Abbreviations in Crochet Patterns


I know from experience that reading a crochet pattern can be intimidating but with practice, it definitely becomes easier.  For starters, I’ve listed below some of the more commonly used abbreviations that you will find within a crochet pattern’s directions. Crochet is a wonderful site to find good demonstrations on these various stitches:

  • alt           –      alternate
  • beg         –      begin/beginning
  • BLO       –      back loop only
  • bls          –      boucle loop stitch
  • BPdc      –      back post double crochet
  • BPsc      –      back post single crochet
  • C             –      crossed stitch
  • CC          –      contrasting color
  • Cdc         –      crossed double crochet
  • ch           –      chain stitch
  • ch-sp     –      chain-space
  • CL          –      cluster
  • cont       –      continue
  • dc           –      double crochet
  • dc2tog  –      double crochet two together
  • dec        –      decrease
  • dsc        –      double single crochet
  • dtr         –      double treble
  • ea          –      each
  • Els        –      extended loop stitch
  • Esc        –      extended single crochet
  • FLO      –      front loop only
  • FPdc     –      front post double crochet
  • FPsc     –      front post single crochet
  • FPtr      –      front post treble
  • hdc       –      half double crochet
  • inc        –      increase
  • KS         –      knot stitch
  • lks        –      locking stitch
  • lp          –      loop
  • ls          –      loop stitch
  • MC       –      main color
  • och       –      overlaid chain
  • pat st   –      pattern stitch
  • pc         –      popcorn stitch
  • pm       –      place marker
  • qtr        –      quadruple treble
  • rem      –      remaining
  • rev dc  –      reverse double crochet
  • rev sc  –      reverse single crochet
  • rf          –      relief stitch
  • rnd      –      round
  • RS       –      right side
  • sc        –       single crochet
  • sc2tog –      single crochet two together
  • Sl st     –      slip stitch
  • sp         –      space
  • st          –      stitch
  • tch       –      turning chain
  • tr          –      treble
  • tr2tog  –      treble two together
  • WS       –      wrong side
  • yo         –      yarn over

These are pretty standard abbreviations that you will find in most American written patterns.  When starting a new crochet project, I would recommend reading through the pattern to familiarize yourself with the abbreviations used.  Most of the time, you will find a stitch guide within the pattern or pattern book itself showing you or telling you exactly how to make a certain stitch or cluster.

One of my favorite books to use as a reference is The Complete Photo Guide to Crochet by Margaret Hubert.  Within the pages of this book are wonderful colored pictures of stitches, tools, tips, techniques and some patterns.  I like to have it readily available especially if I’m working on a new pattern and have to refresh myself on how to do a certain stitch or planning a new project.

Should a pattern use a new stitch for you, why not practice that stitch over and over again with some old yarn (making swatches) so that you will have it mastered and looking perfect for your special crochet project.  This would be a super time to encourage crocheting to a young child; you both could practice the new stitch/cluster together.  What a wonderful and creative way to spend an hour or so one-on-one making your own swatches!!!


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4 thoughts on “Abbreviations in Crochet Patterns

  1. Wow that is a lot of abbreviations to remember! I recently downloaded a pattern from and it doesn’t show how to do any of these (I guess the assumption is that I should already know). Where can I go to see videos or descriptions on how to actually do what is described in the abbreviation?

    • Mary,
      The abbreviation list is for you to use as a reference guide when working with a crochet pattern. About Crochet is a great place to start. They have a wide selection of videos to watch demonstrating various crochet stitches.
      Also, it is always a good idea to have at least one good crochet reference book at hand should you need to be refreshed on how to make a certain stitch.
      One of my favorite books to have available is The Complete Photo Guide to Crochet by Margaret Hubert. Within the book are some lovely, upclose, colored pictures of different crochet stitches plus info on tips, ideas, tools and techniques. I really have liked this book.
      Some of my research lead me to a book called Teach Yourself Visually Crocheting by Cecily Keim. I personally have not seen this book but some of the reviews I read sounded good especially for a beginner to intermediate crocheter. Hopefully, this will give you a good start and “Happy Creating”.

      • @MysticMeems, thank you so much. I am going to spend the weekend with a bottle of wine, The Complete Photo Guide book, and a mountain of yarn. I’ve never crocheted before but found a beautiful pattern for a blanket. Hopefully I can figure it out. Thanks again!

        • Mary,
          Sounds like an absolutely wonderful weekend. Just touch back with me should you have any other questions. Have fun learning to crochet and I hope you enjoy it to the fullest and Happy Creating.

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