The ultimate corner to corner crochet (c2c) tutorial that teaches you everything you need to know about this technique. If you think this guide is missing something, let us know by leaving a comment below. All feedback is welcomed.
DISCLAIMER! Long post ahead, so you might want to save this article for future reference or when you need help with your c2c project. Use the menu below to jump straight to a particular part of this guide.
Corner To Corner Crochet – Everything You Need To Know
Learning corner to corner crochet online for free is not an easy task. You have to jump from one tutorial to another, from one video to another and it can get really complicated trying to put all these resources together and make sense of it all.
With my complete guide to c2c crochet for beginners, you have everything you need in one place so you can easily learn how to crochet your own c2c project from start to finish.
I also made a step-by-step video in two parts for those of you who are visual learners, find the links in the Video section below.
The tutorials are for right-handed crocheters (because I am a right-handed crocheter), but a lot of the information here can be used by everybody: from absolute beginners to advanced crocheters, and from left-handed crocheters to right-handed ones.
Everything is explained in detail, with photo tutorials and videos, to help you master this technique. And it’s all free!
Please note that this post contains affiliate links, I will earn a small percentage should you choose to purchase something, but it will be at no cost to you. You can see my full disclosure policy here. Thank you for supporting my work and this blog.
- Video tutorial – step-by-step for beginners
- What is c2c crochet
- Starting a c2c project – things you need
- C2c crochet without holes – the 5:2 method
- How to read a c2c written pattern
- How to read a c2c graphgan
- How to change colors and minimize ends in c2c crochet
- How to finish a c2c blanket
- Corner to corner crochet pattern variations
- How to make your own c2c graph from your own photos or from scratch
- More resources
Step By Step Video Tutorial (In-Depth C2C Tutorial In 2 Parts)
Subscribe to Crafting Happiness YouTube Channel to save this video for later.
Below you have the full step-by-step tutorial in 2 parts on how to c2c crochet from start to finish with everything you need to know about this technique.
I also took short snippets of this video and linked them to each section if you are interested in learning just one particular thing about c2c (for example, if you only need to know how to c2c increase, jump to that particular section and you will find the short video tutorial linked there).
What Is C2C Crochet
Corner to corner crochet is also known as c2c crochet, diagonal crochet, or diagonal box stitch.
It is a crochet technique where you are starting in one corner by creating double crochet clusters (c2c tiles), growing them row by row on a diagonal until it reaches the desired size, then decreasing back down to the opposite corner.
With this method, you can create beautiful designs and intricate colorwork of any image you want and turn it into afghans, cushion covers, potholders, scarves, wall hangings, and more.
It’s basically painting by numbers, but with yarn!
Starting A C2C Project – Things You Need
Here you will find a list that you need when starting a new c2c project.
A Graphgan Chart And/Or C2C Written Pattern
When starting a c2c project, the first thing you will need is the actual pattern and graphgan for that particular design.
A Graphgan Chart is the pixelated version of an image/design. Each little square in the graphgan represents a c2c tile. Is it possible to follow a c2c pattern from the graphgan alone?
A C2C Written Pattern is a row-by-row description of the graphgan and provides extra help to beginner crocheters to complete the pattern. It is possible to follow a c2c pattern from the written pattern alone.
There are many free corner-to-corner crochet patterns around that come with a graphgan chart and/or a c2c written pattern and you can also make your own using different online websites and software.
Printer & Pen
Once you have chosen your design, your next step is to print it out or use it online.
I prefer having a printed graph pattern, I find it easier crossing off the tiles I made on the paper pattern than having to carry the tablet with me everywhere.
Besides, the internet connection is not always reliable.
Yarn & Hook
The next step is to choose your yarn. Of course, you can use any yarn you like, from very thin to super bulky, BUT…
You need a yarn that, when washed, won’t shrivel or shrink, and it’s thick enough to hide the color changes.
You also need to take into consideration how big you want your project to be.
After a lot of research, I found that the best yarn weight to use for a corner-to-corner crochet pattern is Aran ( worsted, #4) yarn, followed closely by DK (light worsted, #3) yarn.
Why? Aran (worsted) yarn works best because the thickness of the yarn is just right to hide the color changes, but not thick enough that you won’t see the details. It also works up fast and the designs made with it are detailed without creating a very large project.
Are you making an intricate design, but you don’t want your project to be large? Then your best choice is DK (light worsted) yarn. You can still hide the color changes, but the final project will come out smaller, which is not always a bad thing.
Take my 3in1 Farm Cow Folding Baby Blanket as an example.
I wanted an intricate cow print for the blanket, but I also wanted it to be baby blanket size, so DK (light worsted) yarn was the best choice for this project.
You can also use bulky (chunky) or super bulky (super chunky) yarn for simple designs.
On my Rainbow Unicorn Hooded Blanket, I used super bulky yarn and you can see the detail is not great, but it works for simple color changes.
Choosing the right hook is easy. Simply check the yarn paper band for the recommended hook to use.
Working on various c2c projects I have noticed it was hard for me to keep track of which side is the right side and which one is the wrong side, especially on projects that are symmetrical.
The easiest way I found to keep track of which side you are working on is to mark the right side with a stitch marker. Don’t skip this step, it will save you a lot of time in the long run.
Using this method will ensure you are crocheting the right pattern onto your work and that you are reading the graph correctly.
You start your project from the bottom left corner with your first tile crocheted on the right side. This is where you place your stitch marker.
When the stitch marker faces you, it means you are working on the right side and you should read the graph from the bottom to the top. When the stitch marker is on the other side, you will read that row on the graph from the top to the bottom.
Check this short video on how I do it.
A Way To Organize Your Yarn
When you corner to corner crochet with multiple colors, you’ll have a hard time keeping the yarn organized and in one place. How to keep your yarn from tangling? It’s easy!
1. Use clothespins
This method is one of the easiest and cheapest around and my favorite way of organizing yarn for c2c projects. All you need is a set of basic clothespins, make sure they are plastic and more than 5cm tall (so you can have enough space to wrap the yarn).
The best part about using clothespins as bobbins is that you can secure the yarn from unraveling and you can hold them onto your work as you crochet, this way when you flip your workaround, the yarn won’t tangle.
To start, you need to wrap the yarn around the clothespin. But how much yarn should you use?
Make one tile then undo it and see how much yarn you used. Once you know roughly how much yarn you use per tile, look a few rows ahead and take a guess.
Do you only have a few blocks to make in that color? Then wrap around just a few meters of yarn. Is there a large area in one particular color coming up? Then load the clothespin with as much yarn as it can hold, but don’t overdo it.
Use the yarn off the clothespin to crochet your tiles, once done with that color, clip the clothespin securely to your work while releasing the next one.
Check out this short video to see how I do it.
2. Make your own organizer
You can choose to make your own yarn organizer, from printable bobbins to modular crochet bobbin holders.
1 Dog Whoof has a great DIY tutorial on how to make your own modular crochet bobbin holder.
3. Buy a yarn organizer
You might also want a stylish yarn organizer bag that you can travel with like this one on Amazon. Project Bag Store has some wonderful yarn organizer bag designs listed on Etsy if you are looking for something unique.
Tapestry Needle & Scissors
The tapestry needle and scissors are used to cut the yarn and weave in the ends.
Weaving in ends in c2c crochet is pretty much the same as in regular crochet.
C2C Crochet Without Holes -The 5:2 Method
Most c2c patterns are designed with the 6:3 method which means that you are chaining 6 to create a c2c tile and ch3 for the first double crochet stitch in the c2c tile.
I have found that using this method will create holes between the c2c tiles, they will be loose and the overall look of the image you are trying to create will not be compact.
If you have the same issues as I do with the 6:3 method, try it my way with the 5:2 method.
The corner to corner 5:2 method means that you will chain 5 to create a brand new tile and ch2 for the first double crochet stitch. Yout tiles will be tighter to each other and the whole design will look more together and seamless.
The C2C Tile is the building block of corner-to-corner crochet. Each c2c tile will replace a square in your c2c graphgan to create the pixelated image of your choice. Read below how to create the first tile in the row and the following mid-row tiles using the 5:2 method.
How To Crochet The First C2C Tile In The Row
Step 1: Chain 5
Step 2: Double crochet in the 3rd chain from the hook
Step 3: Your tile is now complete, it’s time to connect it to the next door tile so you can start a new tile.
To do that, insert your hook under chain 2 of the next c2c tile (the one that counts as a double) and slip stitch.
How To Crochet The Mid-Row C2C Tiles
Step 1: Your mid-row c2c tile starts from the place where you slip stitched to connect the previous tile.
Chain 2 – this counts as your first double crochet
Step 2: In the same space where you previously slip-stitched, make 3 double crochet stitches.
Step 3: (If it’s the last tile in the row, skip this step) Your tile is now complete, it’s time to connect it to the next door tile so you can start a new tile.
To do that, insert your hook under chain 2 of the next c2c tile (the one that counts as a double) and slip stitch.
How To Read A C2C Written Pattern
In this section, I will cover how to read a c2c written pattern, explain what is the increase, maintain and decrease rows and how I mark my progress on the pattern.
Usually, a written c2c pattern will mark the increase, maintain and decrease rows for you to know when to c2c decrease or increase. Let’s start with the explanation of each type of c2c row.
What Are The Increase in Rows
Increase Rows In C2C Crochet are the rows where the total number of c2c tiles increases by 1. You can see that in the written pattern at the end of each row where the total count of c2c tiles is displayed and also, most designers will mark the section as Increase Rows.
If the increase row section is not explicitly marked, you can tell by the total number of c2c tiles shown at the end of each row. If the total count increases by 1 from the previous row, then this is an increased row.
When working on an increase row, you will need to add a new c2c tile. This is done at the beginning of the row and it’s usually referred to as the c2c increase.
How To C2C Increase
To c2c increase, ch5, dc in 3rd ch from the hook, dc in each next 2ch. Connect the tile to the one next to it with an sl st. See the photo tutorial above (How To Crochet The First C2C Tile In The Row section) or watch the short tutorial below.
What Are The Decrease Rows
Decrease Rows In C2C Crochet are the rows where the total number of c2c tiles decreases by 1. You can see that in the written pattern at the end of each row where the total count of c2c tiles is displayed and also, most designers will mark the section as Decrease.
If the increase row section is not explicitly marked, you can tell by the total number of c2c tiles shown at the end of each row. If the total count decreases by 1 from the previous row, then this is a decreased row.
When working on a decrease row, you will need to c2c decrease at the beginning of each row which means you will be eliminating one tile.
How To C2C Decrease
The c2c decrease can be quite confusing because you are not really decreasing. You are actually eliminating one tile by not making it and instead, you are slip stitching along the last tile to move the yarn to the top corner of that tile so you can continue with the next row.
Here is how to c2c decrease.
- Step 1: Instead of chaining 3 as usual, slip stitch in each double crochet along with the tile
- Step 2: Insert your hook under chain 2 of the next c2c tile (the one that counts as a double) and slip stitch. Your yarn is now at the top of the tile and you can start your next c2c tile which is crocheted like a mid-row tile
- Step 3: The first tile after the c2c decrease is crocheted like you would do a mid-row tile. Ch2 (counts as a dc), 3dc in the same space where you slip stitched when you decreased.
What Are The Maintain Rows
Maintain Rows In C2C Crochet are the rows where the total number of c2c tiles doesn’t change. Even though you increase at one end and decrease at the other, the total number of c2c tiles stays the same, you are only shifting the rows to create the straight middle part of the rectangle shape.
You can see that in the written pattern at the end of each row where the total count of c2c tiles is displayed and also, most designers will mark the section as Increase Rows.
If the increase row section is not explicitly marked, you can tell by the total number of c2c tiles shown at the end of each row. If the total count doesn’t increase to decrease by 1 from the previous row but stays the same, then this is a maintained row.
When working on a maintain row, you will need to increase on one side and decrease on the other side.
Types Of Written C2C Patterns & How To Read Them
Now that you know what increase, decrease and maintain rows are, let’s talk about how to read different c2c written patterns and how to mark your progress on the page.
There are different ways designers choose to write their c2c patterns, some more detailed than others.
It can be a simple one, with fewer details, like this one I found on Repeat Crafter Me. The increase and decrease sections are marked, but you will not know which side of the pattern you work on or the total number of tiles you should have, this is something you will have to check yourself on the graphgan.
This way of pattern writing is suitable for simple designs or for c2c squares where you only have increase and decrease rows.
Or a more detailed one with the total number of c2c tile count, colors used, and which direction to work marked by up and down arrows. Here is an example from my other website, Magic Yarn Pixels.
And this is what my written c2c patterns look like. I chose not to have color blocks to save on printer ink, and my colors are not abbreviated so it will not be any confusion on which colors to use (B can mean black or blue for example and it’s annoying having to refer over and over to the color abbreviations).
It also shows you which sections are the increase, decrease or maintain rows, which rows are crocheted on the right or wrong side, and the total number of c2c tiles you should have in a row.
The total count of c2c tiles by color at the end of the pattern is there to help you decide how much yarn should you use (if you use a different yarn weight for example). Simply see how much yarn you use for a c2c tile and then multiply it by the total number of c2c tiles to see how much yarn you need in that particular color.
So how to read a c2c pattern? Here is a short snippet from my C2C Crochet Guide video, below you have a written explanation of a c2c row.
Let’s take row 10 of my pattern as an example.
← Row 9 [RS]: (yellow) x 4, (red) x 4, (yellow) x 1 (9 squares)
The beginning of a c2c row (marked in red) sets the parameters. ← Row 9 [RS] – The arrow at the beginning shows you the direction you will be crocheting, you are working on row 9 and you are working on the right side of your pattern (RS – right side).
The middle part of the row (marked in purple) is the actual pattern. (yellow) x 4, (red) x 4, (yellow) x 1 – This means you will need to make 4 c2c tiles in yellow, 4 c2c tiles in red and 1 c2c tile in yellow.
The last part of the row (marked in orange) will tell you how many c2c tiles you should have in the row. This is helpful because it will show you if you are on an increase, decrease or maintain row. (9 squares) – This means that the total count of c2c tiles in the row is 9. This way you can double-check against the graph and see if you are doing the pattern correctly.
How To Mark Your Progress On A C2C Written Pattern
It is very tempting to complete an entire row before crossing it off on paper, but I recommend you to do it section by section, color by color, especially when working with multiple colors. It’s also very helpful to count your total tiles after you complete the row and check against the total count on paper.
Here is a short snippet from my video that explains that.
How To Read A C2C Graphgan
A lot of the time, the designer will only provide the graphgan without the pattern. Being able to read a c2c chart will come in handy and, as you become more experienced with c2c crochet, it will be the only thing you need to recreate the design.
This section will cover how to read a c2c chart, what a chart should contain, and how to mark your progress on it in a way that keeps track of the right and wrong sides of the c2c pattern.
A c2c pattern will most likely contain a page-size graph and a multi-page graph of the same image. This is the case with almost all big c2c projects such as blankets. You can use one or another to print and keep track of your progress, it all depends on your eyesight and the size of the project.
Which Corner Should I Start My C2C Project From And How To Read The C2C Chart
A C2C Graphgan, also referred to as a c2c chart, is a pixelated image divided into little squares. Each square represents a c2c tile and it is marked with the row number on the edge of the chart.
The designer usually decides in which corner of the graph to start the pattern and you can tell by the numbers around the graph which represent the row numbers. The pattern starts in the corner and goes up and down in a diagonal direction to complete each row.
Here is a side-by-side comparison of a graph that starts in the lower-left corner and the same one that starts in the lower-right corner. You will see that the numbers around the graph are inverted and the row sequence is different.
If you are following only a graph, you can choose to ignore the row numbers around the graph and start in any corner you like. I find it a lot easier to start a c2c pattern from the lower-left corner because I am right-handed and I read from left to right, but this is up to you if you want to do it your way or follow the pattern exactly.
How To Mark Your Progress On The C2C Graphgan
It is important to keep track of your progress on the c2c graphgan by crossing off each square (or set of squares) as you make the c2c tiles.
It is tempting to completely finish a row before marking it, but I advise you to mark your progress section by section (color by color). I also use arrows to mark the direction I am crocheting and keep track of the right and wrong sides of my project.
For example, take row 10 below.
Because this row is worked on the wrong side, it starts from the top and goes downwards. I have marked that with down arrows to remind me of that.
I first made 2 c2c tiles in yellow, then marked them (purple arrows), then I made 4 red c2c tiles, I stopped crocheting and marked it on the graphgan (black arrows), and then finished the row with 3 yellow c2c tiles after which I marked it on the graphgan (blue arrows).
How To Change Colors And Minimize Ends In C2C Crochet
The whole point of c2c crochet is to use multiple colors to recreate an image or design. The more intricate the design, the more colors and separate strands of yarn you will have to use and you will have to deal with color changes.
A NOTE HERE for the c2c crochet beginner: don’t cut the yarn every time you finished a section, instead, leave it attached and try to carry it over or switch back to it on the following row. See below short videos on what I mean by that.
If you missed this step, here is a way to organize your yarn when working with multiple colors.
Changing colors in c2c crochet is easier than you might think. Below I covered a few situations where you will have to switch or add colors and how to do it so you can minimize ends to weave in and get a neat look on your design (no visible strands of yarn going across the tiles etc).
Adding A New Color To Your C2C Project
I change colors after completing the whole c2c tile, right before you join it to the rest of the work with a slip stitch. Another option is to add the new strand of yarn before completing the last double crochet stitch in the c2c tile.
Switching Colors From One C2C Tile To Another
Here is an instance you need to change colors, but the yarn is already connected to your work.
The only problem is that the yarn is at the base of the tile and if you just pull it through the loop as usual, you will have a strand of yarn going along the tile that can look messy.
Here is how I solved this problem.
Step 1: Before you switch to the next color, release the loop on your hook and pick up the color you want to switch to, that is already attached to your work.
Step 2: Insert your hook at the base of the tile and pull a loop from the yarn, then make 3 sl st along the c2c tile to bring the yarn to the top corner.
Step 3: Release the loop on your hook and insert it back into the previous look you were working with, then pick up and pull the new yarn loop through.
Step 4: Tighten the old loop by pulling the yarn. Now you have switched colors without having a messy yarn transition on the side of your c2c tile.
Switching Colors When The New Yarn Is A Few Tiles Away
Sometimes you will finish a color section and need to switch colors, but the next yarn is a few c2c tiles away. Instead of cutting the yarn and joining it again a few c2c tiles down, you can just bring it down and then crochet over it.
You can apply this technique even if the yarn is quite a few c2c tiles away (5 or more tiles). This is a great way to save ends to weave in.
Here is how to do it.
Step 1: Pull the yarn through the loop on your hook. You will have a long strand of yarn going across your tiles.
Step 2: Make sure you leave enough yarn to go around the outline of each tile. I place my work on a flat surface and mold the yarn around the tiles to get an idea of how much yarn I need.
Step 3: Slip stitch into the next tile and crochet the new c2c tile over the yarn to hide it.
Step 4: Repeat step 3 for each tile until you have crocheted over the entire strand of yarn
How To Finish A C2C Blanket
The majority of c2c projects are either one-piece blankets or blankets made out of different square designs joined together, so I thought I should include in the c2c guide how to give them a neat finish once complete.
Joining C2C Squares
Let’s start with how to join the c2c squares.
I don’t have a tutorial of my own on how to join c2c tiles, but I think this is a skill you must learn if you want to get into c2c crochet. So, below, I have compiled a list of tutorials from talented designers, to show you different techniques on how to join c2c crochet squares.
You can join as you go, sew them together, or crochet borders between your squares. Choose the technique that suits you best from the list below.
How To Put A Border On A C2C Blanket
Sometimes, the edges of a c2c blanket can look uneven or, perhaps, you want to add a decorative border to it. In both cases, you will need to start with a base border that adds stitches all around your project.
This is helpful because it creates straight edges and neat corners, but also because it makes it easier for you to count the necessary stitches in order to crochet the border.
There are two types of base borders that you can make on your c2c blanket and I have created a video and written tutorial for each of them.
Easy Beginner Border For C2C Blankets (No Stitch Counting)
This is a written tutorial that includes a full step-by-step video and comes in 2 options: you can choose to make only the first row or make both rows. Read more about each option and which one is best for you in the Easy Beginner Border For C2C Blankets No Stitch Counting here.
Base Border For C2C Blankets
Before starting on any border, I recommend you crochet a base border around your blanket. This will give you the necessary stitches in order to crochet your choice of the decorative border.
This is just a simple row of single crochet stitches around your c2c blanket, check out my video tutorial on how to crochet it.
Crochet Borders For C2C Blankets
I often get asked if I can recommend a crochet border for c2c blankets. Below I have compiled a few simple c2c borders that I think are easy to make and compliment the flat, compact and colorful design of a c2c blanket.
These borders are specifically designed to fit c2c blankets and include the base border. If you crochet stitches around your blanket, then you can add any border you like.
Corner to Corner Crochet Pattern Variations
Now that you are familiar with the classic c2c crochet, you can play with different stitches and crochet different variations of this technique.
Here are a few ideas of corner-to-corner crochet pattern variations for your inspiration. Some are paid patterns, but I just wanted to show you what you can do with this technique.
PS: crocheting stitches in a triangle shape (a shawl for example), is not being considered as being a c2c pattern. Almost every stitch can be crocheted in a triangle shape.
Create Your Own C2C Graph
Once you are familiar with c2c crochet and are comfortable following any c2c pattern, you can go one step further and create your own c2c graph and pattern.
There are a few options out there for designing your own c2c graphgan, but the easiest one in my opinion is Stitch Fiddle. This is a free online service that turns your own images into graphgans and you can also create designs from scratch.
You can upload your own image, clean it up, change colors and then download the graph to your computer. If you want the written pattern, you will have to upgrade to the paid version.
Jess Coppom of Make And Do Crew has a comprehensive tutorial on how to make your own c2c graphgan from a picture or from scratch. You can find her tutorial here.
If you are good at drawing, you also have the option to manually draw your own design using a c2c graph paper workbook.
But before you start creating your own c2c pattern, you need to decide how big you want your project to be. Below I listed the standard blanket sizes, make sure you pin and save the chart below for your reference.
Once you have decided on your blanket size, follow the steps below to calculate how many c2c tiles you should have on the width and length of your graph. Once you have the numbers, you can visit Stitch Fiddle and create your own c2c chart.
More C2C Resources
If you need more inspiration and information on c2c crochet, you can use this section to discover amazing c2c designers and c2c crochet pattern books. I have compiled a list for both to choose from.
Top 5 C2C Crochet Books To Upgrade & Practice Your Crochet skills
Here is a list of the top 5 c2c crochet books on Amazon, you will recognize some of the designers and authors of these books. If you need more inspiration or you are looking to up your c2c craft, these books are for you.
- CORNER TO CORNER CROCHET: A complete step by step Guide on how to create beautiful crochet patterns and make awesome C2C Projects without stress
- Corner to Corner Crochet: 15 contemporary C2C projects
- Corner-To-Corner Lap Throws for the Family
- Fairytale Blankets to Crochet: 10 fantasy-themed children’s blankets for storytime cuddles
- Box Stitch Crochet: Use the Corner-to-Corner Stitch in New Ways to Make 20 Hats, Wraps, Scarves & Accessories
Best C2C Crochet Designers For Free Patterns & Inspiration
These designers have their own style of c2c crochet, but they are all passionate about this technique and create amazing designs. Read below about each designer and check out their websites to see their amazing creations.
Sarah of Repeat Crafter Me
Sarah has some really cute c2c crochet patterns on her website. They are mostly designs geared toward kids and all her patterns are free. She also has video tutorials to teach you c2c crochet. She also published her own c2c crochet book.
Karen of KnotSoLoopy
Karen does some really amazing things with c2c. She creates c2c crochet variations using different crochet stitches and the results are gorgeous and unexpected. Sher doesn’t have a website, but you can check her Instagram account for c2c crochet inspiration. She also sells some of her designs on Ravelry
Jess Coppom of Make And Do Crew
Jess creates modern c2c designs that will fit in any home. Check her tutorials and free patterns on her website. She also published her own c2c crochet book.
Tonya of Nana’s Crafty Home
Tonya does some pretty awesome things with c2c crochet: blankets, wearables, decorations, and more. Check her website to see for yourself and maybe you might end up choosing one of her designs as your next project. my favorite is the unicorn scarf, it’s something unique that I haven’t seen done before.
The photographs in this tutorial are subject to copyright and are the property of Crafting Happiness, don’t use them to advertise your own creations. You may use photos from this post only if you directly link back to this tutorial.