Why I Avoid the “Magic Ring” When I Crochet

And what I do instead

Leslie Stahlhut
Oct 27, 2019 · 3 min read

I remember the first time I successfully used the crochet technique known as the “Magic Ring.” The way the circle drew closed when I pulled the loose end — it did feel truly magic — and the crochet zombie ninja that I made using the technique:

A crochet zombie ninja at night
A crochet zombie ninja at night
A crochet zombie ninja at night

But after I had finished the piece, I had a nagging concern: if the magic ring closed so easily, didn’t that mean under just the right (or wrong) circumstances, it could come undone just as easily?

For years I didn’t hear anything but praise for the magic of the “Magic Ring,” but I had enough confidence in my concern that if I weren’t working an amigurumi piece and leaving a very (very) long yarn tail so it could be woven in very securely, I did not use the magic ring, and one day, when I was not looking for it, I got confirmation of my concern.

A fellow crocheter was on a message board asking if anyone else had ever had a magic ring closure come undone and open. She had made (and sold) a hat, and the customer had contacted her with just this problem.

From that day forward, I stopped using the magic ring.

Yes, there are steps you can take to reduce the chances of your work coming undone, but you can only reduce those chances; you cannot eliminate them, and given the number of hours I put in on my larger pieces, I want something that will not come undone.

So for those occasions that a “chain-4, join with a slip stitch” loop is not sufficiently elegant, I use what I call a “Chain-2 Start.”

What you will need and need to know

  • A crochet hook (I used a 5.0 mm hook)
  • How to make a slip knot that slips (see video at the bottom)

The “Chain-2 Start” in 6 easy steps

A slip knot that slips and secured to a crochet hook
A slip knot that slips and secured to a crochet hook
Make a slip knot that slips and secure it to your crochet hook

Step 2: Chain 2

A crochet chain two chains long
A crochet chain two chains long
Make 2 chain stitches

Step 3: Insert the hook through the Back Ridge Loop of the first chain made:

Crochet hook inserted through the back ridge loop of a chain stitch
Crochet hook inserted through the back ridge loop of a chain stitch
Insert hook through Back Ridge Loop of the first chain

Step 4: Complete a single crochet stitch:

A single crochet stitch worked through the back ridge loop of a chain stitch
A single crochet stitch worked through the back ridge loop of a chain stitch
A single crochet worked through the back ridge loop of a chain stitch

Step 5: Work 5 more single crochet stitches into the same Back Ridge Loop:

Six single crochet stitches worked into the back ridge loop of a chain stitch
Six single crochet stitches worked into the back ridge loop of a chain stitch

Step 6: Join with a slip stitch:

Six single crochet stitches worked into the back ridge loop of a chain stitch and then joined with a slip stitch
Six single crochet stitches worked into the back ridge loop of a chain stitch and then joined with a slip stitch
Join with a slip stitch

A Chain-2 Start might not always be as elegant as the Magic Ring, but particularly if you are making something to sell or give as a gift, you won’t have to worry that you will ever get a message that the piece has come undone.

A short video on how to make a slip knot that slips:

Crochet Techniques to Improve Your Results and Lessen Your Aggravation

This publication is a collection of crochet techniques that…

Leslie Stahlhut

Written by

Crocheter on a mission to make the world a better place — one stitch at a time. Twitter: @crochetbug. Crochet blog: https://www.crochetbug.com

Crochet Techniques to Improve Your Results and Lessen Your Aggravation

This publication is a collection of crochet techniques that can make your crochet life easier

Leslie Stahlhut

Written by

Crocheter on a mission to make the world a better place — one stitch at a time. Twitter: @crochetbug. Crochet blog: https://www.crochetbug.com

Crochet Techniques to Improve Your Results and Lessen Your Aggravation

This publication is a collection of crochet techniques that can make your crochet life easier

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