How to Join Crochet Motifs: Beginner-Friendly Tips and Tutorials

How to Join Crochet Motifs   Rewritten by Janice Jones  |Last Updated 11-28-2022

You've created all those wonderful crochet motifs and now it's time to figure out how to put them together to make a finished project.

How to Join Crochet Motifs

Crochet motifs (such as granny squares) can be joined to each other in one of the classical ways, shown below. There are no "correct" or "incorrect" ways for joining motifs together. It is only matter of your preferences. Try them all and choose the one you are comfortable with the most.

If you are following a written pattern, you will want to use the method suggested by the designer. Not all patterns though, will provide detailed instructions for connecting the parts.

Three Methods for Joining Crochet Motifs

In this beginner-friendly tutorial, I will describe three methods that you can use to join or connect your crochet squares.  They are by means not the only ways to do this.

For these methods, you will either need a tapestry needle or a crochet hook.

1.  Use a Yarn Needle to Sew Them Together

2.  Use a Crochet Hook to Connect Them

3.  Join as You Go

1. Use a Yarn or Tapestry Needle to Sew Them Together

This is the easiest method of joining motifs. For this method, you will need a yarn needle and length of yarn.  You can either use the same color you used to crochet the motif for an invisible join or if you prefer, use a contrasting color.

Method One

Hold two motifs together (right sides facing each other). Using a yarn needle yarn sew motifs together through the back loops only. 

Join crochet motifsWrong side of the joined crochet motifs. A contrast color thread was used for the better visibility.

2. Use a Crochet Hook to Connect Them

Motifs can be joined by a crochet hook. This method has more technological flexibility and decoration features than joining  motifs with a yarn needle. You can use slip stitch, single crochet or chains, to join elements to each other. Two motifs can be placed right side-to-right side or back side-to-back side. The decorative effect will be different.

Join crochet motifsRight side of the joined crochet motifs. It looks very neat despite a darker color of the thread, which was used for sewing.

Holding Motifs With Backs Facing

Join by a crochet hookThe motifs are held with back sides facing each other. Insert the hook through the front loops of both motifs, yarn over, and pull through all stitches on hook. A neat, decorative ridge on the right side is created.

Holding Motifs With Front Sides Facing

Join by a crochet hookThe motifs are held with the right sides facing. Insert hook through the back loops of both motifs. Yarn over and pull through.

3."Join-as-you-go" method

Connect motifs while crocheting their last row. This method works the best if motifs have arches on the outside edges. This way connection will look the most decorative and the least noticeable.

This is also a handy method that can save you time.  Here is a good example where this method to join crochet motifs (or squares) will work perfect. I used it for crocheting a lacy crochet shawl many years ago.

Some Special Cases for Joining Motifs

All methods of joining crocheted elements, mentioned above, will work if the motifs create a regular repeating pattern. When won't they work for joining motifs? Two cases at least can be mentioned here.

  1. Motifs are large or have a complicated shape. If you join them using any one of the methods above, a final pattern will have the big openings between elements.
  2. Motifs are parts of a larger composition or consist of different shaped elements such as in Irish crochet.

Crochet Motifs are Large

Let's consider joining of motifs #2 from Irish Crochet page. 8 petals allow to join 4 more motifs around  each motif.

We will sew 4 motifs together(or  better use "join-as-you-go" method).

As a result, in center we have a pretty large empty space. To fill it, we usually  use an additional small motif-insert. It looks more natural if the inserting element is a fragment of a major motif.

How to join motifsInsert: Chain 6, join them in a ring. Crochet 16 single crochets into ring, 1 slip stitch. Pin insert in the middle of the opening.
How to join motifsUse chains to join inserts: from insert to the 1st motif, back to insert, to the 2nd motif, back to insert, and so on.

Motifs are parts of a larger composition

Sometimes motifs, which have to be joined to each other are the elements of the pretty complicated composition (like in Irish crochet laces).

None of the methods presented above will work. The joining requires some special techniques. Usually motifs are inserted in some background. In most cases, this kind of joining crocheted elements looks almost like a "rocket science" even for the pretty experienced crocheters.

There is a very good saying :"Our eyes are afraid, but hands just do it!" 

You can try one of these methods on your own together with me. I have never tried to do it before.

Here is a link for more information: Motif Pattern page.