Crochet: chain circle vs magic loop


The question I receive the most in regards to my Mary Jane Slippers pattern is about the magic loop beginning. I typically respond with some links to photo/video tutorials on how to make it. I don’t usually get into the why. That’s what this post is.

Before I begin, the photo-tutorial I link to is this one at Crochet Me. The video I link to is this one on youtube that shows the magic adjustable ring for single, half double, and double crochet. The double crochet starts around 2:35, but the whole video is pretty informative.

The questions I want to discuss are: What is the difference? Why/how do you choose which to begin your round project?


Above is 8 DC worked in the round. The project on the left was started with a regular chain circle (ch 5) and the one on the right was started with the magic loop. The differences are subtle, but they do effect the look of your final product.

The regular chain circle generally leaves a small hole in the center. You can crochet your first round over your tail yarn to cinch it closed shut. With the magic loop, you start crocheting over the tail no matter what and so you always cinch the hole shut and it stays shut


I use the chain circle when I’m making blankets or hats. Specifically, when I’m crocheting a granny square blanket or any other crochet lace pattern. The reason I choose to do so is because I usually start those projects with a first round of 12 or even 20 double crochet stitches. That’s a lot of stitches! They’re going to need room and so a chain 5, 6, or 8, is needed.


I use the magic adjustable loop when I’m making slippers or amigurumi or any other project that needs to be closed or starts with a smaller number of stitches in the first round. The slippers pattern calls for only 8 DC and most amigurumi patterns start with only 6 SC.

In conclusion– they both have their place. I suggest learning and becoming completely familiar with both methods! Doing so will help you understand which one to use for the specific projects you want to complete.

Any questions or other input is greatly appreciated! Leave a comment or email me-

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