With so many different crafts to choose from, you may be overwhelmed with choices. From knitting to cross-stitching to scrapbooking and bullet journaling, it can be intimidating to start a new hobby.
However, you’re in luck! Crocheting is one of the most beginner-friendly crafts as it’s easy to pick up, and you’ll quickly see progress. You’ll also find plenty of crocheting tips to help you along your learning process.
Though crocheting for beginners is a great way to learn a new hobby, you may not know where to start. Keep reading for some of the most essential tips that new crocheters should know before starting.
1. Learn Pattern Literacy
You may be wondering, “what is crocheting exactly, anyway?” Crocheting uses a series of interlocked loops to create material. In order to crochet, you’ll need to follow a pattern.
One of the first steps in crocheting for beginners is learning to read different patterns. This can be one of the more difficult steps, as it is time-consuming.
Looking at crocheting patterns may seem like reading another language. However, once you become familiar with the shorthand and abbreviations, you’ll be able to comprehend the pattern easier.
If you’re still struggling to read the pattern as you crochet, you’ll want to go through and scan it over before starting your project. This will help keep you seamlessly stitching and reduces the number of breaks you’ll take to stop and look over the pattern.
2. Yarn Matters
You may notice that some patterns require specific types of yarn. Though at first glance, all yarn seems the same, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Some yarns are much sturdier and better suited for specific projects. If you’re making a pair of socks, you don’t want to pick a bulky, thick yarn. Instead, choosing a lighter, more delicate yarn can provide more comfortable wear.
Similarly, some yarns drape better than others. This can impact the appearance of the finished product. If you’re making a shawl with yarn that’s too stiff, you won’t get the delicacy and movement you’re looking for.
3. Ball Your Yarn
Before you begin your project, you’ll want to roll the skein of yarn into a ball. Though this may seem like an unnecessary step, you’ll kick yourself for not doing it sooner!
A skein is the standard shape that yarn comes in. A skein is loosely wrapped, making it easy to unravel. However, this loose wrapping can make the yarn more prone to tangles.
If you choose to crochet directly from the skein, you may spend more time untangling the yarn than actually crocheting.
4. Try Different Hooks
Just as you’ll need to try out different yarns to find the best fit for each project, there are various hooks you can try. You’ll need to consider the material the hook is made from and the size of the tool.
A hook is one of the only essential crocheting tools you’ll need, as you can’t work without it!
In general, the larger the hook is, the bigger the stitch will be. Brigger hooks are great for handling heavier materials, while smaller tools can help create delicate details like lace or doilies.
Luckily, these crochet hooks come in various shapes and sizes, meaning you can find the perfect match for your next project. You’ll also need to consider the weight of the hook as it could feel heavy in your hand.
5. Keep the Tension Right
Often, you may find that your stitches are too tight or too loose. This can impact how the end result turns out.
Everyone crochets differently. In order to make the pattern work for you, you’ll need to “swatch” the pattern. This helps you keep the tension of your stitch in line with what the pattern calls for.
Swatching is especially important for wearable items, as you may end up putting it on only to find that the stitches are either too tight or too loose.
You’ll also need to practice keeping your tension consistent. There’s nothing worse than starting a piece too loose, only to finish it with extremely tight stitches.
Keeping your stitches consistent is crucial to crocheting a uniform and improving the appearance.
6. Practice Makes Perfect
Though that cute crocheted top that pops up on your Pinterest board might seem like a great place to start, it will only lead to frustration.
Starting simple and practicing consistently is essential to succeeding.
You’ll also need to be comfortable holding the yarn in one hand while crocheting in the other. This can be challenging, as you’re still getting a feel for the material and hook.
Finally, you’ll want to get comfortable ripping out your stitches. Known as “frogging” (rip-it, rip-it), this is crucial to learning how to stitch. Though it can be frustrating to rip your hard work out, it can be helpful to redo your rows for practice.
7. Improve Hand-Eye Coordination
Finally, you’ll want to work on your hand-eye coordination. This will make the process of crocheting much easier, as you’ll feel more comfortable handling the hook while counting your stitches with your eyes.
There are plenty of ways to start improving your coordination. From typing and playing video games to juggling and shuffling cards, enhancing your agility and developing a keen eye will pay off in the long run.
As you continue crocheting, you’ll begin to rely on your muscle memory. Each new stitch you get comfortable with will increase your speed, helping you finish projects faster and more efficiently.
Keep These Crafty Crocheting Tips in Mind
Though crocheting as a beginner might seem too intense, you’ll find that it’s a fun way to spend your time while creating beautiful works of art.
Remember, you don’t need the most expensive crocheting supplies in order to make something you’re proud of. As long as you stick to your new hobby, that’s all that matters.
If you found these crocheting tips helpful, you’ll want to check out the rest of our website. There, you’ll find more great lifestyle tips and tricks to help you take your craft to the next level.