How to crochet the bullion stitch

How to crochet the bullion stitch

Bullion stitches are tough. Yes, I said it and I’m not ashamed to admit that the bullion stitch was a huge problem for me only weeks ago. Sure, the concept was easy to understand but gauge and tension were an absolute nightmare.

For those of you unfamiliar with the bullion stitch, well, it has been highly regarded as the stitch to master to call yourself a true master of crochet. This is mainly because if you can create a perfect looking bullion stitch with your crochet hook, you are a master! This tutorial doesn’t teach you how to create the perfect bullion stitch but rather how to create a smarter bullion stitch. Call me a rebel, but I like to find the easiest method of working a project. I tip my hat to those few individuals who crochet bullion stitches with ease using a crochet hook, but for the rest of us, lets save ourselves some frustration and crochet bullion stitches the smarter way!

A couple weeks ago I introduced you to my solution for a perfect bullion stitch with the Bullion Stitch Flower tutorial. I realize that there will be some people who simply want to add an accent row to a current work in progress or supplement their pattern using a more efficient method of creating a bullion stitch. This tutorial is for you!

Crochet Bullion Stitch: The Easy Smarter Way

How to crochet the bullion stitch

From this angle, you can really see how stunning the bullion stitch is. It’s nothing short of incredible really and when paired with a short color repeat variegated yarn like you see above…wow! Typically, the bullion stitch is used as an accent stitch or accent row. It can be easily worked in a flat piece or in the round and creates a relatively thick fabric. Here are a few examples of ways to use the bullion stitch:

  • Flowers – Bullion Stitch Flower
  • Clothing accents
  • Hot Pad
  • Handbag/Purse accents
  • Afghan Borders
  • Headband

These are just a few examples. The sky really is the limit in this case. Since bullion stitches are so difficult to perfect, you really don’t see them used much. However, now that you are about to learn the easy way, you may just put a row or two of bullion stitches in every single project from here on out!

How to Crochet a Perfect Bullion Stitch: Video Tutorial


This video is also available in a left handed version. Click here to be directed to the left handed tutorial on YouTube.

Written Instructions

The bullion stitch can be worked in any number of stitches. There is no need to calculate a multiple.

Abbreviations

  • Ch – Chain
  • Sc – Single Crochet
  • YO – Yarn Over

Pattern Notes

The bullion stitch has many height variants. For this particular pattern we will be using 7 “wraps” or loops to accomplish the height of our bullion stitches. Please note that you do not have to crochet the bullion stitch with the latch hook. You can follow the same steps with your crochet hook.

I mentioned in the video that I would provide the written instructions for the swatch seen in the video. It can be worked using any number of stitches, so just know that the written instructions are for the swatch only.

To make a bullion stitch: YO 7 times. Insert hook into designated stitch. YO and pull up a loop, YO and pull through all loops on your hook. YO and pull through the loop on your hook.

Row 1 (Foundation Row): Ch 15. Sc in the first chain from the hook and in each chain.

Row 2: Ch 2. Make one bullion stitch in every stitch.

Row 3: Ch 1. Sc in every stitch.

Repeat rows 2-3 until your piece reaches the desired length.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

One of the many special crochet stitches is called the “bullion stitch”. This is a very decorative stitch, which can also be used to crochet flowers, jewelry or beautiful edges to projects.

In this post I’ will show you how to crochet the bullion stitch.

The bullion stitch step by step

For this tutorial I started with a small swatch in half double crochet (hdc).

How to crochet the bullion stitch

1. Wrap the yarn loosely around your hook.How much time depends on how high you want the bullion stitch to be. Here I am making the bullion stitches in a hdc fabric, therefor I am wrapping the yarn seven times around my hook. When making bullion stitches in a double crochet fabric, wrapping 10 times may be better. It really depends on your individual gauge though.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

2. Insert the hook into the next stitch and pull up a loop.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

3. Make a yarn over …

How to crochet the bullion stitch

4. … and pull the yarn through all the loops on the hook. You will notice that this can be rather difficult when you have wrapped the yarn too tightly around the hook in step 1. This completes your first bullion stitch.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

And this is how it looks when you’ve made multiple bullion stitches in between normal (in this case) half double crochet stitches.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

As you may have noticed, it can be tricky to wrap the yarn loose enough around the hook in step 1. It can help to hold a thin knitting needle, crochet hook or yarn needle next to your hook while wrapping the yarn. Wrapping your yarn around both automatically means a looser wrap!

Also, use the right type of crochet hook! As you can see in the picture below, the tip of the green hook sticks out relative to the shaft of the hook. This makes it more difficult to pull a loop of yarn through multiple loops on the hook. With an in-line shaped hook like the bamboo one pictured below, both tip and shaft have the same thickness. This makes this type of crochet hook much better suited for making bullion stitches.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

One of the many special crochet stitches is called the “bullion stitch”. This is a very decorative stitch, which can also be used to crochet flowers, jewelry or beautiful edges to projects.

In this post I’ will show you how to crochet the bullion stitch.

The bullion stitch step by step

For this tutorial I started with a small swatch in half double crochet (hdc).

How to crochet the bullion stitch

1. Wrap the yarn loosely around your hook.How much time depends on how high you want the bullion stitch to be. Here I am making the bullion stitches in a hdc fabric, therefor I am wrapping the yarn seven times around my hook. When making bullion stitches in a double crochet fabric, wrapping 10 times may be better. It really depends on your individual gauge though.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

2. Insert the hook into the next stitch and pull up a loop.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

3. Make a yarn over …

How to crochet the bullion stitch

4. … and pull the yarn through all the loops on the hook. You will notice that this can be rather difficult when you have wrapped the yarn too tightly around the hook in step 1. This completes your first bullion stitch.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

And this is how it looks when you’ve made multiple bullion stitches in between normal (in this case) half double crochet stitches.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

As you may have noticed, it can be tricky to wrap the yarn loose enough around the hook in step 1. It can help to hold a thin knitting needle, crochet hook or yarn needle next to your hook while wrapping the yarn. Wrapping your yarn around both automatically means a looser wrap!

Also, use the right type of crochet hook! As you can see in the picture below, the tip of the green hook sticks out relative to the shaft of the hook. This makes it more difficult to pull a loop of yarn through multiple loops on the hook. With an in-line shaped hook like the bamboo one pictured below, both tip and shaft have the same thickness. This makes this type of crochet hook much better suited for making bullion stitches.

The crochet stitch that we are going to show you today is a little different. Its texture is a little similar to a stitch with bobbles but denser (that is why it is perfect to crochet blankets for babies). To crochet this stitch we will need another tool, so apart from the crochet hook and the yarn we need to prepare another crochet hook or knitting needle. Try to find something that has a similar size to the crochet hook because that will make everything a lot easier.

Ready to try out the bullion stitch?

To crochet this stitch you can cast on any number of stitches. It is not reversible.

In the example we have crocheted the bullion stitch on top of rows we crocheted in single crochet before but you can also use rows in double crochet if you prefer that. Once you are done crocheting these rows in single or double crochet, follow these instructions:

Row 1: *place the knitting needle on top of the crochet hook. After that, circle the thread around the needle and the crochet hook seven times in total. Without letting the thread slip off both, insert the crochet hook into the next stitch, circle the thread around it again and pull it out. Circle the thread around it again and then pull the crochet hook very carefully out of all the threads that were placed around it and around the needle. You will then have just one stitch on the crochet hook.* Repeat from * to * until the end of the row and then crochet a chain. Turn the project around.

Repeat this row as many times as you want to create the bullion stitch. You can crochet a number of similar rows or mix them with rows in single crochet.

As you can see this stitch forms little bobbles that are very close together. Depending on the material the project will be heavier or lighter.

Ready to start? What color will you choose? We used the cotton in natural and a 5MM crochet hook. Share your results with the hashtag #weareknitters!

Welcome on knitting blog from We Are Knitters with tips on how to knit and crochet plus useful tricks for beginners and advanced makers.

Learn how to crochet bullion stitch with my step by step tutorial and videos!

It takes time and practice to produce even-looking bullions, but it’s well worth it. Once you’ve mastered them you can try making my Bullion Stitch Flower 🙂

Basic Bullion Stitch with 5 Wraps

A video is worth a billion words 😉 So let me show you how I work a bullion with 5 wraps around the hook first:

You can try working bullions into a chain – but it’s nice to have a good, solid base to work into if you’re just starting out on this journey!

So let’s work our bullion stitches onto a base of dc (UK tr.)

I’m using sports-weight cotton and my favorite 3 mm hook for this tutorial.

Ch 16, dc (UK tr) into 4th ch from hook, dc (UK tr) into each ch along.

Ch 3, turn. Miss first st, dc (UK tr) into each st along.

Now we are on the right side of the work. Bullion stitch has a right side and a wrong side, so we’ll be working into the right side 🙂

Step 1: Wrap yarn around hook 5 times.

I hold each wrap with my right index finger to keep it on the hook as I go.

Keep your loops relaxed – not too loose or hanging off the hook. Not too tight, either!

Step 2: Miss 1st stitch, insert hook into 2nd st, pull through a loop.

Now is the time to tighten that loop under the hook – it’s almost hiding under there!

Move your wraps up towards the top of the hook:

Top tips for this crucial step!

What you’re aiming for here is to ensure the first wrap you go under is a little looser than the others

If you can pull your tightened loop under your hook comfortably under the first wrap, then you should be able to get it through the rest.

If you need to loosen that first wrap a bit, “stroke” the wraps from back to front to work a bit more looseness into the first one. You can see how I do this in the video.

If your wraps are too tight, undo and try again. I had to do this a lot when I started, and I still do from time to time.

Work loosely

When making your wraps, inserting your hook into the next stitch, and pulling through your loop, keep your tension nice and relaxed. Only after you’ve pulled through your loop do you surprise your bullion and tighten the loop you pulled through under your hook.

Keep the top of the hook straight

You shouldn’t have to wiggle your hook around or twist it. Keep it pointing upwards.

Hold the wrapped stitches between your thumb and index fingers.

This keeps them together and under control. Things get a bit more difficult if you have a greater number of wraps, but if you can cope with 5 wraps, this is good training for what is to come.

Play around with those wraps. Move them about a bit. See what happens if you move them one way or another. You’ll soon have them behaving themselves!

Step 3: Pull the tightened loop under your hook through all five wraps and the original loop on the hook:

Step 4: Ch 1 to secure bullion.

Repeat steps 1 – 4 along your piece to practise.

How to Crochet Bullion Stitch with 12 Wraps

The method above works with more wraps. Try 6 or 7 wraps and so on, and build up.

If you’re feeling really adventurous, move on to 12 wraps!

Begin as above with a base for your work and chain 5 to turn.

Why only ch 5? Well, although you’ll have 12 wraps, you want them to be nice and close together to create a super-looking bullion! If you made 6 or 7 chain (as I tried doing) you end up having to pull the yarn up through the bullion at the end to get it to the correct height. And then your bullion looks rather stretched and out of shape. or at least, mine did!

OK, watch how I work two bullions wrapping the yarn around the hook 12 times:

Different Types of Bullion Stitch

You may have noticed another method of crocheting bullions.

One of the most common I’ve seen is to wrap the yarn around the hook several times, insert your hook into the next stitch, pull through a loop, yarn around hook again, draw through all the loops, then ch 1. So this version involves an extra “yarn around hook.”

This also works well – it just depends on how you prefer to crochet the stitch.

Bullion Treble Stitch

I found this stitch in Therese de Dillmont’s Encyclopedia of Needlework, which is written for UK readers – so in US terminology, I guess this would be Bullion Double Stitch!

In some editions of this book, Dillmont seems to refer to a bullion treble as being simply a stitch with 10 or 12 wraps. In my edition, she adds a further sentence, telling us to pull the yarn through all but one of the loops on the hook and then pulling a new loop through the last two loops on the hook. So this is the one I will explain here.

Make a base for your stitches again as above, chaining 5 to turn – or do as I did, and work into any number of loosely worked chain, allowing 5 ch for the turn.

*Wrap your yarn 12 times around the hook.

If working on a base: miss 1st st, insert hook into next st and pull through a loop.

If working on a chain: insert hook into 6th ch from hook and pull through a loop.

Then tighten the loop under your hook and pull it through all of the loops on your hook apart from the last one so that you are left with two loops on your hook.

Then yarn around hook and pull through final two loops.*

No need to make a chain stitch – just repeat from * to *.

This is what I ended up with:

Let’s compare that to a 12 wrap bullion worked “normally” – ie pulling your tightened loop through all the wraps and final loop in one go and then making 1 ch:

Not a lot of difference it would seem. until you look at the top of the stitch:

If I was going to be working a second row, I’d rather work into the treble bullion on the right, wouldn’t you?

I guess the difference is explained by the fact that the regular bullions are finished off with 1 ch, and the treble bullions don’t need that extra chain at the end.

So I tried working a swatch to see what came out if I worked rows of bullions, each row separated by a row of sc (UK dc.)

For the chain: I chained 12, working the chains even looser than I did before – because as you can see from the pix above, I didn’t work loosely enough and my row of bullions curled a little.

Then I chained 5 for the turn, working those chains with a tighter tension.

Row 1: Treble bullion into 6th ch from hook, treble bullion into each chain along.

Row 2: Work 1 sc (UK dc) into the top two loops of 1st bullion and into each st along.

Row 3: Treble bullion into 1st st and into each stitch along.

Then repeat rows 2 and 3 and this is what we get:

Well – that was certainly an interesting experiment! I’m sure there are many more adventures to come with our bullions.

And I do hope this page will help you learn how to crochet bullion stitch successfully 🙂

The Bullion Stitch is beautiful when done.

The bullion stitch is a special stitch formed by wrapping the yarn several times around the crochet hook (usually 7 to 10 times), and then pulling a loop through.

It can be used as a decorative stitch for jewelry, flower making or as a pretty edging.

How to Crochet: Bullion Stitch

Start with a test swatch of single or double crochets. I used crochet hook size G in this example. You will also need a knitting needle. If you don’t have a knitting needle, you can use another crochet hook or a tapestry needle. The whole idea is to wrap the yarn around both the crochet hook and the knitting needle to give it more space so you can pull the crochet hook through without getting stuck!

How to crochet the bullion stitch
Place the knitting needle flush against the crochet hook.

How to crochet the bullion stitch
Wrap the yarn 7 times around both the needle and the hook from back to front.

How to crochet the bullion stitch
Move the knitting needle down a bit, holding the loops in place with your finger.

How to crochet the bullion stitch
Take the crochet hook and insert into the next stitch, still keeping the loops intact around the hook and needle.

How to crochet the bullion stitch
Pull through a loop.

How to crochet the bullion stitch
Then – the moment of truth! – Yarn over, and pull both the crochet hook and the needle together through all the loops.

This is what a row of bullion stitches looks like:

How to crochet the bullion stitch

You can even crochet around a circle for a cute flower.
Good luck!

I know it took me a while to master this stitch. But it was worth it!

This entry was posted on Tuesday, February 8th, 2011 at 12:00 AM by Robin Beers and is filed under Tutorials and Help.

Thanks to Crochet Spot for the Article.

Related Posts

First, I would like to apologize for my absence

A Tutorial on Crocheting the Ridge Stitch. Krista, from

There are a few crochet stitches out there that prompt exclamations of amazement and the baffling questions of, “How did they do that?”

How to crochet the bullion stitch

One of those stitches for me has always been the bullion stitch. This intriguing stitch creates spirals of yarn and great texture to a crochet pattern.

The construction of the bullion stitch is really quite simple with a little bit of practice. In no time you will be whipping out fabulous projects like the Bullion Beach Blanket by Donna Kay Lacey (at right) and the Art Nouveau Bullion Necklace (below). Sharon Zientara, Interweave Crochet’s Assistant Editor Sharon Zientara, joins us to walk you through the steps of creating a bullion stitch and offer a few helpful tips.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

1. MULTIPLE YARN OVERS

The bullion is a series of yarn overs that are drawn together in the final stitch. The best hook to complete the bullion stitch effectively is a long, slender, in-line hook. The best yarn to use is a tightly plied one.

To begin the stitch, loosely yarn over the number of times called for in the pattern. Working the yarn overs loosely is key to easily drawing the hook through all the loops. If you can’t get your loops loose enough, hold the handle of another smaller crochet hook alongside your hook and wrap the yarn over both. Slide the second crochet hook out after wrapping before completing the stitch.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

2. YARN OVER AND PULL UP A LOOP

Yarn over and draw through all the loops on the hook. As you draw the hook through, firmly hold the loops in place with the hand that is not holding the hook. If the loops do not slide easily, pick up each loop and pull it off the hook as you draw through.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

3. FINISHED BULLION

To close the bullion, yarn over and draw through the last loop on the hook before working the next stitch.

How to crochet the bullion stitch Art Nouveau Bullion Necklace by Donna Kay Lacey

If you get this right away, that’s terrific! Most people new to the stitch have to do a bit of ripping out before getting it right. The key to the bullion stitch is to practice it until your hands become familiar with the tension required when making the yarn overs and drawing the hook through.

Grab some yarn and a hook and practice a few of your own bullion stitches before beginning one a beautiful textured bullion crochet project. Subscribe today to Interweave Crochet for more great how-to articles on unique crochet stitches and in-depth articles on crochet techniques and project construction. Don’t miss out on this great opportunity to continue your crochet education.

There are a few crochet stitches out there that prompt exclamations of amazement and the baffling questions of, “How did they do that?”

How to crochet the bullion stitch

One of those stitches for me has always been the bullion stitch. This intriguing stitch creates spirals of yarn and great texture to a crochet pattern.

The construction of the bullion stitch is really quite simple with a little bit of practice. In no time you will be whipping out fabulous projects like the Bullion Beach Blanket by Donna Kay Lacey (at right) and the Art Nouveau Bullion Necklace (below). Sharon Zientara, Interweave Crochet’s Assistant Editor Sharon Zientara, joins us to walk you through the steps of creating a bullion stitch and offer a few helpful tips.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

1. MULTIPLE YARN OVERS

The bullion is a series of yarn overs that are drawn together in the final stitch. The best hook to complete the bullion stitch effectively is a long, slender, in-line hook. The best yarn to use is a tightly plied one.

To begin the stitch, loosely yarn over the number of times called for in the pattern. Working the yarn overs loosely is key to easily drawing the hook through all the loops. If you can’t get your loops loose enough, hold the handle of another smaller crochet hook alongside your hook and wrap the yarn over both. Slide the second crochet hook out after wrapping before completing the stitch.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

2. YARN OVER AND PULL UP A LOOP

Yarn over and draw through all the loops on the hook. As you draw the hook through, firmly hold the loops in place with the hand that is not holding the hook. If the loops do not slide easily, pick up each loop and pull it off the hook as you draw through.

How to crochet the bullion stitch

3. FINISHED BULLION

To close the bullion, yarn over and draw through the last loop on the hook before working the next stitch.

How to crochet the bullion stitch Art Nouveau Bullion Necklace by Donna Kay Lacey

If you get this right away, that’s terrific! Most people new to the stitch have to do a bit of ripping out before getting it right. The key to the bullion stitch is to practice it until your hands become familiar with the tension required when making the yarn overs and drawing the hook through.

Grab some yarn and a hook and practice a few of your own bullion stitches before beginning one a beautiful textured bullion crochet project. Subscribe today to Interweave Crochet for more great how-to articles on unique crochet stitches and in-depth articles on crochet techniques and project construction. Don’t miss out on this great opportunity to continue your crochet education.