PlanetJune Craft Blog

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Magic Ring (right-handed)

Link easily to this tutorial in your patterns: www.planetjune.com/magicring

Looking for the left-handed instructions? Or the video tutorial? If not, read on…

What is this ‘Magic Ring’, anyway?

A magic ring is a way to begin crocheting in the round by crocheting over an adjustable loop and then pulling the loop tight. The advantage of the magic ring method (below, right) is that, unlike the regular “chain 2, x single crochet in 2nd chain from hook” method (below, left), there is no hole left in the middle of your starting round.

magic ring vs traditional method
L: ch2, 6 sc in 2nd ch from hook, 2 sc in each st around.
R: magic ring, ch 1, 6 sc in magic ring, 2 sc in each st around.

How do I make a Magic Ring?

Please note: in the following photos, the starting yarn tail is always on the left and hanging down. The working yarn begins on the right and is then picked up over my left forefinger in Step 2.

This demonstration shows a piece made using the following pattern:

Make a magic ring, ch 1.
Rnd 1: 6 sc in magic ring. ( 6 st)
Rnd 2: 2 sc in each st around. (12 st)

If you’re following a different pattern, you’d complete steps 1-2 of this tutorial exactly as shown below, then work the chain and the stitches of Rnds 1 and 2 as specified in your pattern.

  1. Make a loop a few inches from the end of your yarn. Grasp the join of the loop (where the 2 strands of yarn overlap) between your left thumb and forefinger:
    magic ring
     
  2. Insert hook into the loop from front to back. Draw up a loop:
    magic ring
     
  3. Ch 1 (or as many as stated in your pattern). Note: this does NOT count as a stitch:
    magic ring
     
  4. Insert hook into the loop, so you are crocheting over the loop and the yarn tail. Draw up a loop to begin your first sc of Rnd 1:
    magic ring
     
  5. Complete the sc. Continue to crochet over the loop and the yarn tail until you have the required number of sc for your first round (6 sc shown here):
    magic ring
     
  6. Grab the yarn tail and pull to draw the centre of the ring tightly closed:
    magic ring
     
  7. Begin your second round by crocheting into the first stitch of the first round (below, left). At the end of round 2 your work will look like this (below, right):
    magic ring
     

You’ll never go back to your old method again, I promise!

285 Comments »

  1. Elizabeth said

    Hi June, I just started crocheting last month, so please excuse me if this is a ridiculous question, but can you use the magic ring to start a hat when the pattern DOESN’T call for it? Is there a particular substitution? Thanks so much!

    • June said

      All you need to do is replace whatever your pattern says to work the stitches of Rnd 1 into (probably either a single chain stitch, or a loop of chain stitches) with the loop of the magic ring :)

  2. May said

    Thanks for the Magic Ring instructions. I am mostly a knitter only because there are some things about crochet that I had no idea could be done. I will never go back to the old way again!!

  3. Helene said

    Oh. So THIS is a magic. Haha, I always skip that part when I crochet. Now I see what I’ve missed. Thank you so much for this, and for linking it in the flower tutorial so that I clicked it (after 13 failed attempts to fit 15 stitches in one small hole).
    Have a creative day!

  4. Caz said

    Thank you so much for the easiest method I’ve tried for this – usually every time I need to make a magic circle (obviously not often enough lol) I have to search for the instructions, but I think I’ll actually be able to recall your instructions easily. Thanks again!

  5. Parita said

    i don’t get the instructions can u be more specific please

  6. Shradha said

    This is the best explanation ever. I had been struggling with it for 2 years and got it in 2 mins. Thank you

  7. Vanessa said

    Thank you so much. I am new to crochet and have been struggling with the magic circle but got it straight away with your instructions, they are very clear and easy to follow. I can now get to work on my beanie :) Thank you for taking the time to share your expertise.

  8. Rosemary L. said

    I have used the magic ring and it looks great. I have found that the ring loosens and I don’t know how to keep it tight. I do weave in the ends but it still relaxes. It looks as though no one else has this issue. But, it could be my teacher – a book called “I Tought Myself To Crochet”! Learned in 1974 after breaking down in Kingman, AZ for 7 hours. Never had a real crochet buddy so I still have not advanced to semi-complex patterns ????. Thanks for your site.

    • June said

      It depends in part on the yarn you use, and in part on how tightly you pull it closed – after it feels like it’s closed I can usually give it an extra-hard tug and it’ll lock up tighter, but that does depend on the yarn.

  9. Dot said

    My only question is…what keeps the ring from unravelling? I know you pull it tight and then that thread just hangs there. How do you secure it so that when washed, it doesn’t pull apart? That is the only thing that keeps me from trying this.

    • June said

      Dot, if you’re making an amigurumi, you can leave the yarn tail dangling inside the piece. For any other crochet (garments, accessories, home decor, etc) you’d just weave in the yarn tail on the back of the work to secure it, as you do with all your other yarn ends.

  10. Theresa said

    Thanks so much for sharing this, I was never able to quite understand the concept of the magic ring but now I won’t use any other method for my beanies. Your instructions were simple and easy to follow after a few tries I was able to do it on my own…Thanks again!!

  11. KitterKats said

    I have been crocheting for a long time and never heard of the magic ring till I bought the Ami Cats pattern. I tried it with a fuzzy yarn and couldn’t get it to pull tight. I think the fuzz was getting trapped in the stitches and wouldn’t pull. I love cats and the pattern and plan on making a bunch of them using all different types of yarn. So, I’ll definitely try again. It will be nice to make a ring and be able to close up the hole. With the fuzzy yarn, the fuzz itself closed up the hole.
    Your instructions are wonderful and easy to follow.
    Thanks for your wonderful website. I love it and could really go crazy with all your supper cute patterns, if I had the time.

    • June said

      Yep, the magic ring is definitely not designed for use with fuzzy yarns, but it’s amazing with regular yarn! (If you want to make more of my designs with fuzzy yarns, I recommend you use the substitution in the Terminology section on p1 of all my patterns – using the ch 2 start with a textured yarn will give you a more consistent result.)

  12. Wow! I love this technique. It reminds me of being a kid and learning macrame for the forst time. …but now I can incorporate into crochet. BRILIANT!

  13. Kris said

    I have been crocheting for decades and have never liked the hole in the middle when making things. This is simply brilliant and can’t believe I didn’t think of it! Just so practical. Thanks for sharing!

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Please note that I can only answer questions related to PlanetJune patterns and tutorials (see details), and I can only respond to questions or comments written in English. Thank you :) - June

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    June Gilbank

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