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Shell Stitch Tutorial

Updated April 27, 2023

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You’ll be shouting SHELL YEAH! to this fun and simple new stitch tutorial. The absolutely beautiful Shell Stitch uses basic crochet stitches to build up a colourful and textured pattern that’s perfect for personalising your projects. Why not use it to make a mermaid cowl? Or perhaps a seashore-themed cushion?

One of the best things about colourful stitches like the Shell Stitch are that it’s really easy to see if you’ve made a mistake, so it’s a great stitch for beginner hookers to develop their knowledge. It might look intricate and complicated, but with this tutorial and video you’ll be SHORE to master it in no time!


  • Blankets
  • Shawls
  • Scarfs and cowls
  • Hats and gloves
  • Accessories



Yarn: For this tutorial I used Stylecraft Special DK.

Hook: Hook to match yarn and your desired gauge. I used a 5mm.


Darning Needle


These instructions for Shell Stitch are written in UK terms

This pattern gives you the basic principles for the Shell Stitch, designed to help you create your own projects.

Video tutorial can be found at the base of the post.

Crochet Terms

Slip Stitch (ss): Insert hook into stitch, yarn over, pull yarn through stitch and loop on hook.

Stitch(es) (st(s))

Chain (ch): Yarn over, pull through one loop on hook.

Double Crochet (dc): Insert your hook into the chain or stitch, yarn over and pull through (you will have two loops on the hook) yarn over and pull the yarn through both loops on the hook.

Treble Crochet (tr): Yarn over, insert hook into stitch or space, yarn over, draw up a loop (3 loops on hook), (yarn over, draw through 2 loops) twice.

Unsure of the differences between UK and US terms? Need a refresher on how to do your stitches? In my ‘How to crochet: A handy reference guide’ EBook I help you with all of these terms and you can always have them to hand! You will also get exclusive access to free video instructions. You can find my EBook HERE.


Row 1: dc in 2nd ch from the hook, *skip 2chs, 5tr into next st, skip 2chs, dc* repeat until the end of the row. (tie off and change colour if you like at this point, or continue with the same colour)

Row 2: ch1, 3tr into same st, *skip 2ch, dc, skip 2ch, 5tr* until the end, skip 2ch, 3tr into last ch, dc into same space and tie off.

Row 3: ch1, *skip 2chs, 5tr into next st, skip 2chs, dc* repeat until the end of the row. (tie off and change colour if needed)

Repeat row 2 and 3 until you reach your desired size.

A swatch of crochet shell stitch in mustard and white yarn.


Learning a new stitch is one of the BEST parts of crochet – it makes it fun and simple to customise your own projects and boosts your knowledge. Why not browse my Stitch Library archive to learn something new today?

If you LOVE this stitch, then I think you’ll also enjoy:

A swatch of ripple stitch in shades of white, pink, aqua, purple and peach.
The Ripple Stitch
A swatch of Rolling Waves stitch in coral and white.
Rolling Waves
A swatch of granny stripe stitch in purple and white.
Granny Stripe

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  • Julie
    November 5, 2021 at 6:54 pm

    I don’t see an indication for how many chain stitches you need for the foundation on this tutorial. Would you mind listing that?

    • BellaCocoTeam
      November 9, 2021 at 1:16 pm

      Hi Julie at the beginning of the tutorial it tells you that your foundation chain has to be in multiples of 6 (so you can choose the width that you require) in the tutorial I did 24 🙂


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