It can be tricky knowing where to start when you first pick up a crochet hook, so I’ve put together a guide to help and gathered my top tips for crochet beginners.
Now is the perfect time to start a new craft – so why not try crochet? It’s a brilliant new hobby to try. Let me share three of the top reasons that you should pick up crochet today:
- It’s incredibly simple to start. You only need yarn and a crochet hook!
- It keeps your fingers and brain busy – no matter whether the stitch is simple or complex, the simple act of focusing on moving the yarn with your fingers is great for blasting away any worries.
- You end up with some seriously beautiful items at the end of it. It doesn’t matter whether you like making blankets, clothing, toys or more! Each item you make is unique and special and a great reminder of the work and love that you poured into it.
It’s also worth mentioning that crochet is an incredibly mindful hobby. The simple act of picking up a hook and some yarn and practicing crochet can help reduce stress, focus your mind, and improve memory. That’s a pretty great hobby to have – right?
If you’re brand new to crochet, I have a video series with a step-by-step introduction for absolute beginners.
If you’re part of my left handed squad, you can find a version specially for you here.
I’ve also put together this guide, which features 12 of the best tips for beginners. It features advice not only from myself, but five other fabulously talented crocheters and two of the UK’s top crochet magazines. So, whether you’re taking to crochet naturally, or struggling there’s bound to be some helpful advice for you.
Emma from Steel and Stitch starts us off with this important piece of advice, “don’t be afraid to just have a go, the worst thing that will happen is that you’ll learn how NOT to do something! And the more you try it the more confident you’ll get.”
I definitely agree – I always tell people that learning, and even improving at crochet is about patience and practice. No-one is good at something instantly, it takes time. As long as you’re enjoying the process, then don’t give up!
If you’re finding it difficult following tutorials or videos then switch it up!
Try holding your hook and yarn in different ways until you find what suits YOU. There’s no ‘one size fits all’ here. You may also find that your style changes over time as you perfect your skills.
The best place to start is with the basics. You wouldn’t start baking with a souffle, would you? Crochet is the same. Practice the fundamental stitches as these will be the building blocks for more complicated stitches.
If you want to learn the basics then try my beginners series of videos. They’re designed to walk you through the first steps of crochet and build a toolkit of stitches and techniques to help you grow.
Your Crochet and Knitting says, “If you’re struggling with a crochet stitch, don’t be afraid to put the project down for an hour or so, and then come back to it – you will find yourself more relaxed both mentally and in terms of crochet tension, making it a lot easier to have another go at that tricky stitch!“
There’s no point in forcing it. If a stitch isn’t working for you – take a break! Go a grab a soothing cup of tea, some fresh air or even just move along and try the next stitch. We all learn at our own pace. It’s easy to feel frustrated if something just isn’t clicking, but there’s no rush. Crochet should always feel enjoyable, and if it isn’t? Stop for a while.
Once you’ve got the basics, it’s time to start experimenting with new stitches and finding the right hook, yarn and project for you. But, don’t just dive right into a new project – make sure you take the time to prepare properly.
Sarah from Little Duck Crochet says, “Always make a swatch up if you’re attempting a stitch that you are unfamiliar with. It’s great practice and will also help with tension as well.“
Let me tell you a secret….stitch swatches make GREAT face or dish clothes too – so take the time to make them if you’re learning a new stitch!
Swatches can also help make sure you’re using the right tools, Kate from Jellybean Junction says, “make sure you are using the correct hook size for your yarn and tension, don’t be scared to go up or down a hook size if you’re work is warping or not looking right.”
Tension can make or break a project. If your stitches look too loose, or you’re finding it hard to insert your hook – you might be having problems.
I have a video that can help you fix tension worries!
Having the right tools can really help too. While all you technically need is yarn and a hook, there are some bits and pieces that can make life easier!
Heather from The Patchwork Heart says, “get yourself set up with essential crochet kit. You need a pair of small sharp scissors which you keep only for cutting yarn, a magnetic needle keeper is a great help to keep your darning needle handy and I find a small tin useful to keep stitch markers and tape measure in.”
I also like to keep a notepad handy so that I can write notes. Once you start to build your skills and work on larger projects, it’s really handy to have a place to jot down notes about the project. Hook size, measurements, pattern notes, colour choices etc. It’s amazing what you can forget within a day or two!
Having a small collection of yarn pegs can be really helpful too. What’s a yarn peg? It’s simply a peg, wrapped with coloured yarn to help you choose colour schemes you like! Picking out colours for projects can be a little daunting at times – these handy pegs mean you can try out colours before committing to a big project!
Crochet Now have a fab tip for if you want to tackle clothing and are worried about getting the size right, “when crocheting something that comes in different sizes, measure an existing garment that you own and love to wear, that is similar to what you are making to determine which size to make – this is far more reliable that trying to measure yourself and work out the ease of the fit.“
No matter how far along your crochet journey you are, I think this tip from Emma at Potter and Bloom is one to be remembered and is perfect for rounding off the list, “trust yourself, trust the process and enjoy yourself. Every day you’ll learn new skills and intuitively know new things and it will all come with time so stay patient, relax, practice and enjoy yourself.”
Take your time and find your own pace – crochet is a wonderful hobby and skill to have. The only important thing is that you enjoy it.
I’d love to keep up with your progress. If you’re learning to crochet, or if you’re just learning a new skill, be sure to use my hashtag so I can see your lovely work! #bellacococrochet
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Are we Pinterest friends? I’ve recently created a new board that’s packed full of tips, techniques and projects for new crocheters. Catch up with me here: