Monday, April 17, 2017

Crochet Tutorial: Tunisian Purl Stitch


How to Crochet the Tunisian Purl Stitch

Tunisian purl is a variation on the basic Tunisian stitch, or afghan stitch.  It produces a right-side surface that looks a bit like knitted garter stitch, and it's a great way to prevent curled edges.  As an added bonus, the other side has a very nice ridged look.

This is by far, my preferred stitch in Tunisian crochet, and I recommend using it instead of the basic Tunisian stitch.

Tunisian Purl Stitch: How to Do It
U.S. crochet terminology


Base Chain
Chain loosely or use one size larger hook and chain tightly.  Make as many chains as you want stitches to be in each row.

Base Row 1
Start in 2nd chain from hook, [insert hook into chain, pull yarn through, and leave loop on hook], repeat to end. You'll have the same number of loops on the hook as the number of chains you made for the base chain.

Base Row 2
Ch 1, [pull yarn through both the new loop and next loop on hook], repeat to end, ch 1.  Only 1 loop is left on hook.

Main Row 1 - Tunisian Purl Stitches
Skip over first vertical bar at the end,  [wrap yarn over front of hook counterclockwise, insert hook into next vertical bar, pull yarn to the front - straightening out the yarn-over you just made, wrap yarn clockwise around back of hook, draw yarn through the bar and onto hook], repeat to end.  Be sure to work the final vertical bar at the end of the row, next to the end chain.

Main Row 2 (same as Base Row 2)
Ch 1, [pull yarn through both the new loop and next loop on hook], repeat to end, ch 1.  Only 1 loop left on hook.

Repeat Main Rows 1 & 2 to desired length.

Tunisian Purl Stitch: Photo Tutorial
U.S. crochet terminology


Base Chain
Tunisian Purl Stitch Foundation Chain
Chain loosely or use one size larger hook and chain tightly.  Make as many chains as you want stitches to be in each row.

Base Row 1

Tunisian Purl Stitch Base Row 1 Start

Start in the second chain from the hook, [insert your hook into the chain, draw the yarn through the chain and onto the hook], repeat to end.

Tunisian Purl Stitch Base Row 1 Cast-Ons

You'll have as many loops on the hook as the number of chains you made for the base chain.

Base Row 2

Tunisian Purl Stitch Base Row 2 Start Casting Off

Chain 1, [pull a loop of the working yarn through both the new loop and the next loop on the hook], repeat to end, chain 1.  There should be only 1 loop left on the hook.

Looking at your work, you'll see a series of vertical bars going down the row.  It may help to give the row a stretch end-to-end, to straighten up the bars.

Main Row 1 - Tunisian Purl Stitches

Tunisian Purl Stitch Main Row 1 Start of Purl Stitch

Skip over the first vertical bar at the end by the hook,  [wrap the working yarn over the front of the hook counterclockwise,

Tunisian Purl Stitch Main Row 1 Continued Purl Stitch
insert the hook into the next vertical bar, pull working yarn to the front - straightening out the yarn-over you just made,

Tunisian Purl Stitch Main Row 1 Continued Purl Stitch
wrap the yarn clockwise around the back of the hook, draw the yarn through the bar and onto the hook], repeat to end.

Tunisian Purl Stitch Main Row 1 Last Stitch in Row

Be sure to work the final vertical bar at the very end of the row, next to the end chain.

Main Row 2   (same as Base Row 2)

Tunisian Purl Stitch Main Row 2 First Cast-Off

Chain 1, [pull a loop of the working yarn through both the new loop and the next loop on the hook], repeat to end, chain 1.  There should be only 1 loop left on the hook.

Repeat Main Rows 1 - 2 to desired length.


Upper Edge
Tunisian Purl Stitch Last Row: Top Edge

For a neat, uniform edge on your final row, make a Tunisian purl stitch in each vertical bar - including the first bar on the end, pulling through both loops on hook, and leaving only the newly made loop on the hook - no extra loops this time.

You Might Have a Few Surprise Problems


Most standard Tunisian stitches have some problems: curling, slanting, and stiffness.  Here are a few things to try:
  • Use a larger-than-usual hook, 3-5 sizes larger than recommended on the yarn label.
  • Try thinner yarn.
  • Use relaxed, less springy yarn, like cotton instead of wool.
  • Do not work tightly.
  • Be sure to skip over the first vertical bar in each casting-on row (main row 1).
  • Don't miss the last vertical bar for your last stitch in a casting-on row.  It can be hidden with the end-chain.
  • Crochet a border around your work.

You can find additional information on Tunisian crochet here:

Get Started with Tunisian Crochet
    includes a tutorial on the basic Tunisian stitch
How to Stop Crying Over Tunisian Crochet
    troubleshooting Tunisian crochet

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