Crafting terms differ around world February 8, 2014 • Robin Stroot
Patterns for knit and crochet items are easily accessible on the Internet. However, if you live in the North American part of the world, some international terms may have you confused about what technique to do on your knit or crochet craft project. There are some terms that we use in American crafting that may be totally different in other parts of the world.
Let’s start with crochet: A yarn over is taking the yarn and wrapping once around the hook. This is the basis for all stitches. In European circles, the term is listed as YRH — meaning yarn round hook. To “skip” a stitch in North America means you need to “miss” the stitch.
A worsted weight/Fisherman/Aran type of yarn is classified as Aran yarn in European crafting terms.
Basic stitch terms can be a little confusing. According to my information, a crochet chain stitch is still called a chain stitch but single crochet is referred to as double crochet in some other countries around the world. The American half-double-crochet stitch is called “half-treble crochet” stitch; our double crochet stitch is the treble crochet stitch and American “triple crochet” stitch is called the double treble crochet stitch.
One of the ways to get around the written stitch language confusion is to refer to a chart for the crochet patterns. The different symbols for the picture-type of pattern is universal. I have purchased a pattern from across the ocean that is written in a totally different language — Swedish — but includes a charted pattern for the knit/crochet project. I can usually refer to the pictures included in the stitch guide and the charted pattern to understand how to make my craft project.
Stockinette, stocking stitch and plain-knit are all the same stitch pattern for knitting projects. These terms are used interchangeably and all mean the same thing: On a flat piece of knitting, this is to knit across the row, then turn the work and purl across the row. If you are making your project on circular knitting needles — that is the public side of the project is always in view — you would knit every row to make the stocking stitch. In learning about knitting, I first learned the term stockinette for this particular type of stitch pattern. So you can imagine my confusion when I came across the term “stocking stitch” in my first sweater pattern and thought to myself, “Why would I do that? I’m not knitting a stocking.” I had to look it up in my knitting terms dictionary. It made me laugh to realize I thought the term was a new one for a stitch to use only on socks/stockings. The sweater was completed without any other stitch confusion by this knitter.