Have you ever finished your crochet piece just to discover your stitches are just too tight to push the safety eyes or joints through? It's happened to me a few times. And no matter how much you try to stretch the stitches, you just can't get the eye through them.
It's usually not a problem with softer and more flexible yarns like wool or acrylic, but if you are using tougher yarns like cotton, linen or hemp or plan to use oversized eyes, it may be worth to think ahead and leave little holes in the fabric for your eyes, nose or joints.
It's actually really simple - all you have to do is replace a stitch (or two) with a chain and you'll have a hole in the fabric you can later push the safety eye through.
First, you need to decide where your eyes, nose and joints will go. It's easier if you are using a pattern that gives the placement for them, but if you are not using one (or it's not specified in the pattern), you will have to plan ahead a little and decide the placement as you go.
Here I am making a little bunny and the pattern says to attach the eyes between rounds 12 and 13, leaving 10 stitches between them. So, I will be replacing two sc-s with ch-s on round 12, leaving 10 sc-s between the two (it's usually better to attach the eyes slightly higher and joints slightly lower than the other way round).
Follow the pattern as you would normally and when you reach the place you want the eye (or joint or nose) to be, chain one.
Then skip the next stitch and continue crocheting in the stitch after that. Count that chain as a stitch.
Continue crocheting following the pattern as you would normally. When you reach the chain on the next round, crochet the stitch around the chain, inserting your hook under the chain.
And now you have a little hole in your fabric for your safety eye or nose or joint.
Replacing just one stitch with a chain is usually enough, but if you need to, you can always make the hole bigger. Just keep in mind you need to crochet the same number of chain stitches as you skip stitches and crochet the same number of stitches around the chain the next round.
If you have any questions, do not hesitate to email me or leave a comment below, I am always happy to help.