking into the chain. Instead you are hooking under the front vertical bar. Always skip that first bar of the row. You will never turn your work with Tunisian! Let me show you –
Then you just continue on. Hook under the vertical bar, YO and pull up a loop, repeat 17 times. All the loops remain on the hook.
Now, what to do about that end stitch. You have options here. You can put your hook under 1 loop, 2 loops or 3. I choose to always hook under 2 loops for the end stitch. It gives a nice perfect edge that will look just like the top and bottom edges of your work. You can’t beat that when putting on a border! Or not putting on a border. I won’t judge.
Step 5: Reverse Pass
Reverse pass is the exact same as step 3. YO and pull through 1. YO and pull through 2. Repeat YO and pull through 2 until you have finished the row.
So, that’s it then. You just continue with the forward and reverse pass until your project is as long as you want it. I did 16 rows to make a square. Counting the rows is super easy. Just count the vertical bars.
Step 6: Binding off
Here we are at the end and there is an annoying row of gaps from the last row. Simple to deal with. All you are going to do is hook under the vertical bar, YO and pull through the vertical bar and the loop on hook. You’re really just slip stitching along the row. Repeat until you are at the end of the row. Tie off.
For my border I switched to a 6.5 mm hook and Rose Pink yarn and did 2 rows.
Row 1: Join to the side. SC in the next 2 stitches, SC 2x in the same stitch. Repeat along the sides. For the corners, SC 3x in the same stitch. Slip stitch to join.
I’ve found that this lays down really well for me, if it doesn’t for you then feel free to change your ratio of stitches.
Row 2: CH 3, DC in each stitch along sides. 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in each of the corners. Slip stitch to join. Tie off.
I have been petting looking at the Bernat Blanket yarn for a while now. With the holidays a skein is finally on sale and I can justify buying it!!! A blanket will only cost me $28. A Christmas gift will only cost me $28. That’s not too bad. You can barely buy a blanket made in China for that. Who wants a blanket made in a sweat shop when you can have one I made in my chair? There is no sweating in the chair. I promise. This is a much better gift. Totally worth a still outrageous $7 a skein.
Right. Justification over. Finally bought the yarn.
I wanted a nice warm blanket. Of course, I just bought blanket yarn. But I didn’t want a heavy, smothering, hot, miserable blanket. Cause then the blanket recipient would be sweating in their chair.
Ha! See what I did there? Unintentional. I promise.
Eh hem. Moving on.
So, I tried a half dozen patterns. None of them were just right. The bricks pattern on the label. No. Frankly, I’m not sure that was tested with this yarn. I tried a block patten. Close, but no. A few more. They weren’t just right.
Then I think – chevron! That would be just right! Tried it. Loved it!
I made this in 2 days. While taking care of my daughter and her newborn baby, 2 dogs (1 of which is like a toddler on speed) and cooking and cleaning. So, it works up pretty quickly. But, I didn’t count the hours.
Final size: 48″ x 60″
Hook: 11.5 mm (I did not enjoy the plastic hook and could not find a large metal one. More on this in a post for another day)
4 balls Bernat Blanket Yarn
I used 1 ball Taupe, 1 ball Sugar Cookie and 3 balls Pine Bough. I barely used any of the 3rd ball of Pine Bough and only had to break into a 3rd because of the color pattern. FYI. If you want to do it exactly like mine I did 4 rows of green,2 rows of taupe and 2 rows of cream and repeated this 6 times.
Row 1: DC in 4th CH from hook. DC in next 4.
* SK next 2 CH. DC in next 5. CH 2. DC in next 5. Repeat from * to end.
DC in last CH (2 DC’s in same stitch).
CH 3 and turn
DC in same stitch. DC in next 4.
*SK next 2 DC’s. DC in next 5 stitches (the 5th DC will be in the CH from the previous row). CH 2. DC in next 5 stitches (the first DC will be in the CH from the previous row).
Repeat from * to end.
DC in last DC (2 DC’s in same stitch)
CH 3 and turn.
Repeat Row 2 until afghan is long enough.
I liked it so much I whipped up another one. Again completely justified! Christmas present. We won’t discuss the skeins I just bought to make myself one. Uh. Cause I need to try out my made up hook. And I need a present for myself. I deserve it! Ok. Final justification- if I didn’t make one for myself someone wasn’t going to be getting the blanket I just made them. I feel a nap coming on…
Update: Here are some step by step pics. Hope they help!!
Continue Row 2 in the same manner as the first row. The pic above has already completed the DC in same stitch so you would DC in the next 4 (the first and last sets of every row has 6 stitches), skip 2 DC’s from the first row, do 5 more DC’s, Chain 2, DC in the next 5. Repeat this pattern until you get to the end. Add another DC so that you have 6 total DC’s.