Crunch Stitch Crochet Tutorial for Beginners (With Photos & Video!)

The Crunch Stitch is an easy crochet stitch that makes a thick, double-sided fabric with a beautiful wavy texture. Today I’ll be sharing a tutorial with you on How to Crochet the Crunch Stitch.

Crunch stitch crochet swatch

I love working with the crunch stitch for large flat areas, because it gives the fabric a much more visually interesting pattern that really brings the work to life.

Shall we get started?

Crunch stitch free crochet pattern

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What is the Crunch stitch?

The crunch stitch is a crochet stitch worked in multiples of two that creates a more visually appealing texture to the fabric. It is made with a single row repeat of basic stitches, and works up at a medium speed.

How to do the Crunch Stitch

To crochet the Crunch stitch, you simply alternate making a half double crochet and a slip stitch all the way across the row. 

The height will then even itself out, making a straight top edge, because for the rest of the rows, you place a half double crochet into every slip stitch. Likewise, a slip stitch sits above every half double crochet. 

Is the Crunch Stitch beginner friendly?

Yes!

The crunch stitch is made of a short repeating pattern of slip stitch and half double crochet stitches. If you can make both of those, you can crochet the Crunch Stitch.

The most difficult part of working with this stitch is getting the hook into the tight half double crochet stitches in the first couple rows. After about 3 rows, the tension across the stitches will start to even itself out and this won’t be a problem anymore.

Crunch Stitch Video

Plus, if you’re a beginner, I have a crunch stitch video tutorial that should help you figure it out if you’re having any sort of trouble!

Use the Crunch Stitch in Your Projects

Since this stitch is a very short repeating pattern, it can be used in lots of different projects. 

The pattern it forms makes the fabric very pretty to look at, and the way the stitches “crunch” down makes it nice and thick. Consider using the crunch stitch for things like hats and scarves.

In addition, this is also a reversible crochet stitch! Both sides look exactly the same. So, you could even make things like crunch stitch washcloths or crunch stitch baby blankets.

Crunch stitch crochet swatch

The Crunch Stitch Vs. the Even Moss Stitch

Now, if you’ve searched for stitches any amount of time, maybe you’ve ran into the Even Moss Stitch before. And, if you look at the fabric, you might think “it looks exactly the same as the crunch stitch!”

Well, the reason for that is these two stitches are NEARLY identical. Seriously. I don’t know how they got the two separate names, because they both alternate slip stitches and hdc across every row.

The difference between them lies in the way the stitches START and END. Here’s a comparison that should help:

  • The Crunch Stitch starts with a chain 1 that does not count as a stitch. It then works a hdc in the first stitch and alternates hdc and sl st to the end. The row should always end with a sl st.
  • The Even Moss Stitch, however, starts with a chain 1 that DOES count as a stitch. Slip stitches and hdc are alternated across, and then the last slip stitch is done in the turning ch-1.

I know, it’s slightly confusing! And the trouble is, I have even seen tutorials that do not adhere to the points above, but have their own tiny variations.

So, here’s my conclusion when it comes to comparing these two stitches: essentially, they are the same. The body of BOTH stitches alternate hdc and sl sts. The beginning and end of the rows for either stitch can have variations depending on what tutorial you follow. So I would advise you to just learn 1 way and go with that!

The way I show you in this tutorial is perfect for beginners and very easy to do, so that is a plus. You don’t have to worry about working in any turning chains. I always find that to be more straightforward. 😉

Get the Closed Stitch Dictionary

Do you want a library of even MORE unique crochet stitches that are perfect for scarves and blankets (without holes?) I would invite you to join me inside the Closed Stitch Dictionary!

Inside this dictionary, you’ll get the Crunch Stitch pattern AD-FREE, plus 12 other closed stitches. And don’t forget about bonus lessons that teach you how to make the stitches into blankets and scarves!

Crunch Stitch Crochet Tutorial

  • To pin this stitch to your Pinterest boards, click HERE
  • To get the Closed Stitch dictionary get this stitch (plus many others) ad-free, click HERE
  • And to subscribe to my YouTube channel, click HERE

Notes:

  • The Crochet stitch is worked in multiples of two. You should always start with an even number of foundation stitches or chains, plus one chain to start the row. (If starting with a chain rather than fsc, the starting multiple will be 2+1).
  • Turning ch 1 does NOT count as a stitch

Abbreviations/Stitches Used

I always like to start my work with a foundation single crochet row instead of chains whenever possible.

The greatest benefit of using a foundation row is that the beginning of your work will be just as stretchy as the rest, rather than having a tight chain.

Watch how easy it is in my Youtube tutorial. It can help your crochet in so many ways!

If you watch this and decide it’s not for you, you can still start with a chain. Just make a slip knot and then make an even number of chains to the length you want your piece, plus one for the turning chain.

If you do work from a foundation single crochet row (which I highly recommend!), make an even number of fsc.

Materials:

This stitch can be worked in just about any size and type of yarn you’d like, with the size hook recommended on the label.

For this tutorial, I used worsted weight yarn and a 5.75 mm hook.

Note: I usually work with a 5 mm hook for this weight of yarn, but I think this particular stitch looks better with a little bit bigger of a hook. It’s all personal preference though.

Crunch stitch crochet swatch

Instructions:

Fsc 18, or any even number.

Row 1:  Ch 1. Hdc into first fsc. Sl st into next fsc. *Hdc in next fsc, sl st in next fsc. Rep from * until end of row.

Row 2: Ch 1, *hdc into sl st, sl st into hdc. Rep from * until end of row.

Rep row 2 until your desired length.

Crunch Stitch Crochet Picture Tutorial

Make 18 fsc. Turn.

Ch 1 and hdc into the first stitch.

Half double crochet in first stitch

Slip stitch into the next stitch.

Slip stitch into next stitch

Alternate these two stitches back and forth until the end of the row.

Since you have an even number of stitches, you should always start the row with a hdc, and end with a sl st. This will ensure that you’re always making a hdc into a sl st from the previous row, and you’re always making a sl st into a hdc from the previous row.

Finish row with slip stitch

Continue repeating this pattern until your desired length.

Crunch Stitch in the Round

If there ever is a time you want to crochet the crunch stitch in the round, it is very easy to do!

You’ll just want to make your foundation row in an even number and join with a slip stitch.

Next, just work the alternating hdc and sl sts around!

One thing to keep in mind here is that in order to keep the same look in the crunch stitch, you’ll want to turn at the end of each round. If you don’t turn, the stitches will be be facing with the right side out every row, and the texture of the original crunch stitch will not be there.

Crunch stitch crochet swatch

I hope you have enjoyed learning how to crochet this fun and easy stitch pattern.

If you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to email me: [email protected] I would love to help!

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Happy crocheting!

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