Crocheting is a fun hobby that allows you to make beautiful, unique, and practical creations. Plus, it’s good for you! Once you have a handle on a few different stitches and techniques, crocheting can be meditative and relaxing, which can reduce stress and anxiety. However, there’s a learning curve for any new hobby. So if you’re picking up your crochet hook and yarn for the first time, don’t get discouraged. Here are a few key tips for how to crochet for beginners.
1. Gather Your Crochet Supplies Ahead of Time
There’s nothing worse than sitting down to start your new hobby, getting a few stitches in, and realizing you don’t have everything you need to continue your project. To make it easier on yourself, double check that you have everything you need within arm’s reach before you begin.
Required materials for each project may slightly vary, but generally, you’ll need the following basic crochet supplies for beginners:
- Crochet hooks (when you’re first getting started, it can be helpful to buy a variety pack of different sizes)
- Scissors or yarn snippers
- Stitch markers
- Tape measure or ruler
- Darning needle
If you want to be extra sure you have everything you need, consider purchasing crochet kits. These all-in-one kits include everything you need to make a particular project, including yarn, crochet hooks, stitch markers, needles, and a pattern. Start with crochet kits for beginners—for projects like throw blankets or scarves—and progress from there!
2. Consider Starting With Yarn Remnants
If you’re interested in learning how to crochet, but you’re not sure you want to invest in too many crochet supplies, consider using yarn remnants for your first project. (Yarn remnants simply means leftover yarn from other projects.)
Of course, if you’re a beginner, you may not have any leftover yarn. That’s not a problem! Do you have any friends who knit or crochet? Ask if they wouldn’t mind giving you some of their leftover yarn. Or, try asking local craft or church groups if they have any yarn to spare. You can also often find inexpensive yarn remnants at thrift stores, at garage sales, or online on eBay or Etsy.
3. Look for Free Patterns
Until you start to get the hang of crochet and know you want to pursue it as a hobby, you may be hesitant to buy crochet patterns. Fortunately, you can find hundreds of free crochet patterns online for all kinds of creations, from scarves to cute amigurumi dolls. You will likely need to spend a little time learning how to read the patterns—they are typically written with several different abbreviations and terms—but once you know the lingo, you can create nearly any type of project. Try browsing craft blogs or doing a simple Google search, and you’ll find a range of unique, modern crochet patterns—free!
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4. Start With Something Simple
The first thing a beginner should crochet is something simple, like a granny square—or a piece of square fabric made by crocheting in rounds from the center outward. Granny squares are generally easy crochet patterns for beginners and take under an hour to complete. And, if you decide you do enjoy crocheting and get in a groove, you can connect several granny squares to create a larger blanket.
5. Don’t Put Pressure on Yourself
If you’re just starting to crochet, don’t expect to create a masterpiece on your first try. Putting that kind of pressure on yourself can cause frustration and tension—and crocheting is supposed to be relaxing! Approach it with a calm mindset, without worrying too much about whether you’re holding the crochet hooks perfectly or achieving precise tension. This will allow you to practice and gradually improve while realizing the meditative and soothing benefits of crochet.
6. Take Your Time
Even for the most experienced crocheter, creating something beautiful takes time. Don’t rush your projects, and don’t be afraid to take breaks. Holding a crochet hook and yarn for long periods of time can cause tension and pain—and in some cases, even carpal tunnel—so work in short time increments, especially as you’re first getting started.
7. Crochet With a Friend or Group
You can certainly pick up crocheting by yourself, but it can be extremely helpful to learn alongside others—no matter their level of experience. If you surround yourself with more knowledgeable crocheters, you can learn from their work and ask for their feedback. On the other hand, learning among other beginners can be helpful as well, as you work through new stitches and troubleshoot projects together.
8. Take a Class
One of the best ways to start crocheting is to take a class. A class, whether online or in person, will walk you through the basics of crochet from start to finish—covering basic crochet supplies for beginners, how to read a crochet pattern, several different types of stitches, and much more. The teacher can provide helpful tips and tricks, and, particularly with an online class, you can follow along at your own pace.
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9. Enjoy Yourself
Above all, have fun! Picking up a new hobby isn’t about adding stress or pressure to your life. In fact, it’s quite the opposite—your new crochet hobby should be enjoyable and relaxing. Be patient, take breaks, and embrace your (inevitable) mistakes as part of the process. With time and practice, you’ll be making all sorts of unique and beautiful crochet creations.
Enjoy the Journey of Learning to Crochet for Beginners
As a new crocheter, take advantage of the abundance of resources at your fingertips. From classes to free patterns to crochet kits for beginners, you have access to everything you need to start—and maintain—your new hobby. Now it’s time for the fun part: Grab your hook and get started!