Crochet Cushion Back Tutorial (part 1)

 ★★☆ - Improver

Here's goes.  I'm going to attempt to explain how I crochet the backs onto my cushions.  It's actually very easy (in theory).  If you and I sat down now together, I could explain and show you and I'm sure we'd have it cracked in jiffy.  But, can I explain it well enough with words and pictures?  I guess we'll see...

I'm using UK crochet terms throughout this tutorial. (Sorry American friends)

But here's the US terms below in green so you can translate and then everyone can follow along:

ss - Slip Stitch (Slip Stitch)
ch - Chain (Chain)
dc - Double Crochet (Single Crochet)
tr - Treble Crochet (Double Crochet)
dtr - Double Treble Crochet (Treble Crochet)

I always use the same weight of yarn and hook size as I used for making the front of the cushion.

To start with, I'm going to show you how to crochet a back onto a standard, traditional granny square.  Once you have the idea of what to do, you can use the same method to make a back on pretty much any crochet cushion.  Although, sometimes some alterations are required... but we'll come to that later, in part 2.

Jump to Part 2 - Making the Cushion Back Fit

Let's start with our granny square.

1.  Once we get going, we'll be working with the wrong side on the granny square facing us.  But to start with, it's easier if you have the right side of the granny square facing you and we're going to start the crochet in the top right corner (Where the black arrow is).  So attach your yarn in that corner and then chain 2.

2.  As we crochet the back, we need to attach the beginning and end of each row to the sides of the square.   We're now going to use a slip stitch to attach this row to the cushion front.  We need to make a slip stitch into the middle treble of the first cluster on the right hand side of the granny square.  (Pink arrow in the top photo.)

3.  We're now going to crochet 1 treble into each stitch along that top edge of granny square.  So, start with the first treble of the first cluster of the granny square, and continue along the row.   (I still work along this row with the front of the granny square facing me, but the photo shows the wrong side of the granny square, as the row will fold up and lay along the wrong side of the granny square to form the back as we continue on...)

4. Carry on putting 1 treble crochet into each stitch, all the way along the row till you reach the end.

5.  Then we need to attach the top of this row to the granny square.  So, make a slip stitch into the middle treble of the first cluster on the left hand side of the granny square.  (The corners will kind of scrunch up a bit at this stage but you'll be able to straighten them out in a bit...)

6.  Next we need to start the next row, so chain 2.

7.  We need to attach the row to the side of the square.  This time make a slip stitch into the space between the first and second set of clusters.

8.  Turn the work round now so can see the right side of the row you've just made, but the wrong side of the granny square is facing you.  Now, we're ready to make the second row.  Using trebles again, we're going to work all the way along the row, putting 1 treble into each stitch below.  Make sure you start with the second treble in the row below though (as per the photo above).  That's because the chain we just made counts as the first treble for this row.

9.  Carry on making trebles along the row like this and hopefully you'll start to see how the cushion 'back' will lay nicely along the back of the granny square and a little pocket for our cushion is starting to form?

10.  Once you get to the end of the row, ss into the space between the first and second clusters on the side of the square.

11.  You should have something that looks like this.  (If your corners are still a bit scrunched up at this stage, you should be able to push them into place now.)

12.  So all we do now is repeat the same pattern of making rows, attaching the ends of the rows to the edges as we go.  So chain 2 and make a slip stitch into the middle treble of the next cluster along the side.

13.  Then you're ready to start your next row of trebles.  Remembering again to make the first treble of the new row into the second treble of the row below.  (As shown above)

14. Once we reach the end of the row again we're ready to make another slip stitch.

15.  And, as with the beginning of the row, we make the slip stitch into the middle treble of the next cluster along the side, like this.

16.  To start the next row, chain 2 and make your ss into the next space along between the trebles, then you're ready to make your next row.

17.  Once you get to the other end, ss into the next space between the trebles to complete the row.

18.  Basically all you do now is carry on in the same way, making a chain of 2 and ss to the side at the beginning of the row, making trebles along and then making a ss at the end of the row.  All you need to do is remember to alternate where you are making your slip stitch.  We've done four rows so far and we ended making our slip stitch into a chain space.  On the next row the slip stitches will be made into the middle of the treble clusters, the row after that the slip stitches will go into the chain spaces again.  (Really hoping this is making sense!!)

19.  I normally carry on until I'm about three quarters of the way up my cushion.  So on this mini sample version of mine I'm going to stop about here.

20.  The next thing to do is to make the other part of the back.  This part will overlap slightly so that we have a nice big opening for the cushion and space to add buttons.  I'm just going to show you how I make the overlapping part.  So just follow the start of the tutorial again on the other end of the granny square for the other half of the cushion back and crochet up till you meet the point you got to first time.  That's where I've got to in the photo above.  (I'm using a different colour, but that's just so you can see nice and clearly.)

21.  Now we start to overlap.  It's very simple, all you do is make 2 chains like every other start of a row, the only difference is, when you make your slip stitch, the space you need to use will already have a stitch in it.  All you do now is wiggle you hook through in the same place, alongside the other stitch and make the ss for your new row.  Easy.  (You can see my pale pink stitch already there and my hook is in exactly the same spot.)

22.  Then carry on with your row of trebles, making sure of course, to make the trebles into only the part of the back that you're working on now.  In my picture, I made the light pink half first, so now I'm just working into the dark pink trebles of my second half.

23.   Once you get to the other end, just do the same thing and make your ss into the space you need, right next to the one that will already be there.

24.  I usually do about 2 or 3 overlapping rows.  As you can see, they just lay down over the first back section, making a little envelope to tuck the cushion into. 

25.  Almost there now.  We've just got the edges to do.  Sometimes, if I'm using a similar colour, I don't bother with an edge, with my Comfy Granny Cushion I didn't.  However, when I use different colours, I like edge round to give a neat finish, like with Elmer the Cushion.  You can see in the photo here that the back colours are showing through to the front.

26.  All I usually do is a simple round of double crochet.  You can start your edge anywhere and with the right side of the granny square facing you, just work your way round, making a double crochet into each stitch.  All you need to do is make sure your hook goes into the granny stitch first and catches part of the cushion 'back' stitches too.  See how in the photo I have the two purple bits of yarn from the front stitch and a bit of the dark pick stitch from the back on my hook.

 27.  Once you've gone all the way round, it should look like this.  Much neater!  Then, if you want to carry on and add a nicer border to decorate, you're all ready to go.

28.  All we need to finish now is the buttons.  You can see how the crochet offers some nice, ready made holes that we can use for buttons.  All I do is space out my buttons on the underneath layer of the overlap and sew them on where I want them.

29.  Then just push them through whichever part of the top layer that lines up the best.  I like this bit, I can't go wrong lining my holes and my buttons up!

30.  And, ta dah, you are all done!  Why not treat yourself to a nice hot cup of tea (or coffee) as a reward?  That's what I'm going to do!

Ok, I know that sounds really long winded and a lot of work, but once you've got the hang of it, I promise, it's really not.  It just takes a lot of photos and writing to explain!

I really, really hope that it all makes sense, I do want you to be able to do this.  So, as always, if you do get stuck, or have a question, please just ask and I'll do my best to help you out.

I'm also working on a second part to this tutorial, because although I've covered how to crochet onto a standard granny square, it can take a little bit of jiggery pokery to get it to fit depending on what you use as a 'front'.  So, as this post is quite, quite long enough, that will have to follow shortly.

Happy crocheting everyone!

S x

Part Two of the Crochet Cushion Back Tutorial is here

Why not come and share your creations with us in Cherry Heart's Cozy Corner, my Ravelry group.  It's a great place to go if you've got any questions too!