1st Inning

Welcome to Around-the-Bases (ATB) Crochet Along (CAL)!  This is the first of the 16-week CAL we will be working on, starting on August 9, 2015.  A new set of rounds will be released every Sunday for 16 consecutive weeks.  Each week’s clues will be released here on this blog at 8:30 am Central Time.  You can crochet along each week with us or crochet at your own pace.  The pattern will remain on the blog for free.

If you are new to ATB CAL, welcome!  Please scroll down and read about the CAL, especially this introduction page.  You can also find additional information and pictures of the sample finished afghan here.

The CAL starts with a center “base” block of YOUR choice.  Please read about center base blocks here, as you can select any size block but each side must have {multiples of 6 minus 2} stitches, not including corner chains (Examples: 10, 16, 22, 28, 34, 40, 46, 52, 58, 64, 70, 76, 82, 88, 94, 100, 106, etc.).  Here are some of the most popular base blocks patterns.

Are You Ready?

It has been so fun to see the beautiful bases and everyone’s excitement on Facebook CAL – Crochet Along group and Ravelry Around the Bases CAL group during the warm up!

I know we are all anxiously waiting for the 1st inning, but before we pitch off, please count your stitches one more time and make sure your base block has {multiples of 6 minus 2} stitches per side (Examples: 10, 16, 22, 28, 34, 40, 46, 52, 58, 64, 70, 76, 82, 88, 94, 100, 106, etc.).  I recommend you write down your starting stitch count and keep it somewhere safe!  You will likely refer back to this number in later weeks when stitches become a little complicated.

IMPORTANT – Before starting this CAL, please read this Tips page as well as Design Disclaimer, Center Block Credit, and Pattern Use.

Around-the-Bases CAL

©ChiChi Allen 2015

Center block credit: Tropical Delight published in Herrschener’s More Blue Ribbon Afghans.  Pattern is available at Mellie Blossom.
Week 1 TD

PDF  –  For no frills, printer friendly PDF pattern, click on:

Dutch Translation – For Dutch translation of the PDF pattern, please visit Esther at It’s All in a Nutshell.

Video – Watch the video tutorial, courtesy of Esther of It’s All in a Nutshell.

Pattern written in American crochet terms by a right-handed crocheter


  • st = stitch
  • sc = single crochet
  • hdc = half double crochet
  • dc = double crochet
  • slst = slip stitch
  • ch = chain
  • yo = yarn over
  • sp = space

My Sample Afghan’s Colors

  • Row 1: Canary
  • Row 2: Canary
  • Row 3: Canary
  • Row 4: Canary

Starting a New Row:  For this CAL, unless otherwise noted, instructions on each row start with corner stitches.

  • If you are using a different color than your previous row, start the next color in any corner space with a standing stitch. For more information on standing stitches, check out this informative page from Happily Hooked Crochet Magazine.
  • If you are using the same color from one row to the next, slip stitch to the next corner space and use 1 chain for sc, 2 chains for hdc, or 3 chains for dc as your first corner stitch.  For example, for (sc, ch 2, sc), you will chain 3 (1+2) and sc in the corner space.

Finishing a Row: Unless otherwise noted, for this CAL, slip stitch (sl st) into the first (standing) st at the end of each row.

  • If you are changing colors next, check out Dedri Uys’ easy-to-follow instructions on how to change colors with invisible join.  (She also shows how to make traditional slip stitch join at the end of the page.)

1st Inning – Let’s start this CAL with shell pillars.

Week 1 - Shell Pillars

Week 1 consists of 4 rounds and will add a total of 11 stitches per side to your base.

Colors – You can use one or more colors as you wish.  The above sample was made in one color (light turquoise) (dark turquoise and light green belong to the base block and are not part of the 1st inning rounds.)

Here is a sample with two colors.

Week 1 Two Colors

Row 1 (will add 3 st per side):
  1. (2 sc, ch 3, 1 sc) in the corner (note there are 2 sc on one end and 1 sc on the other),
  2. sc in each st,
  3. Repeat 1 & 2 for all 4 sides,
  4. sl st to the first (standing) st [added 3 st per side]

I recommend that you count your stitches here (and ideally after each side and/or row).  You should have added 3 stitches per side.  If you have only added 2 stitches per side, you probably accidentally skipped the hidden stitch.  Throughout the pattern, unless otherwise stated, always put a stitch in this first (sometimes hidden) stitch.  

Row 2 (will add 4 st per side):
  1. (2 dc, ch 1, 2 dc) in the corner (corner shell made),
  2. **sc in next st (do not forget the hidden st), skip 2 st, (2 dc, ch 1, 2 dc) in next st, skip 2 st**,
  3. Repeat ** to **,
  4. sc at the end of the row,
  5. Repeat 1 through 4 for all 4 sides,
  6. sl st to the first (standing) st             [added 4 st per side]

Row 3 (will add 2 st per side):
  1. (hdc, ch 3, hdc) in the corner,
  2. **ch 2, (skip the 2 dc from the previous row), dc in the sc between shells, ch 2, (skip the 2 dc from the previous row), hdc in the 1-chain sp in the middle of a shell**,
  3. Repeat ** to **,
  4. at the end of the row (after putting hdc in the middle of your last shell), ch 2, skip the 2 dc from the previous row, dc in the sc before the corner shell, ch 2,
  5. Repeat 1 through 4 for all 4 sides,
  6. sl st to the first (standing) st             [added 2 st per side]

Row 4 (will add 2 st per side) – on this row, you will only be working on the chain spaces:
  1. (sc, ch 2, 2 sc) in the corner (note there are 1 sc on one end and 2 sc on the other),
  2. skip the hidden st,
  3. 3 sc in each 2-chain sp,
  4. Repeat 1 through 3 for all 4 sides,
  5. sl st to the first (standing) st             [added 2 st per side]

All together, you should have added 11 stitches per side.

Examples: 21, 27, 33, 39, 45, 51, 57, 63, 69, 75, 81, 87, 93, 99, 105, 111, 117, etc. per side

Next week, we will add popcorns.  Week 2 Sneak PeekEnjoy!

15 comments on “1st Inning

  1. Pingback: Nederlandse vertaling Around the Bases CAL week 1 | It's all in a Nutshell

  2. Pingback: Around the Bases CAL week 1 | It's all in a Nutshell

  3. I am loving this already with just one page to printout for the pdf, having just completed Stylecraft’s Lily Pond, I’m however just a week behind with the centre yet to do but really looking forward to the rest … thank you!


  4. Carrie P.
    August 9, 2015

    Just finished the 1st inning. So much fun. thanks


  5. Judy Carroll
    October 14, 2015

    I started my base with 76 and then did inning one. Mine is very wavy, not flat at all. Should I go back and add more to the base or will it flatten out later?


    • ChiChi
      October 15, 2015

      I think there might be two possibilities. Are your sc stitches too tight? Also on the row 3, did you skip 2 st before and after the DC? Throughout the CAL the afghan should be relatively flat. Check out our FB or Ravelry group and post your pictures there. Many people will be able to help you.


  6. Joan
    October 20, 2015

    I don’t understand this. If I’m starting in the middle and it’s a square wouldn’t I make a ring and start there?


    • ChiChi
      October 22, 2015

      You need your own center block to start the 1st inning. You can pick any center you like as long as each side has multiples of 6 – 1 stitches.


    October 20, 2015

    Hi! Can I buy the complete pattern! I’m on a smart phone with no printer!!!!


    • ChiChi
      October 22, 2015

      All the patterns are not ready yet but there will be a full pattern available after the CAL is over. 🙂


  8. nevin Mahmoud
    November 23, 2015

    Would you please tell me what you uaed as tpur center pattern I would hate to start and do it wrong. I absolutely love your work. Thank you .


  9. Gloria
    February 26, 2017

    I would love to buy or download this pattern from you but am unable to find the way.
    It’s the Enchanted Garden. August of 2015 I think. I absolutely love that one.
    Please help.


  10. Julie Bauman
    July 31, 2017

    I have 159 stitches on one side of my square block. How many stitches do I need to start round one of a round the bases? I do not understand what Stitch count 6-2 means. can someone please help me?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


This entry was posted on August 9, 2015 by in Around-the-Bases CAL and tagged , , , .
%d bloggers like this: