Hello again! If you’re here, that means you’ve worked through the crochet basics (1 & 2) and you’re ready to learn how to end a crochet project. I’ll also cover adding a new skein of yarn in, in case your project is longer than what one skein can give you or you want to change colors.
Adding or changing yarn
There are many different ways to change your yarn (changing colors) or add a skein (of the same color). I am going to cover the simplest way for each type of change.
On your final stitch of the first color, work the stitch until you have one yarn over (yo) left.
Take the new color of yarn and (leaving a tail of six inches or so) yo with it and pull through the remaining loops on your hook.
Continue from here in the new color. You can cut the first color off, but leave a six inch or so tail.
Easy peasy! When you’re finished, you will need to weave those tails into your work, which I explain below.
To add the same color, there is a method you can use that reduces the amount of ends you will have to weave in at the end. You could use this even if you are changing colors, but it is much trickier to get the new color exactly where you want it, so I would recommend only doing it for joining a skein of the same color. It is called the “magic knot”.
You take the two ends of the skein and lay them end to end, overlapping by about four inches.
Take one end and wrap it around the other and tie a knot with the end of the knot pointing back towards the skein this yarn came from.
Do the same with the other end. You should now have the two strings tied together with some space between the yarns.
Pull tightly on each knot, then pull the knots together.
Make sure you don’t pull too tightly, as you can snap the yarn if you do. Now cut the ends of the yarn coming from the knots as close to the knot as you can.
That’s it! If you crochet tightly, you may have a little difficulty pulling the knot through your stitches. If you absolutely cannot get it through, I would recommend going up a hook size as you are crocheting too tightly.
Weaving in Ends
The bane of any crocheters’ existence. Weaving in ends. It’s not a fun process, but it’s necessary, not only for the overall look of the piece, but also for the integrity of it. The actual process is not very difficult, but can be time consuming.
Take your tapestry needle and thread it onto your end. Now, you will “sew” or “weave” this end into the stitches of your work. If you have several different colors near your end, you will want to keep it in the same color to reduce the show through.
Try to go at least three different directions and do not go back through the same stitch (to reduce the chance that you unweave what you had just woven).
Be sure you don’t pull too tight when pulling in the first direction, as it will pull your corner in too much and round it off.
Each piece you make will have at minimum two tails to weave in (from the beginning and the end), so it is a good idea to get comfortable with this practice.
If you are working an item with multiple color changes, it will often save you some headache and help encourage you along to weave in tails as you go. Similarly, if you are working many smaller motifs to join together (such as granny squares to join for a blanket), it is helpful to weave as you go.
Now you have truly finished your first piece. Celebrate! Hopefully, you loved the process- maybe not the weaving in ends part so much- and want to keep crocheting. If so, you’re going to need to learn how to read patterns, so check back soon to find out how!