How to Make a Slip Knot Crochet

How to Make a Slip Knot: Crochet for Beginners

Understanding how to make a slip knot for crochet is a fundamental skill when you’re learning how to crochet, similar to learning to thread a needle when learning to sew. Most crochet projects will begin with a slip knot, so it should be the first skill you practice as a beginner crocheter.

The textile craft of crochet uses crochet hooks and yarn to create blankets, clothes, figurines, and more. People who already know how to sew and enjoy working with different types of fabrics are drawn to crochet for its soothing, repetitive nature.

How to make a slip knot crochet
Image source: Melu Crochet

Keep reading to learn what a slip knot is and how to make a slip knot on a crochet hook. Once you know how to create a slip knot for crochet, you will be able to practice the basic crochet stitches such as the single crochet stitch, the double crochet stitch, and how to crochet a circle.

What is a Slip Knot in Crochet

Before we discuss how to start a crochet slip knot, let’s cover the basics of what a slip knot is and why it’s important in crochet. A slip knot is also called a “running knot”, and it’s defined by the fact that it can be undone by simply pulling, as illustrated in the picture below.

Slip knot
Image source: Sheep & Stitch

The slip knot serves as a starting point for all crochet projects, except ones that begin with a magic circle. It acts as a stopper knot that allows you to stitch your foundational chain stitches that become the base for the entire project. The slip knot can be indicated in three different ways in crochet instructions and patterns. See the table below.

Instruction

Abbreviation

Symbol

Slip Knot

lp

Crochet chart and directions
Image source: Dabbles and Babbles

**this is officially the symbol for “beginning of work”, but since the slip knot marks the beginning of any crochet project the meaning is the same.

Since no crocheting can happen without a slip knot, learning how to do a slip knot for crochet should be the first step in your crocheting journey.

Tips for Learning How to Tie a Slip Knot in Crochet 

Learning how to tie a crochet knot is perhaps the easiest skill to acquire in all of crochet. However, since it’s a true beginner skill you should still be patient and detailed. Before you start practicing how to start a knot for crochet, review these basic tips:

    1. Experiment with different methods. There are many ways to learn how to start a crochet knot, and experienced crocheters all have their favorite way. If you’re feeling frustrated by one technique, move on to another until you find the one best for you.
    2. Work with a mid-sized hook and yarn to start.
    3. Choose an appropriate crochet yarn for beginners. In order to see your work most clearly, start with a yarn that is:
      • Light or bright in color
      • Isn’t too fuzzy (not too much texture)
    4. The abbreviation for a slip stitch in crochet is lp.
    5. Begin by practicing your slip knot and stitches in a practice swatch. This will allow you to develop your skills without having to learn reading a crochet pattern at the same time.
    6. The slip knot does not count as a stitch in crochet. When you are ready to practice crocheting with a pattern, remember to start counting your foundation chain after your slip knot.
    7. Familiarize yourself with basic crochet terminology. You don’t have to know what a magic circle is or recognize the abbreviation for a half double crochet stitch, but you should understand how crocheters refer to different ends of the yarn.
      • The “working end” of the yarn refers to the yarn coming from your skein or yarn ball.
      • The “tail end” of the yarn is the yarn being used or worked.

Crochet slip knot
Image source: Crochet Guru

How Do You Make a Slip Knot in Crochet

As mentioned earlier, there are many methods covering how to start a crochet knot. This article covers three different techniques to create a slip knot, but an extra list of methods is included at the end of this article.

Note: The instructions below are all written for right-handed crocheters. If you are left-handed, make sure you’re familiar with how to read crochet patterns as a left-handed crocheter.

How to Make a Slip Knot in Crochet: Method #1

    1. Pinch your yarn between your right index finger and thumb, leaving a tail at least four to six inches long.
    2. Without moving your fingers, twist the yarn clockwise.

How to make a slip knot for knitting
Image source: Instructables.com

      3. Place both your right index finger and thumb inside the loop you just created. Open it slightly, holding the yarn tails in your left hand.

How to do a slip knot crochet
Image source: Instructables.com

      4. Reach through your loop with your right index finger and thumb. Grab the right (bottom) strand of yarn and pull it up through the loop. Do not tighten the slip knot.

How to tie a slip knot crochet
Image source: Instructables.com

      5. Put your crochet hook through the loop and pull the ends to tighten the slip knot.

How to tie a crochet knot
Image source: Instructables.com

      6. Start crocheting!

How to Make a Slip Knot in Crochet: Method #2

The second method uses a crochet hook to form the slip knot. Follow along with the written instructions below, and feel free to let the images guide you.

    1. Loop your working yarn over your yarn tail, leaving several inches of tail. The loop should point down.

Slip stitch steps
Image source: Crochet 365 Knit Too

      2. Place your crochet hook through the loop, under the right side of your loop, and hook the working yarn. Pull through the loop.

Slip knot chain and slip stitch
Image source: Crochet 365 Knit Too

      3. After you’ve pulled through the loop, pull on both ends of the yarn to tighten the loop until it’s secure.

Slip stitch tutorial
Image source: Crochet 365 Knit Too

      4. Celebrate the fact that you just learned how to start a crochet loop, otherwise known as a slip knot!

How to Make a Slip Knot in Crochet: Method #3

The third method uses a crochet hook and the yarn over technique. These instructions are slightly more challenging for new crocheters. 

The advantage of these instructions is that they provide great practice for the yarn over technique. The yarn over technique is used in many common crochet stitches and skills, such as:

Even though it’s more challenging, you might find that you prefer to use this method after you’re more confident in other crochet techniques.

    1. Leave a four-inch tail of yarn. Fold the yarn over itself, leaving the tail end in front and the working yarn in back. Hold the yarn in this position using your thumb and index finger, with the front (tail) end draped over your index finger.

Slip knot crochet
Image source: The Spruce Crafts       

      2. Grip your hook like a pencil or a knife in your right hand. Keep the hook facing up.

      3. Continue holding the yarn in your left hand while you grab the top of the draped yarn on the hook. Hold the yarn on the hook in place while you rotate the top of the hook clockwise (to the right). The yarn should form a very loose loop.

How to start a crochet slip knot
Image source: The Spruce Crafts

      4. Yarn over hook. Hold the tail of yarn with your middle finger and thumb. Place your index finger between the yarn strands and hold the draped yarn away from the hook. From here, you have two options:

      • From behind, wrap the yarn over the crochet hook and then over the top using your left hand.
      • Use the crochet hook to do the same movement as above.

How to make a slip knot on crochet hook
Image source: The Spruce Crafts

      5. Pull through the loop. Use the top of the crochet hook to pull the yarn over through the loop on the hook. When done correctly, the yarn over on your hook will go through the loop and form a loose slip knot.

What is a slip knot in crochet
Image source: The Spruce Crafts

      6. Leave the slip knot on your hook and pull firmly on both ends of the yarn to tighten the knot. Don’t tighten too much or you risk the crochet hook moving inside the loop.

More Ways to Learn How to Do Slip Knot In Crochet

Good news! Once you’ve learned the easy skills of how to make a slip knot and how to weave in ends, you know how to start and finish virtually any crochet project. If none of the above slip knot techniques felt comfortable, continue to explore more methods. Browse the table below for additional slip knot instructions.

Slip Knot Technique

Difficulty Level

The Pretzel Technique

Easy

The X Technique

Easy

The Flip Technique

Medium

Of course, the real challenge comes in learning the foundational stitches and techniques that create the project itself. Be patient with yourself, and soon you’ll be crocheting fabulous crochet sweaters, scarves, and accessories.

When you’re ready to go pro and sell your crochet items, consider investing in custom woven labels and hang tags so no one forgets the master crocheter who created their favorite item. If you sell crochet clothes, custom care labels will ensure that your customers take care of their items and enjoy them for years.

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