This post contains affiliate links. It helps my bottom line when you click on one and load up your cart, so thanks in advance!
Have you ever seen a pattern instruct you to crochet in the back loop of a stitch? Sometimes this may be written like "sc blo" or "hdc in BL". There may be other ways that designers notate this, but if you aren't sure what an abbreviation means, check the intro material of the pattern for an abbreviation list, check the back pages of a magazine or book for a list of abbreviations, or contact the designer or publisher if you aren't sure.
Stitching into the back loop only is very simple. Normally, when crocheting into a stitch, you should work under both loops. Look at the picture above. The last row you see worked (in orange), has several single crochet stitches. The tops of them each look like two little parallel lines. Sort of like an equals sign. Sometimes, they look a little more like a sideways 'v'. To work a typical crochet stitch, insert your crochet hook under both of these strands of yarn.
To work through the back loop only, you will insert your hook only under the strand furthest from you, the strand towards the back of your fabric. Notice that which loop is the front, and which is the back, changes when you turn your fabric. The front loop is the one closest to you when it is time to work the stitch. The back loop is the one furthest from you when it is time to work the stitch.
Looking at the picture above, you can see that I inserted my hook under just the back loop. You can see the front loop still, just under my hook, and my hook only has one strand of yarn over the top of it.
Once you've inserted your hook, you complete the single crochet stitch as usual: yarn over, pull up a loop, yarn over, pull through both of the loops on your hook.
You can see in the picture above, my newly completed single crochet stitch, plus a few others. You might notice that you can still see the unused front loops forming something of a line under my newly-formed stitches. Back-loop-only, or front-loop-only stitches are often used for just this reason, to leave this line on the fabric, to provide texture, or a certain look.
I hope this has been helpful to you! Please visit me on my Facebook page, Instagram, or Twitter! I'd love to see you around!