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Guide to Greatness: The Leaning Square

I don’t think there is a crocheter alive, who hasn’t wondered about the leaning square at some point in time. This photo, courtesy of Christelle Botha, perfectly shows what I am referring to. The square, isn’t square! It is leaning over to the right hand side. Christelle is clearly right-handed. If this was done by a left-handed person, the square would have been leaning to the left.

The common advice given to prevent this from happening, is to “turn around every now and then, and crochet with the wrong side facing you”. But why?

To keep things simple, I will use notation for a half-double crochet (US) / double crochet (UK).

The official notation for this stitch, looks like this:

The diagram for a tiny swatch with this stitch, will look like this:

Be warned. This is very misleading. I wish I could change the entire world of crochet and use different notation. Sounds crazy right? Let me explain. Look at the photo below. I have indicated the stitch hole and the stitch post, of the last stitch made. If you look closely, you will see that the stitch hole, is slightly to the right of the stitch post.

The notation should actually look like this:

This is a much more realistic way of showing it. With this notation, you can even determine the direction in which the crochet should be done. The diagram below not only gives the pattern, it also indicates that the piece should be turned around after each row!

So what does all of this, have to do with the leaning square?

Look again at the diagram above. The posts of the stitches are not on top of each other, yet because you are working back and forth, that slight movement, is corrected automatically. But what will happen if you continually crochet with the same side facing you? This!

BAM! You will have a leaning square!

To keep a square from leaning, you have to turn around EVERY round! Not only will your square be SQUARE, it won’t have a wrong or right side either. Unless you are like me. Then the last round will determine which side is the right side!

Pity I cannot change the entire world of crochet to use more realistic notations.

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8 thoughts on “Guide to Greatness: The Leaning Square

  1. Oh my word that explains it then.

  2. Dit was nou nog die Beste verduidelik van ‘n eeu ou probleem – en hoe om dit optelos!! Eenvoudig maar briljant. Dankie!

  3. Baie dankie Hilda. Dit los n groot probleem op.

  4. Baie dankie vir die hulp

  5. Extremely succinct lesson… Thank you so much- I, too, prefer your symbols. Is it too late to join the CAL if I am a month behind on everything?

    1. Hi Dora – which CAL are you referring to?

  6. Thank you so much . This is really helpful .

  7. Thank you it makes more sense especially when making a big granny blanket

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