Chain vs. Magic Circle

One of the more common questions I get is "Can I use the magic circle instead of the chain" or "Can I use the chain instead of the magic circle". Most of the time it is just a matter of preference. It is not going to make a difference in the outcome of your project if you use the magic circle or chain. Your magic circle can be the same size as a chain of 50. Just remember to knot your magic circle well.

The magic circle is new to me as of March 2008. It is a simple loop with the starting stitches crocheted over the thread. It is a popular start with the amigurumi crochet. When the round is complete, it will close nice and tight. I love using the magic circle start variation. I have been using the magic circle where it calls for a chain since I learned the method. What I like about the magic circle is you get a nice and tight closure with the beginning round. It does get very full with more than 16 stitches in the beginning round. If you are wanting an opening at the beginning round, then by all means, use a chain instead. It is important to remember to make several secure knots with your magic circle once you have completed your project or it will come apart.

The chain on the other hand is a little heavier. You adjust your opening size with the number of chains in the beginning of your loop. You slip stitch the end of your chain to the beginning chain, forming the loop to hold your stitches. This works well if you are starting with a lot of double crochet or with a granny square that will be washed a lot. The decision is yours.


  1. I just reviewed my daily crochet project calendar and I found a cute pattern for a continious spiral cardigan I thought was cute. It mentioned to start with a magic circle. I didn't know what it meant and now thanks to you I do!

    Great Blog! Keep up the good work!

  2. Hi Teresa, This is my first time visiting your blog. It's great and a great resource for anyone who likes to crochet. I knit and crochet and love the learning challenge with all the different stitches and techniques. Have you heard of doing a foundation single crochet (fsc) Well I've been trying to figure it out and I have not been successful. I'm trying to follow the instructions in the book Uncommon Crochet by Julie Armstrong Holetz. I have been searching online for videos which demonstrate this technique. Anyway I really do appreciate all the time and love you put in the videos you make. I subscribe to them.


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