How To Half Double Crochet Stitch For Beginners (hdc)

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In this blog post, you will learn how to half-double crochet (hdc) for beginners, along with a video tutorial. 

The half-double crochet is a versatile, easy stitch that can be used for a variety of projects, such as baby blankets, scarves, sweaters, beanies, pillows, and more. 

If you’re a beginner, learning how to do a half double crochet is a great place to start, a simple stitch to make. 

Read on, and you will find step-by-step instructions on how to do a half double crochet (hdc), how to do a half double crochet increase (hdc inc), and how to do a half double crochet decrease (hdc dec). 

How To Half Double Crochet Stitch For Beginners (HDC)

What Is A Half Double Crochet?    

A half double crochet (abbreviated as hdc) is a basic crochet stitch that falls between the single crochet stitch and the double crochet stitch in terms of height and texture. 

The correct height of the half double crochet stitch is taller than a single crochet but shorter than a double crochet. 

It has a nice balance between the firmness of a single crochet and the openness of a double crochet. 

What is half double crochet in us?    

In the United States, the term “half double crochet” is commonly abbreviated as “hdc” in crochet patterns. 

When you see an instruction like “hdc” in a pattern, it refers to the half-double crochet stitches. 

Related Post: Crochet Abbreviations And Terms (US + UK)

Video tutorial

View a video tutorial here to see how to do a half double crochet stitch.

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Half Double Crochet Dishcloth Pattern

Crocheting a dishcloth using the half-double crochet (HDC) stitch is an excellent project for beginners due to its simplicity and quick completion time.

Here’s a straightforward guide to help you crochet a practical and durable dishcloth.

*Grab your free printable PDF at the end of this pattern.

The supplies you need

Yarn

  • Medium weight cotton yarn (Size 4), as it’s absorbent and durable, making it ideal for dishcloths.
  • 1 x ball of The Pima Cotton yarn from We Are Knitters.
  • This yarn is 3.5 oz/100g/232 yds/212 m.
  • Use my code – MGM4VHHAT – for 10 off on your WAK yarn order.
  • You can make 2 dishcloths with this amount of cotton yarn.
  • Worsted weight yarn

Hook

A size H-8 / 5 mm crochet hook works well with medium weight yarn. 

Notions

  • Darning needle/yarn needle
  • Scissors
  • Tape measure

Size Information

Gauge – 14 sts/6 rows in 10×10 cm/4×4 inches in half double crochet.

Finished Size

  • Length = 8 inches/20 cm
  • Width = 8 inches /20 cm

Crochet Abbreviations

The pattern is written in US crochet terms.

  • ch – Chain
  • Cont – Continue
  • hdc – Half double crochet
  • Patt – Pattern
  • Rep – Repeat
  • RS – Right side
  • Sl-St – Slip stitch
  • St(s) – Stitch(es)
  • WS – Wrong side

Tips for a successful dishcloth:

  • Yarn Selection: Use 100% cotton yarn because it’s absorbent, machine washable, and durable enough to withstand the frequent use and cleaning cycles dishcloths go through.
  • Gauge: Gauge is not critical for a dishcloth, but if you want a specific size, you might want to check your gauge by crocheting a small swatch and measuring it.
  • Care: Wash your dishcloth in a washing machine on a gentle cycle and dry it on low heat or air dry.

This project is not only practical but also a great way to practice your half double crochet stitch, and you can experiment with colors and yarn types to customize your kitchen’s décor!

Half double crochet

Half Double Crochet (HDC) Dishcloth Crochet Pattern

1. Make a Slip Knot:

  • Start with a slip knot on your hook.

2. Create the Foundation Chain:

  • Chain 32 stitches (or any number, depending on how large you want your dishcloth).

3. Establish the First Row:

  • Row 1: Starting from the third chain from the hook, work a half double crochet (HDC) into each chain. You perform a HDC by yarning over, inserting the hook into the chain, yarning over again, and pulling through the chain. Yarn over once more and pull through all three loops on your hook. Continue this across the row, turn your work.

4. Continue Adding Rows:

  • Row 2 and Beyond: Chain 2 (this counts as your first HDC). Starting from the next stitch, HDC in each stitch across the row.
  • Repeat this row until you have reached your desired size, typically around 25 rows for a square dishcloth (or 8 inches in length).

5. Adding a Border (Optional):

  • Once your main body is complete, you can choose to add a simple single crochet border for a neat finish. Chain 1, then single crochet evenly around the perimeter of the dishcloth, putting 3 single crochets in each corner to maintain the shape. Join with a slip stitch to the first single crochet.

6. Finishing Off:

  • Cut the yarn, leaving a few inches. Pull the yarn through the last loop on your hook and tighten. Weave in all ends with your yarn needle to secure.

Grab Your Free Printable PDF Pattern Here

Half double crochet hdc

How To Make A Half Double Crochet?    

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to make a half double crochet (hdc):

  1. Begin with a Foundation Chain:
    • Create a foundation chain with the desired number of chains. This will serve as the starting point for your hdc row.
  2. Yarn Over (YO):
    • Yarn over your crochet hook by bringing the yarn from the back to the front over the top of the hook.
  3. Insert Hook into Chain:
    • Insert your hook into the desired chain. For the first half double crochet in a row, you might insert it into the third chain from the hook.
  4. Yarn Over and Pull Up a Loop:
    • Yarn over again and pull up a loop through the chain. You should now have three loops on your hook.
  5. Yarn Over and Pull Through All Loops:
    • Yarn over once more and pull it through all three loops on your hook. This action completes the half double crochet.
  6. Continue Across the Row:
    • Repeat steps 2-5 in each chain across the row until you reach the end.
  7. Turn Your Work:
    • Once you finish a row, turn your work to start a new row. To maintain the height of the stitches, you typically chain 2 at the beginning of the row (this serves as the turning chain).
  8. Repeat the Process:
    • Yarn over, insert the hook into the first stitch of the new row, yarn over and pull up a loop, then yarn over and pull through all three loops on the hook.
  9. Continue Working Rows:
    • Repeat the process of half double crocheting across each row until you achieve the desired length for your project.

And that’s it, you just made your first hdc stitch!

Half double crochet close up

How To Half Double Crochet Increase?

Increasing in half double crochet (hdc increase) involves adding more stitches to your row, increasing the width of your project.

 Here’s a step-by-step tutorial on how to do a half double crochet (hdc) increase:

  1. Start with a Foundation Chain:
    • Begin with a foundation chain of the desired length for your project.
  2. Chain 2 (Turning Chain):
    • Chain 2 at the end of the foundation chain. This serves as the turning chain and provides the necessary height for the first hdc.
  3. First Half Double Crochet:
    • Yarn over (YO) and insert your hook into the third chain from the hook.
  4. Yarn Over and Pull Up a Loop:
    • Yarn over and pull up a loop through the chain. You should have three loops on your hook.
  5. Yarn Over and Pull Through All Loops:
    • Yarn over once more and pull it through all three loops on your hook. This completes the first hdc.
  6. Additional Increases:
    • To increase, you can work additional hdc’s into the same stitch. Immediately work another hdc into the same stitch you just completed.
  7. Continue Across the Row:
    • Continue working hdc’s across the row, placing additional stitches as needed to achieve the desired increase.
  8. Turn Your Work:
    • At the last stitch of the row, turn your work.
  9. Chain 2:
    • Chain 2 to serve as the turning chain for the next row.
  10. Repeat the Process:
  • Repeat steps 3-8 for each row, increasing as needed. You can place the increases in specific stitches or evenly distribute them across the row, depending on your pattern.

Remember that the number of stitches you increase in each row will depend on your project’s design and the pattern instructions. 

How To Half Double Crochet Decrease? 

Decreasing in half double crochet (hdc decrease) involves combining two stitches into one to reduce the number of stitches in a row. 

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do a hdc decrease stitch, often abbreviated as hdc2tog:

  1. Start with a Partial Yarn Over (YO):
    • Begin with a partial yarn over, bringing the yarn from the back to the front, creating a loop over the hook.
  2. Insert Hook into First Stitch:
    • Insert your hook into the first stitch where you want to start the decrease.
  3. Complete the Partial Yarn Over and Pull Up a Loop:
    • Yarn over again (completing the yarn over) and pull up a loop through the first stitch. You should have three loops on your hook.
  4. Partial Yarn Over Again:
    • Do another partial yarn over.
  5. Insert Hook into Second Stitch:
    • Insert your hook into the second stitch where you want to continue the decrease.
  6. Complete the Partial Yarn Over and Pull Up a Loop:
    • Yarn over again and pull up a loop through the second stitch. You should have five loops on your hook.
  7. Yarn Over and Pull Through All Loops:
    • Yarn over one more time and pull it through all five loops on your hook. This completes the half double crochet decrease, joining the two stitches into one.
  8. Chain 1 (Optional):
    • You might need to chain 1 after the decrease to maintain the stitch pattern or create the desired spacing in your project. This depends on the specific pattern you are following. 

Stitch Variation

The half-double crochet (dc) is a versatile stitch with various creative variations that add texture and depth to crochet projects. 

One popular and easy variation is the front post half double crochet (FPhdc), where the stitch is worked around the post instead of into the top loops, creating a raised effect and a different texture. 

The back post half double crochet (BPhdc) is another option, involving working around the back post to create raised stitches on the back of the fabric. 

The herringbone half double crochet introduces a subtle slant to the stitch, resulting in a unique diagonal appearance.  

Additionally, working the hdc in the third loop, ( HDC 3rd loop), often referred to as the “camel” or “center” loop, creates a beautiful knit-like fabric with a subtle ridge. 

Ribbing

For those looking to add texture to their work, the half double crochet in the back loop only (hdc blo) is an excellent choice, creating a ribbed effect by working solely through the back loop of each stitch.

More Crochet Stitch Tutorials 

If you are ready to make your next stitch, check out the crochet lessons that are perfect for beginner crocheters. 

Including how to make a slip knot (step by step), how to hold a crochet hook, how to start a crochet chain, how to single crochet (SC), how to double crochet (dc) for beginners, how to treble crochet (tr), how to make a single crochet decrease and many more.

Once you have mastered the basic crochet stitches, check out this post for more crochet stitch ideas – 30 Crochet Stitches For All Skill Levels

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Happy Crocheting!

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