Crocodile Crochet Stitch Pattern

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This headwrap makes me think of eagle-people or mythical flying people. I love the colors! It's so beautiful!The crocodile stitch makes this hooded cowl lovely.I never thought it would look so gorgeous as a necklace. (This one's probably sold already because I can't find it anymore on craftisart.com.)I love this elegant purse! It looks like a million bucks!A warm scarf perfect for kids!  This is the  scarf that started my crocodile-stitch headache.One of the eight patterns found in Crocodile Stitch Fashions, such a pretty hat!One of the eight patterns found in Crocodile Stitch Fashions, so warm and beautiful - perfect for cold weather.These baby booties are so cute! There's a lot of crocodile stitch patterns where these came from - Bonita Patterns.
This headwrap makes me think of eagle-people or mythical flying people. I love the colors! It's so beautiful!
This headwrap makes me think of eagle-people or mythical flying people. I love the colors! It's so beautiful! | Source
The crocodile stitch makes this hooded cowl lovely.
The crocodile stitch makes this hooded cowl lovely. | Source
I never thought it would look so gorgeous as a necklace. (This one's probably sold already because I can't find it anymore on craftisart.com.)
I never thought it would look so gorgeous as a necklace. (This one's probably sold already because I can't find it anymore on craftisart.com.) | Source
I love this elegant purse! It looks like a million bucks!
I love this elegant purse! It looks like a million bucks! | Source
A warm scarf perfect for kids!  This is the  scarf that started my crocodile-stitch headache.
A warm scarf perfect for kids! This is the scarf that started my crocodile-stitch headache. | Source
One of the eight patterns found in Crocodile Stitch Fashions, such a pretty hat!
One of the eight patterns found in Crocodile Stitch Fashions, such a pretty hat! | Source
One of the eight patterns found in Crocodile Stitch Fashions, so warm and beautiful - perfect for cold weather.
One of the eight patterns found in Crocodile Stitch Fashions, so warm and beautiful - perfect for cold weather. | Source
These baby booties are so cute! There's a lot of crocodile stitch patterns where these came from - Bonita Patterns.
These baby booties are so cute! There's a lot of crocodile stitch patterns where these came from - Bonita Patterns. | Source

The crocodile crochet stitch portrays crocodile scales in a romantic manner, so different from the tough exterior of the mighty crocodile. This crochet stitch pattern produces a thick, warm cloth perfect for scarves, shawls, wrist-warmers, etc. Its three-dimensional effect produces a beautiful accent on bags, hats, and cowls. Even when used throughout, any FO becomes an elegant piece.

Discovery

I first saw the crocodile stitch in a scarf pattern on Ravelry. A few days later, I saw of video link posted on Crochet Pattern Central. So I got curious and searched Google, Ravelry, and Etsy for more FO’s and patterns. I also searched YouTube for more videos. I found few free written patterns that are quite difficult to understand (or I just didn’t have the patience to read it thoroughly). Most of the videos are too long as well, my attention just can’t last for a 30+-min or 13+-min video. There’s a 5-min video (floating right) but it only shows two rows, not the 4-row repeat that shows how to create the staggered arrangement of the crocodile stitch.

Because of all these, it seemed to me that the crocodile stitch is some sort of classified information.

Simulation

After watching the video by CrochetGeek a.k.a. Art of Crochet by Teresa, I decided to do it. The instructions are still vague, especially the beginning and end row. However, I already understood the idea how to form each “scale”.

I tried it on a Saturday night with a 20-in foundation chain. The problem on beginning and ending a row still persists. So I just went to sleep at 11 pm but whenever I wake up, the stitch pattern simulates in my head.

I couldn’t sleep no more. At 5:00 in the morning I woke up, returned to my failed project and worked on it. SUCCESS!

Now I can go back to sleep.

My gorgeous crocodile crochet purse (I placed a ball inside to make the 'scales' protrude)
My gorgeous crocodile crochet purse (I placed a ball inside to make the 'scales' protrude) | Source
Crocodile Stitch - up close
Crocodile Stitch - up close

Crocodile Stitch Project – Hand-held Purse

The following Sunday, I felt the need to create an FO using the crocodile stitch and thought a very small purse would be a perfect start. I was having a debate in my mind whether to make a crochet cloth, fold, and stitch to the purse or just work on both sides of the chain and work in rounds. After much mental deliberation, I decided to choose the latter.

At first, I turned at the end of each round but soon realized it’s easier to work without turning. There’s a slight advantage, though – the beginning of odd round moves slowly from the side towards the center because of the staggered arrangement of the crocodile scales. Nevertheless the advantage outweighs the disadvantage – I didn’t have to worry how to end and begin the row making it easier to follow the staggered arrangement.

Check out my crocodile purse here!

Click Figures to Enlarge

Figure 1: Parts of a Double Crochet Stitch
Figure 1: Parts of a Double Crochet Stitch
Figure 2: The stitches in the odd rows of the crocodile stitch pattern.
Figure 2: The stitches in the odd rows of the crocodile stitch pattern.
Figure 3: The odd row stitches are drawn in black, the even row stitches are drawn in blue. This shows the arrangement of stitches to make one "scale"
Figure 3: The odd row stitches are drawn in black, the even row stitches are drawn in blue. This shows the arrangement of stitches to make one "scale"
Figure 4: This figure shows the direction of working the even-row dc's on the post of the odd-row twin dc's.
Figure 4: This figure shows the direction of working the even-row dc's on the post of the odd-row twin dc's.

CROCODILE STITCH DE-CLASSIFIED

There are many variations to this stitch pattern. My version is based on the video by CrochetGeek. Honestly, it was too long I didn’t watch it closely. But I like it because it has subtitles, which means I can watch it silently. I can’t say for certain that this pattern is the same as that of the video but it is very similar. Most videos I’ve watched do not define a formula for the foundation chain – I did.

Overview

To clearly understand this stitch, one must have a clear concept of the parts of dc stitch (see Figure 1). Normally, new stitches are worked on top of old stitches. That is not the case for the crocodile stitch. The stitches of the even rows are worked on the posts of the dc’s in odd rows, hiding these rows in the process (see figure 3).

When making a crochet cloth, the crocodile stitch requires the repetition of 4 rows worked back and forth. The odd rows (row1, 3, 5…) contain alternate lone and twin dc’s separated by ch-1’s (see Figure 2). These rows are invisible from the right side and only serve as anchors of the “scales”, which are worked on the even rows (row 2, 4, 6…). On the even rows, 10 dc’s worked on the twin dc’s of odd rows, 5 dc’s for each dc, which are anchored along the posts of the twin dc’s (see Figure 3). The first 5 dc’s are worked from top to base of the first dc, the last 5 dc’s are worked from base to top of the next dc (see Figure 4). The last of the 10 dc’s that forms the “scale” is secured with a sl st on the post of the next lone dc (see Figure 3).

Charted Pattern

Here is a chart of the crocodile stitch pattern. The odd rows are drawn in black, the even rows are drawn in blue.

Figure 5: The crocodile crochet stitch pattern - black symbols represents odd rows while blue represents even rows.
Figure 5: The crocodile crochet stitch pattern - black symbols represents odd rows while blue represents even rows.
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Figure 6: Foundation Chain and Row 1Figure 7: Row 2Figure 8: Row 3Figure 9: Row 4 Repeat Row 1-4 for pattern
Figure 6: Foundation Chain and Row 1
Figure 6: Foundation Chain and Row 1
Figure 7: Row 2
Figure 7: Row 2
Figure 8: Row 3
Figure 8: Row 3
Figure 9: Row 4 Repeat Row 1-4 for pattern
Figure 9: Row 4 Repeat Row 1-4 for pattern

Written Pattern

Abbreviations:

  • ch - chain
  • dc - double crochet
  • sl st - slip stitch
  • sp - space
  • sk - skip


Foundation Chain: Ch a multiple of 6+4.

Row 1: Ch 3, 1 dc in the 4th ch from hook, (ch 1, sk 2 ch, 1 dc in next ch, ch 1, sk 2 ch, 2 dc in next ch) repeat until 3 ch left, ch 1, sk 2 ch, 1 dc in the last ch. (SEE FIGURE 6)

Row 2: Ch 1, turn, sl st on the post of 1st lone dc, (5 dc on the post of next dc worked from top to base, 5 dc on the post of next dc worked from base to top, sl st to next lone dc) repeat till last lone dc. 5 dc on the post of next dc worked from top to base, 5 dc on the ch-3 sp worked from base to top, sl st to top of ch-3. (SEE FIGURE 7)

Row 3: Ch 4, turn, (2 dc on lone dc of Row 1, ch 1, 1 dc in the center of the next “scale”, ch 1) repeat towards the last “scale”, 2 dc on the last lone dc. (SEE FIGURE 8)

Row 4: Ch 1, (5 dc on the post of next dc worked from top to base, 5 dc on the post of next dc worked from base to top, sl st to the post of next dc) repeat to end. 3 ch of ch-4 from row 3 serves as last lone dc. (SEE FIGURE 9)

Since Row 1 is anchored on the foundation chain, just anchor the stitches similar to how row 3 is worked.

Try the Crocodile Stitch

After reading this article, do you plan to use the crocodile stitch in your future crochet projects?

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Conclusion

For me, the crocodile stitch is a revolutionary way of doing crochet for it expands the possibilities in crochet. Right now, I am thinking of ways to create a variation of this stitch pattern. (There’s a myriad of images floating in my mind right now – lacy, solid… sigh.)

I hope this article will encourage you to try this stitch pattern in your next crochet project.

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Comments Make ME Happy! 54 comments

Sandyhedgehog 22 months ago

Love this crotchet stitch. I have made two cushion covers with this pattern.


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MoiraCrochets 23 months ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Hello Lillian!

You dont have to crochet a foundation row after each scale row. There is a diagram on the 'Written Pattern' section that shows how to do he sticth row by row. Just click on the thumbnail to view the full size of the diagram.


Lillian Sauve 23 months ago

Love this stitch. Would someone be good enough to answer a question for me??????

Do I have to crochet a foundation row after each scale row?

Tks. lilliansauve@yahoo.ca


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MoiraCrochets 2 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Thank you, VVanNess! I love this stitch so much!


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VVanNess 2 years ago from Prescott Valley

This is just beautiful! I bet it keeps your ears warm too! Nice job!


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MoiraCrochets 2 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Hello RhondaHumphreys1! The hood is from DaintyLoops.com but unfortunately the link is no longer there. I'm not sure what happened.

I love Bonita Patterns too especially the booties. Thanks for leaving a comment.


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RhondaHumphreys1 2 years ago from Michigan

Thank you so much for the great hub. I too love the patterns from Bonita patterns. They are beautiful. You have a hood in one of your pictures do you know where it is from? I'd love to make it.

Rhonda from The 2 Hookers Shop on Etsy and facebook


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MoiraCrochets 3 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Thank you Anamika. I'm not very patient too so I keep my projects small. ",) I hope you give crochet a try someday.


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MoiraCrochets 3 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Hello Daughter of Maat! I'm happy to help you fulfill your crocodile baby booties!


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Anamika S 3 years ago from Mumbai - Maharashtra, India

Interesting! I really appreciate people with your skills. Though I love stuff like these, I don't have the patience to learn or do it.


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Daughter Of Maat 3 years ago from Rural Central Florida

This is a great hub. The crocodile stitch can be really confusing when you're reading the pattern. These are very helpful tips! Now I can actually try making the crocodile baby booties without feeling intimidated!!


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MoiraCrochets 3 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Thank you, Viktoria-Lyn! I'm very happy you found my instructions helpful. ",)


Viktoria-Lyn 3 years ago

I've been wanting to try this for a while now, thanks for making the instructions a lot clearer than any I have found so far. It's quite a work out for your hands lol. Of course I tried it with #10 crochet cotton and a size #7 hook, probably not the best tools for trying a new stitch but its what I work with and all I had. Still came out cute tho, like a mini version of the yarn one.


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MoiraCrochets 3 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

I respect if you feel that way Lucia. I love the designs of Bonita patterns, too. That's why I featured her baby booties with a link to her site.

What I'm trying to do here is just to explain the stitch. What others will do with the stitch is their concern. And I hope you respect that, too.


Lucia 3 years ago

I really do not understand anything that you are making, it is a very cheap copy of the bonita patterns has been developing . Even, you are showing the baby boots that became a best seller.


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MoiraCrochets 3 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Thank you Rhonda!


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RhondaHumphreys1 3 years ago from Michigan

What a great hub.voted up and useful


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

You're welcome, Sylvie!


sylvie in france 4 years ago

I love ! It's very interesting. I would like to find books with différent models to realize but in France it's difficult. More thanks you are too strong. Excuse my english (i dont practise).


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

I got lost watching the videos, too. Hope it turns out great, holyjeans.


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holyjeans30 4 years ago from Mostly in My Own Little World

I'm bookmarking this to check out this weekend. I just recently saw about this stitch and tried to work it watching the video, and I got totally lost. Thank you for breaking it down a lot better, so I'll definitely be back to try it.


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Charts makes things simple for me, It's easier to explain things with a chart. It's a teacher thing. ",) Old habits die hard.


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handmadebybheng 4 years ago from Cubao , Quezon City

I'm thinking of making a bag using this crocodile stitch pattern.. It's a good thing you placed charts hahahaah


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

@Alice: You're welcome! I love this stitch and I just want to spread the love. ",)

@Priya: You should try this pattern of mine (moiracrochets.hubpages.com/hub/Crochet-Purse-Free-Pattern2) because it does not require attaching. As to the wooden handle, I haven't tried that so I would not have any idea. I'm sorry. I hope this helps.


priya 4 years ago

i tried the purse but was not able to attach the two parts of the purse since the scales are not evenly placed. can u help me? also tell me how to attach a wooden handle to the purse.


Alice 4 years ago

Very nice post. Thanks for your consideration in making and sharing it with all.


jean fd 4 years ago

Hi Moira! I stumbled upon your great hub while lazily browsing and thinking about what to crochet next. I haven't tried the crocodile stitch yet so I'm thinking maybe I could make a tote bag. I admire your patience in making patterns. Although I have a few creations of my own, the thought of making patterns daunted me. Maybe you can give me a few hints? Thanks!


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

It sure is interesting Serena. This stitch didn't let me sleep for a while.

I miss teaching too. Now that I'm pregnant and hormones got me to dislike crochet, I'm starting to feel how mundane life is for a stay-at-home mom.

My prayer now is for my creativity to come back because I sure lost it when I got pregnant. Boredom is killing me.

God help me!


Serena 4 years ago

:D thank you Moira! Tomorrow I will try this interesting stitch following your instructions! I read your profile: I'm a teacher too and I just had a baby :) I wish I could leave my work too and stay home with my little one now, but here in Italy we are facing a really hard time... so in a few months I will "go back to school" :( Since then, I will crochet and crochet and crochet!! ;) thank you again!


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Oh, I'm very sorry about the images not loading up.

I'm happy you find the written instructions helpful.


Joyce 4 years ago

The tutorial is well done and I appreciate your efforts. I plan to use the Crocodile Scales as an edge on an afghan made with the Crazy Crochet stitch and wanted to see a symbol pattern for this stitch in order to get organized. I loaded this page twice and, both times, the thumbnail images for figures 6-9 loaded without the html link, so I could not view the full-sized images for those figures. Thank you for the written instructions.


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Yes LEE, it is a typo. Thanks for pointing that out (I'm editing it now) and for leaving a well-said comment.

I'm glad you found this to be helpful.


Lee 4 years ago

Thank you so much for this dissection. It condenses the information in those too long videos into an easy to understand form and makes this stitch all the more lovable.

I do have a question though; in your written instructions for row one, you say ch 1, sk 2 ch, dc 1, sk 2 ch, 2 dc; but in the chart there's a ch 1 between the single dc and the double dc. I'm following the chart, as it makes more sense and follows the schematic for row 3, so was it just a typo?


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

I felt the same way Sherry Ann, that's why I wrote this.

I am happy that I am able to help you with something I wrote.

Your comment is very much appreciated.


sherry ann 4 years ago

For once someone really made the instructions clear. You are very talented & I appreciate that. Watched one video and did not really get the hang of it. Now I see where I went wrong. God Bless for doing this.


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Thanks, Sara. I get a lot of good comments about my charts. :-)

I just became VERY interested in the stitch pattern, and saw an opportunity for a great hub. And now, what a great hub it really is! It's actually my greatest.

As for the colorful plastic bags, that's because I live in the Philippines where convenience is prioritized over "green-ness". So, plastic bags abound in all thickness, texture and LOVELY colors. I don't even have to buy it. Most stores give them away for free.


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SaraDuggan 4 years ago from California

You skill in writing up charts is great. Here in the states we use written patterns so I'm not as used to them. I like how you explained the crocodile stitch especially the title 'Crocodile Stitch Declassified'. Love the purse you made - how do you find all the different colors of plastic bags?


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MoiraCrochets 4 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Oh, thanks! I felt frustrated too when I first encountered this stitch.


Heather O. 4 years ago

You are awesome for writing this out. It is really hard to find!


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MoiraCrochets 5 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Oh, the figures are thumbnails. You have to click the thumbnails to enlarge them. Above Figure 1, you see there are little pictures there.

I'm so sorry about that. I just realized that it is not very noticeable. Thank you, sharon.


Sharon L 5 years ago

Saw this stitch as a creft fair and fell in love with it, but....

Did I miss something? Your Figure 1 jumps to Figure 5. What happened to Figures 2,3,4 that are mentioned to SEE?

Thanks,

Sharon L.


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MoiraCrochets 5 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

You're very welcome Hezmyjoy! I do hope you will crochet again.


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Hezmyjoy 5 years ago from United States

I have been crocheting since the age of 8. I have put it down for my other art works. This is an interesting stitch though. I might pick that needle and all of that yarn back up again. Thanks for the hub. :)


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MoiraCrochets 5 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

I am so happy to be of help to you, Molly. It's great that you adjusted the pattern and even posted your adjustments here. I'll include it in the hub when I will find the time to edit this.

Thanks a lot Molly!


Molly 5 years ago

I'm glad to have found such a comprehensive guide to this stitch. I tried it out today; I love it. I wanted the scales to look a little "pointier" so I used treble stitches for the two stitches at the top of the curve in the scale.


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MoiraCrochets 5 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Thank you POSHCOFFEECO. I was just lucky to find an interesting topic that was not yet well-written.


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poshcoffeeco 5 years ago from Cambridgeshire

Great original hub Moira. You have a great talent


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MoiraCrochets 5 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Thank you Mimi, I spent a lot of time drawing that in Photoshop.


mimicat 5 years ago

Very nice pattern tutorial! I love your symbol diagrams too :)


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MoiraCrochets 5 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

That would be exciting! I can't think of ways to use this in jewelry, so I'm excited to see what you'll make.


PWalker281 5 years ago

I'm sure I'll be experimenting with it, especially for makking jewelry like necklaces and earrings.


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MoiraCrochets 5 years ago from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines Author

Yes, it really is beautiful. I can't get it out of my head since I saw the second video.


PWalker281 5 years ago

Great instructions, Moira! I love your symbol diagrams! This is the first time I've seen this stitch. The videos were helpful, too, especially the second one. Rated up and useful.


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Barbara Kay 5 years ago from USA

I love the looks of this stitch. I'll have to try it. Thanks.

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