How to convert between US and UK crochet patterns

This week I helped my stepmum troubleshoot a crochet pattern that she has been having some trouble with. When she showed me the pattern I realised that I would need to use UK terms instead of the US that I’m more familiar with. I used to find it difficult when I first started to crochet, that there are two different sets of terms. I would sometimes start a pattern then realise I was using the wrong stitches. The finished project didn’t look right which was disappointing. Luckily though, it’s not hard to convert between US and UK crochet patterns.

How to work out which terms your pattern uses

First you need to work out if the pattern you’re using is written in US or UK terms. A lot of designers tell you at the start of the pattern which is the easiest way to tell. If your pattern doesn’t, don’t worry. It’s still pretty simple to work out which it’s using.

If you see single crochet used, then your pattern is in US terminology as this stitch is not used in UK patterns. Conversely, if you see half treble or triple treble then your pattern in using UK terms as these aren’t used in US patterns. Books of patterns often have a guide to crochet at the start or end. You can check this to help tell if you’re using a US or UK crochet pattern. Look at the instructions for the double crochet stitch. If you need to yarn over before inserting the hook into the loop then it’s a US double crochet whereas if you insert the hook first then it’s UK

How to convert between US and UK terms

Once you’ve worked out which terminology your pattern uses, you can convert it to the ones you prefer. Use this table to easily convert between US and UK crochet terms.

USUK
chainchain
slip stitch slip stitch
single crochetdouble crochet
half double crochethalf treble crochet
double crochettreble crochet
treble crochetdouble treble crochet
double treble crochettriple treble crochet

Now you know how to identify US and UK patterns and convert between US and UK crochet terms. It’s quick to do before you start a project and it saves you the frustration of assuming the wrong terms and having to start again.

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