How to Make the Magic Loop

The magic loop, or ring method, is used for beginning a crochet project worked in rounds and produces a small neatly closed hole in the center of the first round. This method can be used for beginning hats, doilies, amigurumi and other projects worked in rounds.

Instructions might say, “ch 5, join with sl st in first ch to form ring, ch 1, 8 sc in ring.” Working the first round in this manner can often create a large, unsightly open center hole. To eliminate that, you can substitute the magic loop, working the 8 sc in the loop as shown below and then pulling the yarn end to close the hole. Remaining rounds are worked as written in the project instructions.

To practice making the Magic Loop, follow these simple instructions:

Round 1: Wrap yarn around the index finger of your left hand as shown (A).

Wrap yarn around the index finger of your left hand as shown.

Holding crochet hook in your right hand, insert hook under the two yarn loops and hook the yarn coming from the skein or ball (B)

Holding crochet hook in your right hand, insert hook under the two yarn loops and hook the yarn coming from the skein or ball,

Pull loop through.

Pull loop through.

Yarn over hook and pull loop through loop on hook.

Yarn over hook and pull loop through loop on hook.

Chain-1 made.

Chain-1 made.

Insert hook in ring, yarn over and pull up loop,

Insert hook in ring, yarn over and pull up loop,

Yarn over hook and pull through 2 loops on hook.

Yarn over hook and pull through 2 loops on hook.

Single crochet made.

Single crochet made.

Make 7 more single crochet in ring for a total of 8 single crochet.

Work steps F-H for each additional single crochet.

Pull yarn tail to close ring.

Pull yarn tail to close ring.



78 Responses to How to Make the Magic Loop

  1. Diane Keyburn says:

    how many sc to close the ring before pulling string?

  2. Kita says:

    Works great for dc rings too, just yarn over, put it under the ring, y/o and proceed to finish the dc normally. Very handy for dc based beanies!

  3. Micky says:

    This is the easiest way I have seen it thanks!

  4. Carol Gora says:

    Very good instructions

  5. Dottie Lou says:

    Brilliant!!! I have never gotten it right before now!!! Thank you!

  6. Sarah Green says:

    Thank you!! These instructions I can follow! Wow!! You have just made my life so much simpler!!! Thank you!! Thank you!!!! 🙂

  7. Lori Ann Labelle says:

    Thankyou for sharing this,makes it easier to learn the loop.

  8. Amy Mason says:

    I have been struggling with a pattern with beginning this Magic Ring. I have read 3 other sites over and over to try and help me get it just right. This looks so easy. I am ready to go home and try it again right now. This has to be so much better than what I have been attempting to do. Thanks for this as well as for the photos!!

  9. Carla says:

    I’m left handed and this was so easy to understand and do. Thank you.

  10. Charlotte says:

    Best directions ever! Thank you

  11. Susan Stanfield says:

    I have watched so many different videos on how to make the magic circle, but this is the easiest way I have seen so far!! Thank you!

  12. Robin nobles says:

    Thank you so much! These are the easiest instructions for the magic circle I have found! This has made my life so much easier. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  13. Helen says:

    Have tried to follow other instructions. Yours are by far the easiest. Almost got it first time. Thank you

  14. Jill says:

    I’ve been lost at making a magic loop until your instructions! Thank you so much for this easy technique! !

  15. Donna Willingham says:

    I am left handed and thought I would never be able to pick up this stitch. Thank you for the sharing
    the easy directions. Please share more.

  16. Carrol says:

    I have attempted to learn this magic loop many times by trying to follow instructions on YouTube. My attempts have always been a failure. I can not express my gratitude for your clear, concise, and easy to follow instructions. My first try was a success and looked perfect!! Thank you so very, very much.

  17. I have tried several different ways but this is definitely the simplest. Thanks so much for sharing!!

  18. Teresa says:

    Wow. That was so understandable. I was just trying to learn this at my crochet lesson Sunday. Now, if only I could remember what I do next….

  19. Sue McCurdy says:

    You did a great job teaching this method!

  20. Aldiana says:

    How do you start your first row after you have made the stiches?

    • Carol Alexander says:

      Aldiana, The magic loop can replace the beginning slip ring or chain that is joined to form a ring on a pattern, so just follow your pattern. It may mean that you are working single crochet, double crochet or another variation into your ring to begin. It is really that simple!

  21. Sharon says:

    WOW! I love it. Thanks so much. I have tried other instructions to no avail. This was perfect. You are an angel. I have been crocheting for years. Never saw this before.

  22. Agnes says:

    That is without any doubt the easiest magic ring I have tried since starting to learn crochet and the one I will be using in future…many thanks

  23. Sandy says:

    Thank you for this easy method. Wrapping around the index finger twice is so much more stable than holding the double loop.

  24. annieg says:

    Thank you for sharing this technique. I’ve been crocheting for over 40 years and had not heard of this until I saw this on Pinterest today. I am making baby hats as a gift & am thrilled at how much nicer this makes the hat look.

  25. Paula Macdonald says:

    This is the best explanation of magic loop. Thanks.

  26. lori lutz says:

    Your instructions are great, very easy for this senior to follow.

  27. Ashleigh says:

    I don’t understand what I am doing wrong… I’ve used these instructions before and they worked fine, but I just cannot get it to work now… Every time I try to pull the tail, one of the loops tightens but these other does not and I just end up with a loose loop hanging… And thoughts on what I am doing wrong?

    • Carol Alexander says:

      Ashleigh, Pattern Services will be glad to help you. Just give them a call weekdays 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. eastern time at 260-849-4874. Or try watching the video at Annie’s Stitch Guide here.

  28. Leslie V. says:

    Thanks for posting such a great tutorial. I’ve tried following other examples of the magic ring with no luck so I’m happy to have found your site through Pintrest.

  29. Bonnie Allgor says:

    Finally I understand the magic ring. This is the simplest explanation I’ve seen and makes it look so simple. Thank you very much!

  30. Jeanne says:

    Wonderful method. Thanks very much for making my life easier and sharing your knowledge.

  31. Charity Sheppard says:

    THANK YOU for the first magic ring tutorial I’ve been able to understand!!!! Other methods I tried I just COULD NOT understand!!! Yours was perfect!!! I made a magic ring the FIRST TIME!!!! I’m so excited! Thanks again! I’m sharing your link with all the crochet Facebook groups I belong to, because I have heard numerous hookers with my same complaint!

  32. Judy says:

    FINALLY a magic ring tutorial I can do! A million thanks. YOU ROCK!

  33. Bonnie says:

    I would like to add my thanks. I’d read a couple of magic loop tutorials and got thoroughly lost. I have no idea how they made such a simple thing so difficult. Thank you for the easy to follow instructions and super clear photos!

  34. Kim Redbird says:

    Thanks for publishing the first magic circle instructions that are easy to understand! I could never get this before now.

  35. gaell says:

    I had previously given up on ever trying to learn how to do this and wasn’t really searching for a better tutorial, but now I am glad to say because of this one, I have learned how to do the magical loop. Thank you!

  36. Stephanie Gale says:

    I have just started a crochet beanie project in which the pattern calls for the magic ring. So just like everyone else here I’ve googled around and these instructions have been the ONLY ones I’ve been able to follow and ACTUALLY get the hang of it! Thank you sooo sooo much for posting this!!! 😊

  37. Janette Cosier says:

    Thank-you for these instructions. They are great and so easy to follow. The only thing is, as Ashleigh stated above, I don’t understand what I am doing wrong. Every time I try to pull the tail, one of the loops tightens but the other does not, and I just end up with a loose loop hanging. Please could you tell me what I am doing wrong and how can I pull it up evenly. I live in Australia and am very grateful for your help.

    • Carol Alexander says:

      Janette, Sorry you are struggling to make this work. The magic loop is also known as a slip ring and this video from our Annie’s website just might help you out!

    • Lynn says:

      I had the same problem. I ended up tightening the 1st loop separately then pulling the string to tighten the second loop.

  38. Rosanne says:

    Thank you! This is much easier than the way I was doing it.

  39. Gloria says:

    I like your instructions the best. This is the easiest I have ever seen. Thank you so much for sharing.

  40. vee says:

    I’m hard of hearing, so YouTube doesn’t always work for me. This method was the only one I was able to follow after 24 hours of looking. Thanks so much 🙂

  41. Beryl says:

    Brilliant! Thanks very much for the easy to follow instructions. They work every time!

  42. Nav says:

    After watching endless tutorials and reading numerous sites, I have finally learned this thanks to your instructions. Awesome!

  43. Martha says:

    I have looked at many examples of “magic loop” and I can say yours is the BEST and easiest. Thanks for sharing.

  44. BDundee says:

    Thank you for this tutorial. I already know how to make a magic loop, but I am wondering what do you do with the tail? I cannot for the life of me find an answer online for this questions.
    Obviously you can’t just cut it off.
    Any suggestions?

    • Carol Alexander says:

      That is correct, don’t just cut the tail off as you run the risk of your magic loop coming apart. When your project is done, weave the tail securely into the body of your finished piece.

  45. Amy says:

    I am just learning this stitch as well. I have my pattern but I’m confused on the ring. Do you always start with single crochets to make the ring or do you make it in reference to the pattern: Make a magic circle and work 6 hdc into the magic circle.
    So do I make a magic circle with the sc or the hdc?

    • Carol Alexander says:

      Amy, this is a very good question. Our example used single crochet stitches, but you should work the stitches indicated on your pattern.

  46. Kim says:

    Great instructions, easy to follow. Will be saving this site for future use – thank you!

  47. Olivia says:

    Thank you so much! This is the best tutorial I have found to date. I appreciate the time and effort you’ve dedicated to being so helpful.

  48. Linda says:

    Finally!!!! Instructions on how to do the magic ring that I can understand. Thank you so much.

  49. Shelee says:

    Great instructions. Thank you

  50. Ann says:

    At long last I’m able to do the Magic Ring. Thank You

  51. Luci says:

    This is the very first time I’m crocheting so please forgive my ignorance. This was the best tutorial on making the magic loop and I was able to use it to make a tiny little beanie for a doll I’m making. Here comes the dumb question, lol, if I wanted to make a beanie for a person, do I make the original loop larger so that the beanie will be bigger as I’m working around? I’m not using a pattern because I originally just wanted to make a quick doll beanie but maybe I’ll buy a pattern so I can make them for the family and do it the right way! I usually wing things, but I’d like to learn the proper techniques. Thanks again for this great tutorial!

    • Jackie Daugherty says:

      Luci, no question is ever a dumb question! The magic loop is a technique that can be used for any number of stitches or any size yarn. Oftentimes patterns will direct you to begin with a slip ring or magic circle, in which case, the pattern will indicate the number of stitches you need to make. But if you are just ‘winging it’ working 8-10 stitches into the magic ring with a worsted weight is a good place to begin.

      • Luci says:

        Hi Jackie, thank you for replying. I did what you suggested and it did work for what I needed to do. I also purchased a few beginner patterns because I do want to learn all the proper techniques and it’s a fun, relaxing new hobby!! I’m going to take a few lessons at Joanns that they have coming up in October.

        Thank you again for this tutorial, you explain everything very clearly, better than any of the youtube videos I’ve seen.

  52. Lucy says:

    THANK YOU! I have struggled with the magic ring/loop for sometime now and I had given up. This is soooo easy. THANKS!

  53. Norma says:

    Could not believe I finally figured this out after trying so many times, then I happened to find you, and light bulb moment. You made it so simple. Thank you.

  54. Amelia Olivas says:

    This is the best demo ever! I would try to make the magic loop, but always a struggle for it to work out smoothly…now it’s a breeze ! Thanks !!

  55. Lois Angers says:

    I join the writers above in congratulating you. This is much better than trying to follow the U-Tube directions! First time I could actually do it! Thanks so much for facilitating.

  56. Carol says:

    So glad you explained it THIS way, with pictures and details. SO SO SO much time wasted watching tons of videos and POOF, here you are with the perfect tutorial! THANK YOU!

  57. Kathy says:

    Oh my! You made it so simple. Thank you! I know I can do it now.

  58. Suzanne says:

    Finally! I found instructions for this stitch that made sense. It was so hard to follow on YouTube videos and none of the other written tutorials I saw were as clear as this one. I was able to make the loop after a couple of tries and now I’m practicing crocheting circles. Thank you for these great instructions!

  59. Diane Snarski says:

    Excellent visual and printed instructions!

  60. Marilyn says:

    This is the only magic ring instructions that hasn’t left me scratching my head! Now, I’m making medallions and I am weaving the ends as I go on the motifs. Since the motifs are only about 3 inches across, I do trim the ends of yarn a bit before weaving them in. I hope they don’t unravel because I am weaving my ends in as I go. Is there any way short of running the unjoined motifs through the washer and dryer to test the strength of the weave?

    • Jackie Daugherty says:

      Marilyn, that is a very good question! I am overly careful when it comes to weaving in the tails on projects. When using the magic loop to begin a motif, I do crochet over the tail on the first round, but I also take a yarn needle and weave the tail in the opposite direction on the back to make it more secure. I also weave in all tails at least 3 inches. My rule is, take the time to do it right the first time and you’ll not have to go back over your work later! As far as testing your motifs, I would give them a firm tug in all directions; if they stay together and the ends don’t pop out, you’re good to go!

  61. Theresa Mayfield says:

    WOW! Thank You for providing simple, detailed directions in both visual & written formats !!! I was able to crochet the magic ring on a Chemo Baseball Cap, that I’m making for a very good friend, the very FIRST time I tried it! Even though I’ve been crocheting for many years
    Again, THANK YOU for making this soooooo easy!
    Jackie, YOU ROCK!!!

  62. Louisa Tobias says:

    Finally, after looking at countless tutorials, I found you! Your photographs and instructions make perfect sense & I’ve now made my first magic circle. I’ve been trying for a long time to learn this, since so many patterns now use it. Just a thought, though: Do you think the traditional way of making a circle is unattractive? I never thought about the “hole”.

  63. maureen says:

    I can work the most complicated crochet pattern on the planet, but have never been able to get this simple beginning step right. This is the BEST, EASIEST explanation EVERRRRRR! Thank you SO much for explaining it.

  64. Cassie says:

    Thank you so much for sharing! By following your directions, it was very easy for me to start my new project!!!

  65. Diane says:

    This is so much easier than the way I was originally taught! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  66. Mary Ann Andersen says:

    Many thanks for your tutorial…I’m 78 and could never figure out the magic ring. Now I’m raring to go! 🙂

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