When it comes to crocheting, a single ball of yarn can get you pretty far. If you want to make a big blanket using as little yarn as possible, there are a few crochet stitches that you can use to cover a large area with just a few balls of yarn.
What crochet stitches use the least yarn? If you want a simple repeat with basic crochet stitches, taller stitches like double crochets and triple crochets are your friends. If you would like to get a bit fancier, you can use lacy stitches to create a big, lacy blanket.
In this article, let’s learn more about some simple crochet stitches that use the least amount of yarn so that you can get more done with less material!
Why DO Certain Crochet Stitches Use Less Yarn?
There are a lot of crochet stitches that don’t consume a lot of yarn, so we won’t be able to mention all of them here.
However, if you know the basic principles of what kinds of stitches will consume less yarn, then you’ll be able to apply the same principles when identifying stitches that won’t consume a lot of yarn.
Basically, the stitches that won’t consume a lot of yarn are either of the following:
- Tall stitches like double crochets and triple crochets. Double crochets and triple crochets have a lot of height, and the spaces between the stitches look quite airy, which means you can achieve more height with fewer rows of stitches.
- Lacy stitches that leave a lot of ‘holes’ in between the stitches. The holes are created by skipping stitches and replacing the skipped stitches with simple chain stitches, which won’t consume a lot of yarn.
There are literally hundreds of different variations of lacy stitches, so we will only mention a few of them here. But if you can see in the pattern that there are a lot of skipped stitches and chain stitches, then that pattern probably doesn’t require a lot of yarn.
Another way to tell if a piece of crochet fabric doesn’t consume a lot of yarn is if the fabric feels very drapey. Both the tall stitches and the lacy stitches mentioned above create very drapey fabric because there is a lot of space between the stitches that allow the fabric to move very flexibly.
The structured stitches that create a solid fabric, for example, plain single crochets, will always feel thicker and stiffer. If the fabric feels very airy and flexible, it’s likely that the pattern doesn’t consume a lot of yarn.
If you don’t want to change the pattern you are using, you can also use a bigger crochet hook. If the pattern recommends using a 4mm hook, you can size up to a 5mm hook to create bigger and airier stitches. This is a simple way to create a bigger piece of crochet fabric with less yarn without having to alter the pattern.
How Can You Know What Crochet Stitches Consume Less Yarn?
If you have two different crochet patterns and wonder which one will consume less yarn so that you can get more out of your yarn collection, you can tell by doing a simple gauge swatch!
Creating a gauge swatch is a trusty method used by every crocheter and knitter, and it’s highly recommended that you make a gauge swatch every time you start a new project.
Since every crocheter crochets differently, your stitches may be smaller or bigger than the pattern recommended. Creating a gauge swatch can help you make sure that your tension is correct so that the final product will become the correct size when you’re finished!
But how can we use a gauge swatch to measure which crochet stitches use the least yarn?
You can create a 4” x 4” gauge swatch for each stitch pattern. Then, you can weigh the swatch to see which one is lighter. The swatch with the lighter weight will be the one that consumes less yarn!
Now that you know the basic principles, we’ll walk you through some of the basic stitches that use the least yarn.
Double crochets are basic stitches that are employed in almost every pattern, but if you want a simple repeat, using all double crochet stitches can also help you create a light and airy fabric that doesn’t consume a lot of yarn.
Since the stitches are very tall, you don’t need to create as many rows to achieve the same height for the stitches. To create double crochet, simply yarn over once, insert your hook into the stitch below, pull up a stitch, and pull through two loops twice.
Here’s a useful tutorial for how to make double crochet from Fiber Flux on YouTube.
Similar to the double crochet stitches, triple crochet stitches also create super tall and skinny stitches that don’t require many rows to create a large area.
To create a triple crochet stitch, simply yarn over twice, insert your hook into the stitch below to pull up a loop, then pull through two loops three times.
Here’s a useful tutorial for how to make triple crochet from AllFreeCrochet on YouTube.
Lace stitches help you create a super lightweight, flowy fabric that has a lot of open spaces.
The open spaces are often created by skipping stitches and replacing them with a chain stitch, but there are many different variations of this technique that allow you to create hundreds of different lacy patterns.
A quick note about lacy crochet stitches: if you want the lacy pattern to lay flat and show as the pattern intended, then blocking is essential!
Since lacy patterns employ a lot of skipped stitches, the resulting fabric may look scrunched up and distorted after you finish it, and that’s completely normal.
Blocking (where you wet the fabric and pin it in place to dry) will allow the stitches to take the intended shape and create a beautiful lacy pattern that will lay flat and flow beautifully.
Below are some beginner-friendly lacy stitches that you can use to create a beautiful shawl or blanket with the least amount of yarn!
There are a few different ways that you can achieve a mesh look with crochet, but this is definitely the simplest one.
This mesh pattern is created by working a double crochet, followed by two chain stitches, and skipping the two corresponding stitches below.
By repeating these stitches, you will see spaces appearing where the chain stitches are, and a mesh pattern will start to appear after a few rows! This is a nice pattern to use for shawls, beach cover-ups, and even a useful market bag.
Here’s a great tutorial from Crochet Town on YouTube.
The crochet V stitch uses the repeat “double crochet, chain, double crochet into the same space, skip the next two stitches” to create a V shape for each stitch. The chain space and the skipped stitches will appear as triangular holes in the pattern.
The V-stitch is only complicated during the first setup row, but by the second row, you don’t have to count stitches anymore since you’ll be crocheting into the chain stitch in each of the “V” below. That’s why it’s quite a fast crochet stitch that doesn’t require a lot of yarn!
Here’s a great tutorial from Hooked By Robin on YouTube.
Similar to the V-stitch, the shell V-stitch will also make a “V” shape, but the repeat will be “2 double crochet in the same stitch, chain 2, 2 double crochet in the same stitch, skip 3 stitches.”
The V is created by two sets of two double crochets, all in the same stitch, so the stitch will appear more like a shell.
Similar to the basic V-stitch, the shell V-stitch is only complicated to set up, but by the second row, you’ll be crocheting into the chain 2 space between the V, so it’s still a relatively simple repeat for such a lovely stitch pattern!
Here’s a great tutorial from Jennyandteddy crochet on YouTube.
Lacy Chevron Stitch
This lacy chevron stitch looks complicated, but we promise that it’s not too hard to achieve at all!
The lacy chevron stitch employs the same technique as the mesh stitch by repeating “double crochet, chain, skip the next stitch below.”
But by varying the number of skipped stitches and crocheting into the same space, the pattern will start to appear where the skipped stitches will appear as dips in the row, and the clusters will start to appear as peaks in the row.
Sounds complicated? Here’s a simple tutorial that can help you master this pattern from Fiber Spider on YouTube.
Filet crochet is another simple way that you can use double crochets and chain stitches to create a beautiful lacy stitch pattern. By varying where the chain and the skipped stitches are, you can also “draw” with the skipped stitches as well.
You can even customize the filet crochet to create a pattern of your own. With filet crochet, you can also control how lacy you want the pattern to be.
Here’s a tutorial from Bella Coco on YouTube.