5 Ways to Add Fabric to Crochet

I was asked a couple of week ago to share how to attach fabric to crochet. It was a little bit of perfect timing as I was working up a scrap yarn handbag, and it could really benefit from a lining.

There are actually a few ways to attach fabric to crochet.

Hand Sewing

The first method is tried and true, hand sewing. If I am creating a lining for a bag, I cut my fabric the same size as my project. Then I seem the side (this is definitely true for handbags). Now I am ready to add it to my crochet.

Since I cut the fabric the same size and then seemed it, you will notice that it is now slightly smaller than the project….this is perfect. I insert the lining, and now I fold the raw edge of the top of the fabric over. I pull out the hand sewing needle and whip stitch the top edge of the folded fabric to the crochet.

Whip stitching is simply entering the needle from the same side of the fabric. Essentially it is making a loop of thread through both pieces of fabric.

Whip stitch is worked by inserting the needle in the same place and looping through the fabrics

Machine Sewing

Another way to add fabric to crochet is machine sewing. Honestly I do not pull out my sewing machine for what I would view as a small project, but once I did work a bunch of crochet squares to a bunch of fabric squares to make a blanket, and in this case I definitely pulled out the machine. You do need to use a bit of caution and know the machine you are using, but I basically used the fabric and crochet just as I would other machine sewing projects.

Place the fabric on the crochet, if you are turning under a crochet edge (as in typical machine sewing), then just lay the fabrics together and stitch. If the fabric is more like a lining fold under the raw edge of the fabric and stitch to the crochet.

I have found that I prefer the crochet fabric to be the bottom fabric. I lower the feed dogs (the little textured metal tracks that help pull the fabric through the machine), and thus have to help the fabric through with a little gentle pulling. I prefer this approach to having the crochet on top, as I have found the crochet can get a bit hung up on the presser foot or snag on the needle.

Sew crochet on a machine by lowering the feed dogs, and help gently pull the fabric through the machine

As machine sewing will create a tighter stitch then hand stitching, it can, and most likely will create a line across your crochet. If hand sewing this can be easily avoided as you do not have to sew all the way through the fabric, you can sew through half of a crochet stitch instead.

Fusible Interfacing

Another way to adhere fabric to crochet to using a double sided fusible interface. This is a product that works a bit like magic and can be found most places you find fabric. You follow the package direction, using an iron and basically glue the fabric to the crochet. I really have done very little of this, and even then I only worked it in small areas that I wanted to add crochet to large pieces of fabric. It will stiffen the crochet, and depending on the yarn used, it may not appreciate the iron, so beware. Test your fabric and your yarn before going down this rabbit hole.

Needle Felting

In addition you can add crochet to fabric by needle felting. To needle felt crochet to fabric you need to be mindful of the materials you are using. First your yarn, it tend to work best with wool, preferably not superwash. The fabric should be one that can take a bit of abuse, as it is going to be punched repeatedly with a needle. I prefer working with denim, linen or canvas, but have worked on cottons. You need a needle felting needle (it is a needle that actually has small barbs on it that you can feel running you finger up from the needle from the point), and a piece of foam (a pillow can work too).

You place your crochet where you want it on the fabric. Place the foam behind the fabric, and push the needle through the crochet and fabric, into the foam. You repeat this process until the crochet is adhered. You will notice that on the back of the fabric that yarn is being pushed through. Times will vary greatly, and some fabrics/yarns are not suitable and will not stay in place no matter how long you work it.

Needle felting pushes the yarn through the fabric

Crochet Joins

Finally one additional way to add fabric to crochet, simply crocheting it on. There is a little prep work to make you project easier, but it is completely doable. I fold the raw edge of the fabric over, and find a small crochet hook, a steel crochet hook usually works fine, and then I evenly push it through the edge of the folded fabric creating small holes. I then continue working with the small hook and crochet through these holes into the crochet fabric.

Push a small crochet hook through the folded fabric to create holes to help when crocheting the fabrics together.
Working through the holes in the fabric crochet to the crochet. Stitch shown is slip stitch

To make crocheting the fabric on a bit easier, you can take a yarn needle and work a blanket stitch (inserting the needle in the same side of the fabric in a similar movement as a whip stitch, but before the loop pulls closed you insert you needle in the loop, this makes an edge of thread/yarn at the top of the fabric) around the fold fabric in a yarn of your choice. You then crochet in the loop created.

Blanket Stitch, insert needle from front to back of fabric, loop over edge to reinsert into fabric while slipping needle through the loop created. This does not allow the stitch to be pulled tight without completely distorting the edge
The top edging of the blanket stitch creates a place to crochet into, and thus you can crochet through these loops onto the crochet fabric to be joined to.

A Little Extra Padding

To add a little bit of stiffness to the project, or a bit of body to it over all, consider adding a bit of quilt batting between the fabric and crochet.

Some of these techniques are more comfortable than others, and much of that can be related to your comfort level with sewing in general. Just remember like crochet, it can be forgiving, so give it a try.

Design Help- Outside Crochet

Not all designing involves crochet, at least not in my world. Since November 2016 I have been a 4H sewing project leader, this entails me arranging meeting times and helping guide the participants in completing project. Fortunately 4H encourages leadership from the kids, so it does not involve much instruction from me, as I am not much of a seamstress and sewing is not my favorite pastime. After all I crochet, and even work join-as-you-go motifs so I do not have to sew.

However in the course of these last several months the participants under took a community service project. So in addition to creating their shirts, and skirts, dresses and jackets, they also created a project to help Veterans. They arranged to teach the basic use of the sewing machine to other 4Hers at a large community event, then I aided then in creating a quilt square pattern that involved simple strips of fabric. They then sought donations of fabric and cut it into long strips to have their “students” sew these long strips together.

Quilt top created by my 4H sewing project

After a full day of instruction they had all the strips sewn together, then it was time to create the squares. I will admit I did help put some squares together, after all I did want to at least see my dining room table. The squares are completed and put together, now this quilt top is being donated to Quilts of Honor to be finished as a quilt and given to a Veteran.

Yes, I am proud of what they have accomplished, and their dedication and generosity is inspiring. It has been a really interesting undertaking for myself, watching the kids grow and understand themselves and what they like. Some of the kids actually created their own patterns and designs, other modified their patterns to create what they like. There are designers everywhere, at least in the sense that we are all creators.

Crochet Knees

ScannedImageIf you have read my blog for a while you may have realized that I am a little, let’s see, what’s the word…ah yes, thrifty. So in the spirit of thirstiness, I have been attempting to get some more life out of blue jeans my children run wild in.


One knee mended, one more to go. Crochet patches tend to have more stretch

I am not sure if something has changed in the manufacturing over time, but the knees on their pants tend to split open in a relatively short period of time. Maybe it is the tree climbing, the running, or the playing in dirt that my kids still do within our rural lifestyle, but it seems that they are hard on their clothes. So of course that means that we have “good” clothes and “play” clothes. However when the knees get bad enough that they can stick a leg threw, I find a way to mend them to get a little more time out of them.

Sure I could cut them and make them shorts, but trust me they have an abundance of those. I have used fabric patches, but they do not tend to last as long as I would like, tearing out and just becoming flaps over the open knees. So I have taken to making my own, with crochet.

I crochet a few motifs, different shapes like flowers, and different colors. My kids enjoy coming up with ideas for me to crochet into patches, and the stitches seem to allow the fabric to stretch more and thus do not wear out as quickly as the fabric patches. I then pin them in place and reluctantly sew. I say reluctantly as sewing is not my number one favorite skill, but at least this way I get to enjoy some crochet in the chore.

I keep telling them that it is a new fashion statement, who knows maybe it will be. I just really hope that they are not tearing out the knees so that they can keep up with this “new” fashion.

There is More then One Way to Join a Motif Together

ScannedImageWhen the average non-crocheter thinks of crochet, often one of the first thoughts is the classic granny square. This motif has become a historic staple, however working any motifs worked in crochet can have a fun, stunning, and classic appeal. The draw back? Stitching them together.


Remove hook from working loop, insert hook into stitch to be joined to and re-insert into working loop.

I have stated it before, but I am a crocheter, not a seamstress. So join-as-you-go has been a savior of sorts for me. It has allowed be to work various motifs without having to stitch them together, but simply work a stitch into the adjoining motif and they are now connected.


Pull working loop through stitch


Complete the stitch, and continue.

There are various applications that can be used in join-as-you-go, but one that I have been enjoying recently, has a finish that looks like I’ve spent time whip stitching the pieces together, without ever picking up a needle and thread (or yarn). To work this Joined Whip Stitch, or Braided Join, is actually pretty easy. When you are ready to join to the adjacent motif you simply remove your hook from your working loop, insert your hook through the stitch you wish to join to, re-insert into the working loop and pull it through the stitch, then begin and complete the stitch you wish on the motif you are working on. Essentially you are bringing the loop through another fabric and then completing your work, there is nothing fancy, nothing difficult, just a simple way to weave the fabrics together.


The finished look of the Joined Whip Stitch or Braided Join

The look that this technique creates has a hand sewn appearance to some, and a braided effect to others. It is a little slow, and only a little, as removing your hook and getting it placed and then reworking the stitch can take a little time, not to mention a little fear of the working loop being pulled out. However the technique is simple and can be worked with any motif pattern without having to change the stitch structure. So give this method a try next time you have a motif to put together, you may find that it makes your project a little more enjoyable, with no needles required.

Some Crochet Enhancements


I have been drying fruit from the orchard…the pears are coming out quite nice.

ScannedImageSometimes it seems like time flies in the wink of an eye…again it seems to be that time of year for me. The kids have started back to school, I am getting the fruits from the orchard harvested (I am making my first attempts at using a dehydrator this year, so far it has been a success), and my fingers are nimbly working on various designs that you’ll see out in the world this next Spring & Summer.

Working my flying crochet hook, I have undertaken a couple of new techniques, some that I have not undertaken for a while. I would like to share with you one that I am working on that I will admit is outside of my complete comfort level…beading.

I believe that beads can really add to a crochet design, that they give a nice texture difference, sometimes some needed weight for a project, and sometime just a hint of added sparkle; so why is it not a constant wheelhouse in my work…I hate threading those little beads on the yarn. It seems like a daunting task and I inevitably get it tied in knots, it is just that one added step that doesn’t allow me to mindlessly crochet.


Thread dental floss through the sewing needle and tie a knot creating a loop, slip yarn through loop and fold back on itself (creating a link of 2 loops), thread beads onto sewing needle and slide them over the dental floss and onto the yarn

That being stated, I have been playing with ways to get beads in my stitches, and here is what has worked for me; a sewing needle and dental floss. Yes, it does sound a little funny, but it works better than other approaches for me (although I am always open to new ideas!).

First I thread the dental floss through the sewing needle, creating a tail on either side of the needle of at least 4” (10cm) (so a piece of floss at least 8” (20cm) long to begin with), and tie the ends making a loop. This loop is the trick. I then tread the yarn through the loop of floss and fold to back on itself; this creating what would appear to be 2 loops linked together. I using the sewing needle I thread through the beads and slid them down the needle, over the dental floss and then over the yarn.

So now I have them threaded, and the playing can begin.