Learning to crochet can be confusing to start with because the differences between UK and US terminology is strikingly the same, but it all means something a little different… You might start your pattern thinking it’s UK terms and doing your short double crochets, when actually, it is a US terms pattern and they meant for you to do the taller stitches. Most patterns with tell you at the start what to expect, some will list both abbreviations, and others leave you to guess.
Here I have listed the most common translations and abbreviations here, and given an ‘at a glance’ guide for how to spot what type of pattern it is if it doesn’t expressly tell you.
|Chart Symbol||UK Term||UK Abbre.||US Term||US Abbre.|
|Slip Stitch||ss/sl st||Slip Stitch||ss/sl st|
|Double Crochet||dc||Single Crochet||sc|
|Half-Treble Crochet||htr||Half-Double Crochet||hdc|
|Treble Crochet||tr||Double Crochet||dc|
|Double Treble Crochet||dtr||Triple/Treble Crochet||tr|
|Double Crochet 2 Together||dc2tog||Single Crochet 2 Together||sc2tog|
|Treble Crochet 2/3 Together||tr2/3tog||Double Crochet 2/3 Together||dc2/3tog|
|Back Post Treble Crochet*||BPtr||Back Post Double Crochet||BPdc|
|Front Post Treble Crochet*||FPtr||Front Post Double Crochet||FPdc|
*Sometimes a FPtr/BPtr is called a ‘raised’ stitch. ‘Raised treble front/rtrf’ and ‘Raised treble back/rtrb’, however, I have more commonly seen these always called post stitches, and wasn’t until researching that I came across this too.
Telling US from UK
The easiest way to differentiate between US and UK patterns is to look for the trusty single crochet (sc), in UK terms this simply doesn’t exist, so if you see a ‘sc’ in your pattern,
Other tell-tell signs if the pattern doesn’t contain any single crochets and you’re still not certain, is to look for the typical US spellings that will occur in patterns, such as color/colour, and you may also find that US patterns use ‘gauge’ over ‘tension’ – but this isn’t solid.