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How to crochet in Back Loop Only (BLO)

Crocheting is full of abbreviations and terms.  It may seem overwhelming but once you begin crocheting you will become familiar with them and get to know them.  BLO is one of these abbreviations.  BLO crochet is a useful technique known as back loop only.

What is back loop only crochet?  When is back loop only crochet used?  How do you crochet back loop only crochet?  Read on for the answers to these questions.

Learn to Crochet Back Loop Only - BLO - fb

crochet in back loop tutorial

When you learn to crochet, to make crochet stitches you are instructed to insert the crochet hook underneath both loops of a stitch. 

As you crochet more and more, you will find patterns telling you to work in only one of the loops using a basic crochet stitch.  BLO or back loop only is one of the times you stitch in only one loop. 

The best part is back loop only crochet is simple to do and is a great beginner technique for expanding your crochet skills.

When you crochet in back loops only, there is a nice line formed on the right side of the crocheted piece by the unstitched loop. Below is a list of reasons you may want to use this technique.

If you are interested in learning other crochet stitches, head over to our Crochet Stitches page for lots of crochet stitch tutorials.

To get started, I promise learning to crochet in the back loop will be easy with our BLO crochet video lesson and this step-by-step picture tutorial.



COMPLETE VIDEO TUTORIAL AVAILABLE! The video below is a preview, to watch the whole video tutorial, click the link How to crochet in Back Loop Only (BLO) to watch in Youtube.


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What does BLO mean in crochet?

BLO in crochet means back loop only.  In crochet patterns, you may see the back loop abbreviation referred to as bl or bls which means back loop and back loops.

ways to use the back loop crochet

  • A ridged look on a crochet project creating a decorative element 
  • Ribbing and ribbed texture in hats, garments, afghans, etc.
  • Mark a transition or a fold line
  • The horizontal bar (free front loop) used later to anchor a stitch
  • Overlay crochet
  • Amigurumi used as a texture, direction change or shaping effect

WHAT YOU NEED to practice the BLO crochet:

  • Yarn
  • Crochet Hook Appropriate for Yarn

SKILL LEVEL

Easy

Crochet Stitch Back Loop Only Stitch Stitch

BLO CROCHET PATTERN INSTRUCTIONS 

To demonstrate the back loop crochet, we are using a single crochet stitch.  However, this technique can be used with any basic crochet stitch.

1. Stitch Loops

BLO Crochet Stitch Back  Loop 1Let's first get familiar with the loops of a crochet stitch. 

If you hold the row of crochet and look at it from the top, you will see two loops forming a V shape.  Normally as you crochet, the hook is inserted under both loops.   

Back Loop Only Crochet Show Normal Stitch

The front loop is the loop closest to you.  The back loop is the loop farthest away from you.

2. Determine Where to Insert Hook

Crochet Stitch Back Loop Crochet Show Back LoopTo crochet in the back loop only, insert the hook in the center of the V and exit underneath the back loop.  Then, make the stitch as instructed in the pattern.  

3. Complete Designated Stitch

Crochet Stitch Back Loop Only Yarn OverSince we are demonstrating using a single crochet stitch, wrap the yarn over the hook.

Crochet Stitch Back Loop Only Pull ThroughDraw the loop through.

Crochet Stitch Back Loop Only Stitch FinishedYarn over and draw through the last two stitches on the hook.

That's how to crochet in the back loop.

If you look closely at the next picture, you can see the horizontal front bar, the free front loop.

Crochet Stitch Back Loop Only Stitch Stitch2

The following picture is an example of the horizontal front bar being used to anchor shell stitches.

Crochet Stitch Back Loop Only Stitch Sample

Although I've showcased the  BLO in single crochet, this technique can be used for half double crochet, double crochet, and treble crochet stitches. When you work half double, double, and treble crochet, work into the back loop and complete the stitch in the usual manner. 

Here are a few good examples of free patterns using BLO Crochet:

Chevron Blanket by Easy Crochet

Basic Back Loop Beanie by Heart Hook Home

Unicorn Bricks Baby Blanket by My Hobby Is Crochet

Spike Storage Basket by Zoe Creates

As always, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out! I’m happy to help or clarify anything.

Pin or bookmark this page so you will always have it as a reference.

Happy Stitching,
Annette

QUESTIONS?

If you have any questions about this project, contact us through the YouTube Video comments or our Contact Us page. We respond to questions in e-mails and YouTube comments regularly.

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Crochet For Beginners

Crochet For Beginners

A complete step-by-step guide with picture illustrations to learn to crochet the easy and quick way. by Nancy Gordon - Paperback - Published 2018 Affiliate Link to Amazon

The New Crochet Stitch Dictionary

The New Crochet Stitch Dictionary

This is the ultimate collection of crochet stitch inspiration! 440 stitches are presented in color, each with a sample swatch of the fabric and charted instructions with notes and detailed chart keys. by Nele Braas, Eveline Hetty-Burkart - Paperback - Published 2021 Affiliate Link to Amazon

The Step-by-Step Guide to 200 Crochet Stitches

The Step-by-Step Guide to 200 Crochet Stitches

The perfect resource for new and experienced crocheters alike, The Step-By-Step Guide To 200 Crochet Stitches offers 200 stitches with detailed written, charted, and photographed instructions. by Tracey Todhunter - Paperback - Published 2019 Affiliate Link to Amazon






Crochet Back Loop Only - BLO - Tutorial - pin


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